What goes on inside your fridge might be a mystery to you — and we don’t just mean that container of ominous goop that’s been in there since who knows when. As long as your meat isn’t spoiling too fast and your spinach still looks perky after a couple of days, you’re probably content to let it do its thing.
However a refrigerator is still a major appliance that will sit in your kitchen for years, and some features may be more important to you than others. Below are some of our current favorite fridges that each offer a little something different for everyone.
Why should you buy this? This model is a great reasonably priced model with plenty of utility and space.
Who it’s for? Anyone looking to spend a little more when updating their stainless steel appliances.
How much will it cost? $2,660+
Why we chose the Kenmore Elite 72483:
Everything the Kenmore Elite 4-Door Bottom-Freezer fridge can do, it does well. Its 29.9 cubic feet of space is large but not overwhelming, and many of its storage items are customizable. A couple of the glass shelves can slide under to make room for taller items. These “fold-in” shelves enable this refrigerator to host an array of configurations.
The middle drawer is something we’re seeing on more and more fridges lately, but Kenmore’s version lets you turn the compartment into a deli drawer, drink cooler, meat locker, or even a wine chiller, thanks to its four temperature settings. To maximize space, a slimmer ice maker is hidden behind a shallow shelf.
Many refrigerators have rather thin door bins (more ideal for condiments rather than soda or milk containers). The Kenmore Elite 4-Door Bottom-Freezer includes gallon-sized door bins, making it easier than ever to store bulkier items. The spacious three-tier pull-out freezer combines ample room with convenient stowing capacity. As an added bonus, the “CleanFlow” air filter charcoal filter eliminates foul odors.
This refrigerator may not have the most space or the most cutting edge features, but when it comes to design and pricing, this model is tops.
The best storage
Why should you buy this? This model has tons of fresh food space, as well as features to keep everything organized.
Who it’s for? If you find yourself playing food Tetris in your refrigerator on a regular basis, it’s probably time to upgrade to a model with more room to work with.
How much will it cost? $2,650+
Why we chose the LG LFXS32726S Mega Capacity:
A single individual or a couple may not necessarily reap the full benefits of the LG LFXS32726S Mega Capacity 3-Door French Door. However, larger households will surely enjoy this model. After all, they don’t call it the LG Mega-Capacity French 3-Door Refrigerator for nothing. With 32 cubic feet of space, you could conceivably fit leftovers from both Thanksgiving and Christmas inside.
This LG keeps things organized with lots of compartments, all of which are crisply illuminated by a slew of vivid LED lights. While most units are restricted by bulky in-door ice makers, this unit uses a smaller device to allow for more interior room. Besides, how often do most people really even empty their ice machines?
The model also touts a massive freezer to boot. At nearly 11 cubic feet, there’s plenty of freezer space to store a war chest of frozen pizzas, surplus meats, and much more. Despite the large interior, this model is exceptionally energy efficient. The appliance is Energy Star-certified with an annual consumption of just 768 kWh.
Aesthetically, we could’ve asked for more. The model uses a rather unimaginative boxy design, clad in a modern stainless-steel. Another knock is the lack of bells and whistles, but it’s big and still makes food easy to find.
The best for limited space
Why should you buy this? This unit is exceptionally affordable for anyone looking for a modest upgrade from their current refrigerator.
Who it’s for? People with limited space in their kitchens, as well as individuals who don’t necessarily store a lot of perishables.
How much will it cost? $1,070+
Why we chose the Frigidaire FGHI2164QF Gallery Custom-Flex:
In smaller kitchens and apartments, square footage is at a premium. For these limited spaces, top freezers help cut down on the fridge footprint. The Frigidaire Gallery Custom-Flex Top-Freezer manages to make the most of its 20.5 cubic feet of space with clever interior design.
The “Custom-Flex” door compartments are various bins (a can dispenser, a butter tray, basic shelves, etc.) that clip into a system of rails. You can slide the bins along these rails or even swap out units you find unnecessary. You can also buy other bins on Frigidaire’s website for added customization.
Drink a lot of soda? Maybe two of the can dispensers are called for. There’s an additional snack-specific drawer, too, for yogurt, string cheese, and so on. This feature alone allows for some of the most storage flexibility in this pricing bracket.
Although the bins and shelves are plastic — so last century — the fridge makes the leap into the 2000s with LED interior lighting and smudge-proof stainless steel. While its price definitely puts it on the higher end of top freezers, this is still a great choice for small kitchens.
The best budget model
Why should you buy this? An affordable French door model, this Whirlpool looks nice without breaking the bank.
Who it’s for? Anyone seeking an elegant kitchen appliance with minimal perishable spacing needs.
How much will it cost? $1,260
Why we chose the Whirlpool WRF560SEYM French Door:
There are plenty of solid top-freezer and bottom-freezer fridges that cost around $1,000, but if you’re looking for an affordable French door, the Whirlpool 30-inch is a pretty good bet. It lacks the frills of more expensive options and even some of the space of models in the same pricing bracket but the elegant design is a wonderful accent to any modern kitchen.
You’ll notice that its 19.7 cubic feet of space is less than the aforementioned Frigidaire top-freezer, but that’s because it sacrifices some fresh food capacity for a larger freezer. The 6.3 cubic feet of freezer space is perfect for individuals who prefer their frozen snacks. The sensor-controlled Adaptive Defrost feature minimizes the risk of freezer burn to preserve food more effectively.
