The Best Chest Freezers for Extra Cold Storage

Learn how to choose the right chest freezer that will keep your food reliably frozen.

Best Overall

The Frigidaire 14.8 cu. ft. Chest Freezer on a white background.

Frigidaire 14.8 cu. ft. Chest Freezer

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Best Bang for the Buck

The Midea MRC070S0AWW Chest Freezer on a white background.

Midea MRC070S0AWW Chest Freezer

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Upgrade Pick

The KoolMore SCF-20C Chest Freezer with one side of the lid open on a white background.

KoolMore SCF-20C Chest Freezer

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Whether you have a large family to feed, grow a vegetable garden, do a lot of hunting or fishing, or tend to grocery shop in bulk, a chest freezer—which offers additional cold storage to the freezer in your overstuffed fridge—can be a wise purchase.

While you can spend more than $1,000 on an upright version slightly smaller than a fridge, many shoppers opt for a horizontal model with a hinged top door that often comes at a fraction of the cost and tends to be more energy efficient to boot. Read on for some important features to weigh when comparing models, and consider some of the best chest freezers listed below as a helpful addition to your food storage at home.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Frigidaire 14.8 cu. ft. Chest Freezer
  2. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Midea MRC070S0AWW Chest Freezer
  3. UPGRADE PICK: KoolMore SCF-20C Chest Freezer
  4. BEST SMALL: R.W.Flame 3.5 cu. ft. Chest Freezer
  5. BEST OVERSIZE: Frigidaire 24.8 cu. ft. Chest Freezer
  6. BEST PORTABLE: Iceco JP40 Portable Refrigerator Freezer
  7. BEST FOR GARAGE: GE Garage Ready 15.7 cu. ft. Chest Freezer
  8. MOST EFFICIENT: Northair 3.5 cu. ft. Chest Freezer
The best chest freezer in a garage next to a storage rack and parked car.

How We Chose the Best Chest Freezers

When curating our list of recommendations, we made sure to select models that offer a range of storage solutions while also fitting in the available space in a shoppers’ home. Important aspects we considered during our research included operational efficiency, temperature maintenance, and additional features. Our top picks feature a wide selection of sizes, from compact units to extra-large garage-ready models ideal for large families.

Energy efficiency was also a major factor in our considerations, so we ensured that all options on our list come from reputable brands that provide products made from robust materials and are as efficient as possible.

Ron Shimek, president of the repair expert company Mr. Appliance based in Waco, Texas, underlines the usefulness of these devices: “Consumers may need extra storage beyond what their standard fridge can accommodate. Chest freezers offer energy efficiency, and the ability to consistently maintain lower temperatures, preserving food quality for longer periods.” He also suggested people consider placement as well as the cost of operation (electricity usage) as an ongoing factor.

Our Top Picks

Hoping to stock and store a surplus of groceries so that less food goes to waste? Start the search for the best chest freezer. The following are some of the best options on the market, organized by category and chosen based on key shopping considerations like size and capacity, temperature control, and energy efficiency.

Best Overall

Frigidaire 14.8 cu. ft. Chest Freezer

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Product Specs 

  • Size: 32.5 inches high by 55.75 inches wide by 29.56 inches deep
  • Capacity: 14.8 cubic feet
  • Temperature range: -10 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit


  • A high-quality model that is the ideal size for many busy families
  • A pair of sliding lift-out baskets make it easy to organize and access contents
  • Benefits from exterior temperature controls, preventing wasted energy
  • Safety lock has a convenient pop-out key function to prevent leaving in door


  • Faults are rare, but ice can build up if not fully defrosted annually

This chest freezer from Frigidaire offers a spacious 14.8-cubic-foot capacity to help users store a large quantity of frozen food. The SpaceWise sliding baskets assist with organization and provide easy access to key items, while the LED light enhances interior visibility. Use the adjustable exterior temperature controls to set the temperature between -10 and 10 degrees Fahrenheit to match food storage needs.

