I’ve put quite a bit of thought into recipes for a wide range of soups, but I didn’t think much about the tool I use to serve those soups until I tested 15 soup ladles for The Spruce Eats. It turns out that how comfortably and cleanly you scoop soup from a pot and pour it into a bowl depends mostly on the ladle shape, size, and material. The latter can be especially important if you have nonstick cookware. Size might be the key consideration if you make soup in a small saucepan or giant stockpot. And shape and other features can be crucial if you’re skimming fat, drizzling gravy, or pouring into an oversized mug or wide, flat bowl.
By testing so many ladles, I developed all sorts of opinions and ideal uses for various ladle shapes, sizes, and materials. I also made a lot of soups, many of which will be lunch and dinner staples now that cool weather is becoming the norm.
Learn about choosing and using soup ladles