Last updated on January 12th, 2024 at 07:46 am

10 best tools for skimming stock | Easily remove scum or fat from soup or broth

10 best tools for skimming scum and fat of broth or soup
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When making homemade stock, sauces, gravies, or bone broth, you know that part of the process involves skimming excess fat from the surface of the liquid. Several tools help make skimming the fat from your liquid recipes more efficient and more manageable. Some of these tools include devices that look like measuring cups, perforated spoons, ladles, and mesh cloth.

Here is a list of tools you can use for skimming stock:

  1. Cheesecloth
  2. Chinois strainer
  3. Deep bowl spoon
  4. Fat separator
  5. Fine mesh skimmer
  6. Ladle
  7. Paper towel
  8. Perforated spoons
  9. Skimmer
  10. Teabag strainer

What are the best tools for skimming stock

When selecting the best tools for skimming stock, you want to choose one that you can easily use for the type of liquid you are cooking. Several skimming tools help make it possible to remove excess fat quickly and continue simmering your stock. For more, the skimming device they use is a personal choice; for others, they grab what they have available that can get the job done.

Scum on broth

Fine mesh skimmer

Hiware Stainless Steel Fat Skimmer Spoon - Fine Mesh Food Strainer for Grease, Gravy and Foam, Japanese Hot Pot Skimmer with Long Handle
  • Dimensions: Handle’s length: 9.5 inch; The bowl’s diameter: 4 inch; The bowl’s depth: 0.4 inch
  • High quality metal: This skimmer spoon is made of 18/8 stainless steel with fine polished. No-Bpa, safety and healthy metal. Sturdy and durable, won’t rust, corrode
  • Fine mesh strainer: Can be used for separation of the floating fat, grease, foam and filtering quinoa, miso and grains
  • Long handle: Protect your hands from hot grease and oils, non-slip, easy to grip, heat-resistant
  • Dishwasher safe

Last update on 2024-04-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

A fine mesh skimmer is a flat mesh tool on the end of a long handle. Fine mesh skimmers work best with a large batch of stock, especially chicken stock, in a large soup pot. When the fat starts to foam, dip the edge of the mesh skimmer into the surface of the liquid and quickly lift.


OXO Good Grips Brushed Stainless Steel Ladle
  • Sturdy brushed stainless steel construction
  • Subtle, soft, non-slip grip
  • Stainless steel surface for safely leaning utensils on hot cookware
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Hole in handle for hanging

Last update on 2024-04-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

A fat-skimming ladle is a game-changer when it comes to skimming fat and scum off the surface of liquids. A ladle is best for larger stock batches. Dip the ladle into the stock and gently pour the liquid back into the pot or another pot or bowl. The fat is separated into a separate section of the ladle as the liquid flows out of the ladle.

Paper towel

Bounty Quick-Size Paper Towels, White, 16 Family Rolls = 40 Regular Rolls
  • Pack contains 16 Family Rolls of Bounty white Quick Size Paper Towels
  • More sheets, more everyday tasks in every roll* *vs. Bounty Double Plus
  • More absorbent so you can use less vs. leading ordinary brand
  • Picks up messes quicker vs. leading ordinary brand
  • With Quick Size rolls you can choose your sheet size based on the size of your mess.

Last update on 2024-04-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Not everyone has a fat strainer or skimmer in their arsenal of kitchen utensils. A simple paper towel can do the trick for those who do not have a unique tool for skimming fat. Paper towels are suitable for any batch size and are perfect for quickly removing grease or scum from the stock. Lie the paper towel flat over the surface of the liquid and gently pull it across the top. The paper towel will absorb the fat and is the best tool for small amounts of fat.

Perforated spoons

Mercer Culinary 7-8 Inch, Silver Plating Spoon, Perforated Bowl, 7 7-8-Inch, 7 7-8"
  • Length 7-7/8-inch
  • Plating Spoon
  • Perforated bowl
  • 18-8 tempered stainless steel
  • Limited Lifetime warranty

Last update on 2024-04-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

For small amounts of fat, perforated spoons help remove the fat while the stock is still simmering. To use, dip the spoon just under the surface of the liquid and quickly pull it out. The fat will stay in the spoon while the liquid flows out through the slots in the spoon.

