Thanks to the popularity of TV shows that showcase carefully curated cabinets, not to mention the virality of social media accounts that spotlight meticulously organized pantry shelves, it's no wonder sourcing solutions that allow your kitchen to appear more put together is on the rise. While there is definitely a desire among many to find food storage containers that offer a dose of style, functionality still reigns supreme. There are kitchen storage containers that combine both, and more than 13,600 Amazon shoppers rate this on-sale set with five stars.
One of the major benefits of the Chef's Path Airtight Food Storage Container Set is the volume of pieces you can expect to receive in a complete range of sizes. The set will arrive with 24 items, which includes six extra large (11.83 cups or 2.8 liters), six large (8.45 cups or 2 liters), six medium (5.92 cups or 1.4 liters), and six small (3.38 cups or 0.8 liter) containers. While the set is on sale, each airtight and BPA-free container costs as little as $2.50 with a coupon.
To buy: $60 with coupon (orig. $80); amazon.com.
"I purchased the set of 24 containers, and I couldn't love it more," wrote one of the 2,000 five-star reviewers. "The sizes are great for all of your storage needs. They are very affordable compared to other storage systems, and the quality of the product is excellent. I cleaned my pantry, and I find myself opening the door just to look at how organized it is—no more miscellaneous bags or boxes everywhere. Everything is neatly stored in clear containers with locking lids and write-on labels. They are super easy to wash by hand or just throw in the dishwasher."
Because it's important for the Chef's Path Airtight Food Storage Container Set to meet style and functionality standards, every container is clear to allow the item stored inside to be in full view. So go ahead and plan to store pantry staples, like cereal and snacks, inside the container of your choice. You can also place the containers on your counter to keep dry ingredients and foods like pasta, flour, and sugar ready for cooking and baking. When you have leftovers, reach for a container to keep in your refrigerator or freezer—liquids, like soup, can even be stored safely inside.
"I love these," added another reviewer. "They came in perfect condition. I love how they all use the same size lids, so there's no trying to keep track. They stack nicely, and I love that they're see-through."
"This brand is by far the best on the market," added a third five-star reviewer. "I love that the containers are clear and not opaque. It is very easy to see what is inside and how much of each product you have left. I also really like the closing mechanism on the containers. The other brand I bought was really a struggle to put the lids on securely. [With] these, I have full confidence that when I reach for my rice and tip the container, the lid is snug, and nightmare accidental spills simply will not happen. The closure would even be easy for someone with arthritis or shaky hands to use. You will have a forever customer with me."
Not only will you receive 24 containers in the Chef's Path set, but the brand also includes reusable chalkboard labels, a chalkboard marker, and measuring spoons with every order. Shop while the sale lasts, and enjoy a tidier kitchen that's ready to inspire.
After another round of testing, our picks remain the same, though we now recommend different size variations for some sets. We’ve also added options to our Notable competition section.
April 28, 2021
We’ve tested dozens of food-storage containers over the years, subjecting them to repeated freezing, microwaving, and 3-foot drops onto hard floors. We’ve learned that most containers will break or wear down eventually, but we’re confident that our picks are the best options out there for stashing leftovers, packing lunches, or sharing at potlucks. If you prefer glass (which is odor-resistant and often oven-safe, though heavy), we recommend the durable Pyrex Simply Store 18-Piece Set. For plastic (which is lighter and less likely to shatter), we recommend the leakproof Snapware Total Solution 20-Piece Food Storage Set. Both are affordable options that will provide you with years of use.
The streamlined containers in the Pyrex Simply Store 18-Piece Set are made from durable glass—they didn’t break in our drop tests. They stack neatly, and their lids are some of the easiest (among those we’ve tested) to put on and take off. Because the lids don’t clip closed like those on our runner-up pick, the Glasslock containers, we recommend exercising caution if you plan to transport liquids in the Pyrex containers. (We were surprised that the set’s round containers didn’t leak in our tests, but the rectangular ones are not leakproof, and a locking lid will still be best for preventing leaks and spills.) You can use this set in a microwave, freezer, preheated oven, and dishwasher.
In our leak tests, the Snapware Total Solution 20-Piece Food Storage Set’s containers stayed sealed. And after being repeatedly dropped from waist height, they sustained only minor cracks on the edges of the lids. Also, stains and smells didn’t linger in these containers, and they looked great stacked in the fridge, filled with leftovers. The containers nest well, too, so in a cupboard they take up less space than much of the competition.
