Ask any bartender, and they’ll tell you that when it comes to making cocktails professionally, consistency is key across the board. There are myriad resources that the pros have at their disposal, such as garnishing tools to help with presentation, along with the most consistently fresh and high-quality ingredients. But perhaps most important of all of them? It's measurement.
That's where jiggers come into the picture—they are one of the most common things missing from home bars. Sure, bartending at home is a more casual endeavor, but if you want to nail your drink recipes, you’ll want to invest in a good jigger, which will help you know exactly how much rum, vodka, or simple syrup you're pouring.
Cocktail Kingdom Leopold Jigger
Weighted feeling in hand
Comes in several finishes
Available in two sizes
Copper plated option isn't dishwasher-safe
“For a utility at-home jigger, I’ve always preferred the Leopold [design] from Cocktail Kingdom,” says Alex Jump, head bartender of iconic bar Death & Co.’s Denver location. “All of the measurements [are] in one tool, so you don’t have to worry about getting a bunch of tools dirty. Bonus: they look really pretty, and I really like the weighted feeling they have.”
Cocktail Kingdom offers their signature Leopold jiggers in two sizes and a number of different finishes. A 1-ounce/2-ounce jigger is the go-to for many bartenders, so we’d recommend opting for the 30-milliliter/60-milliliter size. The stainless steel is classic, but if you opt for another finish, such as the copper-plated option, just know it's not dishwasher safe.
Material: 18/18 stainless steel with different plating options available | Size: 2.9 x 2.35 x 3.65 inches | Capacity: 1.01 ounces (top), 2.03 ounces (bottom) | Dishwasher-Safe?: Depends on the finish
Price at the time of publish: $22
OXO Steel Angled Measuring Jigger
Features multiple measurements
Isn't as attractive as others
Jump’s fellow Death & Co. Denver bartender Jon Feuersanger offers another handy option for the at-home bartender: “The measuring devices I use at home that are 100 percent [utilitarian] and easy-to-use are the OXO steel-angled jiggers.” According to him, these workhorse jiggers function as a mini measuring cup and hit all the main measurements in one, from 0.25 ounces to 2 ounces. Plus, the price is hard to beat—even if it doesn't have that iconic look that makes the others feel like more attractive options.
Material: Stainless steel | Size: 2.75 x 2.3 x 2.05 inches | Capacity: 2 ounces | Dishwasher-Safe?: Yes
Price at the time of publish: $10
Match Italian Pewter Jigger
Other pieces are available to make a matching set
If you find yourself constantly wishing you lived in a Renaissance painting and you also enjoy a great cocktail, consider investing in this expensive handmade Italian pewter jigger, which is part of a larger (and equally Old World) collection of barware.
The smaller end measures 1 ounce while the larger side measures 1.5 ounces. If you’re looking to build your own set around this beautiful piece, you can choose from a shaker, strainer, mixing glass, and more. Just note that this material is hand-wash only.
Material: Pewter | Size: 2 x 4.2 inches | Capacity: 1 ounce (bottom), 1.5 ounces (top) | Dishwasher-Safe?: No
Price at the time of publish: $113
Related: The Best Bar Sets
Best for Beginners
Barfly Japanese-Style Jigger, 1 oz x 2 oz, Stainless
A bit lightweight
Barfly’s straightforward 1-ounce/2-ounce Japanese-style jigger combines an aesthetically pleasing design with durability and affordability, which is everything any novice home bartender could ask for.
Choose from various finishes, or buy a few different ones to see what you like best. These jiggers are dishwasher-safe and feature interior measurement markings in addition to a rolled top on both sides, which helps prevent spills and drips. It is, however, a bit lightweight.
Material: 18/18 stainless steel with different plating options available | Size: 1.75 x 0.1 x 4.75 inches | Capacity: 1 ounce (bottom), 2 ounces (top) | Dishwasher-Safe?: Depends on the finish
Price at the time of publish: $11
Related: The Best Cocktail Glasses
Piña Barware Slim Stainless Steel Commercial Jigger, 2 oz/1 oz
Comfortable to use
Exterior measurements can be tough to read
For lovers of both form and function, the super-slim mid-century-inspired Piña jigger ticks all the boxes. “It’s very accurate because of the super narrow base, and it’s very comfortable to use,” says Washington, D.C. bartender Justin Golash. This jigger helpfully features exterior measurement markers with corresponding lines on the inside walls, so you’ll always have a handle on even the smallest pours. It might, however just be a little tricky to read the external markings sometimes.
