- Food and Cooking
Soup Bowls With Handles & Lids
Thinking of Buying a Handled Soup Bowl?
Simply sticking a handle on the side of a soup bowl (along with an accompanying lid) is pretty much bordering on 'genius' in my opinion.
Picture this everyday typical soup scene...
Normally, with a standard soup bowl you will have just filled it up with scolding hot soup/stews (or whatever takes your fancy), usually right up near to the bowl's brim (everyone does it). Ok, so far so good.
However, it is then when it comes to 'transporting' that soup bowl to where you want to eat it is where the problems start to arise -- you have to make your way ushering the bowl along, making sure you don't spill any (of course all mean while, burning your hands in the process) on the floor as you make your way to the kitchen table.
All a very stressful process indeed.
Now Add a Handle (& Even a Lid)
With the simple addition of a handle to our soup bowl means the whole process is made ten times easier and a whole lot more versatile too. The additional handle means no longer are we burning our hands, as we can carry the bowl of soup without caressing our hands around the piping hot porcelain. Also, if you get a soup bowl with a lid as well, you don't have to be as concerned with regards to preventing spillage either (a plate still works well though). In all, a very bright idea.
You do still get a range of different designs & features which you have to have a little think about before you make the purchase though (e.g. are they dishwasher safe? microwave safe? are they big enough? is the handle strong enough? and so on) -- which we list in our little non too serious analysis below. Plus, they are of varying quality (so be sure to check their reviews) - some will simply last longer than others & offer more versatility.
What to Look for in Handled Soup Bowls
The set of soup cups with handles above (BIA Cordon Bleu) are pretty much the staple product and are exactly what you should be after, all around. Granted they aren't overly pretty or exciting (although you can get colored ones as pictured up top on the right) but they are built for two things practicality & durability.
Firstly, you can see that the handle itself is large and sturdy. There's no point having a soup bowl with a little weedy handle because the bowl itself would just become too overbearing with weight (especially if you fill it right to the brim) and your fingers could get too close to the bowl and end up burning them. Defeating the whole point really -- you'll be surprised at how little of a handle there are on some.
Secondly, it holds around 20 ounces. Again, usually speaking you will want it to hold a decent size portion for when it comes to cereal, soup and the like. This isn't meant to be a cup, it is a bowl. With regards to relative size you can fit more than you'd expect, but not as much as a standard bowl, they are usually listed in ounces how much they can hold.
Cleaning wise this set dishwasher, freezer as well as microwavable and oven safe, however this doesn't go for all models. This is an important aspect to look for in other handle soup bowls, as some are delicately designed and can only be washed by hand and will you require you to heat up the soup/stew in a separate container and then pour into the bowl. These on the other hand are made from durable strong porcelain and have an all round solid quality build to them, you won't need to worry here.
It is hard to get a perception of just how big they are from a picture alone but as you can see from the video above, they aren't small. They are large enough to hold a decent amount of stock in fairness also you don't want them too big, otherwise they become difficult to actually move around with and there's more risk of spillage.
Of course you can also get doubled handled soup bowls as well. This, as you can imagine, adds even more stability in your carrying (obviously using two hands) and this aesthetic set have a slightly different look to them too. The MulBerry Stoneware set offers a bit more of a 'homely rustic feel' with that finish than the BIA Cordon Bleu set -- they hold an extra 2 ounces too (22 in total it is reported).
Can't really beat a winter's night with a bowl of hot piping stew in front of the fire with one of these bowls and a decent book. Life can't get much better than that. They are great for just wondering around the house with too, as a student this came in handy aimlessly pondering around the student halls with my soup. Moreover, they aren't exactly expensive either given you get a set of four in most packs and they are built on the premise of durability & trust me once you will be soon using them quite frequently.
What About Super Sized Cups?
You should definitely consider extra large mugs as well. Such as the jumbo cup below, this holds 18 ounces so typically they hold a little less than the bowls up top, but they tend to offer more depth and are narrower (diameter just 4.5 inches).
This tends to be more preferable for those who plan on moving around a lot with the mug (as you can act to almost sip your soup instead), rather than with a soupbowl where you are basically just moving from A (kitchen) to B (table to eat with a spoon).
It is arguably slightly more practical too as you can just actually genuinely use it as a coffee mug as well -- which tends to be a struggle with the soupbowls as they are so wide (and just isn't right really). In all though either make pretty great perfect gifts for mother's day, father's day, students who are off to college. Not too expensive, a little different (some can be pretty funny) and are actually very practical.