Chinois strainer

New Star Foodservice 34158 18/8 Stainless Steel China Cap Strainer, 12-Inch, Coarse Mesh
  • 18/8 Stainless Steel construction
  • Perforations allow liquid to pass through while retaining pulps
  • Coarse stainless steel mesh
  • Perfect for commercial use
  • Available Diameter : 7", 8",9", 10" and 12"

Last update on 2024-04-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

A chinois strainer is a tightly woven mesh shaped like a cone. Its sole purpose is to help filter the fat and scum from stocks, sauces, and soups. This type of fat skimmer is best for large batches of stock that you can quickly pour through the strainer and into a new bowl. First, support the chinois strainer over a pot and pour the liquid through the strainer.

Deep bowl spoon

Qualizon 18/8 Stainless Steel Heavy Duty Big Soup Spoon Large Serving Spoon Mini Ladle-7.9inch (4 Packed)
  • ☞☞☞☞【Unique Design】Someone Says This Thing is Like a Mini-ladle. It Holds 30ml of Fluid and It's Quite Wide. Sipping/Eating from the Side is Easy but if You Wanna Fit the Entire Thing into Your Mouth, It will Take a wee bit of Effort. If You Like to Eat A Lof of Soup,This Might Be an Ideal Option to Make Fun.
  • ☞☞☞☞【Features】Real Stainless Steel. Food Grade. Dishwasher Safe and Easy to Clean. High Glossy Finish, Smooth Edge Polishing.
  • ☞☞☞☞【Size Option】6.7Inch is Good as Personal Table Soup Spoon for Adult. 7.9Inch is Good as Personal Use or Family Serving.
  • ☞☞☞☞【Package】7.9Inch, 4 PCS Packed.
  • ☞☞☞☞☞【WARRANTY】100% Rust Resistent; 100% Lifetime Warranty.

Last update on 2024-04-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

A deep bowl metal spoon works well to remove fat hot soup or broth. This method works best when only needing to skim a moderate amount of fat from the top of the liquid. To skim, dip the spoon just under the surface of the liquid, deep enough to allow the fat into the spoon. Then, place the edge of the spoon against the inside side of the pot and tip just enough to allow excess liquid to drain out while the fat remains.

Another method would be to add an ice cube or two to the spoon. Place the underside of the spoon on the surface of the liquid. The fat should solidify and attach to the bottom of the spoon.

Fat separator

OXO Good Grips Good Gravy 4-Cup Fat Separator
  • Easily separates fat for leaner gravies, soups and sauces
  • Built-in strainer catches unwanted bits
  • Non-slip handle releases liquid from the bottom and leaves fat behind
  • Silicone shut-off valve seals snugly to prevent leaks
  • Convenient measurement markings in cups, ounces and milliliters

Last update on 2024-04-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

A fat separator is a container similar to a measuring cup destined to separate fat from your beef or chicken stock. This method works well when working with a few cups of stock at a time. To use, place the spout stopper and strainer in place, then pour the stock into the cup. The fat remains in the strainer. Next, remove the plug and pour liquid into a clean pot for continued cooking.


KINGSUPER Hot Pot Fat Skimmer Spoon Stainless Steel Mesh Food Strainer for Oil Filter Skimming Grease and Foam
  • Package include: 3pcs stainless steel skimmer spoon(3 Different sizes )
  • Made of stainless steel, strong and well made
  • 3 sizes stainless steel mesh food strainer easily removes small food items and grease or foam from hot grease or boiling water
  • Long Handle Skimmer spoon is comfortable for handling without getting too close to the heat,a convenient hanging hole ensures space-saving storage
  • 3 sizes:The big one:11.7cm/4.7inch diameter mesh, Total Length: 33cm/13inch, the medium one:10cm/4inch diameter mesh, Total Length: 30.5cm/12inch,the small one:7.6cm/3inch diameter mesh, Total Length: 29.5cm

Last update on 2024-04-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

You can easily remove more significant pieces of fat on the surface of large batches of beef or chicken stock with a simple wire skimmer. Dip the skimmer just below the fat into the liquid and pull it out to remove the fat.


