OXO Steel Single Wall Cocktail Shaker
Credit: Amazon

The 9 Best Cocktail Shakers, According to Experts

Professional bartenders prefer Koriko weighted tins for a reason.
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From an Aviation to a Gin Fizz, many cocktail recipes require a good shake to incorporate, aerate, and chill the ingredients. While it's a necessary step, the technique is also easy to learn and unabashedly fun. Before mastering the skill, though, you need the right equipment. 

There are three types of shakers—the French, the cobbler, and the Boston shaker, and the latter is a popular choice for professional bar settings. "A Boston-style shaker has great balance because it's weighted," says Chad Gant, the lead bartender and beverage expert at Bobby Hotel's Union Tavern in Nashville. "It creates a really effective seal without being impractical, and it's hard to break." 

Generally speaking, bar and beverage professionals chose shakers for durability, sturdy weight, and a tight seal—adding up to the ability to build a stand-out cocktail. The best option is the set of Koriko Weighted Tins, which forms a tight seal and is a universal bartender favorite. Below, find nine of the best cocktail shakers for mixing chilled margaritas, frothy fizzes, and beyond. 

Our Top Picks

Best Cocktail Shakers
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Best Overall: Koriko Weighted Tins

View at Amazon ($12 for large)

View at Amazon ($11 for small).

Nearly a dozen drinks experts we talked with named the Koriko stainless steel weighted tins as their favorite. The slight weight at the bottom makes it easier to shake, says Curtis Pierre-Bernadeau, beverage director at Royalton Rooftop in New York City. "The tin walls are thinner than most shakers as well, allowing better feedback to ensure the cocktail is diluted and at the perfect temperature," he says. 

The price point is a plus, says Milagro Tequila ambassador Luis Lopez, adding, "they've proven that they're built to last, and they're weighted for efficiency."

Many experts called out the Koriko's strong seal, including Adam Witherspoon, beverage director at Four Seasons Hotel Minneapolis. "They create a great seal when shaking, avoiding making a mess of a cocktail," he says. The tight seal also lends itself to a more vigorous shake, according to Amanda Bilbro, the director of food and beverage at Kona Kai Resort & Spa. That's necessary for mixing up drinks like a Whiskey Sour. "These shakers allow for a very hard shake which gets the egg whites nice and frothy, which is exactly what makes a perfect sour," she says. 

  • Capacity: 28 ounces
  • Material: Stainless Steel
Best Cocktail Shakers
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Best Cobbler Shaker: Oxo Steel Single Wall Cocktail Shaker

View at Amazon ($23)

Also available at Oxo.

Fashioned with two silicone gaskets, the stainless steel Oxo shaker is completely leak-proof, so shaking up a mess-free cocktail is easy. Like everything the design-obsessed brand makes, this three-piece shaker is thoughtfully-made, with a built-in strainer and a jigger cap for simple ingredient measuring. The concentrated spout on the strainer also makes for easy, precise pouring. Erik Andersson, Hendrick's Gin Ambassador, also likes the Oxo strainer for its aesthetic. "A three-piece shaker is more elegant but requires a bit more technique, so it's great for special occasions," he says. It's dishwasher-safe, as well, making its multi-part cleanup a breeze. 

  • Capacity: 24 ounces
  • Material: Stainless Steel 
Best Cocktail Shakers
Credit: Courtesy of The Boston Shaker

Best Value: Tin on Tin Boston Shaker Set

View at Boston Shaker ($16)

The classic Boston shaker is the top choice for many beverage pros who weighed in. The no-frills stainless steel option does the trick for Anthony Bohlinger, Fistful of Bourbon ambassador, especially when crafting certain cocktails. "For anything using egg whites, I always use a tin on tin Boston shaker—this gives the most area for the cocktail to aerate," he says. "I also use the Boston for whip shaking with a small amount of crushed ice for the same reason." 

  • Capacity: 28 ounces
  • Material: Stainless steel
Best Cocktail Shakers
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Best Splurge: Sertodo Copper Boston Shaker Set

View at Amazon ($89)

Also available at Sertodo.

While most cocktail shakers behind professional bars are stainless steel, Christie McGuire, food and beverage manager at Alila Ventana Big Sur in California, loves the set from Sertodo Copper. "We use copper mostly because it is beautiful," says McGuire. "But copper also exhibits the oligodynamic effect which is great for our cocktails." (That is, the natural sterilization effect some metals have on bacteria.) The delicately-textured set is made of heavy-gauge, 100-percent recycled pure copper. 

  • Capacity: 25 ounces
  • Material: Copper
Best Cocktail Shakers
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Best Design: Leopold Weighted Shaking Tin Set

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Sturdiness is the key for Dorys Rodriguez Cordero. The bartender at Palacio Provincial's Atelier in San Juan, Puerto Rico likes the Leopold weighted shaking tin set "because they're incredibly durable and well-made," he says, which helps keep up in a high-volume cocktail bar. Designed to form a strong seal and separate easily, the shakers are easy to clean and dishwasher-safe. 