Some other noteworthy features of this chest freezer include the safety lock and pop-out key, defrost water drain, and optional casters to allow the freezer to slide easily. According to the manufacturer, this freezer is also suitable for garage use in many kinds of climates.

Get the Frigidaire 14.8-cubic-foot chest freezer at Lowe’s, The Home Depot, or Walmart.

Best Bang for the Buck

Midea MRC070S0AWW Chest Freezer

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Product Specs 

  • Size: 33.5 inches high by 32.1 inches wide by 21.7 inches deep
  • Capacity: 7 cubic feet
  • Temperature range: -28 to -12 degrees Fahrenheit


  • Comes at a very affordable price while still providing good storage capacity
  • Runs at just 42 decibels, a noise level comparable to quiet library sounds
  • Convenient stay-open door hinge makes it easy to add or remove food


  • There’s no interior light, and a few owners have reported their freezers breaking down

Those who are looking for a chest freezer that won’t break the bank may want to consider this 7-cubic-foot model from Midea. To help keep foods organized and within easy reach, the freezer includes a removable wire storage basket. Users can adjust the temperature to their desired setting without opening the freezer’s door by using the exterior temperature controls.

While this freezer does not have an interior light, it does feature hinges that can hold the freezer door open at 45- and 75-degree angles. It’s a helpful feature that allows users’ hands to easily access the freezer contents without needing to hold the door open themselves.

Get the Midea chest freezer at Amazon or The Home Depot.

Upgrade Pick

KoolMore SCF-20C Chest Freezer

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Product Specs 

  • Size: 32.48 inches high by 75.98 inches wide by 27.95 inches deep
  • Capacity: 20 cubic feet
  • Temperature range: 0 to -8 degrees Fahrenheit


  • High-capacity storage with powerful motor to maintain the desired temperature
  • Twin locking lids, 2 baskets, and 2 standing ledges allow versatile access and use
  • Meets Electrical Testing Laboratories (ETL) and National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) 7 standards for safety and commercial food storage


  • It’s a considerable investment, and packaging isn’t always sufficient to prevent transit damage

Anyone needing high-capacity frozen food storage will want to take a closer look at the KoolMore SFC-20C. The headline figure is the 20 cubic feet of storage, but it has several features that give it added versatility. First is the twin lid design for easy opening. The lids also help users avoid causing major temperature fluctuations that can cause freezer burn. There are also two epoxy-coated steel baskets and two ledges to help organize contents.

A powerful motor and eco-friendly refrigerant improves cooling efficiency. Strong castor wheels make for smooth rolling should it need to be moved. The KoolMore chest freezer also meets independent ETL and NSF standards for commercial use. However, there is no indication that it is garage ready, and so it’s

not recommended

for areas subject to extreme temperatures.

Get the KoolMore chest freezer at Amazon, Walmart, or Appliances Connection.

Best Small

R.W.Flame 3.5 cu. ft. Chest Freezer

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Product Specs 

  • Size: 32.72 inches high by 21.18 inches wide by 21.77 inches deep
  • Capacity: 3.5 cubic feet
  • Temperature range: -7.6 to 6.8 degrees Fahrenheit


  • Compact and budget-friendly model is perfect for those who have limited space
  • A pair of hanging wire baskets allow smaller frozen items to be kept handy
  • Balanced hinge door stays open, allowing both hands to be used


  • Occasional failure to freeze properly suggests quality control may be inconsistent

At only 21.18 inches wide, the R.W.Flame chest freezer is an attractive option for those who have limited space or want to add freezer space but don’t need the capacity of a full-size model. The low price also suits modest budgets.

Unusual for models that fall into the

mini freezer category

, it has two lift-out baskets. A straightforward manual thermostat is front mounted for easy access, and when it’s time to defrost the drain plug, it’s also conveniently found at the front of the freezer. According to the manufacturer, the R.W.Flame chest freezer runs at a barely noticeable 40 decibels.

