We submerged, froze, microwaved, baked and machine-washed ten of the preferred food storage containers to seek out which one might maintain food recent longest. The greatest glass food storage container is OXO Good Grips – Sensible Seal. Its distinctive lid with a smooth silicone gasket ensures a leakproof and hermetic seal. A lightweight and less expensive choice is the Rubbermaid – Brilliance. Made out of sturdy BPA-free Tritan plastic, this engaging set can also be 100-percent leakproof and appears like new even after repeated use.
- 1 Desk of contents
- 2 How we selected finalists to check
- 3 Examine one of the best meals storage containers
- 4 Who needs meals storage containers?
- 5 Health considerations about using plastic
- 6 Essential options to think about
- 7 How we tested
- 8 Best plastic: Rubbermaid – Brilliance
- 9 Best glass: OXO Good Grips – Sensible Seal
- 10 Different merchandise we examined
- 11 The bottom line
Desk of contents
How we selected finalists to check
There are literally lots of of food storage containers that you might buy online and at practically any retailer. There’s a very good probability that you simply’ve received cabinets, drawers and pantries full of them and that they’re stained, warped and broken from microwaving leftovers. You in all probability need to throw them out, but what do you buy as replacements?
To slender our choice, we began by studying buyer critiques on Amazon. The evaluations pointed us in the course of food storage containers that stand up to years of heating and reheating, radical modifications in temperature and dishwashing.
We also checked out critiques from respected cooking websites and proposals from health and weight-reduction plan web sites. Mother and father of schoolchildren had tons of opinions about which containers are greatest for college lunches, as did people who do weekly meal prep dietary or exercise regimen.
Finally we divided our finalists into people who have been plastic and people who have been glass — 5 of each — because the quantity of shoppers who prefer one to the opposite is about equal.
Although glass containers last longer than plastic containers, glass containers are also susceptible to chip, notably across the edges where the highest snaps on. There are also complaints that tumbler containers can explode in the oven. We had some highly rated glass containers on our record, but we eliminated people who tended to chip and shatter.
Examine one of the best meals storage containers
Who needs meals storage containers?
There’s all kinds of uses for food storage containers. Whether or not you prepare dinner for your self or a household brood, you might have leftovers you want to benefit from the subsequent day. Other individuals prepare dinner in bulk and freeze food for a month or longer. In each instances, you want a storage container that is airtight and leak proof so it can maintain meals recent and, if frozen, frost-free.
It’s additionally necessary for some folks that the container could be faraway from the refrigerator or freezer and go immediately into the oven. On this case, the container have to be borosilicate glass that can stand up to excessive warmth with out shattering.
Pot-luck dinners are common in many communities, so a large, sturdy container with a safe lid is right for transportation. Mother and father of faculty youngsters pack their lunches in food storage containers to be carried in backpacks. In this case, it’s necessary that the container be leak-proof, since its contents can easily shift sideways or the wrong way up.
Meal prep containers are food storage containers in particular amounts for people who find themselves weight-reduction plan or on a workout routine. Oftentimes, meal prep containers are divided in half to apportion two varieties of food in a single container.
Food storage containers aren’t only for food; individuals who do their own house restore use them for storing numerous sizes of screws, bolts, nails and different hardware.
Health considerations about using plastic
You’re in all probability aware of two chemical compounds related to plastic containers: BPA and phthalates. BPA (Bisphenol A) is a chemical used within the manufacture of polycarbonate plastic, which is the sort of plastic used in most meals containers.
When heated in a microwave, BPA leeches into the meals or liquid, and though the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said the low ranges of BPA are protected, research suggests there are potential well being results on the brain and conduct of infants and youngsters.
The Nationwide Institute of Environmental Sciences recommends avoiding merchandise that aren’t labeled BPA-free and not microwaving products made of polycarbonate plastic.
Phthalates are chemical compounds used to make plastic pliable. The Facilities for Disease Control and Prevention state that though phthalates have affected the reproductive system of lab animals, research continues as to how phthalates affect people.
In case you favor to use plastic food containers, purchase those which might be labeled “BPA-free” and “Phthalate-free.” Nevertheless, further research is being carried out about whether or not such products are actually harmful as nicely.
