Fried foods are a favorite, but cleaning up after frying isn’t much fun. Grease can splatter all over the stovetop, all over the other cookware, and all over the cook. A splatter screen cuts down on the splashing and reduces cleanup time.
Not just for frying, a splatter guard also can come in handy any time a soup or sauce wants to get splashy during cooking. You'll want to factor in the size of your pots and pans and what exactly you'll be using your screen for before purchasing, as splatter screens come in several shapes and sizes as well as different materials.
After researching top-rated models, we sent a number of splatter screens to our experienced at-home tester to evaluate them side by side. Each one was rated on its design, versatility, durability, performance, and ease of cleaning.
Here are the best splatter screens for your kitchen, based on hours of cooking tests.
Oxo Softworks Stainless Steel Splatter Screen
Lies flat on skillets
Circular ridges help center it on pots
Handle folds for neater storage
Might be too large for some dishwashers
No feet to keep it off counter
When it comes to blocking splatter, whether it’s from searing steaks in a cast iron pan or cooking a thick tomato sauce in a Dutch oven, it’s hard to beat the Oxo Good Grips Stainless Steel Splatter Screen. Rather than screen-like mesh, it has small round holes in a solid piece of thin stainless steel. The tiny holes let steam out while the metal blocks most of the droplets of fat or splashes of food. Circular ridges on the screen keep it stable on pots of different sizes, meaning it works well for both large and small pots and pans.
One of the best features of this screen is the raised handle design, which means the handle sits directly above the pan’s handle. Not only does it look neater and keep the screen flat on the pan, but it also means that the screen and pan can be lifted with one hand.
The splatter screen was tested with a thick tomato sauce as well as boiling foamy pasta water. It did a good job with the thick tomato sauce. There was almost no sauce on top of the screen, while plenty was caught on the underside. With the foamy water, it helped a little with boil-over, but it was still possible to get a little boil-over on the edges.
In testing, we found that the plastic handle stays cool during cooking, and it folds over onto the screen for more compact storage. The screen is dishwasher safe, so cleaning is easy, and in testing, we found that washing it by hand was easier than washing the screen-like mesh models since food didn’t get stuck.
Price at time of publish: $23
Diameter: 12.5 inches | Material: Stainless steel screen; soft-grip handle | Heat Resistance: Not oven safe | Dishwasher safe? Yes
"This was definitely a favorite among the screens. The handle design was a huge plus, and it's a sturdy screen that should last a long time."
Williams Sonoma Silicone Splatter Screen
Folds for easy access to the pot
Can double as a trivet
Can't use on gas stovetops
Small side handles
Most splatter guards need to be removed to stir or flip the food in the pot, but the Williams Sonoma Silicone Splatter Screen lets the cook flip one side up to stir the chili while leaving the other side in place. For storage, it can be left unfolded to fit slim spaces or fold it to fit short spots. The screen is made from sturdy silicone, so it’s heat resistant and dishwasher safe. Small hand-holds on either side of the screen take less space on the stove or in storage, but it might be wise to approach them with a potholder. Not just for keeping grease from flying, this would be handy for slow-simmering a stew in a Dutch oven when a cover is too much, but the cook doesn’t want the pot completely open.
This worked well, keeping oil from spraying out when cooking, but it also collected condensation on the underside, so when it was lifted, it created a short burst of spatter as the water dripped into the hot fat. Care should be taken when opening it. It did a good job with a thick tomato sauce, stopping the spatter from coming out. There was plenty collected on the bottom of the screen.
The downside of this screen is that it shouldn’t be used on a gas cooktop—limiting its versatility. It was tested on one with no ill effects, but we were very careful to use it on a large pot and to make sure the flames never went up the sides of the pan. The screen is both dishwasher safe and easy to wash by hand.
Price at time of publish: $29
Diameter: 13.5 inches | Material: Silicone | Heat Resistance: 400 degrees | Dishwasher safe? Yes
"I really liked that I could open one side of the screen to stir without having to remove the whole screen and find someplace to put it down."
BitimexHome BitMexHome Splatter Screen Set
Three screens included
High-quality stainless steel
Hanging holes on handles
Can warp during cooking
This set of three has your pots covered—or at least they can cover three of them at the same time. The set includes an 8-inch screen, a 10-inch screen, and an 11-inch screen, so they can fit a variety of frying pans, saucepans, and Dutch ovens to protect the stove from cooking mess. It’s great when the sauce is simmering in one pot while there’s fried chicken in another. When splatter is excessive, the cook can use two screens at once, blocking the most aggressive droplets. The blue plastic handles stay cool during cooking, and each one has a hole so they can be hung on a hook for easy access when cooking is getting messy. These are also dishwasher-safe for easy cleaning.
