Olive oil, unlike other pantry staples such as red wine vinegar or black peppercorns or dried shrimp, seems to always get used up before you can blink (which is good, considering it isn't shelf-stable forever). If only for convenience's sake—but also to cut down on container waste, olive oil costs, and the deep sorrow that is starting a recipe and realizing you don't have enough olive oil to make it—many shoppers opt for large 3-liter tins of olive oil at a time. But they're not exactly drizzling-friendly.
Those large canisters should get stowed in a dark, cool place, off your kitchen counter. And since they're a bit unwieldy (and you'll want your oil within arm's distance) you can funnel a portion of the oil into a cruet—that's pronounced crew-it, emphasis on the crew, apparently—and set it out on the counter for daily use. Distinguished by a pouring spout and narrow neck, cruets are made in many materials and shapes and sizes; whether you opt for a repurposed glass decanter or a traditional carafe made from protective stone is up to you. But since they're all designed to be kept out and about, you'll want one that's cute, to boot.
Here are 14 of our favorite cruets, for dispensing your olive oil with ease.
- Ceramic Oil Jug, CeramicART4U, Etsy: Hand-thrown, voluptuous, in a textural finish.
- White Ceramic Olive Oil Cruets, Amazon: A little bit Scandi, with tapered sides and open spouts
- Dan Oil and Vinegar Set, Fancy: In abstracted letter shapes that double as handles (and sculptures for your table)
- Anti-Drip Olive Oil Bottle, Emile Henry: made from Burgundy clay, which keeps out the light
- Blue and White Olive Oil Cruet, EntropyDesigns, Etsy: Hand-made and -painted, in a rich splash of royal blue (dishwasher safe!)
- Offset Stripe Whiskey Bottle, Leif: Handmade in New Hampshire for an artful touch
- Whiskey Jug, Case Ceramics, The Food52 Shop: Generously sized, in a buffed natural finish
- Copper & Tin Oil Dispenser, Paderno World Cuisine: Pretty pink copper, in a poised design
- Vintage Copper Cruet, LeBateauLavoir, Etsy: Made in the 70s and charmingly petite
- Oil Can with Brass Cover, Winco: With a long spout for dramatic drizzling—and lightweight to boot!
- Hand Blown Cruets, Marquis by Waterford: In rounded lines, a pair of vintage cruets with glass stoppers
- Country Home Olivia Glass Oil Set, Bormioli Roco: A blue-green 7-ounce cutie, with textured patterning
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Navy, Frantoio Muraglia: In this case, you're buying the olive oil—but the bottle it comes in is cute enough to reuse
- Ceramic Cruet, The Food52 Shop: With the purchase of our Puglian Olive Oil Gift Set, you'll get this reusable ceramic cruet, 3 liters of olive oil, and an adoption certificate for a tree from its orchard
Do you use a cruet or pour your olive oil right from the bottle? Fess up in the comments.