Essential options to think about
Plastic vs. glass: Both have execs and cons. Plastic containers are available a spread of sizes and shapes, giant and small, they usually’re light-weight, so you’ll be able to carry them in a backpack or shoulder bag. If they’re leakproof and airtight, food and liquids gained’t spill out if the container is dropped or by accident turned the wrong way up or sideways.
Plastic containers are also considerably cheaper than glass containers. For $20, the Rubbermaid – Straightforward Find Lids comes with 24 numerous sizes of containers and lids.
The downside to plastic containers is that they simply don’t last. Principally everyone microwaves meals in a plastic container and then tosses it into the dishwasher. After our testing, all of the plastic containers have been stained to some extent, and most have been pitted and scratched.
Glass meals storage containers are heavier and costlier. Nevertheless, they’re also much more sturdy than plastic and much simpler to wash. In the event you’re involved about BPAs and phthalates, you possibly can relaxation assured that a glass container is more healthy. All of the glass containers we examined had plastic lids, so these shouldn’t be microwaved or run by means of the dishwasher.
Lastly, in case you’re ecologically aware, glass is one of the perfect options.
Silicone gasket: Many of the food storage containers we examined had a silicone gasket inserted into the internal lip of the lid the place it connects to the top of the container. When the lid is locked into place, the silicone gasket varieties a decent seal.
Our two winners — Rubbermaid – Brilliance and OXO – Sensible Seal — had gaskets that have been twice as thick as the other finalists, so their lids floated on prime of the containers. When the latches are locked, a vacuum seal is created, thus making certain each have been leakproof and hermetic.
Food particles can get trapped between the gasket and the lid’s lip, and silicone tends to retain meals odors and have to be periodically soaked in a vinegar-water answer. You’ll need a silicone gasket that can be removed for cleansing and easily reinserted.
The OXO – Sensible Seal was, by far, the simplest silicone gasket to take away. The lid has aspect tabs that permit you to pull out the gasket after which snap it again on. (Actually, its design reminded us of the On the spot Pot, which we beloved in our assessment of the perfect strain cookers.)
Stacking/Nesting: Whether or not you’ve an enormous or small kitchen, ample cabinet or drawer area is a premium. Glass food storage containers aren’t nice for stacking or nesting, as a result of typically a smaller container gets stuck in a larger one. Many plastic containers are designed for nesting, however you run into hassle with all of the bothersome lids.
Of the containers we examined, the Rubbermaid – Straightforward Find Lids have been the simplest to nest, and their interlocking lids forestall your rummaging across the backside of drawer trying to find the best measurement.
How we tested
We crammed every container two-thirds full with water and secured the lid. Then we vigorously shook each container for one minute over paper towels and famous any leaks. Virtually all of the manufacturers advertised their container as leakproof, and for probably the most half, they have been. The Pyrex and Sistema don’t declare to be leakproof, they usually weren’t; water leaked from their corners. But Prep Naturals was presupposed to be leakproof, and water also poured out.
Hermetic containers maintain in moisture and hold out odors from other meals in the refrigerator. For this check we made positive that each container was utterly dry. Then we placed one sheet of rest room tissue into the underside of the container and sealed it. Next, we crammed a three-gallon bucket with water colored with meals dye and plunged each container separately into the bucket, holding it beneath for one minute. After that, we flipped the container the wrong way up and submerged it for an additional minute. We then withdrew the container from the bucket, unsealed the lid and famous whether the bathroom tissue was moist or dry.
All of the manufacturers claimed their containers have been airtight. Not surprisingly, the identical three that weren’t leakproof — Pyrex, Sistema and Prep Naturals — have been also not hermetic.
The majority of meals storage containers that we tested have been sealed by aligning a silicone gasket contained in the lid with the edge of the container, then locking it with hinged latches on all four sides. 4 exceptions have been the Pyrex and the Rubbermaid – Straightforward Find Lids, which simply had snap-on lids, and the Rubbermaid – Brilliance and Sistema, each of which had two latches on the longer sides of the container.
We tested the lids and latches by opening them and shutting them repeatedly and famous whether or not they have been straightforward to snap on and launch.
Plastic food containers are infamous for being stained by tomato-based foods, similar to spaghetti sauce, and curries with turmeric. We started this check by filling each container three-quarters full with marinara and then froze them in a single day in the freezer. The next day, we defrosted the containers with lids askew within the microwave till the marinara was boiling. When the sauce had been utterly defrosted, we allowed each container to completely cool before dumping the marinara out.