We like that the Glasslock 18-Piece Container Set includes lids that seal to prevent spills, and these containers survived multiple drops from counter height. But after four years of long-term testing, some of our containers have chipped around their edges—a common complaint with most glass containers we researched. Their locking lids require more effort to close than the lids of our main pick, the Pyrex Simply Store 18-Piece Set. And we suspect that the repeated stress of snapping the Glasslock containers’ lids shut is what caused some of them to chip (stacking the containers for storage can also cause stress on glass containers and lead to chipping). That said, if you’re looking for leakproof glass containers for meal prep, these are the best we’ve tested. The Glasslock containers come in a variety of shapes that store nicely in the fridge, and they are safe to use in an oven, microwave, freezer, or dishwasher.
The Rubbermaid TakeAlongs Food Storage Containers are perfect for transporting food to parties and other functions, and because they’re so cheap, you may not mind leaving pieces behind. This set comes in a variety of sizes, with containers that stack well for convenient storage. Scents and stains remained after washing, and a few containers leaked in our testing. But we think they’re the best option compared with other budget sets.
Everything we recommend
Why you should trust us
To find the best food-storage options, we’ve talked with several experts over the years about materials science and what makes a great container, including Nancy Hopkins, senior deputy food and entertaining editor for Better Homes & Gardens; Faith Durand, then executive editor and now editor-in-chief for Kitchn; and Michele Thomas, then executive editor at the International Culinary Center. Additionally, we reached out to glass experts including Jane Cook, PhD, then chief scientist at the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, New York, and William C. LaCourse, PhD, a professor in the Glass Engineering Science department at Alfred University in Alfred, New York.
We’ve updated this guide after years of using these container sets in our test kitchen and in our own homes, storing leftovers in the fridge or packing lunches for our commutes. Anna Perling, who performed testing for and wrote our latest update, is a kitchen staff writer who has spent more than four years reviewing food-storage vessels, from travel mugs to food thermoses to lunch boxes. Her reporting built on senior staff writer Michael Sullivan’s deep dive into the science of glass and thorough durability testing over the course of several months. Ganda Suthivarakom, who wrote our original guide, spent dozens of hours researching and testing (and filling, shaking, storing, freezing, microwaving, washing, and dropping) food containers.
Who should get this
There are a few reasons to upgrade your containers, especially if you use plastic yogurt or takeout tubs. First, you can’t see through yogurt containers, so once the lid is on, you can easily forget what you have in there (and let it rot). Second, they aren’t leakproof, which means that transporting them to work for lunch can be a messy affair. Third, such plastic containers are not FDA-approved for repeat food storage or microwaving. By upgrading to more-durable glass or plastic food-storage containers, you can be confident that they’ll last longer and keep your food fresher (however, because the lids are usually plastic, you may still need to replace the ones that come with glass containers before the containers themselves give out). And if your current containers are chipped or warped, that’s another sign it may be time to replace them. They won’t seal properly, and a chip or crack will act like a snag in a pair of stockings—the crack can run and cause more damage down the line.
You may also want additional containers if you’re getting into meal prep (that is, portioning individual meals into separate containers to eat throughout the week). Our plastic recommendations are especially great for meal prep because they’re less expensive and light enough to carry to work. If you already own a glass or plastic container set but want something you can bring to potlucks and picnics, you may also want to purchase a set of cheap plastic containers you won’t mind leaving behind.
Choosing between glass and plastic containers
Wondering which material to get? Here’s our breakdown.
Choose one of our glass picks if any of the following apply:
- You don’t mind heavier containers that can shatter.
- You’re using the containers mostly for storage at home.
- You store foods that tend to stain or smell.
- You prefer oven-safe containers (though you should still double-check whether a container can go in a preheated or cold oven).
Choose one of our plastic picks if any of the following apply:
- You want something that is less likely to shatter.
- You want a cheaper option that you can leave behind at potlucks or stock up on for meal prep.
- Your family members tend to lose containers.
- You want something lighter to carry around.
Ultimately, the choice between plastic and glass is a personal one that’s based on lifestyle. Of the experts we interviewed, some preferred glass, some preferred plastic, and one even preferred zip-top plastic bags for leftovers. They chose what worked best for themselves and their families, and you can too.
