Portion Scoops Buying Guide

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Believe it or not, portion scoops are one of the most versatile and important kitchen tools in any foodservice establishment. Dishers provide chefs with an effortless way to measure ingredients and serve consistent portions to eliminate food waste. In this buying guide, we outline the different types of food dishers available to ensure you make the right investment for your business.

Benefits Of Portion Scoops

“What is a portion scoop used for?” is a question many chefs around the world ask themselves because they prepare meals on a regular basis without dishers. Rather than measuring ingredients, they eyeball portions which can lead to an increase in food waste, a difference in taste between dishes, a change in nutritional value in each dish, and much more.

Disher scoops are an essential tool for portion control. They provide establishments with an easy way to standardize cooking procedures and guarantee consistent taste and quality for every dish. The following list provides the benefits of using portion control scoops at your establishment:

  • Reduces food waste
  • Helps manage food costs
  • Provides a guide for purchasing
  • Ensures nutrient content in dishes are always the same
  • Makes sure a consistent amount of ingredients are prepared

Portion Scoop Capacities

When you work with food dishers, you probably notice that the majority of scoops have a color-coded handle and a number on the bowl or the handle itself. That’s because portion scoops have an established color-coded and numbering system that allows you to easily identify the differences between each disher.

Disher scoop sizes are based on the number of scoops it takes to fill a 32-ounce or 1-quart container. Each size is assigned a specific number and color. For example, the No. 8 disher has a gray handle and a capacity of 4 ounces which means that it would take 8 scoops to fill a 32-ounce container. We’ve created a portion scoops size chart to help you understand the variety of sizes available in the market and the differences between each scoop. Although the color-coded handles are an industry-standard, each brand may have slight variations in measurements. Use this chart as a general guide.

Portion Scoop Styles

Disher scoops come in a variety of styles that allow chefs to comfortably and efficiently complete specific tasks. When purchasing dishers for your establishment, there are a number of things to consider.

Perforated Spoodles Vs. Non-Perforated Spoodles

Perforated spoodles feature holes on their base that provide chefs with an easy way to drain liquids while still holding solid foods. This allows them to effortlessly strain liquids from ingredients prepared in water or sauces to accurately measure foods and create an eye-catching food presentation. However, non-perforated dishers have a solid base that does not allow liquids to strain. These portion scoops are designed to measure and serve dry ingredients or prepared foods intended to be served with sauces.

Serving Ladles

Ladles are built with a long handle and deep, round bowl that is ideal for serving soup, stew, gravy, and other liquid dishes or sauces. The long handle keeps your hands away from hot pans or liquids and the deep bowl prevents ingredients from falling out. Similar to portion scoops, serving ladles come in a number of different sizes and are excellent for practicing portion control. There are also perforated and non-perforated ladles available to fit your needs.


Most dishers feature a round base that provides you with an effortless way to measure and scoop ingredients. Portion scoops typically measure 8 to 10 inches in length, allowing you to easily scoop soft foods from deep food pans or containers. The majority of dishers also features a color-coded handle that provides chefs with a quick way to identify the differences between each disher to prevent cross-contamination.

Portion Scoop Features

The majority of dishers have a spring clip on the bowl that can be easily activated to release food onto a plate or bowl. However, there are two types of portion scoops and each disher provides you with a unique way to activate the blade.

Thumb Levers

Many portion control dishers include a thumb trigger that is located on the right side of the scoop. When the thumb lever is pressed, the blade on the bowl is activated to conveniently release foods onto servingware and scrape bowls clean to maximize your yield.

Squeeze Handles

Dishers with squeeze handles are designed for left and right-handed individuals to easily measure and serve food. Rather than using your thumb to activate the blade, you simply squeeze the handle to release foods and wipe the bowl clean.

Portion Scoop Materials

Portion scoops are primarily constructed from stainless steel which allows you to easily scoop ingredients and helps prevent bending or breaking when scooping dense foods. Stainless steel dishers are dishwasher-safe, providing your staff with a convenient way to streamline their end-of-day cleaning process. They are also excellent for measuring and serving hot or cold dishes.

What’s The Difference Between Portion Scoops and Ice Cream Scoops?

Portion dishers and ice cream scoops are usually classified in the same category because they are both used to scoop and serve food. However, each product is specially designed for specific tasks. To ensure you’re properly using a disher and an ice cream dipper, it’s crucial that you understand their differences.

Portion Scoops

A portion control scoop is a versatile tool that allows you to measure and scoop vegetables, rice, cookie dough, and other soft foods. Dishers typically have a spring clip on their bowls that can be activated by pressing on the thumb lever or squeezing the ambidextrous handle. This guarantees that bowls are wiped clean for consistent flavors of meals and to minimize food waste.

Ice Cream Scoops

An ice cream scoop is designed to easily scoop and serve ice cream into a cup, bowl, cone, or onto a dish. The base of the scoop is typically slightly rounded to create a classic ice cream scoop shape. Ice cream dishers are usually made from aluminum or stainless steel to allow individuals to effortlessly scoop frozen desserts without bending or breaking.

Which Portion Scoop Is Right For You?

Before purchasing food dishers for your foodservice establishment, it’s essential to think about which foods chefs would use scoops for. Each portion scoop is designed differently which allows you to easily scoop, measure, and serve specific types of food. By using our detailed portion scoop buying guide, you now understand the benefits and differences so you can purchase the best portion scoops for your business.

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