As anticipated, all of the plastic containers and their lids have been stained. The Rubbermaid – Brilliance, nevertheless, was only slightly stained. All of the plastic lids for the glass containers — apart from the OXO – Sensible Seal — have been also stained.
After we microwaved the frozen marinara within the plastic containers, we checked every one over for signs of warping. None have been affected by the lengthy microwaving. Two glass containers, 1790 and Glasslock, warned to not microwave their plastic lids. Since their lids have been exactly the same as the other glass containers, we ignored the dire warning. Aside from staining, neither have been affected by the microwave.
Should you learn shopper critiques on-line, you’ll see some terrifying photographs of glass food storage containers that have exploded in the oven. Borosilicate glass is immune to sudden excessive modifications of temperature, because it doesn’t increase like regular glass.
Nonetheless, all producers advise placing borosilicate glass containers — especially from the fridge or freezer — into a preheated oven. This seems to defy logic, however when a glass container is put into a chilly oven and then the heat is turned on, the heating aspect initially radiates warmth erratically, which doesn’t permit the glass to increase properly and can cause it to crack or shatter.
For our check, we eliminated the plastic lids from every glass container full of frozen marinara and put the containers into a preheated 350℉ oven. All of the glass containers reheated the marinara in the same amount of time, and none shattered.
The dishwasher undoubtedly does probably the most injury to plastic food containers and lids. We followed manufacturer instructions and loaded the glass containers into the lower part of the dishwasher and the plastic containers and all the lids into the higher rack. We then set the dishwasher on a heavy-duty wash cycle.
All of the glass containers cleaned superbly. The Rubbermaid – Brilliance was the only plastic food container and lid that showed no signs of injury. The other plastic containers have been deeply stained and pitted, the worst being the Rubbermaid – Straightforward Discover Lids.
Plastic meals containers and silicone are likely to retain meals odors, so after dishwashing, we did a sniff check. Only the Vremi, the silicone container, smelled strongly of marinara sauce. The silicone gasket within the Glasslock lid didn’t retain meals odor however as an alternative had an acrid chemical odor.
Retesting latches and leakproof functionality
Amazon reviewers regularly complain that after dishwashing and microwaving, the latches are too troublesome to close, and we found this to be true solely with the Glasslock and OXO. Nevertheless, we opened and closed the OXO’s latches a number of occasions, they usually worked usually once more. Although the Vremi’s silicone container held up in the dishwasher, one of its plastic lid’s latches had cracked after a single wash.
Finally, we repeated our leakproof check to see if freezing, microwaving and dishwashing had any structural impact on the containers. The similar three that failed the primary time — Pyrex, Sistema and Prep Naturals — leaked once more. However this time the 1790 also leaked.
Best plastic: Rubbermaid – Brilliance
The Rubbermaid – Brilliance 14-piece set is made of Tritan, a BPA-free plastic that resembles glass, however it’s shatter resistant and more durable than different plastics. The seven lids for the seven containers are additionally made of Tritan, which let you see their contents from all sides within the fridge. The set consists of a big 9.6-cup container, two medium 3.2-cup containers and 4 small 1.3-cup containers.
Each container in this engaging set is rectangular with flat lids which might be barely recessed, so you’ll be able to stack them within the fridge without fearing they’ll topple.
As we mentioned earlier, a thick silicone gasket inside the inside lip of the lid floats on prime of the container. If you press down on the lid, air is expelled out of the container via the lid’s vent holes with a whoosh. The two small latches on the long sides snap shut and create an hermetic seal, which proved to be 100-percent leakproof.
Best for Faculty Lunches: Rubbermaid – Brilliance
Made of shatter resistant Tritan plastic, the Rubbermaid – Brilliance containers are available small sizes which might be light-weight and may simply match right into a backpack in your youngsters’ faculty lunch or snacks.
$24.99 from Amazon
The containers also have one-quarter-inch extensions at reverse ends, which stay cool if you carry the recent container out of the microwave.
On-line instructions advise that turmeric will stain the Tritan plastic but tomato-based sauces won’t. Our marinara sauce did stain the container and lid very barely, however it was much lower than on different containers we examined.
The Rubbermaid – Brilliance made it via the heavy-duty dishwashing cycle and showed no signs of pitting or scratching. Apart from the rosy tint left by the spaghetti sauce within the container’s beveled edges, the container and lid appeared model new.
