Regardless of what type of outdoor activities you are doing and where you are doing, you require something to keep your foods and drinks fresh and cool all day long. Using coolers is a great way to keep your food cool, whether it’s a short trip or a long trip. But to get the premium performance from the cooler, you need the best coolers. Therefore, we are overviewing some of the best and top-rated coolers from the market and help you buy the cooler that best suits your requirements.
Top 15 Coolers for 2021 (Best Pick)
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Top 15 Best Coolers for 2021
- Coleman 54-Quart Steel-Belted Cooler
- Coleman FlipLid Personal Cooler
- AO Coolers Original Soft Cooler with High-Density Insulation
- CleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag
- Igloo BMX 25 Quart Cooler with Cool Riser Technology
- OAGear Backpack Cooler
- Polar Bear Coolers – Nylon Line
- Everest Cooler Lunch Bag
- Pelican Products Progear Elite Cooler, 45 Quart
- Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler with Removable Liner
- TOURIT Insulated Backpack Cooler
- YETI Tundra 65 Cooler
- Stanley Adventure Cooler
- IceMule Pro Insulated Backpack Cooler Bag
- Coleman C003 Soft Backpack Cooler
My Top Picks of the Best Coolers of 2021
1.Coleman 54-Quart Steel-Belted Cooler
Coleman is a very old cooler company; in fact, they were the first large company to manufacture portable cooler way back in 1954. So in terms of reputation and trustiness, there is nothing to worry about. Coleman 54-Quart Steel-Belted Cooler is a prime example of it.
The cooler is made of high-grade rust-resistant stainless steel that ensures the durability of the cooler. It has a high capacity, and it can hold up to 85 cans. The Ice Retention of this cooler is great. The cooler has 4-day ice retention. Moreover, it has comfortable steel handles that make the cooler very portable.
- Charming retro design
- High build quality
- Great storage capacity
- Less Ice Retention
2. Coleman FlipLid Personal Cooler
Coleman FlipLid Personal Cooler is one of the best personal ice chests available in the market. The cooler is large enough to carry 6 cans, full meals of one person, and you can use it as a portable table! In the meantime, this cooler is small enough for someone to carry it wherever he wants, thanks to the bail handle.
Given the cooler size and design, this model is better suited to a city environment. It has a compact design that ensures you to pack lunch and some drinks and take them to work with you. When you are working or camping outdoor, this small cooler will keep your food and drinks cold for up to 12 hours.
The Coleman FlipLid Personal Cooler has a beverage holder inside to provide a stable surface for drinks. The cooler is popular for its portability and easy to use functions. You can easily clean the top of the cooler. Moreover, you can use it to make clear ice. Though there are some complaints about the lid, handle, and lack of insulation, it is still worth buying this cooler.
- It can hold up to six cans of drinks
- The handle can be carried by a single hand
- Lightweight & portable
- You can use it as a table
- It has beverage holders for drinks
- Easy to clean
- Lack of insulation
- Lid and handle lack durability
3.AO Coolers Original Soft Cooler with High-Density Insulation
If you love fishing, boating, hiking, hunting, then this soft cooler will be a great addition to your outdoor gears. This AO soft cooler allows you to bring all your drinks and foods without carrying the weighty traditional cooler along.
This cooler has 3/4 inch thick closed foam cell insulation that guaranteed to hold ice for 24 hours in more than 100-degree weather. AO soft cooler has a removable shoulder strap, side pocket, and it is lightweight compared to other soft coolers available in the market. The cooler is made of durable canvas material, so you don’t have to worry about any leaks.
- Sweat-resistant canvas material
- Waterproof, leak-proof
- Lightweight and moisture-proof
- Lower Capacity
4.CleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag
The CleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag is a very stylish, space-saving soft cooler for moderate outdoor activities. The bag is made of plastics and polymers, which make the cooler extremely durable and water resistance. The interior of this soft cooler has a leak-proof design. This cooler has duffle bag handles, and side grip makes the bag more portable.
This soft cooler is popular for its storage capacity. It can hold up to 50 cans of foods or drinks (ice excluded). It can carry up to 50 pounds of weight. This collapsible soft cooler has a front zipper pocket, and the flop-free design prevents all the spills. The cooler comes with a bottle opener. So you don’t have to carry a bottle opener anymore.