A note on tempered vs. other types of glass
Containers are made from different types of glass, which will affect their durability, price, and how they’ll break if you drop them. Most glass food-storage containers, including the Pyrex and Glasslock sets we recommend, are made of tempered glass, a type of heat-treated soda-lime glass. Tempered glass is ideal for cooking and storing food because it’s very durable. It can survive being dropped on the floor, and it’s able to withstand dramatic temperature changes without cracking. Tempered glass does have one downside, however: On rare occasions, it can shatter unexpectedly (this may seem spontaneous, but it’s usually a result of thermal shock or repeated stress on the glass). That being said, tempered glass is often referred to as “safety glass” because when it does break, it crumbles into cube-shaped pieces that are easy to sweep up, as opposed to long, thin shards that can more easily cut you. (This is why tempered glass is used for side and rear windows in cars and glass shower doors.) To understand more on how and why this seemingly random breakage occurs, you can check out our blog post on the subject.
Some food-storage containers are made from borosilicate glass because it’s even more resistant to thermal shock, or sudden changes in temperature, than tempered glass. However, it’s more expensive, and it’s also more brittle than tempered glass—which means it may break more easily if you hit it against the counter or drop it on the floor. You may also find containers made from heat-strengthened glass, which is twice as strong as untreated glass yet not as strong as tempered glass. So compared with tempered glass, heat-strengthened glass is not as resistant to sudden changes of temperature or as durable if you drop it. You’re unlikely to find non-heat-treated soda-lime glass containers because they are neither oven- nor freezer-safe.
How we picked and tested
In reporting this guide, we talked with five experts, ranging from cookbook editors to glass scientists: Nancy Hopkins, senior deputy food and entertaining editor for Better Homes & Gardens; Faith Durand, then executive editor and now editor-in-chief for Kitchn; Michele Thomas, then executive editor at the International Culinary Center (and now a sommelier, wine educator, and writer); Jane Cook, PhD, then chief scientist at the Corning Museum of Glass in Corning, New York; and William C. LaCourse, PhD, a professor in the Glass Engineering Science department at Alfred University in Alfred, New York.
We also consulted reviews from Good Housekeeping, The Strategist, Reviewed, and The Spruce Eats. Finally, we looked for best-selling sets from Amazon, Bed Bath and Beyond, Wayfair, Target, IKEA, Williams-Sonoma, Food52, and The Container Store. For each of these, we combed through owner reviews. We also polled our staff for long-term-testing feedback and read the comments on this guide.
After years of research and testing, we know that whether you’re choosing glass or plastic, a good container should meet the following criteria:
- Airtight and leakproof: “You want something that’s really airtight with a good seal, if it’s something you plan to keep for a bit,” Nancy Hopkins, senior deputy food and entertaining editor for Better Homes & Gardens, told us. Not only will a good seal help food last longer, but leakproof construction is also important for transporting liquids. We’ve found that round containers are usually more leakproof than square or rectangular containers. Many of the models we tested have a gasket seal around the lip and plastic hinges that snap shut, so you know the container is sealed properly.
- Stain-resistant: Resistance to stains and odors is key—you don’t want to smell or see yesterday’s pasta and red sauce on your container. Plastic containers are more likely to stain than glass, but we’ve found that some are more stain-resistant than others.
- Easy to clean: We wanted containers that could go in the dishwasher. For easier cleanup, we preferred containers that had sealing lids with removable gaskets because you can remove and wash them separately (this also prevents mold buildup). And we avoided lids that had microwave vents; they’re just another piece to de-crud, and you’re better off removing the latches and resting the lid on top of the container in the microwave (or not using the lid at all, as some manufacturers suggest).
- Easy to stack and store: Containers that can nest or stack neatly will be easier to store and nicer to look at. And the shapes and sizes will affect how easy it is to store containers—square or rectangular containers will maximize fridge or freezer space. We tried to pick sets with a good range from large to small, with emphasis on rectangular or square space-saving shapes. We didn’t eliminate round shapes, though, because they can be good for liquid foods. We also preferred glass and plastic sets that had interchangeable lids among containers, so finding the right lid will be a little easier.
- Heat-safe: We wanted containers that could go in the microwave, so that eliminated stainless steel. For glass containers, we also preferred options that were preheated-oven–safe or oven-safe so you can warm food in the same container.