Get the R.W.Flame chest freezer at Amazon or Wayfair.

Best Oversize

Frigidaire 24.8 cu. ft. Chest Freezer

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Product Specs 

  • Size: 31.75 inches high by 83.125 inches wide by 31.5 inches deep
  • Capacity: 24.9 cubic feet
  • Temperature range: -10 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit


  • Impressive capacity suitable for large families, regular hunters, or commercial catering businesses
  • Digital control panel allows for precise temperature setting and easy monitoring
  • Boost mode for convenient and rapid freezing of large loads
  • Safety lock with pop-out key prevents key from being left in the freezer


  • Although usually reliable, there have been some reports of compressor failures

This Frigidaire oversize chest freezer has the highest capacity of any model we considered. It is intended for the kind of bulk food storage that would make it popular with large families, regular hunters, or commercial food businesses. A front-mounted digital control panel allows a precise temperature to be set, and there’s a boost setting to rapidly freeze new additions. A safety lock with a pop-out key feature prevents unauthorized access.

Although it weighs 198 pounds, six castor wheels make moving it possible even when loaded. However, it is not garage ready so will only be suitable if it will fit within an interior living space. Additionally, while two baskets are provided, their size is modest.

Get the Frigidaire 24.8-cubic-foot chest freezer at The Home Depot or Best Buy.

Best Portable

Iceco JP40 Portable Refrigerator Freezer

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Product Specs 

  • Size: 17.5 inches high by 23 inches wide by 13.8 inches deep
  • Capacity: 42 quarts
  • Temperature range: -7 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit


  • Can be either fridge or freezer with ECO and MAX modes to manage energy consumption
  • Comes with both AC and DC cables for home and vehicle use
  • Smartphone app can allow monitoring and control from any location where Wi-Fi is available


  • It is very expensive compared to other comparable top models
  • At 35 pounds without contents, it is not easy to carry around

The Iceco portable refrigerator-freezer offers an ideal solution for those looking to transport frozen items or keep them frozen when they are away from home. This model features an adjustable temperature range between -7 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit for both frozen and refrigerated items.

Choose the ECO mode and the compressor will save energy and only start running when the interior temperature has risen between 6 and 9 degrees Fahrenheit from where it was set, or choose the MAX mode to cool the unit down more quickly. Both 110- to 240-volt AC and 12/24 DC cables are included with each model to allow for both home and vehicle use. While this is a portable model, it still holds quite a bit. The 40-liter capacity is large enough to fit 58 soda cans, 36 water bottles, or 12 wine bottles.

Get the Iceco chest freezer at Amazon or Walmart.

Best for Garage

GE Garage Ready 15.7 cu. ft. Chest Freezer

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Product Specs 

  • Size: 33.38 inches high by 65 inches wide by 28.5 inches deep
  • Capacity: 15.7 cubic feet
  • Temperature range: -10 to 15 degrees Fahrenheit


  • Garage-ready design means it can withstand hot and cold temperatures
  • In the event of a power outage, contents can remain frozen for 48 hours
  • 4 sliding storage baskets on 2 levels allow for maximum storage versatility


  • Has a premium price tag, so it won’t suit all budgets
  • There have been a few reports of compressor breakdowns

Searching for the best chest freezer for garage use? Consider the GE Appliances 15.7-cubic-foot garage-ready chest freezer. This model has undergone testing and performs well in both hot and cold temperature extremes ranging from 0 to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. Inside the spacious 15.7-cubic-foot capacity with four sliding storage baskets, users can store and organize frozen meats, ice cream, packaged goods, and other items. A second level rail allows owners to place the sliding baskets at different heights for ease of access.

This Energy Star–qualified model also offers exterior temperature controls, a power-on indicator light, and LED lighting. The temperature alarm can help reduce food waste by letting users know if the freezer’s temperature begins to increase, and the lock and key allow users to keep their food items secure.

