Nuts are probably among the oldest forms of sustenance in the world. Many animals and birds love feeding off of these crunchy delights from nature’s bounty. They are enjoyed raw, cooked, or even as cooking or baking ingredients for various recipes.
Extracting nuts, on the other hand, could be a challenging task before you experience its benefits and tasty flavor. This is why people have come up with ingenious ways to do it: nutcrackers.
This revolutionary invention essentially makes the extraction of nut meats much easier, faster, and more reliable. There is no need to smash them with a blunt object anymore which often leads to injuries and damages.
Commonly, nutcrackers work by squeezing and putting pressure on the nut through two thick metals that make up the parts of the tool. This allows you to get the nuts with less effort while the meat itself remains uncrushed. This gives you far more options when using them for products. If that is something you are interested in, then the five nutcrackers featured here are the ones you should be considering in your next purchase.
Best Nutcrackers Comparison & Rating
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Before you decide which nutcracker to buy, you might want to find out more about the best options available. This is to make sure that you will absolutely enjoy the nutcracker that you would get for your kitchen. Also, be sure to click the yellow buttons below to see their best deals on Amazon! With that, here are five of the best options that we rounded up especially for you.
Anwenk Heavy Duty Nutcracker
7.48 x 1.97 x 2.36 inches
This is an excellent nutcracker that is easy to use and works really well. You can use this to harvest the flesh of pecan, almonds, pistachios, and many others quickly. This makes it perfect for baking your favorite vegan recipes. The strength required is rather low, as well, thanks to the excellent materials. You can use this consecutively without worrying about the aluminum cracking.
4.2 x 3.5 x 4.8 inches
This is an excellent nutcracker option for those who don’t have a lot of strength. Crushing shells is incredibly easy and even the elderly won’t have trouble using this. This is perfect for grandmas everywhere who use nuts to bake bread. The heft of the item helps a lot when it comes to durability. Cleaning this nutcracker is made a lot easier since it can be disassembled, too.
Anwenk Nutcracker Heavy Duty Nut Cracker
7.87 x 2.56 x 2.56 inches
Steel and Wood
This is a super simple and incredibly convenient nutcracker. The lever-action design makes how it is used quite obvious, even for those who have never used it. You can easily control how much strength you put into cracking nuts, as well. This can help you get nuts in any shape you want, whether it is whole or in halves that you can toast in the oven. More importantly, this nutcracker can be used all day long with no trouble.
OXO Good Grips Slim Nut Cracker
10.3 x 4.2 x 0.6 inches
This nutcracker works great on large, tough nuts that would otherwise require a hammer or a mortar and pestle. Squeezing the handles is made more comfortable thanks to the soft grips. By receiving the pressure, the hands don’t hurt even when cracking hard nuts. The design of the nutcracker itself is quite elegant and would work with seafood, as well. As for cleaning, you can just throw this in the dishwasher.
8.88 x 3.88 x 0.6 inches
This is a practical and elegant kitchen tool for eating nuts and crabs. You can even use this as a utensil when serving seafood to guests. When it comes to smaller nuts like pecan, you can crack the shells and extract the meat with ease. This tool is built solid and is guaranteed to last a long time. It can be cleaned by hand and does not require disassembly of any kind.
Nutcracker Buyer's Guide
Since nutcrackers will be used to likely crush tough shells to extract the meat of nuts multiple times, they will need to be extremely durable. This applies to every part of the cracker. This includes the handles and whatever form the contact point where the nuts will be placed takes. If the handle snaps too easily or the joints split, the nutcracker would be completely useless.
Most modern nutcrackers are made of a variety of metals, though, some also contain some form of wood or plastic. This is one of the most crucial details that you need to watch out for, especially when choosing your nutcracker. The material will determine the durability of your nutcracker, as well as how to maintain it and how to use it.
The design of the nutcrackers you get will determine how easy they will be to use. Some take more effort than others while there are also those that employ more complicated mechanisms. One is not necessarily better than the other since they have pros and cons. Some nutcrackers are more suited to control and others are better for speed.
Soldier nutcrackers or nutcrackers in the shape of wooden soldiers are simple to use. Place the nut in the mouth and hit the lever. Then there are the nutcrackers that look like vice where you place the nut between two thick pieces of metal and squeeze. Those are the simplest types of nutcrackers you will find, with others being more complicated and harder to use.
It’s important to never forget that despite how they may look, nutcrackers are still dangerous kitchen tools. If they can crush nuts, you can be sure that they pose a threat to your hands. So be sure to choose the ones that will not endanger your digits by being easy to use, secure and comfortable to grip, and will not take a lot of strength to work.
Nutcrackers generally rely on the force that is generated either through smashing or squeezing. When using dense materials like steel, the cracking is generally done via the material’s tensile strength and leverage. When using wood, it’s more about the sudden impact, which transfers the kinetic energy into the brittle shell.
Neatness and wastage are the reasons. With a nutcracker, you make less of a mess that you will need to clean up. You also get more out of the nuts since there won’t be small pieces flying all over the place along with the shells. With the control that you get from nutcrackers, you can get the meat of the nuts intact so you have more of it to eat or use.
Nutcrackers that come in the form of dolls that look like soldiers are an old tradition. They are a combination of things that are meant to represent good luck and protection. Over time, they evolved to take on new meanings and have even become associated with the winter holidays. These days, they are treated as decorations more than as functional tools, but many of them can still crack nuts.
Nutcrackers can work in different ways depending on the design. However, it can often come down to some form of smashing or squeezing. Naturally, you want to go for the nutcrackers that make the least amount of mess while yielding the most amount of meat. So it would be better to go with nutcrackers that squeeze the nuts open.