The screens did a good job keeping splatter to a minimum and let steam out with no issues during testing. They also did a good job with a thick sauce by keeping spatter contained.
In testing, these often warped during cooking, and the screen discolored a bit. They aren’t as sturdy as more expensive screens, which is expected at this price point. On the plus side, the fine mesh would be great for sifting flour, and they work well for straining liquids once cooking is done.
Price at time of publish: $21
Diameter: 8, 10, and 11 inches | Material: Stainless steel mesh; plastic in handle | Heat Resistance: Not oven safe | Dishwasher safe? Yes
"This is a great example of getting what you pay for. This is a budget set and works fairly well, but with some issues. If someone doesn't need to use a screen very often, this is the right set for the job."
Norpro Grip-EZ Red Silicone Splatter Screen
Can be used for straining and draining
Great for tomato sauce
Silicone can retain odors
Can collect condensation
Silicone is rapidly becoming the material of choice for high-heat-use kitchen gadgets. This silicone splatter guard has tiny holes that thwart splatter, but in testing, it also retained more steam and collected condensation on the underside. Since silicone has a high heat resistance, this can also be used as a trivet and as a strainer when it’s time to empty water from a pot of pasta, but care should be taken when on a gas stove to make sure flames aren’t coming up the side of the pan, which could burn the screen.
It’s practically impossible to see the food below the screen, so this needs to be lifted to take a peek. However, if water or other liquids need to be added, they can be poured right through the screen. The handle doesn’t fold, but it has a hole on the end to hang it on a convenient hook. This is dishwasher safe but might be too large for some dishwashers. It was easy to wash by hand in testing, though, since food tends to slide off silicone easily.
Price at time of publish: $24
Diameter: 13 inches | Material: Silicone | Heat Resistance: 500 degrees | Dishwasher safe? Yes
"I liked this a lot for the thick tomato sauce but less so for frying. Cleanup is easy, which is a plus when cooking something goopy."
Best for Frying
Frywall Splatter Guard
Top is open for easy access to food
Nonstick silicone is easy to clean
Fits limited pan sizes
High walls can make stirring/flipping difficult
This unique splatter preventer is a wall rather than a screen. In testing, we found it essentially turns a frying pan into a very high-walled wok with silicone sides. While high-flying splashes can still escape the wall, splatter traveling sideways will stay easily contained, and there’s no need to remove the wall to stir the food or flip the steaks.
This fits 10-inch pans best and won’t fit any less than 9 1/2 inches; a smaller and larger size are available. It also comes in a variety of colors, so you can color-code the small, medium, and large ones in storage. Also, it can fold and roll for compact storage wherever it’s kept, and it’s dishwasher-safe for easy cleaning.
Unlike guards that cover the top of the pan, this won’t trap condensation, and it will come in handy when piling spinach or other greens into a pot since it can contain them neatly until they cook down to a more manageable size.
This is really best for frying or for food that can be contained inside the walls. It’s less useful for any kinds of sauces that would ooze between the wall and the rim of the pot, where they could stick and burn.
Price at time of publish: $22
Diameter: For 10-inch pots | Material: Silicone | Heat Resistance: 450 degrees | Dishwasher safe? Yes
"If someone does a lot of frying, they might want to get one of these to fit their favorite frying pan."
JAZ Innovations Splatter Guard Pro
Provides access to food
Folding handle for easier storage
Fits wide range of pots and pans
A little bulky for storage
Most splatter guards are completely flat and made from screen material with tiny holes. This one is completely different. It has a raised center section and one large hole instead of multiple small ones. This guard gives enough space to see inside the pot or pan while allowing steam to escape. Even better, it makes it possible to stir ingredients without removing the guard, and in testing, we often left our spoon in the hole for easy stirring.
All of the splatters along the edge of the pan can’t escape at all, and the few that go straight up in the center also come straight down, so they won’t land on the cooktop. A few splashes that made it out of the hole in testing landed on the guard, so it kept the stove clean. This is made from sturdy, heat-resistant silicone and has a fold-down handle that makes storage easy. Once cooking is done, it's dishwasher safe, so cleaning is always easy.
Price at time of publish: $17
Diameter: 13 inches | Material: Silicone | Heat Resistance: 500 degrees | Dishwasher safe? Yes
"I like this a lot for food that I want to watch and stir while cooking, particularly for thick and gloopy foods, although it was also great for frying, too."