Get the GE chest freezer at Lowe’s,The Home Depot, or Walmart.

Most Efficient

Northair 3.5 cu. ft. Chest Freezer

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Product Specs 

  • Size: 30.94 inches high by 21.18 inches wide by 21.77 inches deep
  • Capacity: 3.5 cubic feet
  • Temperature range: -4 to 6.8 degrees Fahrenheit


  • Affordable and efficient model requires just 0.45 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of electricity per day
  • Has 7 temperature settings and runs at a very quiet 38 decibels
  • Offers 2 baskets and has hands-free stay-open lid hinges


  • There are a few reports of electrical faults with this freezer

Keep utility costs down with this 3.5-cubic-foot chest freezer from Northair. This compact unit uses as little as 0.45 kWh per 24 hours, helping reduce energy consumption and providing savings on users’ electricity bills. In addition to its energy efficiency, this freezer also has a lot of exciting features to offer. One of the most impressive is the quiet compressor technology that maintains a very low noise level, as well as the soft-close lid mechanism, so users won’t disturb the rest of the household during a midnight ice cream binge.

The chest freezer offers two storage baskets that are removable for easy access to the foods beneath them. Other freezer features include the power-on indicator light, external adjustable front temperature controls, and auto-hold hinges.

Get the Northair chest freezer at Amazon or Walmart.

Jump to Our Top Picks

What to Consider When Choosing a Chest Freezer

As you’re deciding among the best chest freezers on the market, there are factors to keep in mind and compare. Chest freezers can vary in their size and capacity, temperature control options, defrost settings, energy efficiency, and other key features. Deciding which features are most important for your needs can help focus your search.

Size and Capacity

Most chest freezers are between 3 and 6 feet long and 2 and 4 feet wide. Since a 3-foot-long by 5-foot-wide appliance clearly can’t be wedged into a 3-foot-long by 4-foot-wide clearing in a basement, measure the available space where the appliance will go and make sure the chest of choice will fit before buying. Also measure the doorway openings that lead to that space to ensure that the freezer can arrive at the chosen spot.

It’s not worth running a freezer that won’t hold everything or one that takes up unnecessary space. The capacity of most chest freezers ranges between 5 and 20 cubic feet. One cubic foot can hold about 35 pounds of cut and wrapped meat. Meat with the bone in takes up more freezer space because of its irregular shape.

When selecting an appropriate freezer capacity, factor in times of the year when the amount of food that needs to be stored is often the greatest, like around the holidays, after a harvest, or after hunting season. Take inventory of what will be stored to determine the capacity that will best work.

Temperature Control

The temperature control is preset at the factory for dependable performance, but a manual temperature controller inside the unit allows for customized adjustments. Colder temperatures may be more appropriate for long-term storage, while less cold temperatures are better for keeping ice cream scoopable. Some freezers offer temperature zone control that allows for a range of storage capabilities.

Some new upright freezers feature an average temperature range of -10 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit, with some models offering colder settings. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recommends storing frozen foods at 0 degrees Fahrenheit or colder. The optimal storage temperature range for long-term freshness is -10 to -20 degrees Fahrenheit.


Chest freezers can either be self-defrosting, also called frost-free, or there are options for a manual defrost chest freezer. Proper and consistent defrosting eliminates ice buildup and keeps the unit operating efficiently. Choosing a self-defrosting upright freezer helps avoid adding another household chore.

Frost-free chest freezers automatically run a defrost cycle about once a day. During the defrost cycle, the temperature change in the food storage area raises minimally, about 2 degrees Fahrenheit. Food quality is unaffected by this small change.

Energy Efficiency

For those who prioritize energy efficiency, look for the Energy Star label. Energy Star–rated freezers operate at least 10 percent more efficiently than the minimum federal standard. These models use about 395 kWh of electricity and cost less than $50 per year to operate. Energy-efficient upright freezers use advanced technology, high-performance features, and better design and insulation compared to standard equipment.

