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With all the tools in your kitchen, the one that you probably use most frequently for meal prep is your trusty potato peeler. Whether you need it for creating piles of garlic mashed potatoes or crispy latkes on holidays or butternut squash soup on a chilly fall day, a potato peeler is an indispensable part of your kitchen tool collection. The best peelers are lightweight, versatile, and preferably top-rack dishwasher-safe. Incidentally, it’s interesting to note—and unfortunate—that few peelers on the market can be re-sharpened once they get dull with use (I've included an option for that below).
Peelers come in several different designs, and what works best for you often comes down to personal preference and what feels right in your hand. “As a former caterer who’s tried a variety of peelers over the years, I always reach for my classic straight edge peeler,” says Julie Blanner, creative editor and director of a lifestyle and cooking blog. “I appreciate the control I can get with a traditional peeler. Although I like the Y-shaped ones, they never seem to be a timesaver for me.” A serrated edge blade isn’t essential, but it’s handy when making chocolate curls or citrus zest, Blanner says.
When it comes to blade materials, peelers typically are made from stainless steel, carbon steel, or ceramic. “I’m old-school and use classic steel,” Blanner says. Some people opt for electric peelers, but Blanner isn’t a huge fan. “They look fun, but I’m more of a minimalist in the kitchen. I gravitate toward multi-functional accessories that don’t take up a lot of space,” she says.
Ahead, my top picks for the best potato peeler.
Best Overall: Oxo Good Grips Swivel Peeler
What We Love: Solid grip won’t slip out of your hands when wet, reasonably priced, sharp swivel blade makes longer strips, includes a hanging hole for easier storage
What We Don't Love: Might be too big to grip comfortably if you have small hands, blade isn't replaceable
Two swiveling blades make fast work of everything from potatoes to apples. The oversized handle has a nonslip grip so you won’t drop it while working, even if it’s wet. It's also comfortable to hold, making peeling almost effortless, according to many online reviewers. Just let it glide and do the peeling for you in one neat, long strip. And in addition to making the task of peeling mountains of potatoes less like a chore, other users say it works great on more irregularly shaped vegetables, like large sweet potatoes, yams, and even tough to handle jicamas.
This peeler also has a built-in potato eye remover on the tip, which many users think is more durable and useful than the design of some other peelers. Some reviewers do strongly warn that the blade is extremely sharp and that it should be used with caution, as well as covered with the included blade guard before storing.
Blade Material: Stainless steel | Body Material: Plastic | Weight: 0.2 pounds | Dishwasher-Safe? Yes
Best Budget: Kuhn Rikon Original Swiss Peeler, 3-Piece Set
What We Love: Available in fun colors, lightweight, very sharp, easy and comfortable to use, inexpensive
What We Don't Love: Hand-wash only, may rust if you don’t dry it immediately and completely
If you’re looking for a no-nonsense peeler at a bargain price, this is the one. The 2-inch long blade works for both vegetables and fruits, sliding through tough skins on squash and citrus fruits. It has a sturdy plastic handle and ergonomic design for right- or left-handed people.
And you know how you’re always looking for the peeler when you’re prepping a big meal? At this price, you can afford a few so one is always clean and ready to go. But you may not have to buy replacements as often as you may think—several users say that as long as you take care to hand wash and carefully dry the blade completely, it should stay sharp for years.
Blade Material: Carbon steel | Body Material: Plastic | Weight: 0.7 ounces | Dishwasher-Safe? No
Most Ergonomic: Chef'n PalmPeeler Vegetable Peeler
What We Love: Inexpensive, easy to hold if hand strength or mobility is an issue, blade is very sharp, comes with a cover
What We Don't Love: Somewhat awkward to use on round items such as apples or potatoes, has a bit of trouble on heavy-skinned produce such as squashes
The unique design of this peeler makes it easier for people who have issues with hand strength, grip, or mobility. The rounded, ergonomic shape fits neatly into your open palm, with a plastic ring you slip on your finger to help control it. It also has a built-in potato eyer at the tip—just be careful not to accidentally knick your other hand with it, some reviewers warn.
