Kitchn Love Letters

The $12 Accessory That Makes My Mason Jars a Million Times More Useful

published Dec 26, 2023
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
green goddess pesto sauce in a mason jar
Credit: Photo: Joe Lingeman; Food Styling: Ben Weiner

Two year ago, my life was changed for the better when our Food Editor-at-Large, Christine Gallary, wrote about her new house salad dressing. On a whim, she mixed up anchovy paste, garlic, and zingy lemon zest and juice into a Mason jar and she ended up with a salad dressing that actually got her excited to eat more salad. I tried it out and I’m happy to report that it had a similar effect on me. I’ve been making this salad dressing on repeat ever since and, while it’s not hard to throw together, I now have a new gadget that makes the whole process even easier.

What’s So Great About the Microplane Jar Lid Etched Grater Set?

Say hello to the Jar Lid Etched Grater Set from Microplane. What is it, you ask? Well, it’s a set of two disks — each one fits under the band of a wide-mouth canning jar and grates your ingredient directly into the jar. The set includes a ribbon blade and a fine blade. The ribbon blade is good for soft cheeses, carrots, radishes, zucchini, and more; the fine one can zest lemons, grate cinnamon sticks, and turn hard cheeses into fluffy clouds. And because they’re made by Microplane, you can be sure those teeth will start and stay sharp. (The brand knows what it’s doing when it comes to all things grating!)

I’ve been using the fine blade to make my — er, I mean Christine’s — salad dressing for months and, what I love about it is the fact that all of my lemon zest goes directly into the jar. (You know, instead of all over the counter.) Before, I’d use a classic Microplane Zester and work carefully to make sure all my pieces were collected and then dumped into the jar. With this insert, both of those steps are handled for me. I zest my lemon and garlic right into the jar. Then, I just take the grater off, add the rest of the ingredients, put on the real lid, and shake, shake, shake.

I’ve also used these graters to make this creamy peanut sauce (I grate the ginger and garlic right into the jar), I’ve used them to grate nutmeg and cinnamon (for cookies and spice blends and such), and I’ve used them to make Mason jar salads (because there’s something so fun about eating veggies out of a jar, even if I’m not commuting these days). I recently just shaved up a copious amount of Parmesan for a pizza night and I loved that my storage/serving vessel was also my prep vessel.

My Mason jars were already in heavy rotation, and now, these graters make them even more useful. In short, these graters are great. And, obviously, so are Mason jars. (No pun there, sorry.)

Do you have any Mason jar accessories that you just love? Tell us about them in the comments below.

Buy: Microplane Mason Jar Lid Grater Set, $12 (normally $12.99)