Different Types of Ladles

As someone who loves to cook and experiment in the kitchen, one of my biggest pet peeves is messy counters dripping with soup, sauces, or condiments splashed while dishing out food. Thankfully, we have the ladles to get the job done perfectly.

A ladle can be described as a large scoop that is used for removing food, mostly liquid food, from large and deep pots without splashing. Thanks to the long handle, you can also use it to stir the food as it cooks without worrying about burning or tiring your hand excessively. Anyone who has ever tried dishing out soup or stew with a spoon would agree that ladles are an essential tool for every kitchen.

However, as you probably already know, not all ladles are built the same way. In fact, there are several different types of ladles – each designed for a different purpose. We will get to that in a bit. First, let’s take a look at how to choose the perfect ladle that matches your cooking style and allows you to dish out your favorite foods like a pro.        

How to Choose any different types of Ladles

Different Types of Ladles

Picking a ladle may not seem like a tough job. However, when you are out in the market, the sheer number of options available can steer you in the wrong direction. Instead of buying the first ladle, you see, here are some things to consider when choosing this important kitchen utensil.  

  • Size of the Ladle

Ladles come in different sizes ranging from a very small spoon to a large ladle designed for pouring food in large quantities. Generally, the diameter of a ladle varies between 4 and 12cm. The right ladle size depends on what you intend to use it for.

For example, if you are looking for a soup ladle for, let’s say, pouring a single serving, a ladle with a diameter of 4 to 6 cm should get the job done. On the other hand, if you need a ladle for catering purposes where large quantities of food are involved, it is best to look for bigger ladles with a diameter of around 12cm or more.

  • Handle Size

The second thing to consider while choosing a ladle is the size of the handle. The best way to determine the right handle size is to consider the depth of the container from which you will use the ladle to draw food. The rightly sized ladle would sit comfortably on the rim of the pot.  

Make sure that the handle is long enough to allow you to hold the ladle comfortably as you transfer food or liquid components from the container. A longer handle will also help balance the ladle and keep it from slipping into the pot.

  • Material

Ladles are available in different materials, including plastic, wood, metal, and even glass. A plastic ladle is generally cheaper as compared to other options. If you decide to go for a plastic scoop, it is best to opt for a nylon one to make sure it can withstand high temperatures.

Wooden ladles and glass ladles are some great options. However, their durability depends on the manufacturer. As a result, your wooden ladle or glass ladle may last anywhere from a few months to a lifetime.

On the other hand, if you are looking for a sturdy ladle that can handle the heat, a stainless steel ladle might be the best choice for you. The only problem is that stainless steel ladles are generally heavier than other options, which means using them to stir or dish out food can easily tire your hand.

Types of Ladles

Now that you know how to choose the right ladle, the only remaining question is which type of ladle to choose? In order to make this decision, it is important to familiarize yourself with different types of ladles and understand what they are used for. Without further ado – let’s take a look at some popular kinds of ladles available in the market.

Sauce Ladle: IMEEA Small Sauce Ladle with Pouring Spout

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The IMEEA Small Sauce Ladle with Pouring Spout is a great tool for those who want to make sauces and gravies. The ladle has a spout that makes pouring easy, and the long handle ensures that your hands stay away from the heat.

The IMEEA Small Sauce Ladle comes with a spout to easily control what, where and how much you’d like to pour.

Different Types of Ladles: sauce ladle

Are you tired of those unpleasant sauce dollops on your plate? All you need is a good quality sauce ladle. You can think of a sauce ladle as a type of presentation cutlery. In other words, your sauce ladle can do more than just help you transfer your homemade sauce from the container to the plate without dripping.

It allows you to drizzle the sauce in any way you want. For maximum ease of use, opt for a sauce ladle that has a “pouring lip” on one or both sides. This distinctive shape of the ladle makes it ideal for pouring the sauce.

Another reason why you may want to invest in a sauce ladle is that it makes it easier to pour a consistent portion of sauce when dishing out food on plates or topping a dish with sauce.

