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A good basting brush can really change your grilling or baking game, taking it from “This is really good,” to “Wow, this is amazing! How’d you make it?!”
It’s all about the specialized design of your tools. In brushes, the basics are the handle and the brush. What are they made out of? Will the brush bristles be too strong, too light, too big, or too small? How will the handle fit your hand, will you enjoy using it? And last but not least, is it easy to clean? Because sauces and melted butter and beaten egg yolk have a habit of getting in every nook and cranny.
We’ve collected the best basting brushes for the job in this list, with an eye to having a selection that will fulfill different needs. If you’ve been making do with whatever happens to be in your kitchen drawer, this could be the perfect time to have some fun trying some new brushes for old tasks, or even to get inspired. A North Carolina vinegar-based BBQ sauce on grilled chicken using a mop brush, maybe? Or a Linzer torte using a small round brush? Let these brushes lead the way to new deliciousness!
Best Overall: Le Creuset Silicone Craft Series Basting Brush
The shape of this great-looking silicone brush from Le Creuset makes it suitable for many uses, as its crown-shaped edge and conical bristles work well on both meats and pastries. Made from premium silicone, it’s stain-resistant, non-abrasive, and resistant to odor and flavor absorption. The ergonomic wooden handle adds a pleasant feel to using this brush, and the head is removable so it can be put in the dishwasher. It’s also available in a variety of colors!
Best for Baking: Williams Sonoma Walnut Pastry Brush
This boar-bristle brush with a smooth walnut handle is a classic for pastry-making! It’s also beautifully made to last for years and is available in two brush sizes, 1-inch and 1.5-inch wide. It is recommended to hand wash and dry thoroughly after every use.
Best for Grilling: Consevisen Silicone Basting Brush
These very well-regarded, very affordable brushes come in sets of two to five of various sizes. The design is seamless to avoid catching food or sauces and has a core of stainless steel to provide strength. The brushes can handle temperatures up to 446 degrees, are made from BPA-free silicone, and are dishwasher safe. With any of these sets, you’ll be able to grill with a variety of different sauces or bastes all at the same time, making any meal a feast!
Best Nylon: Carlisle Sparta Galaxy Nylon Pastry Brush
The nylon bristles on this basting brush are soft and flexible enough to not damage delicate pastries while providing easy, full coverage of the surfaces of any baked good.
The Oklahoma-based Carlisle brand has been producing foodservice supplies for more than half a century, with the stated goal of creating products that “make your work easier." These basting brushes are designed for professional-grade use, with a single-piece plastic handle, and bristles resistant to abrasion and cracking. They are also available in various sizes.
Best Silicone: Norpro Silicone Barbeque Brush
This brush comes in different sizes for different tasks, but the basic design is the same: a high-grade silicone brush on a sleek, stainless-steel 12-inch handle. The look is high-tech, and the black silicone won't melt, shed, fray, stain, lose shape, or retain odor. These brushes have a really well-balanced feel! The Norpro company started and is still headquartered in the state of Washington. Their goal is to provide the highest caliber kitchenware with an eye on innovation.
Best Multipurpose: OXO Good Grips Large Silicone Basting Brush
OXO has done everything right with this brush. It’s ergonomic with a soft grip and an angled extended-length handle for barbecue use. The brush has circled inner and tapered outer bristles that both hold liquids and gently distribute them over meats, vegetables, or pastries. It’s easy to clean, odor-resistant, and can handle temperatures up to 600 degrees!
Best Round: Tezzorio Professional Boar Bristle Pastry Brush
For those times when only a small round pastry brush will do, this classic boar brush with a smooth hardwood handle is perfect! The boar bristles are water-resistant and can handle temperatures up to 500 degrees. The 9.75-inch handle is ergonomic and has a hole for easy hanging storage. This brush is hand wash only, and best to use on baked goods.
Best Mop: Grillhogs BBQ Basting Mop with Wooden Handle
This long-handled, mop-like brush holds thin sauces that other brushes can’t manage. It’s great for grilling and also works for making pastries! The 18-inch wooden handle protects you from heat while allowing for precision. The removable mop head can be put in a washing machine for easy cleaning. Grillhogs is a company with a focus on manufacturing “chef-grade grilling accessories."
If you’re looking for a basting brush that can do double-duty on meats as well as pastries, the OXO Good Grips Large Silicone Basting Brush (view at Amazon) works well on both and has the additional perk of being made by OXO, with their level of quality and ergonomic design. If you’re a baker seeking a brush to use for pastry, the Williams Sonoma Walnut Pastry Brush (view at Williams Sonoma) and the Carlisle Sparta Galaxy Nylon Pastry Brush (view at Amazon) are both good bets. They have a different feel to them as you work, but each equals the other in performance. If you can, try them both!
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Karen Resta is a writer specializing in food culture and history, cooking, pastries, and restaurants. She's also a former pastry chef and has traveled to Budapest, Kyiv, and Paris during their Fashion Weeks as a photographer and writer, always finding the best authentic pastries along the way. She now spends a lot of her free time baking at home and recommends quality within your given budget. Having the right tools available and knowing how to use them well (it can take practice, like anything else) makes all the difference, and she curated this list with that in mind.