You’ll just need to slide the entire peeler over the fruit or vegetable to peel it. In addition to being comfortable to hold, it's also almost effortless to use, several users rave, with one calling it "like a hot knife over butter," and another saying that "it's actually fun to use."
This comes with a cover that should keep the blade sharp.
Blade Material: Stainless steel | Body Material: Plastic | Weight: 1 pound | Dishwasher-Safe? Yes
Related: The Best Vegetable Peelers
Best Ceramic: Kyocera Advanced Ceramic Horizontal Y-Peeler
What We Love: Non-corrosive and rust-resistant, super sharp, lightweight, has two eyers, many colors to choose from, doesn't take up a lot of space in your kitchen drawer
What We Don't Love: Manufacturer says not to use on heavy rinds (e.g., butternut squash), blade eventually gets dull and can't be replaced or sharpened
Ultra-sharp ceramic blades, made in Japan, make this peeler a great option for cooks. The Y shape may give better control, though that’s often a matter of personal opinion. But many of those who have used this Y-shaped peeler say that it's very easy to use, even if you're left-handed, and the blade is so sharp that it works equally well—and quickly—on both veggies like potatoes and carrots and softer-skinned fruits, including versatile kiwis and mangoes. And though the manufacturer warns against using this on tougher vegetables like squash, some users say that, in their experience, it makes easy work of those, too.
It comes in a multitude of bright colors, so you’ll always be able to spot it when you set it down on the counter. The blades will never rust, and the company claims they’ll stay sharp up to 10 times longer than steel blades. True, the blade can't be sharpened or replaced, but as several reviewers highlight, because the blade doesn't corrode or rust, it should stay sharp and last you years.
Blade Material: Zirconia (ceramic) | Body Material: Plastic | Weight: 1.1 ounces | Dishwasher-Safe? Yes
Best Splurge: Cutco Vegetable Peeler
What We Love: Feels sturdy in the hand, very sharp, works on tough skins, double-sided blade offers versatile peeling, blade can be sharpened
What We Don't Love: More expensive than most peelers, has to be mailed in for sharpening as needed
This peeler is pricier than the others, but it could be the last peeler you’ll ever buy (I inherited my Gram’s). It’s made in the USA and comes with a lifetime guarantee and lifetime free sharpening (you just have to mail it to the company when needed). But you may not need to do this often, as the blade stays sharp for years, say happy reviewers. It works on almost everything that needs peeling, from potatoes to thin-skinned carrots to challenging butternut squash.
This peeler has a swiveling blade so you can peel in both directions—and it also works for both right- and left-handed people—and it has a nonslip comfortable grip that feels good in the hand. Plus, the blade is somewhat recessed so you aren’t going to be peeling your fingers accidentally.
This is highly recommended for anyone who does a lot of peeling for food prep or has issues with gripping.
Blade Material: High-carbon stainless steel | Body Material: Thermoresin handle with thermoplastic elastomer | Weight: 2.6 ounces | Dishwasher-Safe? Yes
Related: The Best Apple Peelers
Best Serrated: Kuhn Rikon Serrated Piranha Swivel Peeler
What We Love: Inexpensive, good for fuzzy-skinned fruits such as kiwi, nonslip grip works for both right- and left-handed people, hole in handle for easy storage
What We Don't Love: Doesn't come with a blade cover
The blade peels fruits and veggies quickly, biting into fuzzy skins such as peaches with the serrated edge. It’s also designed to peel super-thin-skinned produce such as tomatoes. The blade also allows you to peel in both directions, and the resulting peels are paper-thin.
The serrated blade is very sharp (hence the name), so you need to take care when using and storing it, as it doesn't come with a blade guard. But this sharpness is what lets the tool also easily peel more challenging produce, such as fibrous, tough asparagus or irregularly shaped veggies like sweet potatoes, say some users.
Because the blade is serrated, it does leave tiny grooves on the food item's surface as you peel it, which is something to consider if the aesthetics matter. Interestingly, one user found the grooves in their peeled produce helpful: "They are not slippery even when peeling under running water, and [provide a] a good grip for children eating peeled carrots," they say.
The plastic handle is nonslip and ergonomically designed to feel good in your hand. It’s available in several colors to coordinate with your kitchen décor.