This is a collapsible cooler bag. So when it is not in use, you can fold it to less than three inches, which makes this soft cooler great for storing. It has ice retention of 36 hours, making it a perfect day cooler. There are a zipper front pocket and a back pocket available in this cooler. You can keep your keys, wallet, and other valuables in the front pocket while using the back pocket for additional storage.
- Made with polyester fabric
- Convenient, integrated bottle opener
- Can carry up to 50 pounds
- Leak-proof & durable
- Sides collapse without cause
- Leaks can still occur
5.Igloo BMX 25 Quart Cooler with Cool Riser Technology
Igloo is renowned for the budget-friendly cooler. Over the years, they have produced some of the best coolers at a very reasonable price and earned quite a reputation. The BMX series signifies the next evolution of Igloo.
The Igloo BMX 25 Quart Cooler has a unique design and builds quality. The cooler was blow-molded for added durability. It has diamond kick plate metal that provides more strength and protection. In fact, you can use this cooler as a seat!
The main attraction of this cooler is the t-grip latch system. The latches are rubberized, so they completely secure the lid to lock in the cold. Moreover, it has a triple-point grab handle with stainless steel reinforcements, which make the cooler portable. Though it has little less insulation and ice retention compared to other coolers, but at this budget, it is one of the best coolers for camping available in the market.
- Great Storage Capacity
- Very Affordable
- Quite Tough & Light Weight
- Less Ice Retention
6.OAGear Backpack Cooler
OAGear may not be a popular brand as some of the backpack cooler brands out there, but they do have some of the best coolers available in the market. You can easily trust this brand to keep your drinks cold and food fresh while out camping.
The OAGear Backpack Cooler offers five years no-leak liner. It has a great storage capacity where it can hold 20 cans of drinks and enough ice to keep the drinks cold for at least one day. This cooler has two outside mesh side pockets along with a front zipper pocket and a bungee for extra storage. The backpack straps are padded, and you can adjust them very easily.
- Great Durability
- Good capacity
- Less ice retention
7.Polar Bear Coolers – Nylon Line
Polar Bear may not be a popular brand like some of the cooler brands out there, but they do have some of the best soft coolers available in the market. You can easily trust this brand to keep your drinks cold and food fresh while you are out camping. This soft cooler has some amazing features that ensure its endurance.
This soft cooler has an excellent build quality. It has luggage grade TPE nylon exterior, Cordura strapping that ensures rock-solid durability. It has a huge #10 weatherized and rustproof zipper. It is one of the strongest zippers you may find in a soft cooler. This soft cooler can keep your foods and drinks cool for 24 hours in 100+ temperatures.
For isolation, Polar Bear cooler uses 1″ thick 10 gauges high-density foam and a food-grade anti-microbial liner. This liner ensures the safety of your foods from any contamination. With the available size, this soft cooler is not a family pack. However, you can easily store a dozen cans and foods in this cooler, which makes it perfect for a picnic for a family of four members.
- Excellent built quality
- Great ice capacity
- Less storage capacity
8. Everest Cooler Lunch Bag
The Everest lunch bag is a simple cooler lunch bag that helps you keep the foods and drinks cold. It is one of the cheapest personal coolers available in the market. Unlike other small coolers, this cooler is made out of polyester instead of a hard molded material. But this doesn’t compromise the cooler’s performance.
The cooler has an interior vinyl lining that makes it easy to clean and provides plenty of room for food and drinks. The front zippered pocket can be closed and opened in just as easy a fashion. It has a zippered pocket on the front that provides extra space to keep your napkins and eating utensils. There are side-mesh pockets available in this personal cooler. You can use them for holding packets or other items.
Whether the cooler is full or empty, it is easy to carry. It has a shoulder strap that is adjustable from anywhere between 24-46″. Unfortunately, the cooler is less effective compared to the previous models we presented, but it still can keep your food and drinks cold for up to 8 hours or so, which is more than enough for a personal cooler.
- Compact and insulated lining
- Zippered pocket
- Side-mesh pockets
- Adjustable straps
- Lack of insulation
- The zipper is not durable
9. Pelican Products Progear Elite Cooler, 45 Quart
If you are looking for a cooler with great Ice Retention, then Pelican Progear Elite Cooler is the perfect choice for you. The cooler has 2-inch thick polyurethane insulation that ensures 10 days ice retention ability, makes it one of the best cooler in the market.
The build quality of the Pelican Progear Elite Cooler is also excellent. It is made of corrosion-resistant stainless steel, which makes it more durable. In fact, this cooler is considered as bear-resistant. It has a freezer-grade gasket that keeps the lid secure and airtight.