Material: Brushed stainless steel | Size: 5.2 x 2.3 x 2.3 inches | Capacity: 1 ounce (top), 2 ounces (bottom) | Dishwasher-Safe?: Yes
Price at the time of publish: $15
True Trio Multi Unit Measured Jigger, Metallic, 2.75", Multicolor
Incredibly clear external measurements
Feels good in your hand
A little pricey
“My forever favorite [is the] the multi-level jigger,” says Montreal bartender Kate Boushel. This design, she says, allows you to build directly in the jigger and features all of the important units of measurement (ounces, milliliters, and tablespoons). “It’s sturdy, super comfortable to hold, and even has a 0.25-ounce measure [when flipped],” Boushel adds.
Material: Stainless steel with different plating options available | Size: 3.25 x 2.25 x 6.25 inches | Capacity: 2.5 ounces | Dishwasher-Safe?: Yes
Price at the time of publish: $26
Cocktail Kingdom Japanese-Style Jigger 1oz/2oz, Stainless Steel
Feels balanced in your hand
Markings on inside only
“I go classic with the Japanese style jigger in 1 ounce/2-ounce capacity,” says Robin Kirk Wolf, a bartender in San Luis Obispo, California. “I love the physical balance in my hand, and the longer profile is great for moving quickly on a busy Saturday night, turning out rounds of cocktails!”
This classic design by industry favorite brand Cocktail Kingdom is made of stainless steel and features measurement markings on the inside walls. Note that these jiggers are hand-wash only.
Material: Stainless steel | Size: 2.15 x 2.1 x 5.35 inches | Capacity: 1 ounce (top), 2 ounces (bottom) | Dishwasher-Safe?: No
Price at the time of publish: $15
Related: The Best Bar Carts
Yukiwa Stainless Steel Seamless Jigger 1 oz x 1.75 oz
Easy to hold
Don't have markings
When it comes to barware, New York City bartender Orlando McCray has one go-to: Japanese specialty brand Yukiwa. “[Their] jiggers are really elegant and feel great in your hands,” he shares, though there is one downside to this piece in that there are no markings. “You have to train yourself through repetition—having an accurate idea of how much you’re pouring is a pretty good skill for us all to have, though,” he adds.
Material: Stainless steel | Size: 1.5 x 1.6 x 4 inches | Capacity: 1 ounces (top), 1.75 ounces (bottom) | Dishwasher-Safe?: Unknown
Price at time of the publish: $25
Jiggers are handy tools for the home bartender, and the Cocktail Kingdom Leopold Jigger wins for best overall thanks to its clean design and availability in multiple finishes. For the best value, look to the OXO Steel Angled Measuring Jigger for its measuring cup-like design and clearly marked measurements at a lower price.
Do professional bartenders use jiggers?
They most certainly do! Jiggers are key to making drinks that taste great and have the best proportions of ingredients. There's no substitution for accurate measurements.
Why use a Japanese jigger?
The design of a Japanese jigger makes it very easy to pour from and, therefore, more precise. They have a smaller diameter, and they also offer a few different measurements on the inside rim, which makes them versatile, too.
Is a jigger one or two shots?
A shot can be anywhere between 1.25 ounces, 1.5 ounces, and 2 ounces, although most bartenders in the United States will agree that a shot equals 1.5 ounces. Typically, an official jigger will measure 1.5 ounces on one side and 1 ounce on the other. The larger side is often referred to as a "jigger shot" and the smaller side is often called a "pony shot." A jigger, then, is closer in measurement to one shot rather than two.
Why Trust Liquor?
Longtime wine and spirits writer Céline Bossart has tested countless jiggers over the years—between her picks and a handful of ideas from fellow industry pros, this list is sure to cover all of your cocktail needs at any experience level.
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