- Translucent: The containers should be clear or easy to see through, so you know what is inside without having to open them. So we avoided ceramic containers (they can also break easily).
- Affordable: Plastic or glass storage containers range from about $3 to $10 apiece. Containers in a set are generally less expensive per piece. Although price was a factor when we made our pick, we also considered that glass containers will last a long time. Keep in mind that most manufacturers include both the containers and the lids in the total set count. So if a set is sold as 14 pieces or 16 pieces, you’re really getting only seven or eight containers.
Our 2021 tests built on our testing from previous years. We tested for leaks by filling containers with water and shaking them, before and after they had run through the dishwasher. To test how the containers would hold onto smells and stains, we filled them with tomato sauce, placed them in the refrigerator for five days and the freezer for two weeks, and reheated the sauce in the microwave for two minutes. Before reheating, we also checked the frozen tomato sauce for freezer-burn patterns, which indicate how tightly a container seals. And we submerged all of the lids in a large bowl of tomato sauce for 48 hours and then ran them through the dishwasher, as an additional stain and smell test. Usability is important in a container. We considered how easy each set’s containers were to open and close, how well they stacked, and how well their shapes and sizes would work with different types of foods.
Keep in mind that most manufacturers include both the containers and the lids in the total set count. So if a set is sold as 14 pieces or 16 pieces, you’re really getting only seven or eight containers.
Previously, we froze quarter-pound portions of ground beef for two weeks to look at freezer-burn patterns. And, most fun of all, we conducted a drop test from waist height for all of the containers (including glass ones) to see whether they would break or if the lids would pop off. In an attempt to simulate a non-bouncy kitchen floor, we did these drop tests on a piece of wood placed over cement.
In 2018, we also subjected the glass sets to extreme thermal stresses (which is something we strongly do not recommend trying at home): We pulled the containers from the freezer and filled them with boiling water; we took containers that had been in a 350 ºF oven for 10 minutes and filled them with ice water; we used the containers to reheat cold beef stew and tomato sauce in the microwave for three minutes; and, finally, we froze beef stew in the containers and put them directly into a 350 °F oven for 10 minutes. Since most of our picks have remained consistent over the years, we didn’t repeat any drop or thermal shock tests in 2021.
Our glass pick: Pyrex Simply Store 18-Piece Set
The classic, streamlined Pyrex Simply Store 18-Piece Set is the best glass container set we’ve tested. Made from tempered glass, these sturdy containers survived multiple counter-height drops onto wood without breaking. Unlike other glass containers we tested, the Pyrex containers have a smooth rim that’s less likely to chip over time, and they look nice enough to use for serving. Though not all of the lids are watertight, they’re faster and easier to seal than the lids of our runner-up pick, the Glasslock containers (which require more force to clip closed). And because each shape of Pyrex lid is a different color, they’re easy to match to their corresponding containers. The lids will likely wear down faster than the containers themselves (especially if you run them through the dishwasher), but you can easily get replacements from Pyrex. This set stacks neatly and is safe to use in a microwave, freezer, preheated oven, and dishwasher.
We continue to be impressed by the durability of the Pyrex set: After years of use in our home kitchens, our containers haven’t chipped or cracked. We’ve heard this from a number of Wirecutter staffers. One person told us, “They’ve held up remarkably well over the last two to three years of regular use.” Another said: “I use them all the time, they’ve held up extremely well for years now. [I] dishwash them, top or bottom rack, wherever they’ll fit.” And yet another colleague told us, “I’d say I’ve had most of them for more than five years. Never had the glass part break.”
These containers were also impressive in our initial drop tests. They survived drop after drop onto a wood board placed over a cement floor. At one point, a container missed the board entirely and bounced off the cement without breaking. The containers also passed our thermal stress tests: They were still intact after we transferred them directly from a 350 °F oven to the freezer and vice versa (we strongly urge you not to try this experiment at home). The Pyrex containers are fairly heavy, but that’s true of all the glass models we tested (for lighter containers, we recommend plastic options).
