The Shop

A Better Way to Keep Your Olive Oil in Arm's Reach

April  7, 2016

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.

Photo by James Ransom

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.


Photo by Etsy
  • Ceramic Oil Jug, CeramicART4U, Etsy: Hand-thrown, voluptuous, in a textural finish.

Modern White

Photo by Amazon
Photo by Fancy

Classic Ceramic

Photo by Sur La Table
Photo by Etsy


Metal Cans

Photo by All Modern
Photo by Etsy
Photo by Tiger Chef


Photo by Charish
Photo by Amazon


Do you use a cruet or pour your olive oil right from the bottle? Fess up in the comments.

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • bellw67
  • LemonyZest
  • margaretpm
  • Amanda Sims
    Amanda Sims
Amanda Sims

Written by: Amanda Sims

Professional trespasser.


bellw67 April 7, 2016
I buy a large jug of EVOO and store it in the fridge, and for every day I use an old soy sauce bottle with a plastic thingy so I can drip or drizzle or whatever.
I have tried cruets and oil bottles with the top thing you shove into the bottle but haven't found one that didn't leak.
LemonyZest April 7, 2016
The duration of what? My life? ;) When it's empty, I refill it.
margaretpm April 7, 2016
How do you clean these cruets after they've had olive oil sitting in them for the duration
Amanda S. April 7, 2016
Good question! If the neck's wide enough, add a spoonful of dry white rice (to act as a scrubby), a drop of soap, and warm water—then plug the top, swish and swirl. And rinse and dry thoroughly before refilling!