15 Best Food Storage Containers of 2020

15 Best Food Storage Containers of 2020

It’s easy to have a love/hate relationship with food storage containers. They can feel cheap and flimsy, the lids are often impossible to find, and the sets can feel like they take up a whole cabinet. But a good food storage container makes all the difference: You can neatly refrigerate meal prepped servings, take healthy lunch leftovers to work, reheat, and even serve food out of some. A good storage container should have an airtight seal, and even better if it’s leakproof for food like soup. We like ones that can be stored easily and stack on top of each other with little risk of slipping.

In the Good Housekeeping Institute, we test food storage containers for air-tightness, leak-proof ability, and staining. We also test how they hold up in the freezer, microwave, and dishwasher if they’re designed to do so. While all of the containers below have not been tested in our Lab, we’ve used them all and they’ve stood up to the even bigger test of time and real-life use. Our favorite picks, below, include an array of plastic, glass, and silicone bags intended to replace disposable baggies.

How to find the best food storage container

Before you start scrolling, here are some details to consider when shopping for food storage containers:

  • Material: Glass and plastic are two of the most common food storage options. Glass tends to have more uses and can often be used in the oven, while plastic cannot. The trade-off is that glass is heavier and can break, which doesn’t make it the best for taking on the go. Though most plastic is now BPA-free and perfectly safe, some consumers still believe glass to be the «safer» option to avoid any possibility of chemical leaching.
  • Shape: Most food storage containers are round or rectangular. Round are more ideal for salads and liquids while rectangular ones are great for meats and sides, plus the straight edges stack neatly without wasting space. Round or rectangular, we love containers with straight edges versus flared to avoid hogging up extra, unnecessary room in your fridge and cabinets.
  • Lids: A lid that doesn’t seal is a dealbreaker. Some simply press down to close while others have clasps on the sides. We tend to prefer lids without clasps because they’re thinner and store easier, but it’s worth noting that the clasps offer an extra source of leak-protection.

Below are the best storage containers you can buy in 2021:

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Best Overall Food Storage Containers

Brilliance Food Storage Containers

Brilliant for many reasons, these food storage containers are completely see-through (aside from the seal), stack easily, and are perfect for taking on the go since they’re light, sturdy, and leakproof. They have an airtight seal that snaps close for extra protection. They come in an assortment of  sets and sizes that work well in your pantry or for packing salads with mix-ins. Some containers have compartments which are removable, depending on what you want to store inside.

  • Freezer-, microwave, and dishwasher-safe; leak-proof; BPA-free
  • Transparent and stain-proof
  • Easily stackable
  • Lids are cumbersome to store

Best Value Food Storage Containers

PRUTA Food Containers

These containers neatly nest inside each other and come in an assortment of sizes that can store anything from quarts of soup to spice seasonings. The lids are slim and snap on easily. They store well, too, and their bright green color makes them easy to find. The containers stack if you’re using multiple at once with little risk of sliding off or toppling over. We’re also not worried about losing one or lending to a friend because of their competitive price point. 

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  • Freezer-, microwave, and dishwasher-safe; BPA-free
  • Very affordable
  • Slim, bright green lids are easy to find and store neatly inside containers
  • Lids need to be firmly pressed down on all sides to ensure sealing
  • Plastic is flexible and large sizes not recommended for transporting liquids for risk of spilling

Best Food Storage Containers for Pantry

Good Grips 8-Piece POP Container Baking Set

OXO’s very well-known POP containers got a new design. The lids feature a one-handed design: Simply press the button down to form an airtight seal. Now, the lids are slimmer, easier to clean and dishwasher safe. Some also store accessories, like the pictured half-cup scoops that lives inside the container so you always have a dedicated one on-hand for measuring dry goods. This Baking Set is designed to perfectly fit a five-pound bag of flour and sugar, as well as a one-pound box of brown sugar. The POP containers come in an assortment of sets and sizes so you can buy exactly what you need. They stack neatly and securely, allowing you to easily keep track of necessary refills. 