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Soup Ladles: OXO Good Grips Stainless Steel Ladle

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According to their website the OXO Good Strips Stainless Steel soup laddle, which is a best seller on Amazon features:

  • Sturdy stainless steel ladle neatly scoops soups, sauces and gravy
  • Dual-sided pour spouts make serving easy for right-and left-handed users
  • Angled design keeps liquid in the ladle when scooping
  • Soft, comfortable, non-slip grip, even when wet
  • Polished design for kitchen-to-table appeal
  • Dishwasher safe
Different Types of Ladles: soup ladle

Soup ladles are quite close to sauce ladles in shape. However, there’s one major difference between a soup ladle and a sauce ladle.

Ladles with handles equal to or smaller than 5 inches are generally used for serving a sauce or condiment. On the other hand, soup ladles have much longer ladles, reaching up to 15 inches or more. Soup ladles are designed with longer handles because you need something a little larger to serve soup. The long handle can therefore support the bigger scoop.   

Soup ladles are kind of multipurpose in the sense that they can double as punch bowl ladles. Whether it’s a glass ladle, wooden ladle, or stainless steel ladle, if it is designed for pouring soup, it will pour punch just as well. Soup ladles also work well for serving dishes that come with a lot of sauce or broth, such as creamy pasta with loads of sauce.

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Slotted Ladle: RSVP International Endurance Kitchen Slotted Ladle

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The RSVP International Endurance Kitchen Collection Pierced Straining Tools, Ladle is a great option for those who are looking for a durable and reliable ladle. This ladle is made from 18/8 stainless steel, which makes it resistant to rust and corrosion. Additionally, the pierced straining design allows you to easily strain liquids from pots and pans.

According to their website this laddle features:

  • Made of highly polished 18/8 stainless steel for long-lasting use
  • Perfect for serving, use this perforated spoon to separate solid foods from liquids
  • Hole in handle for easy storage by wall mounting, putting on a ring, or a chain
  • Measures 12.75″ long, 3.25 wide, 2.5″ depth of bowl and a 10.5″ handle
  • Dishwasher safe. Place securely in dishwasher securely for easy cleaning
Different Types of Ladles: slotted ladle

A slotted ladle can be best described as a cross between a regular ladle and a sieve designed to serve a niche purpose. Owing to the slotted design of the scoop, it cannot be used to transfer soups, stews, sauces, or beverages. Instead, it is used to scoop food that is stored in a liquid or sauce but needs to be served without it.

While slotted ladles are typically used for poring canned foods, such as canned fruits or veggies, you can also use them around the kitchen in many other ways. For example, you can use your slotted ladle to retrieve a boiled egg or other small foods that are cooked in liquids.

Another popular use of slotted ladles is found in serving absinthe. It is a kind of alcohol, which is served by placing a sugar cube in a slotted ladle over the alcohol while cold water is poured over it to add a sweet flavor to the drink.    

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Punch Bowl Ladles: RSVP International Endurance Canning Collection Punch Ladle, 13-1/2″

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The RSVP International Endurance Canning Collection Non-Reactive 18/8 Stainless Steel, Dishwasher Safe, Ladle is perfect for any kitchen. It is made of durable stainless steel and is dishwasher safe, making it easy to clean. This ladle is also non-reactive, making it a great choice for canning.


  • 12-inch long handle, 13-1/2-inch long overall
  • The 1 cup capacity is perfect for serving and pouring; take the mess out of putting food where you want it to be.
  • Dual spouts allow for pouring liquids or gravy from either side.
  • Made of durable 18/8 stainless steel
  • Dishwasher safe
Different Types of Ladles: punch bowl ladle

While you can always use your soup ladles for pouring punch, if you want to serve that punch right, it is best to get a punch bowl ladle. It is the perfect way to serve a wide variety of beverages at your gatherings in style.

These ladles come in different styles with a great focus on the looks. The handle is also rather stylish with a defining curve. However, punch bowl ladles with straight handles may also be available.

While you may be able to find punch bowl ladles in different materials, most people prefer to use glass ladles or plastic ladles for the purpose. It is mainly because these ladles generally rank higher on the aesthetic appeal scale.

Moreover, regardless of the punch or juice, you have prepared to serve your guests, the minimalist design of glass and plastic ladles will match any color of the punch bowl.  

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The Bottom Line on Different Types of Ladles

This brings us to the end of our short guide on ladles. If you are ready to buy a new ladle, you might be wondering what us the best ladles to buy. Well, the truth is there is no straightforward answer to that question.