The only factor we didn’t like concerning the Rubbermaid – Brilliance is that the silicone gaskets can’t be removed from the lids. The gasket bends so you possibly can scrub beneath its ridges, but to utterly avoid odor retention, all the lid would must be submerged in cleaning answer.
Rubbermaid – Brilliance within reason priced for such a high-quality product. It’s out there in 6-piece and 10-piece sets, and you may also buy numerous sizes individually in the event you need more of one measurement than one other. The 1.3-cup measurement, which is perfect for packing faculty lunches or snacks, can be found in a really reasonably priced two-pack.
Rubbermaid – Brilliance proved immune to microwaving and dishwashing, and we consider it is going to outlast all of the opposite plastic food containers we tested.
- Rubbermaid – Brilliance containers are made of light-weight, sturdy and BPA-free Tritan plastic.
- This leakproof set has small sizes which might be good for teenagers toting lunch or snacks to high school of their backpacks.
- Throughout our checks, these materials showed no signs of being broken by freezing, microwaving or a heavy-duty cycle in the dishwasher.
- Each lid is flat with a recessed edge that lets you stack the containers within the refrigerator and see contents from each angle.
Best glass: OXO Good Grips – Sensible Seal
Glass containers are a lot simpler to wash than plastic, and you don’t have to fret about BPAs and phthalates. The OXO Good Grips – Sensible Seal was our favourite of the glass containers. It’s made of borosilicate glass, so it will probably stand up to modifications in temperature and go from the freezer to the microwave or a preheated oven.
What made OXO stand out from the other finalists is the thick silicone gasket that’s set right into a channel in the lid. The gasket is made of tender silicone and floats on prime of the container, so whenever you press down, not only does it make an hermetic seal, the latches are straightforward to lock into place. The silicone gasket slips right off for cleaning and slides back into the lid’s channel with no effort.
Most Versatile: OXO Good Grips – Sensible Seal
The OXO can go from freezer to a scorching oven with out shattering. Its unique silicone sealing system creates an airtight and leakproof lock.
$29.99 from Amazon
The OXO carried out perfectly in all our checks. It was leakproof, hermetic, and the marinara sauce heated evenly in the microwave and oven. Although the glass container emerged glowing clear from the dishwasher, the plastic lid was moderately stained. An enormous plus, nevertheless, is that the silicone gasket might be removed for washing.
OXO’s glass containers are a bit of costlier than the others we tested, but the OXO’s sturdy lid and latches made the strongest seal and have been the simplest to wash.
- OXO Good Grips – Mushy Seal has a thick silicone gasket that ensures a leakproof and airtight seal.
- It was the simplest of the glass containers to wash as a result of the gasket may be removed and washed separately.
- The OXO is costlier than different glass containers, however we found it to be durable and straightforward to snap shut.
Different merchandise we examined
Fullstar – 12-Pack has five totally different sizes in rectangular, sq. and spherical shapes. They’re made of common polypropylene plastic like the other containers we examined, so after microwaving and dishwashing they received stained and pitted. Its silicone gasket is embedded in the lid’s channel, and it wanted to be precisely lined up or the latches wouldn’t shut properly.
The Fullstar was leakproof and hermetic and remained so after our testing. The container survived the microwave and dishwasher, however its lid warped and have become convex.
Rubbermaid – 2063704 Straightforward Find Vented Lids was one of our early favorites. Like conventional Rubbermaid or Tupperware, the lid snaps on prime of the container and is then eliminated with a nook tab. We found the lids very straightforward to open and close. A sq. vent, which snaps up and down, is meant for releasing steam in the microwave. The Rubbermaid was the only plastic container that had a lid designed for the microwave.
The Rubbermaid – Straightforward Find Lids design was leakproof, even with the vent. Surprisingly, it was even hermetic. However the marinara sauce proved its downfall. After microwaving and dishwashing, the container was deeply stained and massively pitted. Although the lid nonetheless closed easily, and the container was nonetheless leakproof, it was clear that the Rubbermaid – Straightforward Find Lids wouldn’t final.