Best for Microwave
Smartwares Microwave Spatter Screen
Can use on bowls and plates
Not for stovetop use
Microwave splatters can be just as bad—or worse—than stovetop splatters since they cook onto the sides, top, and bottom of the inside of the microwave, which can be awkward and difficult to wipe clean. Unfortunately, most splatter screens made for stovetop use are either too large for the microwave, or they have enough metal to make them unsuitable for microwave use.
These thin silicone mesh rounds are just the thing you need. They can drape over the top of a bowl or sit on top of a dinner plate in the microwave to contain splashes and spatter while still allowing steam out. When there’s enough material draped over the edge of a bowl, they can keep fingers safe from heat when removing the bowl from the microwave. They can also be used in a bamboo steamer basket, as a trivet, or as a grip to open jars and bottles. While these aren’t for stovetop use, we tested one briefly. While nothing untoward happened, we’d still suggest saving them for uses they’re good at.
They are easy to clean with a bit of soap by hand and can also be washed in the dishwasher.
Price at time of publish: $7
Diameter: 12 inches | Material: Silicone | Heat Resistance: Microwave only; no high-heat use | Dishwasher safe? Yes
"They're useful, inexpensive, and have multiple uses, for example, as a grip when opening a jar, or as a trivet or nonskid base for a cutting board or mixing bowl."
Best for Boiling Water
Kuhn Rikon 11-Inch Cover
Available in different colors
Can collect condensation
Use care when removing; steam escapes
This large cover is mostly solid, with the holes near the center covered by flaps that resemble flower petals. The flaps lift up to let out some steam, but not as much as a traditional screen, so it’s great for foods where keeping steam in is preferable. Its best use is to thwart boil-over when making pasta or other foods that create foam while cooking or when boiling is very enthusiastic. Instead of boiling over the sides, the liquid comes through the center and then drains back into the pot when the heat is turned down. We tested it with a thick tomato sauce, and while some splatters emerged from under the petals, they didn’t go far, keeping the mess contained to the guard.
Because of the concave design and the steam retention, this won’t work for frying, especially in a shallow pan. But it did so well containing frothy boiling water in our testing that we recommend it for that use as well as a universal lid for everyday cooking.
The 11-inch size is large enough for most standard cookware, but it can also be used on small pots and pans since it’s made of thick silicone that's heat resistant and won’t droop over the sides of the pots. It is dishwasher safe and actually fits more easily in dishwashers than other models. You should expect this model to last for years, although it may not look good as new after lots of use.
Price at time of publish: $20
Diameter: 11 inches | Material: Silicone | Heat Resistance: 400 degrees | Dishwasher safe? Yes
"When using it with boiling frothy pasta water, that's where this really shined. Water and foam come up in the center through the flower petal-shaped fingers in the center, but the pot didn't boil over onto the stove at all."
U.S. Kitchen Supply Splatter Screen Set
Feet hold it off counter
Sturdy rim resists warping
Can also be used as cooling rack
Largest might not fit all dishwashers
This set of three screens offers size options (13, 11 1/2, and 9 1/2 inches), so the cook can choose the one that fits the pan the best. And if more than one splashy pan needs a cover, another screen is ready to be used. These have black handles that stay cool during cooking and a hanging hole at the end of the handle so they can be hung on a nearby hook. One of the best features of these screens is the small feet on the underside. When using the flat side of the screen on the pan during testing, we flipped it over onto its feet to rest on the counter as we stirred food in the pot. While a drip or drop might have hit the counter, it was minimal and the working side of the screen never touched the counter.
These screens did a fine job with tomato sauce splatter. You can see where the sauce hits the screen, but it doesn't come through. They are also great for straining liquids after cooking and for sifting flour and other dry goods.
Made from stainless steel mesh with a sturdy rim, these have a fine weave that keeps droplets in the pan while the screens also resist denting. They can also be used to drain pots while keeping vegetables safely inside the pan. When cooking is done, the screens are dishwasher-safe for simple cleanup.
Price at time of publish: $18
Diameter: 13, 11.5, and 9.5 inches | Material: Stainless steel screen; plastic on handles | Heat Resistance: 400 degrees | Dishwasher safe? Yes
"These have a lot going for them. The feet, the solid build, and the fact that they're safe for gas stoves make them quite appealing."
Best Odor Absorbing
Farberware Stainless Steel Odor Absorbing Splatter Screen
Sits evenly on pots and pans
Hanging hole on handle
Multiple layers minimize splatter
Can’t see food during cooking
May trap odors too well
Not only can frying be messy, but some cooks also object to frying odors, particularly when frying foods like fish. This innovative splatter guard features an activated carbon filter that the manufacturer says will absorb cooking odors and capture splatters while letting steam escape. During testing, bacon was accidentally burned, and we didn’t realize it until we lifted the screen to check. Not one whiff of smoke odor or visible smoke was detected even though we were at the stove. The screen discolored, and after several washes, there’s still a whiff of smoke, but it’s still able to do its job.