The choice of the best ladle boils down to your needs and personal preferences. For example, if comfort is your top priority, you may want to consider ergonomic options, such as the OXO Good Grips Brushed Stainless Steel Ladle.

The subtle, soft, and non-slip grip makes it a great option for frequent stirring and serving. On the other hand, if you are looking to add some fun to your cooking sessions and make sure your ladle never slips into the pot, you can opt for Nessie Ladle Green that comes with tiny feet, allowing the ladle to stand in the pot.

These are some of the options. The market is flooded with numerous ladle choices. However, you have nothing to worry about. Now that you know all about the different types of ladles, you are all set to make the right choice and pick the perfect ladle for your kitchen.

What are the benefits of Different Types of Ladles

Different Types of Ladles have benefits that range from versatility to ergonomics. Here are some of the most popular Types of Ladles and their benefits:

  • The Spaghetti Ladle is a long, thin ladle that is perfect for scooping up long pasta noodles. Its narrow design also makes it great for reaching into deep pots and getting a good grip on slippery foods.
  • The Soup Ladle is the most versatile type of ladle, as it can be used for everything from soups and stews to sauces and gravy. It has a deep bowl that is perfect for scooping up large amounts of liquid, and its long handle keeps your hands away from the heat.
  • The Serving Ladle is a large ladle that is perfect for serving food at parties and events. It has a wide bowl that makes it easy to scoop up large portions of food, and its long handle ensures that your hands stay clean.
  • The Punch Ladle is a large ladle with a long handle that is perfect for serving punch at parties and events. Its wide bowl makes it easy to scoop up large portions of punch, and its long handle ensures that your hands stay clean.
  • The Gravy Ladle is a small ladle with a long handle that is perfect for spooning gravy onto plates. Its small size makes it easy to control the amount of gravy you spoon, and its long handle ensures that your hands stay clean.
  • The Chocolate Ladle is a small ladle with a curved bowl that is perfect for scooping up melted chocolate. Its small size makes it easy to control the amount of chocolate you scoop, and its curved bowl ensures that all of the chocolate ends up in your mouth!

How to Choose the Best Types of Ladles

A ladle is a kitchen tool used to scoop and pour liquids. There are many different types of ladles, each with their own unique purpose. When choosing a ladle, it’s important to consider the type of liquid you’ll be using it for, as well as the size of the pot or container you’ll be scooping from.

Features To Look for in Different Types of Ladles

When looking for a ladle, there are several factors you should consider. The type of ladle will determine the features you should look for.

Some ladles, like soup ladles or gravy ladles, have a deep bowl so that they can scoop up a lot of food at once. Others, like ice cream scoops or pancake batter dispensers, have a shallower bowl. Some ladles have a long handle so you can reach into deep pots, while others have a short handle for easier maneuverability.

Here are some features to keep in mind when shopping for different types of ladles:

  • The size of the bowl
  • The depth of the bowl
  • The length of the handle
  • The material the ladle is made of
  • Whether the ladle is dishwasher safe

When you know what type of ladle you need, you can narrow down your options and find the perfect one for your kitchen.

Types of Ladles:

Soup Ladles:

  • Soup ladles have a deep bowl so that they can scoop up a lot of food at once.
  • Soup ladles typically have a long handle so you can reach into deep pots.
  • They have a long handle so you can reach into deep pots.
  • The material the ladle is made of determines how well it retains heat.
  • Soup ladles are dishwasher safe.

Gravy Ladles:

  • Gravy ladles have a deep bowl so that they can-The size of the bowl and the depth of the bowl are important factors to consider when purchasing a soup ladle.

Ice Cream Scoops:

  • Ice cream scoops have a shallower bowl.
  • Some ice cream scoops have a long handle, while others have a short handle for easier maneuverability.
  • The material the scoop is made of affects how well it scoops and how easy it is to clean.
  • Ice cream scoops are dishwasher safe.

Pancake Batter Dispensers:

  • Pancake batter dispensers have a shallower bowl.
  • Pancake batter dispensers have a short handle for easier maneuverability.
  • The material the dispenser is made of affects how well it dispenses batter and how easy it is to clean.
  • Pancake batter dispensers are dishwasher safe.