Instead of locking on with clips, the flexible Pyrex lids press on, and they don’t require as much force to put on or take off. They’re easier to seal than the similar Anchor Hocking lids we tested and than Glasslock’s locking ones. The lids come in different colors that correlate to differently sized containers, providing a visual cue to help match them together more easily. The lids are airtight, and we didn’t see any signs of freezer burn on our tomato sauce. Even though the round containers we tested didn’t leak in our tests, we would hesitate to throw them into a backpack with a computer. We also found that the rectangular containers leaked from the corners. However, since you can simply choose to store soups and stews in the round containers, we’re willing to forgive this minor drawback.
We recommend storing soupier foods in the round Pyrex containers; the rectangular ones leaked from the corners in our tests. Photo: Michael Murtaugh
The Pyrex lids are color-coded to match with the differently sized containers. Photo: Michael Murtaugh
For storage, you can nest the containers or stack them atop one another with the lids on. Photo: Michael Murtaugh
In our tomato-sauce tests, we could detect a slight aroma on the Pyrex lids after running them through the dishwasher, but the smell wasn’t as strong as the one left behind on some of the other containers we tested, like the silicone-rimmed Pyrex Ultimate containers. Pyrex’s plastic lids are obviously not oven-safe, and if you’re using a dishwasher to clean the lids, they should be placed only on the top rack.
The Pyrex set includes nine glass containers (with matching lids), and they range in size from 1 to 7 cups. The containers nest well, or you can stack the sealed containers on top of each other. The smooth, clean lines of the Pyrex pieces also look nice on a table, if you’re serving straight from the containers after reheating.
If you’re looking for fewer containers, the Pyrex Simply Store line is also available as a 14-piece set (with seven containers and accompanying lids). You can purchase replacement tops on Pyrex’s website.
Pyrex offers a two-year warranty on the Simply Store containers, meaning the company will replace defective pieces from the set as long as they haven’t been subjected to misuse or abuse. Also, according to the company, Pyrex will replace any glass product that breaks due to oven heat. If this happens, just be sure to keep the damaged item, since you may be asked to return it. Contact the Pyrex Customer Care Center for returns or replacements.
Flaws but not dealbreakers
Like the other glass containers we tested, the Pyrex set we looked at had a number of visible flaws in the glass. These flaws aren’t noticeable unless you’re looking for them, but they can potentially weaken the glass and make it more prone to shattering, so it’s something to know before you buy.
Again, not all of the containers in this set are leakproof, so we don’t recommend using them to transport meals to work or school. Though the round containers didn’t leak any water in our tests, we’d still exercise caution if you intend to use them to transport liquids. Our runner-up pick, the Glasslock set, is best if you’re looking for an entirely leakproof glass option.
We’ve noticed some mixed feedback over how long the Pyrex lids can last. We’ve found that the lids can crack even when washed on the top rack after many years (about five). Several Amazon reviewers have complained that the lids can crack or warp even after just a few uses, but Wirecutter staffers reported that their Pyrex lids stayed intact even after two to three years. Pyrex does sell replacement lids if you need them. You may be able to prolong the life of your lids by hand-washing them, although it may be inconvenient to do so.
Our pick: Snapware Total Solution 20-Piece Food Storage Set
Out of all the plastic sets we tested, we recommend the Snapware Total Solution 20-Piece Food Storage Set. This plastic set doesn’t offer the same durability as the glass Pyrex set we recommend—we’ve noticed that plastic containers may scratch, stain, or warp over time, while glass ones do not. But the plastic, locking Snapware set is cheaper, lighter, and more convenient for transporting food than our glass picks. Snapware is owned by the same company as Pyrex, and similarly, it offers replaceable lids and a long warranty. These sets have held up well over time in our home kitchens, too. For those reasons, we think the Snapware set is the best option from our picks if you want to prep your meal ahead and grab your container from the fridge on your way out the door.
The lids in the Snapware Total Solution set are easy to snap closed (unlike those in the Snapware Airtight set, which were difficult to latch and repeatedly popped open, or the Rubbermaid Brilliance lids, which sprang shut violently, like a mousetrap). With the Snapware containers, there’s also a small tab at the edge to leverage when you’re pulling the lid off, though you may not need it (these lids didn’t suction as much as ones like the Rubbermaid Brilliance). Still, the Snapware Total Solution containers and lids provided a tight seal, which prevented any signs of freezer burn and didn’t leak (even after a run through the dishwasher). With the locking tabs, these containers are more likely to stay shut than sets with press-on lids from IKEA or our budget pick, the Rubbermaid TakeAlongs.
