Tool of the Trade: Citrus Reamer

This simple handheld utensil beats fancier, pricier options at getting the most juice from any kind of citrus.

oxo gg citrus reamer
Photo: Courtesy of OXO

Whether you're a crafter or a home cook, it often feels like there are so many tools you can purchase to help you get a job done. Which ones are really worth investing in? Our editors are here to help. From everyday essentials to more obscure must-haves that will take your practice to the next level, we're breaking it all down. Each week Tool of the Trade will highlight one must-have crafting or cooking item you need to know about.

Get the maximum amount of juice from any size citrus fruit, from tiny key limes to jumbo grapefruit, with this simple, affordable handheld tool. A citrus reamer is exactly what you need for making everything from fresh orange juice to margaritas to lemon bars and lots more.

What Is It?

A citrus reamer is a handheld juicer shaped like an inverted cone with a broad, blunt handle at the base. The cone has a ridged surface designed to get the greatest amount of juice from halved citrus fruits.

How Is It Used?

To juice citrus with a reamer, first cut the fruits in half through the "equator." Pick up a citrus half in one hand and the reamer in the other hand, and hold them over a bowl to catch the juices. Insert the pointed tip of the reamer into the center of the fruit. Twist and rotate the reamer while simultaneously pressing the fruit against it. Continue until no more juice comes out of the fruit.

Here's a juicy tip on how to make the job even easier–and get even more juice out of each lime, lemon, orange, or grapefruit: first put the (uncut) fruit in a bowl or bin and cover it with hot tap water. Let soak for 20 minutes to warm up the fruit. Then, roll each piece of fruit on the counter, applying pressure with your palm, to further soften the flesh and break open the membranes. Finally, cut each fruit in half and juice it with a reamer, and you'll be amazed at how much juice pours out.

Note: If your recipe also calls for citrus zest, you'll find it much easier to zest the citrus before you cut and juice it.

Why We Love It

There are many kinds of juicers on the market, both manual and electric. Many of the manual ones look pretty but are surprisingly expensive and surprisingly ineffective. The electric ones are even more expensive, very heavy, and take up a lot of room. Unless you run a lemonade stand or a margarita bar, you probably don't need one of these. Enter the reamer, which is pleasantly affordable, compact, and durable. And unlike the "press" type of manual juicers, a reamer works well for both small and large citrus fruits thanks to its flared shape.

Our Editor's Pick

We love the OXO Good Grips Wooden Reamer. Its solid beech wood construction doesn't react with the acid in citrus; its handle is comfortable to grip, and its tip and ridges are sharp enough to juice those fruits without straining your wrists.

Was this page helpful?
Related Articles