  • Capacity: 28 ounces
  • Material: Stainless Steel 
Best Cocktail Shakers
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Best Leakproof: Piña Barware Commercial Boston Tin Set

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Juan Sanchez, the beverage director at Alila Marea Beach Resort in Encinitas prefers the Piña Barware Boston shaker set for its "quality craftsmanship and great feel and weight when shaking up cocktails." The sleek set is made with the heaviest stainless steel of any shaker on the market, making for a supremely durable pick. Its custom shape—slightly curved at the rim—makes for a tight seal for a leak-proof shake, plus it's easy to separate with a simple pop. They're also dishwasher safe. 

  • Capacity: 28 ounces
  • Material: Mirror-polished stainless steel
Best Cocktail Shakers
Credit: Courtesy of The Boston Shaker

Best for Visual Cues: Boston Shaker with a Pint Glass

View at Boston Shaker ($8)

Instead of using a set, Amy Farrell, Head Bartender, Bar 210 at Lacroix inside The Rittenhouse, prefers making cocktails with a simple 28-ounce shaker and a pint glass. "The glass lets me really feel the temperature," says Farrell. "In the same way you would never stir a drink in metal, I like being able to regulate the temperature and see the drink. Feeling the temperature of the glass and seeing the dilution of the ice helps me ensure that I am putting out a consistent product." According to Farrell, you can watch your drink transform in the pint glass while shaking. "I can tell from the opacity and color if it's right," she says, which ultimately helps her make the best cocktail. 

  • Capacity: 28 ounces
  • Material: Stainless Steel 
Best Cocktail Shakers
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Best for Durability: Barfly Superfly Heavyweight Set

View at Amazon ($20)

The heavyweight Superfly line from Barfly can stand up to the busy bar at Harrah's Resort Southern California, says beverage manager Grace Skarra. "They hold a tight seal; they are durable and stylish," she says, making them their go-to for shaking up tropical cocktails and their new line of mocktails. For home use (which should, in theory at least, see less use than a professional bar), the heavy-duty construction will hide wear and tear well for years of both use and bar display. The set is dishwasher safe, but hand washing is recommended. 

  • Capacity: 28 ounces
  • Material: Stainless Steel
Best Cocktail Shakers
Credit: Courtesy of Amazon

Best for Color Options: Barfly Antique Copper Tins Set

View at Amazon ($37

Juan Carlos Ascencio, the bartender at Rita's Cantina & Bar at JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa, prefers the Barfly set for its "durable feel and weight which is perfect for the busy bar." The brand's stainless steel cocktail tin sets also come in over a dozen finishes—including gold, vintage black, and antique copper—to channel the perfect aesthetic in your home bar. Hand washing is best for keeping these tins in good condition. 

  • Capacity: 28 ounces
  • Material: Stainless Steel 

Our Favorite

There are plenty of solid cocktail shakers on the market, but the Koriko weighted tins are popular with bartenders and hospitality pros for good reason. The shakers are thin enough to feel the drink chill but durable enough to withstand many years of cocktail making. They create a strong seal that withstands a vigorous shake, and the price point makes it an easy addition to a home bar. 

Factors to Consider

Material

The vast majority of cocktail shakers are made with stainless steel for a reason—the material is durable, lightweight, easy to clean, and doesn't hold odors or stains. However, some are made with pure copper, which is beautiful and long-lasting and can have antimicrobial benefits. 

Purpose 

Before buying a shaker, consider how often you plan to make drinks and where it will live. If your bar cart is on prominent display, choose a model you love to look at as much as you love using. 

Cleaning

Most stainless steel shakers are dishwasher safe, and rugged enough to withstand years of usage and cleaning. Depending on how often you mix cocktails, keep in mind some options, including the ones made with copper, will be hand-wash only.

Q+A

What's the best way to use a cocktail shaker correctly?

After pouring the ingredients into the tin, add ice and seal it with the lid or shaker tin (depending on which shaker you're using). Make sure to grip the shaker with both hands, one on top and one on the bottom. Shake vigorously in an up-and-down motion over your shoulder. Once the shaker starts to chill after about ten seconds, the cocktail is ready to strain into a glass. 

What are the different types of shakers?

There are three types of cocktail shakers. The most popular model named by pro bartenders is the Boston shaker, which usually comes as a set with a large shaking tin and small tin. (The latter can be substituted with a pint glass.) The cobbler shaker is a tin with a built-in strainer and cap. Finally, the French (or Parisian) shaker is a hybrid of the first two, with a shaking tin and a cap but no built-in strainer. While the cobbler shaker is easier for novice home cocktail makers, some experts say it can be cumbersome—the cap can get stuck, and the strainer can get clogged more easily. 

What are classic cocktails served shaken?

Besides the most obvious reason to use a shaker—that is, to thoroughly mix the drink—shaking a cocktail chills and aerates the ingredients. Cocktails that contain citrus, cream liqueurs, egg, and milk are typically shaken. Anything with club soda, sparkling wine, or bubbles should be stirred. 

Our Expertise

Regan Stephens is a Philadelphia-based writer and editor who has worked for nearly two decades in digital and print magazine production. She's worked on staff at People, Teen People, and Philadelphia magazines, and her writing has appeared in publications like Travel + Leisure, Fortune, and Conde Nast Traveler. She has contributed to Food & Wine for the last five years. For this piece, she spoke with over a dozen professionals—including bartenders, beverage managers, and spirits ambassadors—from all over the country.