  • Top-rack dishwasher safe; BPA-free
  • Assortment of shapes and sizes
  • Stackable and transparent
  • Pricy
  • Not ideal for taking on the go

Best Glass Food Storage Containers

Simply Store Meal Prep Glass Food Storage Containers

The shapes in this set stand out for versatility. They can be used for a variety of storing needs and taken on the go, stack neatly, and take up minimal room thanks to their straight edges. The containers nest and their lids are slim for easy storage, plus, the assorted bright colors help you keep track of missing pieces. Pyrex containers can be used in the oven, which make them great for reheating leftovers, crisping small servings, or using in the air fryer or toaster oven.

  • Freezer-, microwave-, dishwasher-, and preheated oven-safe; BPA-free lids
  • Assorted sizes can be used for leftovers and taking on the go
  • Lids crack on side after many uses but can be replaced

Best Airtight Glass Food Storage Containers

Total Solution Glass Food Storage

Snapware
amazon.com

$23.29

If you’re looking for glass containers that will keep food fresh for a long time, (say, if you’re putting meals in the freezer for long-term storage) Snapware’s Total Solution Glass line proved completely airtight. Just keep in mind that the locking lids are plastic, so when you microwave, use plastic wrap or waxed paper as a barrier to avoid staining. 

  • Freezer-, microwave-, and top-rack dishwasher safe; BPA-free
  • Lids lock into place
  • Many lids with clips to store

Best Space Efficient Food Storage Containers

Nest Lock Plastic Food Storage Container Set

The Joseph Joseph Nest Storage containers are great if you’re concerned about space. This line features nested containers and nested lids — so when put them away, you only have to clear space for the largest-sized container. The lids snap onto the containers to create an airtight seal. They’re see-through so you can see inside. The larger sizes are great batch cooking. 

Best Long-Lasting Food Storage Containers

Hocking TrueSeal Glass Food Storage Containers with Lids

These containers earned top scores in our test for keeping air out (and that means keeping freshness in). They’re made of glass and can be used in the oven up to 425ºF. The lids are see through and have a flexible edge that won’t crack over time. The lids are textured and the lip on the side helps with opening and sealing.

  • Freezer-, microwave-, dishwasher, and oven-safe up to 425ºF without lids; BPA-free
  • Lids have clear tops and are easy to put on and take off
  • Containers stack but lids don’t offer a lip to prevent slipping

Best Food Storage Containers for Meal Prep

EveryWare

Slim and compact, these storage containers stack easily in the fridge and travel well. They form an airtight seal that’s also leakproof. They have a little lip on the lid, which make them easy to open and little handles on the sides that can be used to transfer in and out of the microwave hassle-free. When time to toss, they’re 100% recyclable. Good Cook makes an assortment of other meal-prep containers, too, which have different compartments for food. They’re cheap enough to toss if you don’t want to bring them home, but sturdy enough to use over and over again, and are dishwasher safe.

  • Freezer-, microwave-, and dishwasher-safe; BPA-free
  • Good value
  • Lids are one color and not transparent

Best Non-Slip Food Storage Containers

Duraglass Glass Food Storage Meal Prep Containers

These glass containers come in a set of five different colors, and the silicone-covered exterior make them slip-proof and help keep the outside cool for handling straight out of the microwave. Their rectangular shape stack neatly in the fridge, which make them ideal for meal prep and taking on the go. They can be microwaved or heated in the oven without the lid, and are also dishwasher-safe. 

  • Freezer-, microwave-, and dishwasher-safe; BPA-free
  • Good for evenly portioning food for the week

Best Food Storage Containers for Keeping Food Cold

Total Solution Plastic Food Storage with Ice Pack

Snapware
amazon.com

$13.25

The Snapware Total Solution Plastic Food Storage containers come with a slim ice pack that snap into the lid. This means they keep food cold for hours and proved super airtight in our tests. Win-win! The containers can also be used without the ice pack. 