This worked well with a thick tomato sauce, keeping the spatter inside. Nothing really escaped. It also seemed to help thwart boilover when used while boiling a frothy pot of pasta water.
The 13-inch screen is completely flat, so it will sit evenly on pots and pans that are 13 inches in diameter or smaller (or there's an 11-inch screen that fits on pots and pans that are 11 inches in diameter or smaller). The handle has ridges that make it easy to grab and a large hanging hole so it can hang from any hook. When cooking is done, this splatter screen is dishwasher safe, although it might be too large for some dishwashers.
Price at time of publish: $18
Diameter: 13 inches | Material: Stainless steel and carbon steel screens; plastic handle | Heat Resistance: Not oven safe | Dishwasher safe? Yes
"People who have an aversion to food odors remaining in the kitchen would likely love this, but they're going to need to peek at the food often to see how it's cooking and that it's not burning."
For whatever kind of cooking you do, it's hard to beat the OXO Softworks Stainless Steel Splatter Screen. However, the Bitimex Home Splatter Set contains three sizes of screens at an affordable price and would be a good buy for someone who only reaches for a splatter screen occasionally.
How We Tested
We sent ten top-rated splatter screens in a variety of sizes and materials to our expert at-home tester. She put each one to the test by evaluating their versatility with all different sizes of pots and pans and then putting them through some messy kitchen tasks. After boiling frothy pasta water, simmering thick tomato sauce, and frying with splattering oil, she rated each one on its design, versatility, durability, performance, ease of cleaning, and overall value.
What to Look for in a Splatter Screen
While a super-large splatter screen sounds like a great idea since it will fit every piece of cookware in the kitchen, balancing a large screen on a small pot may be more trouble than it’s worth. When shopping, it’s best to try to match the screen size with the pots and pans you will use it with. If you’re most concerned about spatter when using a large frying pan, then a large screen makes sense. But if you’re worried about spatter when using a saucepan, a smaller screen makes more sense.
Metal screens are old-school, but they can be used on any cooktop. Silicone screens are newer and have their own advantages. However, silicone can burn if you’re cooking on a gas cooktop and the flames get a little high.
A simple screen can do what’s needed, but some screens have little extras, like feet to keep the screen off the counter when it’s removed from the pot or the ability to allow access to food while the screen is in place. If those extras are appealing, look for screens that have those features.
How do you use a splatter screen?
The idea of a splatter screen is simple enough, but how do you use one while you're cooking? Whenever you're getting ready to fry something, are making a big pot of soup, or are just worried about making a mess, it's time to bust out the splatter screen.
How you use a splatter screen can vary depending on the type you have. Most are as simple as placing it on top of the pot or pan. Some have an opening where you can keep an eye on your cooking or even stir it with a spoon. Others have a folding feature where you can fold part of the screen back and check in on your food—maybe add a dash of spice—before flipping it closed again. Some splatter screens are little more than mesh screens on a handle, and for those, you'll need to remove them entirely to access your food. No matter the kind of splatter screen you have, it's a simple tool to use.
Are splatter screens oven-safe?
It depends on the materials the screen is made from. While the working part of the screen may be heat safe for high temperatures, the handles may not be. Screens made entirely from stainless steel and those made from stainless steel and silicone are likely to be safe. Those with plastic or wood on their handles should not be used in the oven.
How do you clean a splatter screen?
Fortunately, many splatter screens are dishwasher safe, although the larger ones might be a tight fit in a dishwasher. It’s best to check the documentation to make sure, though. If the screen isn’t dishwasher safe, hot, soapy water and a good scrub will remove the grease and food residue.
Can splatter screens be used with air fryers?
Since air fryers are enclosed, there should be no need for a splatter screen. However, if the food being cooked is likely to make a large mess—for example, bacon—there are some mesh silicone mats that might be safe. It’s best to check with the manufacturer of both the air fryer and the mat to make sure and keep the mat away from the heating element since silicone can burn when directly exposed.
Why Trust The Spruce Eats?
Donna Currie is a writer, cookbook author, and product tester for The Spruce Eats. She admits that she hates cleaning her stove, so the need for a splatter screen is real. After plenty of research and trial and error with a number of different options, she narrowed the list down to some favorites that any cook could use and tested them all side by side to break down their advantages and disadvantages.
Shit, Subhas et al. A Review On Silicone Rubber. National Academy Science Letters, vol 36, no. 4, 2013, pp. 355-365. Springer Science And Business Media LLC, doi:10.1007/s40009-013-0150-2