Blade Material: Stainless steel | Body Material: Plastic | Weight: 0.1 pounds | Dishwasher-Safe? Yes
Best Electric: Starfrit Electric Rotato Express
What We Love: Fast and easy operation for those with hand strength or grip issues, nonslip base, comes with a thumb knife for paring, includes two spare blades
What We Don't Love: Takes up more counter or under-counter storage space than other picks, does not work as well on irregularly shaped items
Do you really need an electric peeler? Maybe! If you regularly host big family gatherings (where you're peeling pounds of potatoes), are bringing a dish to a big potluck, or can’t grip a potato well in order to peel it, this little gadget may be the solution.
Simply place a potato on the stand, and it pares it automatically in anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes, which many reviewers can attest to. A bonus: It's fun to watch it do the work (preferably while you're sitting back and relaxing)! It even stops automatically after peeling. Just make sure you have enough counter space to accommodate the contraption, as it has a considerably larger footprint than a small hand-operated vegetable peeler.
One thing to note—a common quibble among users—is that it doesn't peel at the "poles" of the potato where it's attached to the device, but many say this is a small sacrifice for the amount of potato meat they're saving versus peeling by hand.
The Starfrit also works for other produce, including eggplant, zucchini, peaches, onions, and apples. It has a nonslip base and comes with two spare blades that are stored underneath the unit. You can run it on batteries or the 6-volt adapter, also included.
Blade Material: Stainless steel | Body Material: Plastic | Weight: 1.8 pounds | Dishwasher-Safe? No
For an all-around best performer when it comes to all your potato-peeling needs, you can't go wrong with the OXO Good Grips Swivel Peeler (view at Amazon). Its super-sharp, swiveling blade lets you peel longer, finer strips, and its ergonomic, nonslip handle helps make repetitive peeling less tiresome. If grip or hand mobility is an issue, you've got plenty of options: the Chef'n PalmPeeler, with a unique design that lets you softly cup it as opposed to gripping (view at Walmart); Cutco's Vegetable Peeler, which is pricier for good reason, with its ultra-sharp, double-sided blade and sturdy grip (view at Amazon); and Starfrit's electric potato peeler, which can peel large quantities of produce in seconds (view at Amazon).
What to Look for When Buying a Potato Peeler
Potato peelers usually are made from either stainless steel, carbon steel, or ceramic. It’s really a matter of personal preference because there’s no guarantee how long each substance will maintain its sharpness, which is related to how often you use it.
The peeler should be lightweight and feel good in your hand, not unwieldy or bulky. This is especially important if you'll be repetitively peeling a huge batch of potatoes or other produce of varying skin toughness.
Many are dishwasher-safe, though it’s often recommended to use the top rack only. However, the heat of the dishwasher may damage the blade, so handwashing is best to prolong its lifespan.
Can It Be Sharpened?
Unfortunately, most peelers are meant to be disposable and cannot be sharpened. However, at least one brand (see our pick above) has a lifetime sharpening guarantee.
How do I sharpen a potato peeler?
The bad news is, you usually can’t. Most peelers are not meant to be sharpened and do not have removable blades that would allow you to sharpen them safely. Internet hacks suggest using a metal nail file (which is difficult to position at the correct angle on most blades), while others say to rub a paring knife up against the edge (which can damage the knife). Neither method is foolproof and won’t restore your peeler to its original sharpness.
Can I peel other fruits and vegetables with a potato peeler?
Absolutely! A sharp peeler can remove the fuzz from a kiwi fruit or the skin from a butternut squash or ginger root. However, use caution the less sharp your peeler becomes, because a dull peeler can slide off hard skins or cause your hand to slip (because you have to use more force), which may lead to you cutting yourself.
Can I peel a potato without a potato peeler?
Of course! Use a small paring knife with a 2.75- to 3.5-inch blade for the best maneuverability. A flexible blade takes off less peel, while a stiffer blade tends to give more control—but either type works.
Why Trust Simply Recipes?
Arricca Elin SanSone has been peeling potatoes since she was assigned this chore as a kid in her mom’s kitchen. She’s an avid cook and owns three straight-edge peelers that come in handy when canning or preparing meals for family and friends.
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