A cheese grater is not exactly a rarely used kitchen tool, but that doesn’t mean it might not be underused. There are many things a cheese grater can be used for aside from shredding cheddar cheese for your tacos. Anytime you need a food cut into tiny pieces ask yourself, “can I use my cheese grater for that?”
Potatoes. A box grater is an easy way to shred potatoes into small pieces. You can shred potatoes to use in making potato pancakes or just to fry up as hashbrowns. Shredded potatoes can also be used in potato casserole or twice-baked potatoes.
Vegetables. A cheese grater is great for shredding vegetables. Shredded carrots are a great addition to salads or stir fries, where a large piece of raw carrot may be undesirable. Finely grated vegetables can be used for fillings in homemade pot stickers or dumplings.
Onions. You may be wondering why you would want to grate onions. A lot of people don’t like to eat pieces of onions, and grating them releases their flavor without adding chunks.
Spices. Freshly grated spices add a whole new level of flavor to your dishes. Nutmeg is available whole and can easily be grated along a cheese grater. Cinnamon sticks are another spice that can be finely grated with the fine side of a cheese grater. A cheese grater is also useful for grating garlic cloves if you do not have a garlic press and don’t want to spend the time to finely chop the garlic.
Zester. The fine side of a cheese grater can be used as a zester if you don’t have one. Grate just the very outside peel of a lemon, lime, or orange to get zested citrus rind.
Soap. Many recipes for making your own soap call for grating ingredients. Making liquid soap requires grating bar soap, as does turning soap scraps into a new bar of soap. If you want to make your own soap-on-a-rope you will need to shred a bar of soap first. Homemade laundry detergent also requires grated soap.
Being Sneaky. If your children don’t like to eat vegetables, shredding vegetables make it easy to sneak them into foods such as spaghetti sauce, soup, or even breads and casseroles. A tiny piece of shredded vegetable is not only harder to notice but harder to pick out. Your child may not like carrots in his macaroni and cheese but if he likes macaroni and cheese, he may rather eat it than spend his time picking out tiny pieces of carrot.