Did you know there are other ways to use your cheese grater — cheese grater hacks, if you will — besides grating cheese? You can not only grate these eight foods with your trusty cheese grater, doing so will save you time!
Sure, you could get out the food processor, attach the grating blade, run these foods through it, then wash the whole thing. But that’s an awful lot of trouble which is why so many of us stash our food processors in the cupboard unless we’ve got a really big job to do. Me, I like my box cheese grater but, for really small jobs, I’m crazy about this very clever hand-held grater that swivels into different positions, measures as I grate AND fits in my kitchen utensil drawer.
Whatever tool you choose, use it with these eight foods to speed up cooking and clean-up, too!
Cheese Grater Hacks: 8 Foods To Grate
1. Bell Peppers
There’s no need to spend time carefully slicing peppers with a knife. Instead, cut them in half from top to bottom right through the stem and scoop out the seeds. Hold a half pepper by the stem and run it slowly on the big holes in your grater. Bonus tip: do this with hot peppers on the grater’s smaller holes when making recipes like Tex-Mex Cornbread.
Hard spices like whole nutmeg and cinnamon sticks can wreak havoc on your food processor. Not so with a box grater: just run them along the small holes to turn them into fine powder. Ginger root grates wonderfully, too, and saves you the hassle of mincing it. Bonus tip: break off only what you need from the ginger root and store the rest in the freezer where it will keep its fresh, bright taste for up to a year.
Shredding carrots on a cheese grater is easy: just slide them along the holes. Bonus tip: get your kids to eat more vegetables by stirring shredded carrots into any meal containing grated cheddar cheese — they look similar enough your kids won’t know!
Remove the core, cut the cabbage into quarters, and grate on the large holes for slaw or the horizontal blades for thin slices. Bonus tip: tie a slice of bread in a piece of cheesecloth and add it to the pot when you’re boiling or steaming cabbage to keep that cabbage smell away.
These days, foodies are raving about vegetable spiralizers but you don’t have to spend money to get those yummy vegetable noodles. To make zucchini noodles, for instance, you just rest the box grater on its side with the large holes facing up. Then, working slowly, run the zucchini lengthwise down the grater. Rotate your zucchini frequently so you aren’t using the center where the seeds are. This works with carrots and peeled, uncooked squash, too! Bonus tip: save those zucchini seeds and other vegetable scraps in a container in your freezer to make vegetable stock.
A five pound bag of potatoes costs around $3. A one pound bag of shredded potatoes for hash browns costs $2.70. Madness! Peel your potatoes (or not) and run them on the large holes of your cheese grater for perfect hash brown-style potatoes. Those shreds work great in soup, too! Bonus tip: go ahead and shred the entire bag of potatoes then scatter them on a baking sheet and freeze. Break the frozen potatoes into sections and pop them into a freezer bag — use just like you would the store-bought stuff.
Making a pie crust or biscuits requires cold bits of butter which, when melted, leave behind air pockets that make flaky layers. To make this happen, freeze a stick of butter then run it along the medium holes of your box grater. Bonus tip: if you forget to take the butter out of the fridge before making toast, grate it and it’ll spread without tearing your bread.
Grated chocolate melts faster, so next time you’re making cocoa from scratch, or hot cocoa on a stick, grate it on your cheese grater’s large holes first. Bonus tip: make chocolate curls to decorate your baked goods by using the horizontal blades on the side of your box grater.
Do you know of other cheese grater hacks or foods to use your cheese grater on? Share them in the comments, or head over to the Housewife How-To’s Facebook Page where you’ll also find more bonus tips!
Equipment I’ve Used For This: