Waffle dish towel

Waffle dish towel DEFAULT


 Waffle Dishtowel - Mosaic Blue

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    Wiping dirty hands as you cook or drying the dishes after a family meal, this Waffle Dishtowel is perfect for all your cleaning, drying, and wiping away needs. Made of 100% cotton, this handy kitchen towel measures 18 by 28 inches in size and is sure to add a pop of color to your kitchen. 

  • Specs
    • 100% cotton
    • Dimensions: 18 x 28 inches
    • Care instructions: Machine wash cold separately, gentle cycle, tumble dry low, low iron.
    • Imported
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Sours: https://www.mastgeneralstore.com/design-imports/waffle-dishtowel-mosaic-blue-202514
These long lasting dish towels will tackle all of your drying, wiping, and cleaning tasks. These towels are lightweight, absorbent, dry quickly and are durable for daily use. Wash with cold water on gentle cycle and tumble dry low. Wash before first use, towels will lose excess lint and will become softer and more absorbent with continued use and washing.

  • White
  • 18" x 26" each
  • 6 dish towels
  • Wash with cold water on gentle cycle and tumble dry low
  • Recycled cotton
These long lasting dish towels will tackle all of your drying, wiping, and cleaning tasks. These towels are lightweight, absorbent, dry quickly and are durable for daily use. Wash with cold water on gentle cycle and tumble dry low. Wash before first use, towels will lose excess lint and will become softer and more absorbent with continued use and washing.

  • White
  • 18" x 26" each
  • 6 dish towels
  • Wash with cold water on gentle cycle and tumble dry low
  • Recycled cotton

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Sours: https://www.michaels.com/dii-white-recycled-cotton-waffle-dish-towels-6ct/D363198S.html
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Each product we feature has been independently selected and reviewed by our editorial team. If you make a purchase using the links included, we may earn commission.

If you can't remember the last time you replaced your dish towels, it's probably time to do a little shopping and upgrade your kitchen linens. Dish towels may seem like a pretty straightforward kitchen staple, but because you likely use yours multiple times throughout the day to dry your hands, polish your dishes, and mop up messy spills, it's actually worth taking the time to find the right set for your home.

A quick scan of some major retailers, like Amazon, reveals a huge variety of dish towel options. Along with an array of colors and patterns, you can choose from different materials, including cotton, microfiber, and even bamboo and flour sack dish towels, depending on your needs (and your kitchen's style). 

For instance, cotton dish towels are sure to get the job done and look thick and fluffy when not in use, while microfiber options are great for polishing glassware and absorbing moisture quickly. Then there are newer alternatives, like bamboo and flour sack towels. Bamboo is naturally antimicrobial and antibacterial, and it can even act as an insect repellent, while flour sack material is ideal for shining glassware and cleaning pesky stains.

No matter the material or color, there are plenty of affordable dish towels to choose from—when it comes to this kitchen necessity, even high-quality brands come at super reasonable prices. So what are you waiting for? Here, the 13 best dish towels under $30, according to thousands of customers, to start shopping right now.

Best Overall: Utopia Kitchen Towels

These classic kitchen towels from Utopia are one of Amazon's best-selling set of dish towels. This set of 12 dual-colored towels will only set you back $17 (that comes out to less than $2 a towel), but they're made of high-quality ring spun cotton. The woven design makes them soft yet durable, and their 15-by-25-inch size allows for absorbency. Plus, they come in a variety of classic colors to fit in with most kitchen aesthetics. Over 3,300 Amazon shoppers have left the towels five-star reviews, including this customer, who wrote, "I've found far too many kitchen towels that aren't absorbent at all—they just push the liquid around making more of a mess. These don't have that problem—they do the job and look good, too."

Cloths Cleaning Cloth

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

BUY IT: $16.99 (orig. $21.99); amazon.com

Best Dish Cloths: DII Terry Kitchen Dish Cloths

If you're in the market for affordable towels that will get the job done (and look good hanging in your kitchen), consider these dish cloths from DII. Available on Amazon for just $11, the set includes six cotton towels featuring a traditional windowpane design. They're lightweight, absorbent, and machine-washable for easy cleaning. Plus, you can choose to buy them in an array of fun colors, like aqua, eggplant, or spice. According to customer reviews, these towels are a great value. Many customers noted that the colors held up after multiple washes, and the thin material allows the cloths to dry quickly. "I like them so much, I'm buying another set. I highly recommend them," one shopper wrote.

Basic Everyday 12 x 12

Credit: Amazon

BUY IT:$10.77; amazon.com

Best Cotton: Sticky Toffee Cotton Terry Kitchen Dish Towels

These are made with 100 percent high-quality terry cotton for a durable, absorbent cloth that's perfect for drying dishes and cleaning up big spills. Available in multiple colors—including gray, yellow, blue, and red—the four-piece set features a textured design with symmetrical striped detailing for a simple look that'll easily match any kitchen decor. "I love these towels," one Amazon shopper wrote. "They dry up better than any others I have used! The texture is absorbent but not rough. They did not lint in the wash, and they look great hanging in our kitchen."

Sticky Toffee Cotton Terry Kitchen Dishcloth

Credit: Amazon

BUY IT: $14.99; amazon.com

Best Microfiber: Hyer Kitchen Microfiber Kitchen Towels 

Microfiber dish towels are typically more absorbent than cotton and dry very quickly, making them a great option if you're looking for towels to wipe up spills or dry dishes in the kitchen. The material is ideal for drying glassware without leaving scratches or streaks behind, and Hyer Kitchen's microfiber kitchen towels are some of the best, according to thousands of Amazon shoppers. They measure 26 by 18 inches wide, offering a large, absorbant surface for polishing dishes and wiping up spills. Plus, they'll remain soft and plush, even after multiple washes. "They absorb really well, the colors are simple and nice, they seem like good quality, wash out well, and have stayed soft," said a reviewer.

Microfiber Kitchen Towels - Super Absorbent, Soft and Solid Color Dish Towels

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

BUY IT: $15.99 (orig. $20.99);amazon.com

Best for Big Messes: Fecido Classic Kitchen Dish Towels with Hanging Loop

When it comes to tackling big messes, you'll need thicker and ultra-absorbent towels, like these cotton ones from Fecido. Measuring 19 by 27 inches, the large towels are made of 100 percent cotton designed to quickly and efficiently dry dishes and wipe away liquids. "These things suck up water like a siphon in a swimming pool," one shopper wrote. Not only are they highly functional, but the towels also come in a variety of cute colors, like red, light green, purple, and silver gray, that complement their classic checkered patterns.

Fecido Classic Kitchen Dish Towels with Hanging Loop

Credit: Amazon

BUY IT:$16.99; amazon.com

Best Design: The Pioneer Woman Fiona Kitchen Towels

When it comes to decorative dish towels, look no further than Walmart's selection of colorful, patterned towels from Ree Drummond's The Pioneer Woman, including this blue and red set of four. Consistent with Drummond's signature farmhouse style, these towels feature whimsical floral patterns in bright, cheery hues that would bring a welcome pop of color to any kitchen. In addition to their playful look, they're made of a cotton and polyester blend that's durable enough for everyday use. Reviewers love that the affordable set comes with four towels, and many noted that the cloths are great for cleaning and adding a touch of style to their space.

The Pioneer Woman Fiona Kitchen Towels

Credit: Walmart

BUY IT: $10.88; walmart.com

Best Flour Sack: Utopia Kitchen Flour Sack Dish Towels

Despite the name, these towels are not actually made of flour sacks. Rather, the material consists of thin cotton threads for a super lightweight towel that's ideal for drying glassware and hands—or even for using as a cheese strainer. This set of 12 towels from Utopia Kitchen is made of 100 percent pure ring spun cotton with a diagonal knit for style. They're machine-washable, lint-free, and surprisingly absorbent as long as you wash them before the first use, reviewers say. "I absolutely love these towels," one shopper wrote. "Super absorbent [and] will do everything from dry dishes to get dog pee out of the carpet."

Utopia Kitchen Flour Sack Dish Towels

Credit: Amazon

BUY IT: $16.99; amazon.com

Best Bamboo: Luckiss Bamboo Dish Cloths

If you've never thought to buy bamboo dish towels before, this set might sway you to ditch your cotton ones for good. Made of 100 percent bamboo, the sustainable towels are soft, quick-drying, and ultra-absorbent. The non-abrasive material makes them ideal for drying delicate cookware and plates without leaving behind scratches, but they're also great for wiping up spills. In fact, they can absorb liquid up to seven times their size. You can even use them to clean electronics, mirrors, and dusty furniture. One Amazon reviewer said the towels are "super absorbent and easy to wring out," adding that they do a better job than traditional cotton towels.

Cloths Cleaning Cloth

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

BUY IT: $13.89; amazon.com

Best Splurge: Martha Stewart Waffle Weave Kitchen Towels

For just a slightly higher price tag, you can snag these modern waffle weave dish towels from the curated Martha Stewart Collection at Macy's. The set of three comes in timeless color palettes, including gray, navy, red, and taupe, for an elegant look that'll go nicely with any kitchen decor. The 20-by-30-inch towels are made of 100 percent cotton and have a waffle weave texture for a stylish yet functional kitchen essential that's worth splurging on. "I have purchased Martha Stewart's kitchen towels for the last seven years. The towels are super absorbent and extremely well made," one person wrote. "I recently purchased some red and green towels to go with my kitchen update. The green towels are gorgeous with the new kitchen look so of course I purchased more green towels." 

Martha Stewart Collection 3-Pc. Waffle Weave Kitchen Towels

Credit: Macy's

Top-Rated: Swedish Dishcloth Cellulose Sponge Cloths

Amazon's best-selling dishcloths, these sponge cloths each have different textured sides—one with criss-cross stitching and one with linear stitching—for serious absorbency and durability. They're designed to combine elements of traditional hand towels with those of cellulose sponges, and they can absorb over 20 times their weight. You can use them to scrub, wipe, and polish dishes and countertops. More than 5,000 Amazon shoppers gave this 10-pack of dish towels a perfect five-star review, and many say they're better than traditional cloths. "They are very absorbent, yet easy to wring out completely (and I mean completely!) after use," wrote one reviewer. "And as advertised, they don't stink!"

Amazon Dishcloth Cellulose Sponge Cloths

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

BUY IT:$19.95 (orig. $24.99); amazon.com

Most Durable: Zeppoli Classic Kitchen Towels

One set of these classic kitchen towels includes 15 durable cloths made with 100 percent cotton. They're made with strong fibers that are designed to stand the test of time but are still soft enough to safely dry dishes and silverware without leaving scratches behind. Thanks to a herringbone weave, they're also lightweight, absorbent, and quick-drying, which reduces the risk of mildew and bacteria. The dish cloths have over 2,000 perfect five-star reviews, so you can trust that they'll get the job done. "These lovely towels are durable, have a nice tight weave, and hold up with lots of use. I highly recommend these," one Amazon shopper said.

Amazon Dishcloth Cellulose Sponge Cloths

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

BUY IT: $16.99 (orig. $19.99); amazon.com

Best Value: Amour Infini Terry Dish Cloths

This set of eight 12-by-12-inch dish cloths for $15 is a great value. The 100 percent cotton towels are available in a variety of solid and checkered colors, and they're machine-washable. Thousands of Amazon shoppers are fans of the simple towels, and as one reviewer summed it up, it's "a great pack of dishcloths at a wonderful price!"

Amazon Dishcloth Cellulose Sponge Cloths

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

BUY IT: $14.99 (orig. $15.99); amazon.com

Best Waffle Weave: Homaxy Waffle Weave Kitchen Dish Cloths

Waffle weave dish cloths not only have a specific look, but they also have a smart design that makes them extra durable and absorbent. They're tough enough to scrub big messes and wipe up major spills with ease. Each square towel in this six-pack comes with a convenient hanging hook for easy storage and drying. "These towels are beautiful, absorbent, [and the] perfect thickness for dish-wiping and all kinds of kitchen use," said one of hundreds of satisfied reviewers on Amazon.

Amazon Dishcloth Cellulose Sponge Cloths

Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

BUY IT: $14.99; amazon.com

Sours: https://www.southernliving.com/home/best-dish-towels
How to Print Sublimation Waffle Towel? New Item Introduction \u0026 Printing Tutorial.

The 12 Best Dish Towels, According to Customer Reviews

Dish towels are one of the most reached for items in the kitchen. So why don't we put a little more thought into which ones we buy? Let's be honest, cleaning kitchen messes is just a normal day in the life of a home cook. So let's all thank the humble dish towel for doing the dirty work for us.

Whether you're a young cook looking to purchase your first set of dish towels, or you're simply looking to upgrade your existing set, these are the best dish towels on the market. We scoured the internet, specifically the reviews sections, to find the dish towels people are most excited about. Keep reading to see our picks for the best 13 dish towels to buy, and find the right one for you.

Best Dish Towels at a Glance:

  • Best Overall:All-Clad Dual Woven Stripe Hand Towels, Set of 3
  • Runner-up:T-fal Tea Towel and Dishcloth, Set of 2
  • Best Dishcloth:Sticky Toffee Cotton Terry Kitchen Dishcloth Towels, Set of 8
  • Best Budget Pick:Made by Design Cotton Dishcloths, Set of 6
  • Most Versatile:Williams Sonoma All Purpose Pantry Towels, Set of 4
  • Ultra Absorbent:KitchenAid Albany 4-Piece Striped Tea Towel Set
  • Best Cotton:Utopia Ultra-Soft Cotton Dish Cloths, Set of 12
  • Best Terry:Crate and Barrel Waffle-Terry Dish Towels, Set of 2
  • Best Microfiber:MU Kitchen Microfiber Dish Towel
  • Best Flour Sack:Aunti Em's Kitchen Dish Towels With Vintage Design, Set of 13
  • Best Design: Gracie Oaks Fairley Dish Cloth, Set of 3
  • Best for Gifting: Martha Stewart 3-Piece Waffle Weave Kitchen Towels

What to Consider When Buying Dish Towels

Types of Dish Towels

Which dish towel you choose to buy all comes down to how you intend to use them. Most of the time, you'll be using dish towels to dry dishes, cookware, hands, and other surfaces. But dish towels can also be used to handle hot cookware, clean big spills, and polish glassware.

Here we'll break down the difference between common dish towel materials so you can decide which one is a fit for you. While some dish towels are double-sided or feature different types within a set, you may also want to consider getting a combination of different materials so you can tackle every kitchen task.

  • Flour Sack: Flour sack dish towels, sometimes referred to as tea towels, are made from linen, which has soft fibers that are great for polishing fine china or glassware. They won't leave any fluff or other residue on your crystal-clear glassware. And they dry extremely quickly. The only con to flour sack towels is they're not the best at absorbing liquids because they're so thin.
  • Terry Cloth: If you are looking for absorbency that can handle big spills, terry cloth dish towels might be the right fit for you. Terry cloth material, often made from cotton, is made of piles of loops tightly sewn together. This is the type of fabric that's often used for bath towels or bathrobes because it's great at soaking up moisture. This makes it a great pick for tackling kitchen messes, but it will take a little time to dry.
  • Cotton: Tightly-woven cotton is arguably the best material for dish towels because it is both very absorbent and leaves very little lent behind. It's ideal for drying dishes, hands, and for handling hot cookware, as it's both durable and extremely heat-tolerant.
  • Microfiber: Microfiber towels are plush and thick, making them ideal for tackling big spills. Many of them have added absorbency and dry very quickly. Plus, they're great for use on glassware because they're lint-free. The only downside to them is that they can be damaged when used on hot surfaces so you won't want to use them as an oven mitt.

With the best type of dish towel in mind for you and your kitchen, keep scrolling to see our 12 picks for the best dish towels you can buy.

Best Overall: All-Clad Dual Woven Stripe Hand Towels

All Clad Dual Woven Stripe Hand Towel Set in gray

All-Clad is known for creating high-quality kitchen products that will last a lifetime, and these top-rated dish towels are no exception. The smart design of these dual-sided towels makes them ideal for tackling a variety of kitchen tasks.

One side is made from absorbent terry while the other is made from flatter, woven-weave cotton that's perfect for use on glassware and other delicate dishes.

The simple stripe design comes in a dozen colors so there's an option for every kitchen. Not to mention they've been treated with an antimicrobial agent to prevent the growth of odor-causing bacteria. One reviewer says, "These look nice and classy, but the 'hidden' terry cloth back side makes them thick, soft, and thirsty!"

Buy It: All-Clad Dual Woven Stripe Hand Towels, Set of 3, $22; Amazon or $8 each; Bed Bath & Beyond

Runner-Up: T-fal Tea Towel and Dishcloth

T-fal Tea Towel and Dish Cloth set in brown

If you're looking to tackle big messes, these cotton terry dish towels are soft and absorbent workhorses. With over 3500 glowing reviews on Amazon, it's safe to say these are a popular pick.

One reviewer puts it this way: "Doing dishes is not my favorite task, but these dishcloths dry beautifully and are very pretty!" This set comes with two towels in over eight vibrant colors to choose from. And at $10 per set, you can't pass these up.

Buy It: T-fal Tea Towel and Dishcloth, Set of 2, $10; Amazon or Target

Best Dishcloth: Sticky Toffee Cotton Terry Kitchen Dishcloth Towels

Sours: https://www.allrecipes.com/article/best-dish-towels/

Dish towel waffle

  • We plan to test new kitchen towels from Williams Sonoma, Crate & Barrel, and Food52.

January 12, 2021

Let’s face it, we’re all a little bit of a mess in our own way, especially in the kitchen, which is why you can never have too many kitchen towels. Having a thick stack on hand will ensure you’re always ready to sop up messes, wipe down counters, and dry hands, dishes, and produce. We’ve wiped up gallons of spills and dried countless dishes with 25 towels since 2014, and the Williams Sonoma All Purpose Pantry Towels are our favorite. They’re absorbent, durable, affordable, and available in a rainbow of colors.

The Williams Sonoma All Purpose Pantry Towels are our favorite because they’re big, thirsty, long-lasting, and reasonably priced. With tightly looped cotton on one side and waffle weave on the other, these towels have the absorbency of terry cloth without the fluff. They’ve been in regular rotation in the test kitchen for two full years and show no signs of wear. They have a convenient loop for hanging and come in six colors.

The Utopia Towels Kitchen Bar Mops are an inexpensive way to get the job done. In our tests, they absorbed spills with ease, wiped up messes well, and held up to extensive runs through the washer and dryer. They’re not that attractive, resembling bathroom hand towels rather than kitchen towels, and they come in white only, but that’s fairly standard for bar mops. Although these towels may not be the best choice for polishing your glasses, they are a good option for someone looking to clean up without cleaning out their wallet.

Aunt Martha’s Premium Flour Sack Dish Towels are the thickest and most absorbent we’ve found for this style of towel. But, like most flour sack towels, they’re at least 50 percent bigger than our other towel picks, and made from thinner cotton. These are a great choice if you want a smooth, lint-free cloth that’s not only great for drying dishes, hands, and delicate produce, but is also helpful for food prep tasks like straining stocks.

Everything we recommend

Why you should trust us

We’ve covered kitchen towels at Wirecutter since 2014. Over the course of that time, we’ve spent almost 100 hours researching hundreds of towels, and tested 25.

Lesley Stockton spent her whole professional life cooking in restaurants, catering, and in test kitchens, so she knows her way around a dish rag. In addition to her practical experience in the kitchen, she’s covered table linens for Wirecutter for the past three years. And though she wouldn’t use a dinner napkin to dry dishes, some of her research on table linens is applicable for kitchen towels.

Haley Sprankle, who conducted testing in 2019, is an updates writer for Wirecutter. She’s also covered oven mitts and pot holders for Wirecutter.

When researching this guide, we scoured the Internet for reputable editorial guides from sources like Cook’s Illustrated (subscription required), and we read hundreds of user reviews. We also read Wirecutter’s own guide to bath towels, which has a wealth of information on terry cloth. We went to kitchen and home stores to feel towels, see the available colors, and talk with salespeople. We also talked to Wirecutter deputy editor Christine Cyr Clisset, who has covered home textiles, and Tux Loerzel, store manager at Whisk, a kitchenwares store in Brooklyn, New York.

Who should get this

A person with their sleeves rolled up dries a dinner plate with the Pantry Towel.

Everyone needs absorbent kitchen towels. You can use them to dry your hands and dishes, to wipe up spills, or for handling hot pans. Whether you’re equipping your first kitchen or replacing worn-out or stained dishcloths, new kitchen towels made from 100 percent cotton are a small way to upgrade your everyday. No matter if you want a towel that matches your kitchen’s color scheme, an absorbent mop for spills and dirty jobs, or an oversized thinner cloth for food prep tasks, one of our picks is likely to meet your needs.

If you’re not sure what you need in terms of a kitchen towel, here’s a list of the types we review in this guide:

Cotton terry cloth: Terry cloth has raised loops that are great at grabbing and holding moisture. It’s highly absorbent, inexpensive, and ideal for drying dishes and hands or wiping up spills. New terry cloth towels will deposit some lint on glassware, depending on quality. But they’ll produce less lint after four or five wash and dry cycles.

Waffle weave: The term for these towels is derived from their waffle-like woven grid pattern. Waffle-weave towels are commonly made from cotton or microfiber, and touted for being absorbent and quick-drying.

Flat-weave cotton: These towels have a smooth weave without any raised loops or stitches. They’re slightly less thirsty than terry cloth, but relatively lint-free from the outset. The smooth texture has a clean look, and lends itself to decorative printing or patterns.

Cotton huck towels: Huck towels are a mainstay in hospitals for drying surgical instruments after sterilization, because they’re absorbent and lint-free. But they’re also thinner and smaller—and in turn more limiting— than standard kitchen towels. Bloggers are popularizing the use of huck towels in the kitchen because they’re cheap and a reusable substitute for paper towels.

Flour sack towels: These towels are thin, low-lint, and can measure up to 50 percent bigger than standard 20-by-30-inch kitchen towels. They’re less absorbent per square inch, but make up for this deficiency with more surface area. Flour sack towels are also useful for food prep, like covering rising dough and gently drying tender herbs and berries.

Their practicality doesn’t end in the kitchen. Fellow Wirecutter staff writer Michael Sullivan uses flour sack towels for dusting because, “they’re extremely soft and won’t scratch wood surfaces. And since they’re so thin, you can use the edges to get into hard-to-reach crevices of ornate furniture.”

How we picked

A pile of around a dozen kitchen towels of varying sizes and textures.

For this guide, we focused on all-purpose towels that can take a beating in the kitchen and hold up to frequent wash cycles. We immediately ruled out microfiber cloths because they hold smells and aren’t as durable as cotton towels. Thick-weave linen towels are absorbent and lintless, but they’re also very expensive, so we decided not to test those. Based on past personal experience, we skipped cotton basket-weave towels because of their lack of absorbency. We’ve also tested a few blue-stripe herringbone-weave towels before, but they never compete with higher-quality brands.

When it comes to quickly drying dishes, hands, and produce, or even handling hot pans and casseroles, nothing is as versatile as a thick cotton towel.

When it comes to quickly drying dishes, hands, and produce, or even handling hot pans and casseroles, nothing is as versatile as a thick cotton towel. Cotton is durable, affordable, and absorbent, which is why Tux Loerzel, of the kitchenwares store Whisk in Brooklyn, told us that he recommends cotton to most people. Cotton towels are also heat-resistant, making them great as pot holders when folded over a couple times. Loerzel said that at home, “I have oven mitts and pot holders … but the towel is hanging off the oven so I generally will reach for that nine times out of ten.” (Pro tip: Never handle a hot item with a damp towel, because water transfers heat much better than fabric, and will quickly burn your hand) But not all cotton towels are the same, and their performance varies with thickness, size, and the type of weave. Listed below are the criteria we believe are most important when selecting a kitchen towel:

A strong weave and durable stitching will keep your kitchen linens looking like new through multiple wash cycles. Because kitchen towels are exposed to bacteria from your hands, cutting board, and food, they need regular laundering (ideally, multiple times a week, depending on use). Cotton is generally very durable and will hold up against the rigors of your washer and dryer. But towels made from high-quality long cotton fibers will last longer than those constructed from cheap cotton.

Size and shrinkage
Most all-purpose cotton kitchen towels seem to hover around 20 by 30 inches, give or take. For thicker fabrics, like terry cloth, this is ideal. It’s large enough to dry a full draining rack of dishes, and provide protection from hot pots and casseroles when triple-folded. There are two exceptions to this general size rule: flour sack towels and bar mops. Thinner flour sack towels can run up to 33 by 38 inches, and that extra area makes up for their lack of absorbency per square inch. Inexpensive terry cloth bar mops are smaller, measuring around 16 by 19 inches, but these thirsty towels are efficient at wiping up spills.

All cotton towels will shrink after washing and drying. The rate of shrinkage with the towels we tested ranged from 11 to 25 percent, and our picks fell in the 11 to 18 percent range. But even the towels that shrank by 18 percent were still a generous size.

Two people hold towels in front of them; the one on the right is about twice the surface area of the left one.

Left to right: Williams Sonoma All Purpose Pantry Towel and Aunt Martha’s Premium Flour Sack Dish Towel. Photo: Michelle McSwain

Two people hold towels in front of them; the one on the right is about twice the surface area of the left one, and appears to be a waffled texture.

Left to right: Real Simple Antimicrobial Bar Mop Dish Cloth and Aunt Martha’s Premium Flour Sack Dish Towel. Photo: Michelle McSwain

Even though kitchen towels are practical items, nobody wants a tattered rag hanging in their kitchen. Plain, plush fabric sewn with clean hems is attractive by virtue of its construction, but we also understand that kitchen textiles are a big part of people’s kitchen decor. We kept aesthetics in mind by choosing towels available in multiple textures and colors, and gave preference to sets available in white because it’s the most neutral color.

How we tested

Someone's hand using a thick, shaggy hand towel to wipe up a small amount of bright pink liquid from a white counter.

Before we mopped up a single spill, we washed and dried each towel 10 times. This served two purposes: to test the towel’s durability through multiple launderings and to remove the industrial coating (called sizing) that protects the fabric during shipping and storage (but also inhibits absorption). After the wash test, we eliminated kitchen towels with loose threads and frayed hems.

To test absorbency, we laid each towel over ½ cup of spilled black tea or water for 30 seconds, then checked for any unabsorbed liquid. As we predicted, the thinner towels absorbed less per square inch than thicker ones.

We also dried water glasses to check for lint. But after 10 wash and dry cycles, most of the kitchen towels were virtually lint free.

Our pick: Williams Sonoma All Purpose Pantry Towels

Two close-textured waffle-weave towels drape over the edge of a tub.

Williams Sonoma All Purpose Pantry Towels offer the best combination of absorbency, durability, attractiveness, and price of all the towels we tested. With thirsty terry cloth on one side and waffle weave cotton on the other, this low-lint towel quickly dries dishes, hands, and surfaces, and is attractive enough to hang in plain sight. It’s available in eight colors and the four-pack price averages out to $5 per towel.

This dense cotton kitchen towel combines two different textures on opposite sides: terry cloth and waffle weave. Though the terry weave is flatter and less plush than that of other terry towels, it absorbs moisture as well as any fluffier cloth we tested. It dries dishes and glassware without depositing lint, and is thirsty enough to tackle a draining rack full of dishes after dinner. Though the Williams Sonoma towel is tough and absorbent, the smoother waffle side also excels at delicate tasks, like de-fuzzing strawberries and blotting water from tender produce.

Two towels, stacked to show their corresponding corners, display the different textures of terrycloth and waffle weave; both are tightly woven versions.

The waffle-weave and terry cloth sides of the Williams Sonoma All Purpose Pantry Towel. Photo: Michelle McSwain

The loops on the top pick are indeed tighter and shorter than the bar mop's, showing the grid of the weave instead of a uniform shaggy texture.

The visible difference between the tight terry cloth loops on our top pick (left) and the longer, looser loops on a bar mop (right). Photo: Michelle McSwain

We’ve used and abused the Williams Sonoma towels in our test kitchen since 2016, but the seams and stitching are still completely intact with no signs of wear. And to say we’re hard on our kitchen towels is an understatement. We deploy them for every spill, from coffee and tea, to red wine and red meat drippings. To remove tough stains, we soak our towels in hot water and oxygenated bleach before running them through the washer and dryer.

We also think Williams Sonoma’s towel is attractive. The terry cloth loops are small and tightly packed—unlike bathroom hand towels—and waffle weave has a smooth and hygienic look that’s befitting for the kitchen. And it has a sewn-in corner loop so you can conveniently hang your towel from a hook or drawer pull. If white isn’t your style, the All-Purpose Pantry towel is available in seven other colors.

Our pick: Long-term testing notes

We use the Williams Sonoma All-Purpose Pantry Towel in the Wirecutter test kitchen every day. After several years of abuse (we’re not easy on our kitchen rags) and countless washes in extra-hot water, they show no sign of unraveling at the hem or worn holes in the weave. We still like the Williams Sonoma towels, and purchased fresh sets for Wirecutter’s new test kitchen. Our old towels, while pretty stained, are still good and are now wiping up messes in our large appliance testing room.

We’ve seen some reviews on Williams Sonoma’s website suggesting that the Pantry Towels are slightly different than the ones from years past. We got a new set of towels at the end of 2020, and after we wash and dry them at least five times, we’ll compare their weave and absorbency to our older ones and report back. It’s helpful to remember that washing can change the look and feel of a towel quite a bit: It will shrink and thicken after one wash, and soften after several, becoming more absorbent as the protective sizing washes off.

Flaws but not dealbreakers

The only flaw with the Williams Sonoma towel is that if you want to order it online, the shipping charge bumps the price per towel from $5 to $7.75. There are a couple of ways around this dilemma. If you live near a Williams Sonoma store, you could simply purchase the towels there. Or you could purchase enough items to put you over the free-shipping threshold (usually $49). These towels make excellent holiday and hostess gifts, so you might want to stock up. Or if you can wait, these towels regularly go on sale, sometimes with free shipping.

Budget Pick: Utopia Towels Kitchen Bar Mops

If you’re looking for an affordable kitchen towel built to handle your day-to-day spills, the Utopia Towels Kitchen Bar Mops are your best option. These terry cloth towels are durable, absorbent, and easily washable. They’re available in white only, and they aren’t the kind of towel you’d want to hang on display. But they cost about a dollar apiece, which means you can keep a stack of them stashed in a drawer for extra-messy tasks, and you won’t have to worry too much about stains.

A detail shot of the Utopia Towels Kitchen Bar Mop terry cloth material.

They soaked up ½ cup of water consistently, as well as cleaned up a sticky smoothie effectively. After running them through the washer (in hot water) and dryer multiple times, we spotted a couple of frayed threads, but the seams held up remarkably well.

The Utopia Towels Kitchen Bar Mop cleaning up some spilled cold brew off the counter.

Although these towels are great for cleaning up spills and drying your hands, they are not meant to polish your glassware. In our tests, they still deposited lint on glasses after multiple runs through the wash. They also aren’t the most attractive towels—some may even argue that they resemble bathroom hand towels—and they come in white only. And like most bar mops, they’re small: about 15 by 17 inches after washing and drying, whereas standard kitchen towels are about 20 by 30 inches. But if you’re looking to get the job done and aren’t worried about hanging these on display, these are the towels to get.

Also great: Aunt Martha’s Premium Flour Sack Dish Towel

The Flour Sack towel, placed on a counter underneath a colander full of raspberries.

Aunt Martha’s Premium Flour Sack Dish Towels are the thickest and highest-quality flour sack towels we’ve ever tested. They’re oversized, lint-free, and finely woven. Their absorbency and smoothness make these towels ideal for delicate jobs like wicking excess moisture from tender herbs, lettuces, and berries. Although Aunt Martha’s towels can’t mop up a spill as quickly as our other picks, their usefulness for food preparation sets them apart.

We’ve looked at a few flour sack towels over the years, but none match the performance of Aunt Martha’s. Because they’re lint-free, these cloths are great for drying glassware as well as food prep. Flour sack cotton is thin, so it’s a good alternative to cheesecloth for straining liquids or wicking excess moisture from cut watery vegetables like eggplant. These towels are also great for serving warm dinner rolls at the table.

They're arranged largest to smallest, from left: Aunt Martha's is the largest, the Williams Sonoma towel is about half its surface area, folded; the Crate and Barrel towel is only slightly smaller than that; and the Real Simple towel is about 2/3 the size of the Williams Sonoma and Crate and Barrel towels, folded in half.

Even though they’re thinner than the Williams Sonoma or Crate and Barrel towels, Aunt Martha’s towels are 50 percent larger (measuring 33 by 38 inches to their 20 by 30 inches). What the Aunt Martha’s towels lack in absorbency per square inch, they make up for in more surface area, and the thinner cotton allows the towel itself to dry faster.

If you’re into colorful or decorative kitchen towels, these are not for you, because they’re available in white only (although they make a good blank canvas for painting or stamping if you want to decorate them yourself).

Laundry tips and best practices

Because of their proximity to bacteria, kitchen towels need frequent laundering to prevent cross-contamination. Ideally, if you use a towel throughout the course of preparing a meal, throw it in the hamper and replace it with a clean one. But we’re real people too, and we understand that life gets busy and obsessively washing your kitchen rags is time-consuming. All we ask is that you don’t let them get to the point where they start to smell sour, because then you know that thing is a petri dish.

Towels need frequent laundering to prevent cross-contamination.

Usually a cold-water wash cycle with detergent is enough to clean your kitchen linens after normal use. But if you’re dealing with a grease stain, pretreat the spot with dish soap and warm water before running the towel through a hot-water wash cycle.

For all-white towels, we use chlorine bleach in the wash to keep them bright. For patterned or colored fabrics, a scoop of powdered oxygenated bleach (like OxyClean or Clorox Oxy Magic) helps to remove most stains.

What to look forward to

We plan to test a handful of new kitchen towels from Williams Sonoma, Crate & Barrel, and Food52. The Williams Sonoma Super Absorbent Multipack and Super Absorbent Waffle Weave could rival our top pick. Both are textured, while also coming in different patterns and colors that some people might prefer over the solid-colored Williams Sonoma All Purpose Pantry Towels.

Since Crate & Barrel discontinued our former runner-up pick, they released a new line of Stripe Dish Towels that looks very similar. They’re 100 percent cotton, woven, and they come in five different colors: olive, almond, grey, blue, and lilac. Food52 also makes some comparable, 100 percent cotton woven towels, the Five Two Essential Kitchen Towels. The only downside is they cost $35 for two towels—almost three times the price of the Crate & Barrel towels.

While we plan to test these as soon as we can, our capacity is limited by the COVID restrictions of our testing space. We’ll update the guide as we’re able to.

The competition

We compared the Target Made By Design Barmop Towels with our former budget pick, the Real Simple Antimicrobial Bar Mops, for a blog post about Target’s affordable home goods line. As we wrote in the post, the Target towel was thinner, smaller, and less absorbent than the Real Simple bar mop.

We used to recommend the Now Designs Ribbed Towel. Our original towels are still holding up well, with no traces of loose threads or fraying, but the new towels we bought in 2017 are far less durable. Some of the stitches loosened after 10 wash cycles. These findings mirrored some Amazon comments about the towels’ decline in quality.

We can’t say for sure that the Sur la Table Ribbed Kitchen Towels are a rebrand of the Now Designs towels, but they bear an uncanny resemblance. Unlike the Now Designs, the Sur la Table towels held up through multiple washings. But if they are the same towel, we could see durability issues arise down the road.

Like our top pick, the Crate and Barrel Waffle-Terry Dish Towel has a terry-cloth side and a waffle-weave side. But the fabric is almost too thick and absorbent. The tea stain didn’t lift completely, even after a soak in hot water and oxygenated bleach.

The Utopia Towels Flour Sack Towels are smaller and much thinner than our pick, Aunt Martha’s. The loose weave makes these so thin, you can almost see through them.

The Kitchenmart towel's hem is shown, with frayed threads visible all along the edge.

The hem of the Kitchenmart Kitchen Towel (pictured above) from Bed Bath & Beyond completely unraveled after the fifth wash cycle.

About your guides

Lesley Stockton

Lesley Stockton is a senior staff writer reporting on all things cooking and entertaining for Wirecutter. Her expertise builds on a lifelong career in the culinary world—from a restaurant cook and caterer to a food editor at Martha Stewart. She is perfectly happy to leave all that behind to be a full-time kitchen-gear nerd.

Haley Sprankle

Haley Sprankle

Updates Writer

Haley Sprankle is an updates writer at Wirecutter currently covering kitchen gadgets and financial content. She loves French bulldogs, French tucks, and french fries. It’s a wonder she hasn’t been to France yet, but it’s next on her to-do list.

Sours: https://www.nytimes.com/wirecutter/reviews/best-kitchen-towels/
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