Like most plastic lids, the Snapware ones retained a faint tomato-sauce scent after we marinated them separately in a large bowl of sauce for 48 hours, but they didn’t retain any stains. The containers themselves were also stain-free. In contrast, the Lock & Lock containers retained an oily orange residue (and when we previously tested the Snapware Airtight set and the Popit containers, we also found that these sets retained smells and stains). And the Snapware Total Solution set performed admirably in our drop tests: Only a small piece on the corner of the lid broke off, after the third drop.
The Snapware set comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, with larger containers to store leftovers and smaller ones for dressings or sauces. Photo: Michael Murtaugh
With their locking tabs and gaskets, the Snapware lids are leakproof. Photo: Michael Murtaugh
The Snapware lids are easier to snap closed than the lids on some other sets we tested. Photo: Michael Murtaugh
We appreciate that the Snapware containers nest, for easy storage, or stack neatly in the fridge and freezer. The set comes with 10 containers and matching lids in a variety of shapes and sizes that we think will work for most foods—from small circular containers for storing sauces or dressings to deeper, rounded rectangles for lasagna or curry. You can also write on the lids to label what’s inside (which is a nice touch, even though we prefer to label with removable tape).
The lids also work with glass Snapware containers, which is convenient if you’re buying both styles and don’t want to have to rummage through various lids in your drawer. We found the Snapware lids slightly easier to lock and pop off than the Glasslock lids (thanks to a small protruding tab at the rim). The key difference between the two containers is that you can remove the gaskets on the Glasslock lids for cleaning, but the gaskets on the Snapware lids we tested are attached. (The instructions on the Snapware Total Solution product page recommend removing the gasket for cleaning. But a company representative confirmed that these are the brand’s general-care recommendations and apply to the Airtight containers, which do have removable gaskets.) That’s a downside, but since the Snapware lids don’t have fine ridges, like the spongier gaskets on the OXO or Glasslock lids, we think the Snapware lids won’t trap grime as easily.
These containers are microwave-, freezer-, and dishwasher-safe. Snapware offers a lifetime warranty on both the plastic containers and the lids if “damaged during normal household use.” Wirecutter staffers who have owned a set for several years reported no issues with the containers or lids. Snapware also sells replaceable lids for every shape in the set if you need them: round, square, and rectangular. (Like Pyrex, Snapware is a Corelle brand.) If you need to make a claim, contact the company’s customer-care center; be sure to keep the container or lid because you may be asked to return it.
Flaws but not dealbreakers
As we mentioned, the gaskets on the lids aren’t removable, which makes cleaning more difficult compared with the Glasslock set. Over the years, we’ve noticed some stock fluctuation with these containers. If they’re sold out, we also like the OXO Good Grips 16-piece Smart Seal Plastic Container Set, which we discuss in our Competition section.
Runner-up: Glasslock 18-Piece Container Set
We recommend the Glasslock 18-Piece Container Set only if you want a glass set that’s leakproof. Like a lot of glass containers we considered, these have a history of chipping over time (although many Wirecutter staffers report no issues after years of use). The Glasslock containers’ tight-fitting lids keep food fresher longer. But they also put pressure on the edge of the glass, which, according to the glass experts we spoke with, may be causing stress that results in breakage. (Several reviewers also mentioned that their containers chipped after they nested them for storage. We were told by Jane Cook, then chief scientist at the Corning Museum of Glass, that stacking glass can cause stress over time because the two hard surfaces rub together, and this may eventually lead to chipping. You can stack the containers on top of each other with the lids on instead, or layer a paper towel between containers.) That said, compared with other brands we tested, the Glasslock containers locked more securely without leaking and didn’t break or pop open when dropped. Per piece, the set also costs less than other glass options we considered.
The plastic lids have a firm silicone gasket that fills the lid groove from edge to edge and provides a tight seal that doesn’t leak. Though the gaskets are removable, they’re harder to pry off than the thicker rings on the OXO containers—we accidentally punctured the gasket on one of our Glasslock containers with a butter knife. Our testers found that the plastic flaps on the lids were more difficult to close than the press-on lids of the Pyrex glass containers, but that’s true of most locking containers. However, the Glasslock containers kept food fresher longer than much of the competition in our initial tests, indicating that they’re airtight. In our tests, greens remained sprightly, and cut strawberries tasted just a touch off after being refrigerated for two weeks. Tomato sauce didn’t show signs of freezer burn, and it didn’t impart stains or smells to the glass or to the plastic lid.