The Sistema – Klip-It are rectangular, divided containers for storing two totally different food gadgets. The small measurement, which comes in a pack of three, are fairly tiny, and may only really fit baby carrots and small grapes inside. The 4-cup container is an effective measurement for college or work lunch, and the 8-cup container is for storing leftovers. Two problems plague the Sistema containers: They’re not leakproof or hermetic, so for those who’re toting something with liquid, look forward to finding it pooled within the bottom of your bag. Also, the dividers aren’t high enough to succeed in the lid, so liquid or sauce on one aspect easily leaks into the other aspect.
We really needed to love the Vremi – VRM020376N silicone containers. Their four rectangular sizes are in shiny main colors, and since the containers are made of silicone, they collapse to one-third of their absolutely expanded peak. We researched several silicone containers, and most buckle once you safe the lid, leading to an explosion of anything liquid inside. The Vremi containers, nevertheless, have a inflexible lip, so after some follow, we have been capable of snap on the lid with out the edges buckling in.
Sadly, the Vremi was neither leakproof nor airtight, and after its spherical by means of the dishwasher, one of the lid’s latches had cracked, and the container reeked of marinara. Nice concept but poorly executed.
None of the glass containers confirmed any signs of injury from the freezer, microwave or dishwasher. The plastic lids, nevertheless, differentiated one from the other.
The Glasslock – 11339 was leakproof and hermetic, but its hinges have been stiff to close. The smaller ends snapped on and off with out too much wrestle, however there was extra resistance from the hinges on the lengthy aspect of the container. We had to press down very arduous to get the hinges to secure. Though the glass container itself is ok, someone with weak hand power can be annoyed by these lids.
1790 – Glass Meal Prep Containers did nicely in our checks. The latches have been straightforward to lock and unlock, and when sealed, they have been leakproof and airtight. 1790’s label warnings concerning the glass containers are a bit scary; it’s an extended record of don’ts, some in capital letters. The containers are made of sturdy borosilicate glass, yet the manufacturer states that scorching glass might shatter if the container is positioned on a countertop, metallic floor or sink.
We have been justifiably nervous about what to do with the recent 1790 once we removed it from the oven. We opted for the marble counter, and fortunately, no explosion occurred.
After dishwashing, the 1790’s lid was stained and slightly pitted. The latches nonetheless closed easily, but now the seal was not leakproof.
Prep Naturals is a popular model with individuals who use the containers for meal prep. The containers are divided in two, so you’ll be able to store two totally different parts of meals in them. Because the dividing glass wall doesn’t attain the lid, something that’s liquid on one aspect will leach into the other aspect. When sealed, the Prep Naturals have been neither leakproof nor airtight; so much water had been absorbed by the tissue, we needed to squeeze it out. After dishwashing, the lid was stained and pitted, and the latches have been troublesome to snap shut. As for cleaning, meals particles have been trapped between the gasket and the lid and couldn’t be eliminated.
We tested the Pyrex – 1123268 Merely Store set, because it was ceaselessly talked about by Amazon reviewers as their long-time favorite. It handed the freezer, microwave and oven exams, and its lid was not harmed by the dishwasher. From the start, nevertheless, the lid was troublesome to snap on, and we had to pry it off earlier than it might launch from the container. Naturally, we thought this is able to point out that the Pyrex can be hermetic and leakproof. But the Pyrex carried out just as poorly as the Prep Naturals.
Plastic meals containers are great for storing food within the fridge or freezer and for carrying lunch or leftovers to work or faculty. They’re inexpensive than glass, however as our checks showed, microwaving and machine-dishwashing damages each the containers and their lids. You’ll in all probability need to substitute them after a couple of months of use.
An exception was the Rubbermaid – 1977447 Brilliance, our prime decide for plastic food container. The Rubbermaid – Brilliance was 100-percent leakproof and hermetic, and although it stained very barely — much lower than the other plastic containers we tested — its durable Tritan plastic retained readability and structure over the course of our rigorous checks. It’s a top quality product for an inexpensive worth.
Should you don’t need to fear about potential well being hazards from plastic, our favourite glass food storage container was the OXO Good Grips – Sensible Seal. The OXO is costlier than different glass containers (not to mention plastic containers), however its unique detachable silicone gasket ensures a perfect seal. The OXO is leakproof, hermetic, freezer-, microwave- and dishwasher-safe and can maintain up for years.
Best General: OXO Good Grips – Sensible Seal
Should you’re ecologically aware and need to choose out of plastics, the OXO is a flexible, glass storage container that’s hermetic, leakproof and can maintain meals recent longer.
$29.99 from Amazon