  • Freezer-, microwave-, dishwasher-safe; Non BPA
  • Built-in ice pack keeps food cold
  • Ice pack takes up some storage space

Best Food Storage Containers for Snacks

Food Storage Container

In our at-home tests, these storage containers proved to be excellent options for taking on the go and storing snacks. They’re especially easy to grab out of packed bags and the top can be unscrewed with one hand. The flexible insert can be used to keep toppings separate from bases or to store different snacks all together.

  • Dishwasher-safe; BPA-free
  • Separate compartments for multiple snacks at a time
  • Handle makes container easy to find in packed bag

Best Food Storage Containers for Cooking

Grab Glass Bakeware and Food Storage Set

Pyrex
amazon.com

These rectangular glass containers are perfect for marinating food and bringing over to the grill to cook. Once the food is ready, they can be used as serving platters with lids to keep food warm and the bugs out. (Just be sure to wash before using for serving if previously used with raw meat.) The containers stack and have handles for easy transferring. They’re also light enough to bring over to the table and later carried inside for storing leftovers and reheating in the same vessel. These nesting bowls with lids make an excellent companion for hot and cold salads and side dishes. 

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  • Freezer-, microwave-, dishwasher-, and preheated oven-safe; BPA-free lids
  • Long, rectangular size good for baking, serving, and storing
  • Handles make for easy transporting
  • Lids can melt if placed too close to heat source

Best Dry Food Storage Containers

Airtight Storage Containers

These Oggi containers offer a Pinterest-perfect look to your pantry shelf and conveniently nest inside themselves for easy storage. While the two latches on the lids seal lids into place, we found they weren’t effective at meeting their claim to be airtightness. These might be best for storing foods you go through fast. 

  • Acrylic containers are lightweight and break-resistant design
  • Cute design, perfect for countertops
  • Did not meet airtightness claims in our test

Best Flexible Food Storage Containers

Stand-Up Silicone Bag

If you like your baggies, you’ll love Stasher reusable bags. They’re made of thick, but flexible silicone that’s transparent and come in an assortment of colors and sizes. They seal and open easily. When we tested them at home, they kept herbs wrapped in a damp paper towel fresh for weeks, and we didn’t have to shuffle everything around in our fridge to make room for them–they take up minimal space. Stasher bags are freezer-, microwave-, oven-, and dishwasher-safe. They can even be used in boiling water for cooking sous vide!

  • Freezer-, microwave-, dishwasher-, boiling, and oven-safe up to 400ºF; BPA- and PVC-free
  • Flexible, stand-up design takes up minimal room in fridge
  • Sturdy
  • Bulky to store when not in use

Best Food Storage Containers for Soups & Sauces

Ziploc Twist n Loc 10-Piece Set

Ziploc
amazon.com

These cylindrical containers with screw-on lids are space efficient, stack, and come in an assortment of sizes suited for your needs. They’re made of BPA-free plastic but have threaded lids that screw on like a jar to keep soups, stews, and sauces safely contained, making them great for taking on the go. The containers are see-through and have measurement markings on the sides, which help with portioning. They also come part of this set that has square, one-press containers as well. 

  • Freezer-, microwave-, and dishwasher-safe; BPA-free
  • Cylinder shape takes up minimal space and containers stack
  • Lids twist to seal
  • Measurement markings on side of container are a little hard to read

Easy Meal Prep: The Ultimate Playbook for Make-Ahead Meals

Good Housekeeping
amazon.com

$9.99

Good food storage containers are key, but if you really want to become a meal prep pro, get yourself a copy of  Good Housekeeping’s Easy Meal Prep cookbook. Each recipe been vetted by the experts in the Good Housekeeping Test Kitchen, plus you’ll find tips and techniques to help you flawlessly execute batch-cooking, freeze-ahead meals, ready-to-serve dinners, and more.

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