The Pelican Progear Elite Cooler comes with a dual handle system, which makes it very portable. It has stainless steel made molded-in lock hasp that ensures extra security of the cooler. This cooler comes with a lifetime guaranty. It suggests how confident the company is about the durability of the cooler.
- Great Ice Retention
- Very Durable
- Lifetime guaranty
- Bit pricy
10.Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler with Removable Liner
This is another great cooler from Coleman. It is a very simple but effective soft cooler. The main compartment of this cooler has a lining, which is guarded by antimicrobial products. It made the cooler mold and odors resist. The liner can be removed, so you can easily clean the cooler. This cooler is leak resistance thanks to the heat-welded layers. The cooler is also waterproof.
The Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler with Removable Liner comes with extra pockets. It has a zippered front pocket, mesh pockets on either side, and a bungee cord on the lid. You can use the pocket to store extra snacks or other small gears. It has adjustable shoulder straps so that a person can carry this cooler on his shoulder comfortably.
The storage capacity is less compared to other coolers, which inhibits its ability to carry things. Moreover, the linings become thin in less than a few months. So there are questions about its durability. However, if you are looking for a soft cooler that can keep the food and drinks cold for 16-18 hours, then this cooler is the best in the market. With this price range, it’s a bargain.
- Mold resistant lining
- Heat-welded seams
- Adjustable shoulder straps
- Lining can wear out quickly
- Small size
11. TOURIT Insulated Backpack Cooler
If you are looking for a lightweight backpack cooler, then the TOURIT Insulated Backpack Cooler will be the right choice for you. But for a lightweight cooler, its storage capacity is amazing. The capacity of this cooler is 25 litter, and it can hold up to 28 cans. It has high-quality insulation material, and the leak-proof liner makes sure the drinks remain cold for a longer period.
On the outside, the backpack cooler has a single zipper pocket with mesh divider and two side mesh pockets for extra storage. It has adjustable padded shoulder straps and thickly padded sections on the back of the cooler. These straps and padded sections ensure portability and comfortable carry when the backpack cooler is fully loaded.
- Lightweight but great capacity
- Excellent portability
- Water resistance
- Less ice retention
12. YETI Tundra 65 Cooler
YETI Tundra 65 is another very amazing cooler from YETI that will give you premium service for the money. Like all other coolers from YETI, Tundra 65 has Rotomolded Construction. It has Tundra armored to the core, which makes it perfect for camping and other outdoor activities.
This cooler is popular for large storage capacity. It can hold all the drinks, snacks, and dry foods of a large family. The cooler comes with a dry goods basket, which makes it even better. The YETI Tundra 65 cooler has an extra thick FatWall design with 3 inches of Permafrost Insulation, which holds ice for a longer time.
The cooler is low in weight, makes it easier to carry along. For high quality, excellent design, rotomolded construction, and impressive storage capacity, the YETI Tundra 65 cooler has made a place in our list, and it will definitely worth your money.
- Very durable
- Great storage capacity
- Low weight
- Bit pricy
13.Stanley Adventure Cooler
The Stanley Adventure cooler is a small and solid ice chest that is perfect for people who love spending time in nature. Whether you’re an angler, a hunter, or an explorer, this personal cooler would be a great choice for you because it’s large enough to carry lunch and a few drinks but small enough to carry comfortably.
This cooler has dual seals, and they are leak-resistant. It will keep the cold in for a longer time. The clasps and hinges offer extra durability. The Stanley Adventure Cooler has an adaptable tie-down for any flask or water bottle, while the handle offers a strong grip. With amazing built quality, this small cooler is durable enough to use it as a makeshift seat.
The Stanley Adventure Cooler is available in two sizes, a 7-quart, and a 16-quart. The overall performance of this personal cooler is great. It can keep your food and drinks cold for up to a day, depending on how much ice you put inside the cooler and outside temperature. The only drawback of this cooler is; it flips over very easily.
- Keep foods cold for 24-36 hours
- Hold 21 cans of drinks
- Double foam insulation
- Adjustable tie-down
- Leak-resistant gaskets
- Flips over
- Plastic handle
14. IceMule Pro Insulated Backpack Cooler Bag
If you are looking for something big, then the IceMule Pro backpack cooler is an excellent choice with exceptional durability. It has a high built quality that keeps everything cold for a longer period. It has three sizes available in the market from large to massive.