Impressively, the Glasslock set bounced in our drop tests, with no damage to the glass containers. The lids remained perfectly intact and didn’t pop off. (For kicks, we even tried dropping a Glasslock container onto cement. It broke on a corner only after three other attempts to crack the thing.) The glass Snapware set we tested didn’t fare as well in our drop tests: Some of the flaps opened, and the corner of the lid cracked.
The Glasslock containers are oven-safe and nice enough to serve from, just like the Pyrex containers. Photo: Michael Murtaugh
The tabs on the locking Glasslock lids require a little more force to close than on the Pyrex press-on lids. But the Glasslock set is the best choice if you want a leakproof glass container set. Photo: Michael Murtaugh
A removable gasket makes the Glasslock lids easy to clean. You can pry the gasket off carefully with a butter knife, then press it back into the ridge of the lid after you’ve cleaned and dried it. Photo: Michael Murtaugh
The Glasslock set comes with nine square, rectangular, and round containers ranging from 0.7 cup (165 milliliters) to 6.3 cups (1.5 liters) in size. Though the containers are clear, you can choose to get them with clear lids with a sea-green gasket or with translucent cornflower-blue lids. This set has a wider range of shapes than the glass Rubbermaid Brilliance set. The Glasslock walls are thick but perfectly see-through, and same-shape containers of different sizes nest even with the lids on. These containers stack beautifully in the fridge, making it easy to see what leftovers you have.
Like Pyrex and Anchor Hocking, Glasslock makes its containers out of tempered soda-lime glass that’s oven-, microwave-, freezer-, and dishwasher-safe. Though we like the OXO 16 Piece Smart Seal Glass Container Set (which has a spongier gasket and lids that are easier to take off and clean), it’s far more expensive since the containers are made from borosilicate glass. And we still saw complaints of chipping in the reviews.
Glasslock will replace any worn-out or faulty lids free of charge (though you’ll have to pay a few bucks for shipping). You can order the right-size lid on its website by looking for the product code etched into the bottom of your container. If you buy your set directly through Glasslock’s website, the company will offer a full refund within 30 days of purchase as long as the containers are unused and in their original packaging.
Like all tempered glassware, the Glasslock containers can spontaneously shatter (albeit very rarely) due to surface damage, manufacturing flaws, or extreme thermal stresses. Beyond that, several pieces we’ve long-term tested have chipped around the edge, and we’ve heard other people complain of the same thing. We’ve also read reviews that the containers’ body chips over time. The chipping is probably due to the pressure that the locking lids put on the glass when you snap them shut, or from stacking the containers. William LaCourse, a professor in the Glass Engineering Science department at Alfred University, told us, “There will be stresses as a result of the cap and putting the cap on with fairly high pressure … it essentially squeezes the cap onto the glass.” He explained that if there are any minor flaws already present in the glass, the added pressure from the lids could cause the containers to chip or break. Cook said that you can also put stress on glass by rubbing it against a material as hard or harder than itself (which happens when you stack glass containers on top of each other). That stress is also exacerbated when you stack warm containers that have expanded.
If you’re committed to getting the Glasslock containers because you want glass containers that don’t leak, we don’t think the concern of chipping or breakage should stop you. Only a small number of the containers we’ve tested have chipped. We also subjected the Glasslock containers to extreme thermal stresses, and they survived unscathed. And we’ve previously ordered sets from different retailers to check for any breakage during shipping. Just keep an eye out every time you open a container: The only thing you don’t want is a piece of glass in your food. And if you’re going to choose glass over plastic, keep in mind that all glassware is inherently brittle and needs to be handled with care.
If you don’t have a dishwasher, you may need to remove the gaskets from the Glasslock lids to clean them and prevent any mold buildup. (This seems to happen only to sets that people hand-wash.) Carefully dig the gasket out with a butter knife so you don’t knick it, wash it with hot water, and let it dry completely before you reassemble the lid.
Some Amazon reviewers have complained that the flaps on the lids of the Glasslock containers make a racket when snapped shut. But we don’t think this is a dealbreaker because it’s just a split second of noise; other containers, like the Rubbermaid Brilliance, were louder.