With this model, there is some — although very little — flexibility inside. Two of the shelving units can be adjusted to make room for taller items (such as sodas or large juice containers). While it’s smaller and less showy than models you’ll pay hundreds of dollars more for, it still offers glass foldaway shelves, gallon-sized bins, and LED lighting. That’s all pretty nice for a sub-$1,500 French door.
The best for customization
Why should you buy this? Thanks to its unique compartment, this fridge can switch back and forth between extra fridge and freezer space.
Who it’s for? Anyone who appreciates the ability to easily add more freezer or refrigerator space in a sleek, modern stainless-steel build.
How much will it cost? $2,500+
Why we chose the Samsung RF23J9011SR 4-Door Flex:
If you’re in the market for a unique fridge, the Samsung 4-Door Flex Fridge offers a full compartment that can be either a freezer or warmed up for more fresh food storage. It’s sort of like the Kenmore’s temp-adjustable drawer, but more versatile. It’s both bigger and offers a larger temperature swing.
If you want it to be an ice cream holder, one of the four settings is for a soft freeze. The drawback is that the because the bottom of the fridge is split in half, you can’t store large frozen pizzas in it — the individual compartments just aren’t wide or tall enough.
The Power-Cool feature is very handy if you need to quickly cool down that six pack before the game. There’s also a similar Power-Freeze tool for the freezer. Both of these can be selected on the front touchscreen panel.
As for the design, overall, the model is a bit shallower than full-sized models. Thankfully, the middle shelves can be repositioned for greater flexibility. Three gallon-sized bins are positioned on the right door to keep bulkier items to the side. The shelf in the middle can be lowered or raised as needed.
It does have 22.5 cubic feet of capacity, it’s 36 inches wide, and costs about $2,500, so it’s meant for a very specific market, but the flex-door option is definitely a quirky feature that actually has value.
The best aesthetic
Why should you buy this? Not just pretty, this KitchenAid fridge has a lot of special features, too.
Who it’s for? Foodies and culinary-minded individuals will appreciate the specific settings for herbs and marinades.
How much will it cost? $3,400+
Why we chose the KitchenAid KRMF706EBS Multi-Door:
In a list full of stainless steel fridges, the KitchenAid Multi-Door Freestanding Refrigerator stands out, and not just because it comes in black stainless. KitchenAid found a way to make its five-door design look elegant.
The KitchenAid has two separate drawers with temperature control that are designed with home chefs in mind: There are settings for herbs and marinade or thaw, for example. The inside of the fridge is pretty eye-catching, too, with platinum-gray walls and lots of LED lights.
There is ample room inside to store all of your groceries. The 25.8 cubic feet of interior space is larger than most, meaning there’s plenty of room for the necessities and even weekly meal preps. There are four adjustable, spill-proof shelves allowing you to tailor the unit to your weekly shopping list.
The freezer utilizes the popular three-tier design to help you organize your frozen goods with ease. With a $3,400 price tag, you’re paying more for the distinctive design, rather than any over-the-top functionality, but if aesthetic is what you’re looking for, this model wins.
The best luxury
Why should you buy this? This fridge has the ability to keep groceries fresher longer and filters bacteria away from your food.
Who it’s for? People who like their refrigerators like their Aston Martins.
How much will it cost? MSRP $10,340 – $10,435
Why we chose the Sub-Zero BI-42S/S Side-By-Side:
You’ve seen your share of past due, even spoiled food in the refrigerator. Well, it doesn’t have to be that way. The Sub-Zero 42” Built-in Side-by-Side Refrigerator keeps your food fresher longer with the most advanced food preservation technology available — a technology developed through almost 70 years of research. That means crisper greens, juicier peppers, and blueberries that burst with flavor – even weeks after you’ve brought them home from the market.
This overall food preservation tech is only enhanced by the magnetic door seals. The built-in air purification system — inspired by technology used by NASA — continuously removes ethylene gas, airborne bacteria, molds, and even viruses. The climate is perpetually monitored and adjusted via an advanced microprocessor.
There’s a total of 24.3 cubic feet of storing capacity with this unit. This includes 16.3 cubic feet in the refrigerator compartment and eight cubic feet in the freezer unit, all of which is designed for optimal maneuverability.
The refrigerator has four adjustable glass shelves, three adjustable door shelves, as well as an adjustable dairy compartment. The freezer keeps things organized and in clear view with three adjustable wire shelves, three storage drawers, and five adjustable shelves along the door
In all honesty, a $10,000 refrigerator is certainly not for everyone. However, if you’re in the market for one of the most modern, efficient, and sanitary refrigerators, you’ll be hard pressed to beat this cooler than cool product from Sub-Zero.
Is now a good time to buy?
This is certainly always something to consider when purchasing a new appliance. There are always seasonal sales and clearance events to look for to ensure you’re getting the most bang for your buck. With Black Friday right around the corner, there are sure to be many sales on an amalgam of home appliances, including refrigerators.
How we test refrigerators
When choosing a new appliance, the overall aesthetic is definitely something to consider. After all, a refrigerator is a large focal point in any kitchen. It may be the best refrigerator ever constructed but if it’s unsightly or unnecessarily bulky, do you really want to showcase it alongside your other appliances? Probably not. We also like to focus in on specific special features. What does this appliance do that others simply cannot? Many of these bonus bells and whistles will certainly affect the price of the unit but then again, many of these options are the selling points on a specific model.
Outside of basic square footage limitations in your kitchen, internal refrigeration/freezer capacity is key. How large is the refrigerator? How large is the freezer portion? Adjustable housing and aftermarket customization can also affect the capacity of the unit. You can read more about how we test products here.