Cotton Farm Grade 100 XL Cheese Cloths - Straining & More; 36x36 Inch; 100% Unbleached Cotton Cheesecloth; Reusable with Hemmed 2 Edges; Ultra-Dense (the finest) Butter Muslin
  • Premium Culinary Cheesecloth (pano de queso) by Cotton Farm; Crafted from the finest unbleached Mediterranean cotton yarns. With dye-free, odorless properties, it will not impart any color or odor to your food.
  • Food Grade Butter Muslin type fabric (Not Bag) comes in a convenient 1x1 yard dimension in a Sealed Pack. You can use it as is or cut based on your specific needs. With its 2 Hemmed Edges, it is much more durable and reusable than other products.
  • Grade 100: Cotton Farm is the pioneering brand for Grade 100 (46×54 threads per inch) Cheesecloth, designed exclusively for pro Chefs and Cooks. With its fine mesh texture, Grade 100 guarantees no unwanted particles can escape.
  • Pure/Precision Strainer; Your essential companion for straining a diverse array of liquids and foods. From yogurt to melted butter, sauces, broths, rice, jelly, vegetables, soup, herbs, fruit juices, kefir, wine, honey, cold-brew coffee concentrate, kombucha, tea, homemade nut milk (almond or cashew) and more.
  • Kitchen Essential; In addition to cheese making, the ultimate companion for cooking, roasting, basting and seasoning. Whether it's turkey, chicken, meat, or steaming vegetables, our high-quality muslin cloth elevates flavors and guarantees delicious results in all your culinary endeavors.

Last update on 2024-04-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Cheesecloth is a quick method to remove fat and scum from the top of chicken stock or beef stock. The cheesecloth essentially acts as a sponge, soaking up all the fat floating on the top of your cooking liquid. The best way to use cheesecloth is to cut a large piece, place a handful of ice cubes in the center, and tie the cloth to secure the ice cubes in place.

Next, gently dip the fabric into the liquid, soaking up the fat. The ice cubes quickly solidify the fat, adhering it to the cheesecloth. When done, throw the cheesecloth away.

Teabag strainer

kingleder 12Pack Reusable Drawstring Cotton Soup Bags, Straining Herbs Cheesecloth Bags, Coffee Tea Brew Bags, Soup Gravy Broth Stew Bags, Bone Broth Brew Bags(4''x6'')
  • Material: Unbleached Cotton cheesecloth; Size:About 4x6 inch
  • Keeps herbs in the bag but lets the flavors out
  • Drawstring, Easy to use ,clean and reuse
  • Perfect for Cooking Straining Herbs, tea, coffee or spices
  • Package included: 12 pcs Reusable Soup Bags

Last update on 2024-04-29 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Use a teabag strainer for smaller batches of stock or when only removing a small amount of fat. Use teabag strainers in two different ways to remove fat or scum from a stockpot. First, run the liquid through the tea bag, catching all the fat inside. Or dip the tea bag into the liquid to catch all the fat.

How to skim soup or stock

The best way to help skim soup or stock is to watch it during cooking and immediately remove the foam with a ladle or spoon. When done cooking, remove meat and vegetables, strain the liquid through a strainer or use a fat separator.

How to separate fat from broth without a separator

It is still possible to remove the fat from your broth without a skimmer or separator. The first method is the cold method, which is the easiest to do. When done cooking, place the liquid in a glass container and let it cool to room temperature. Then, place the container in the refrigerator overnight. The fat will create a solid white crust you can remove with a spoon or ladle.

Another method involves allowing the liquid to cool a little and letting the fat rise to the top of the liquid. Then, using a turkey baster, suck out the fat and place it in another container.

A large, heavy-duty freezer bag works well, separating fat from the liquid. Pour liquid into the freezer bag and let it cool. Once the fat separates and solidifies, cup off a bottom corner of the bag and pour the liquid contents into another container

Why do you have to skim the scum from stock?

Scum is the foam that develops on the surface of liquids, such as bone broth. The scum is not fat but a mix of proteins from the ingredients in the stock. The layer of scum on the top of the liquid creates insulation, negatively affecting the cooking temperature. Remove the scum from the stock to keep an even balanced temperature and remove the extra, unnecessary proteins.


Skimming soups or stock helps remove the fat and allows for even cooking. With many tools available to use, select one that best fits your cooking needs and preferences.


I am a kind of person that would sneak a taste out of grandma’s pot when I was barely tall enough to reach it. I grew up in kitchens full of love and liveliness and have spent my whole live learning, experimenting and succeeding in the art of cooking. At Pro Family Chef, every day is an opportunity for a new meal and a brand new flavor. I created this website to connect people that love to cook, with the products designed to make their cooking easier, hassle-free and rewarding every time.

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