Long-term test notes
Marilyn Ong, supervising editor on our kitchen team, has owned Glasslock containers for roughly five years, and she uses them frequently to store leftovers for her family of five. She hasn’t experienced any glass chipping, though the flaps on the lids for her round containers did start to break off after about four years. She ordered new lids for free from the Glasslock website, paid a few dollars for shipping, and received them less than a week later.
Budget pick: Rubbermaid TakeAlongs Food Storage Containers
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It should come as no surprise that an organized kitchen is a happy kitchen. When everything is in its place—and easy to find—cooking, baking, and performing general tasks becomes effortless: You're no longer rifling through the pantry and sniffing mysterious bags of beans. If you haven't invested in kitchen organizers, it's definitely the next step towards total organizational bliss.
The easiest place to start shopping is Amazon, which is home to a slew of organizers for just about every section of the kitchen. To make things as seamless as possible, we've gathered together some of the most popular organizers and divided them into different areas of the kitchen: cabinets, fridge and freezer, pantry, and underneath cabinets. Keep scrolling for 16 top-rated kitchen bins, turntables, and airtight containers that are guaranteed to rein in any mess—all for $30 or less.
For the Cabinets:
Whether you need to create more space, or simply add a semblance of structure to the cabinets, there's something for everyone here. Prop a few of the Simple Houseware sliding drawers in the cabinets and fill with everything from jars of spices to condiments and coffee pods. If you need to find a place for pots and pans that isn't just under the stove or thrown haphazardly into the back of the pantry, set up the YouCopia adjustable pan and lid rack or the Simple Houseware skillet organizer, both of which are designed to not only save space but also keep everything in place.
"Bye bye messy cabinets," one five-star Amazon shopper says of the SimpleHouseware skillet organizer. "No more cluttered cabinets! When I need a skillet, I pull one out in a matter of seconds versus digging through hazardously piled pans that my family carelessly threw back in."
For the Fridge/Freezer:
The fridge and freezer don't merely have to be a chaos zone, with vegetables and cartons of milk haphazardly tossed into any section. Keep things at arm's reach with the mDesign translucent food storage bins, which show you exactly what's in the fridge at any given moment. You can even unpack boxes of eggs and place them in this adorable egg holder designed to store up to 24 eggs. And If you're searching for containers that'll keep produce fresh, look to the Silivo bins, complete with a removable drain tray that prevents fruits and vegetables from becoming limp.
"These are awesome for organizing the fridge," one five-star shopper shares about the mDesign plastic storage bins. "I buy cups of cinnamon applesauce and diced peaches and once the package is open they are all over the fridge. These hold multiple packages of each all stacked perfectly and ready to just grab and go."
For the Pantry:
If you're lucky to have a pantry, you know quite well that it's a double-edged sword: Even if you have plenty of space, maintaining organization and being able to find that certain box of pasta can be tricky. Rather than rummaging through the chaos, store dry goods like rice, beans, and pasta in these airtight storage containers, move dried spices into these translucent glass jars, and store snacks or tea bags in this turntable that comes with removable bins.
"These containers are awesome," one of 7,000 five-star shoppers says of the Vtopmart airtight bins. "I almost spent a lot more buying a name brand set of containers and I'm happy I tried these out first. I will definitely be replacing all of the containers in my pantry with these."
For Under the Cabinets:
One way to create more space is by utilizing the area underneath a cabinet—whether that's dangling a shelf underneath, or by inserting a storage rack in an unconventional spot. Start with the SimpleHouseware expandable shelf that can be propped under the sink. The shelf can expand or contract to suit the space and be arranged with everything from cleaning supplies to sponges and towels. A similar rack from YouCopia can also be positioned under the sink or below pantry cabinets and stocked with plastic bags, aluminum foil, and other long boxes. If you're looking to increase space in already-filled cabinets, consider installing this under-cabinet shelf, which instantly doubles storage.
"Spring cleaning in a snap," a shopper says of the SimpleTrending Under Cabinet Shelf. "I was tired of a messy cabinet and not enough shelving space. The baskets are a must for getting organized! They fold open and slip in so easily. I will be ordering more for all of my cabinet space."
Head to Amazon now and shop these simple organization solutions for the kitchen cabinets, pantry, fridge, and freezer.
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