A citrus juicer is a kitchen tool specifically designed for removing the juice from citrus. Both hand operated and electric versions are available, with many cooks preferring one or the other, depending on how much citrus needs to be juiced. Most cooks can find a use for a citrus juicer, making it an excellent tool to have around the kitchen and a good gift as well. Most kitchen supply stores stock citrus juicers, usually in a wide range of styles.
The most simple type of citrus juicer is a citrus reamer. A citrus reamer consists of a ridged cone attached to a handle. The consumer cuts a piece of fruit in half and holds it in one hand while pressing the conical part of the reamer against it to extract the juice. As a basic, easily used kitchen tool, a citrus reamer makes a great juicer. As one can imagine, using a citrus reamer for large volumes of juice can get tiring. A citrus reamer also does not strain out pulp or seeds.
Another type of manual juicer uses a two-part design, although in some cases the parts may be molded together. One part is a conical section mounted so that it faces upwards, and the other catches the juice. To use this type of citrus juicer, the cook presses a halved citrus fruit down on the conical section while pushing it back and forth to get all the juice out. In some instances, this style of citrus juicer includes a sieve for draining pulp and seeds, and it is more practical for larger amount of fruit.
Electric citrus juicers are the preferred type for high volumes of juicing. An electric juicer uses a motor to spin the conical section inserted into the fruit, allowing the cook to simply hold the fruit against it while the machine does the work. Usually, a larger reservoir is attached to an electrical citrus juicer so that the cook can juice a large volume of fruit at once. When making orange juice or lemonade for a big group, an electric juicer is a huge time saver over hand juicers. For people who are trying to integrate juicing into their diet, an electric juicer can also be a big help.
When picking out a citrus juicer, think about how much juicing you need to do. If you just need to juice a lime or lemon now and then for cooking, a hand juicer is probably sufficient. If you do a lot of juicing, an electric juicer would obviously be a better choice, and you may want to consider the options, which range from huge industrial juicers designed for commercial use to small electric juicers designed to produce a glass of orange juice at a time. Look for a sturdy, easily cleaned citrus juicer which will be easy to care for.