The IceMule Pro backpack cooler has a treated MuleSkinTe exterior with welded seams and nylon webbing. It has a roll down and clips system instead of zippers. This is a classic and proven watertight method.
Many people may find the shape of the cooler as an issue. This cooler has a rounded shape that is a little more difficult to carry as it presses into the back. Though the straps of this cooler are broad with padding, so the portability may not be a major concern for this backpack cooler.
- Huge capacity
- Great Durability
- Simple design
- Not comfortable carrying experience
15.Coleman C003 Soft Backpack Cooler
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Coleman is a very old cooler company; in fact, they were the first large company to manufacture portable cooler way back in 1954. So in terms of reputation and trustiness, there is nothing to worry about. Coleman C003 Soft Backpack Cooler is a prime example of it.
The Coleman C003 Soft Backpack Cooler is perfect for people who love hunting, hiking, fishing, and other outdoor activities for a short time. It has ripstop nylon made external part that makes the cooler more durable. Moreover, this backpack cooler has an anti-microbial liner and leak-proof zippers all around.
The cooler has standard Coleman soft insulation that ensures plenty of ice time for any shorter trip. It has great portability compare to other backpack coolers available in the market. Though the size of this cooler may be an issue for some people, it can hold up to 9 liters in total. This capacity is fairly good for a couple of people with a day trip.
- Excellent build quality
- Great ice retention
- Small size
How to Choose the Best Cooler
There are a lot of things that make a cooler stand out among the other coolers. Moreover, some coolers have extra features that may come in handy in different situations. So it is sometimes overwhelming for people to pick a cooler for them. Here are some features that you should consider while buying the cooler.
The first thing that comes in the mind while buying a cooler is the storage capacity. How big the size of the cooler should depend on what purpose you will be using the cooler. If you are planning to do outdoor activities with a large group of people, then you should buy a large cooler. The problem with a large cooler is they are a bit expensive and lack portability. But if you aren’t using your cooler for a large group of people or very often, then you should pick a small cooler. A small cooler is cheap and they are very portable. So pick the size of the cooler carefully or else you will be carrying a large cooler half empty or a fully loaded small cooler with an item left at the house.
The materials of the cooler should be chosen according to your preferences. You can either buy a hard-shelled cooler or a soft one. Usually, a hard-shelled cooler is durable compared to the soft cooler, but they are less portable. Soft cooler, on the other hand, makes a better alternative to carrying around with a shoulder strap. So choose according to your needs and desires.
No matter what, make sure you always spend money on a durable product, even for a cooler. Some of the coolers are more durable than others depending on the material. For a cooler, you should consider the durability according to your uses. If you are planning to use your cooler while kayaking, fishing, or hunting then you should buy a cooler that will last longer.
But, if you need a cooler to carry your lunch; or to use it for some random outdoor activities, then you can consider the durability over other features. Depending on how often you will use the cooler and where you will carry the foods, ensure you choose a cooler that will fulfill all your needs and going to last for a longer time.
People use coolers for outdoor activities like camping, fishing, picnic, etc. So portability plays a vital role while buying a cooler. You should choose a cooler that you can carry easily anywhere you want. Manufacturers design the coolers for traveling or outdoor trips. They crafted the cooler with straps that make them highly portable. For bigger size cooler, you should buy one that has wheels and handles on it. So, you can easily push or carry it with you when it is heavily loaded.
People need cooler so that they can keep their food and drinks fresh and cool while doing outdoor activities. So you should pick a cooler that has better ice retention. In fact, the ice retention of your cooler either can make or break your cooler. Though if you need a cooler for daily or short-time use, then you can buy a cooler that has less ice retention time. The price of the cooler also depends on ice retention time. The more ice retention time the cooler gives you, the more expensive it will be.
Insulation keeps the foods and drinks fresh and cold. The better the insulation is, the more it will keep the drinks and beverages cold. Better insulation prolongs the freshness of food items. Moreover, good insulation means better ice retention time. Roto-molded coolers are best for insulation but for better portability and daily use, you can either buy soft-sided coolers or hard coolers.
Coolers can make your life much easier, and it also doubles the excitement of your outdoor activities. A great cooler means you can carry all the delicious food with you for a picnic or you can preserve foods while camping, fishing, or doing other outdoor activities. So you should take time and invest in a cooler that will be able to last you for a very long time and suits all your requirements. Just ensure you check your needs, preferences, features of the cooler and you will surely find the best cooler for you.
Last update on 2023-01-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API