Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Stuff that Works: Lemon Squeezer

For a long time, and religiously for the last six months or so, I've squeezed fresh lemon juice into the bottle of drinking water I keep at my desk during the day—refilled 2-3 times daily. Fresh lemon juice, contrary to logic, has a powerful alkalinizing effect on the body's pH, important since so many foods in the Standard American Diet are acidic. I don't eat the SAD and depend on my plant-based diet to keep my pH balanced, but use the lemon juice as added insurance.

I've been using a hand-held lemon squeezer for a long time that was a flaky product from the beginning. I bought it at Sur la Table, the high-end kitchen store, so assumed it was good. But I hadn't had it two days before the hinge pin snapped due to the pressure I was putting on it. So I discarded the hinge pin and replaced it with a finishing nail, cutting it off to length and blunting the cut end to keep it from sliding out—and it's worked fine ever since. Sort of. Over time, the acid from the lemons caused the paint to begin flaking off and the lemon oil stained the paint. I would occasionally find a little chip of yellow paint in my water—not good. It's obvious that this product was put on the market without any kind of thorough testing or these deficiencies would have shown up. But I have seen this squeezer sold lots of places in three sizes: yellow for lemons, green for limes, orange for oranges. DON'T BUY THIS PRODUCT!

Instead, I have found a great replacement—a stainless steel squeezer that is a bit more expensive but a delight to use. Granted, I haven't yet put it through months of use like the other one, but so far it's been great. Ergonomically, it feels better. The stainless steel doesn't stain, and the hinge pin takes all the pressure I can give it. I found this at Amazon (4.5 stars by 75 reviewers) for sale through a third-party seller who has a kitchen gadgets storefront on Amazon. But when I went back to get the link for this post, it was gone! The squeezer is there, but only listed for sale by Target which lists it as "Out of Stock." Not sure why my seller isn't listing it currently. I bought it from them (got it in two days!) even though it was a bit more expensive than Target since they had it in stock and Target didn't. The squeezer is made/distributed by Norpro, a wholesale distributer of kitchen tools. It seems to have limited availability on the web for some reason. [Note: a friendly reader provided a link in the Comments to a source for this juicer for $23! Click here to see it—and thanks!]

Anyway—I really recommend this as a better, safer (no paint chips) lemon/lime squeezer. (And I recommend adding the lemon juice to your water daily as well.)

Compare the old and new (note all the places where the yellow paint has chipped off the old one):




  1. http://www.wasserstrom.com/restaurant-supplies-equipment/Product_108168

  2. Thanks for this link! You're a better shopper than I am. I Googled this product and looked at several places but didn't see this one. This is more than $10 cheaper than the one I bought. I'm going to add this link back into the post!

  3. Just a note to second the lemon-a-day recommendation! Every morning: one quart of water and one lemon. Our "yellow" lemon squeezer is beginning to show signs of wear as well. Glad you found a better one.

  4. If I recall (Daniel), yours is a different brand than my original yellow squeezer, and I hope better than mine. The price provided in the link above from "surfsalterpath" is an excellent price for this stainless model.

  5. ...finally received the squeezer.

    have you ever used a
    John Boos Cutting Board w/ Mezzaluna Knife?

    pricey but looks efficient

  6. Surfsalterpath --

    Hope you enjoy your lemon squeezer -- mine is doing great -- looks like it did the day I got it even after being used several times a day.

    Have seen the Boos cutting boards in catalogs -- have never splurged and bought one, or a mezzaluna. Just rely on rocking back and forth with my chef's knife for cutting up herbs, but the mezzaluna would probably be better!