One energy-efficient design feature is the magnetic seal. Rather than using a simple rubber-gasket seal, efficient freezers often incorporate a magnetic strip inside the seal to form an airtight connection. Not only does the magnet eliminate airflow through gaps to the outside, but it also pulls the door completely shut if it has been carelessly closed.

Another energy-efficient feature to look for is an air temperature monitor. This feature will warn the owner if the internal temperature rises to a potentially unsafe level for proper food storage.

Alvin Pullins, appliance expert at NerdInTheHouse in Yorkville, Illinois, provides some easy-to-follow advice: “In order to maximize energy savings, I recommend keeping the inside of your freezer well-organized for efficient airflow, ensure the door seals are tight, and regularly defrost the freezer.”

He also added a couple of tips for maximizing performance: “Make sure to clean the interior regularly to prevent odors. Check and replace door gaskets if they show signs of wear. Ensure proper ventilation around the freezer’s condenser coils, and schedule periodic inspections of the compressor and other components.”

Additional Features

Chest freezers tend to be no-frills appliances, but some models offer worthwhile features. These extras are generally worth a slightly higher price if the chest will be accessed on a regular basis, it’s kept in a dark area, and/or theft is a concern.

  • Some freezers come with storage bins or shelves to sort items.
  • An interior light helps users see what’s in there.
  • Leveling legs screw in or out to counteract an uneven floor. The freezer should tilt toward the back slightly so the door closes automatically.
  • Casters are especially helpful when it’s time to clean behind the freezer.
  • High-end chest freezers may come with a built-in safety lock, touch-screen control panel, and ice maker.


After reading about all of the important chest freezer features and checking out some of the best on the market, there may still be some remaining questions about choosing among the best freezers. The following answers to some popular questions may help during your search.

Q. What is a standard-size freezer?

There is not necessarily one standard size for chest freezers. Rather, there are four different size ranges. Within each size range, the freezer’s dimensions may also vary. Below are some general dimensions for each chest freezer size:

  • Compact (3 to 5 cubic feet): 32 to 34 inches high by 21 to 28 inches wide by 19 to 22 inches deep
  • Small (5 to 9 cubic feet): 32 to 34 inches high by 29 to 38 inches wide by 22 to 27 inches deep
  • Medium (10 to 16 cubic feet): 33 to 36 inches high by 54 to 65 inches wide by 24 to 28 inches deep
  • Large (17 or more cubic feet): 31 to 34 inches high by 72 to 84 inches wide by 27 to 32 inches deep

Q. What is the difference between a chest freezer and a deep freezer?

Deep freezers are specially designed for long-term storage. Their design features additional insulation to ensure food stays completely frozen. Deep freezers can be designed as a chest freezer or an upright freezer and typically have a capacity that ranges from 10 to 25 cubic feet.

Q. Are chest freezers better than upright?

There are pros and cons to both chest freezers and upright freezers. The “best” option can vary from person to person based on their individual storage needs.

Chest freezers typically offer a greater storage capacity and are better able to keep foods frozen should the power go out. They also are more economically priced and more energy efficient than upright models. Many chest freezers will last for 15 to 20 years, which is longer than the average upright freezer. On the other hand, chest freezers don’t offer as many shelves and organization baskets (if any) as an upright freezer. They can also be more challenging to clean and often require manual defrost, as opposed to the auto defrost offered with some upright models.

Upright freezers make it easier to keep foods organized since they feature more shelves and bulk storage baskets than chest freezers. An upright freezer also has a smaller footprint than a chest freezer and is easier to reach inside and clean. However, upright freezers are more expensive and typically only last between 10 and 15 years. They also don’t stay as cold in a power outage, so it is more likely that the food stored will go bad. While upright freezers can be good for organizing food, the layout of the shelves can make it more challenging to fit large or bulky items.

Q. What brand of chest freezer is best?

There are a few top chest freezer manufacturers. Some of the most respected include Frigidaire, GE, and Whirlpool.

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