Thanks to technology we now have insulated food containers, water bottles, mugs and flasks that can keep our colds cold, and our hots hot for longer than ever. Below is a selection from each of these categories that offer conveniences we’ve grown to love deeply.
These days, it’s hard to imagine a hiker or camper heading to the outdoors without an insulated bottle for cold water or hot drinks. That’s why we’ve rounded up some of the best insulated mugs, bottles, flasks, and food jars in 2020. And although the insulated bottle’s popularity has surged in recent years with new brands and technology entering the market, it’s actually a pretty old idea. In fact, it was first invented in 1892!
A few years later in 1904, two Scottish businessmen came up with a vacuum sealed bottle that could be used by the general public. They called it a “thermos” (from the Greek word for “heat”), and it later became the very first product of The American Thermos Bottle Company (known as Thermos today). Other brands and designs soon followed and the insulated bottle became a must-have for anyone spending extended time in the outdoors.
This simple, low-tech design has stood the test of time and it’s still your best option for keeping drinks and food hot or cold. (Especially if you plan on fall or winter camping.) Here are some of our favorites for crisp fall evenings and hot summer days.
Sometimes you just need a mug that keeps your coffee hot but doesn’t do much else. The following options won’t hold a lot and don’t fit in car cup holders, but they’re great to have for mornings at a campsite. (Or at work!)GSI Outdoors Doppio Mug
Most insulated mugs and bottles are designed for the long haul—not this one. The Doppio Mug by GSI Outdoors is the perfect size for sipping and sitting by the campfire. Perfect for when you’ve got nowhere to go but still want to keep your morning coffee hot.
- INNOVATIVE DESIGN: With its unique double wall and press-fit lid, this mug can keep a coffee hot on the frostiest of winter mornings or ice cold on a hot summer day, without burning hands or forming condensation.
- COMPACT AND CONVENIENT: Measuring only 2. 8 x 3. 9 inches and holding 6. 5 fluid ounces, this compact stainless steel mug is the perfect size for a double shot of espresso or a glass of bourbon, while still being small enough to take with you on the go.
- DESIGNED FOR DURABILITY: Made from durable 304, 18/8 stainless steel this mug will last a lifetime of reliable use.
- NO SPILLS, NO PROBLEM: The convenient press-in lid is easy to drink from, while ensuring that you won't spill a drop.
- Care instructions: Hand Wash
With its simple design and various color options, this mug has already become a classic in its own right. Easy to clean and dishwasher-safe. Plus, its Duracoat finish makes it scratch-proof.Hydro Flask Insulated Mug
Similar to the Yeti model, this mug has a sleek handle and splash-proof lid. (But not leak-proof.) It’ll hold 12 oz of your favorite hot (or cold) beverage and currently is available in 5 colors.
Insulated Bottles and Flasks
Whether you want to keep water cold or coffee hot, these insulated bottles are your best options when you’re on the go.Stanley Classic Vacuum Bottle
Not long after Thermos was created, William Stanley invented his own vacuum sealed bottle using steel instead of glass (unlike the earlier Thermos models). More than a century later, Stanley has a reputation for tough insulated products that last. This 1-quart Stanley Classic will keep drinks hot and or cold for up to 24 hours.
- KEEP IT HOT OR COLD: Our Stanley Classic Vacuum Bottle is made with superior insulation that keeps liquids (soup, coffee, tea) hot or cold drinks cool for up to 24 hours It’s also made with BPA-free materials, keeping its contents safe to consume
- TOUGH AND DURABLE: The rust-proof 18/8 stainless steel construction on this insulated thermos means it can work just as hard as you do without impacting its performance This is an ideal bottle to throw into your truck, work bag or travel with it
- MULTI-PURPOSE LID: The Stanley thermos is designed with a leak-resistant lid, so you can put it in your backpack without worrying about any spills The wide mouth of the thermos helps with easy pouring into the lid that doubles as an eight-ounce cup
- FILL IT FOR THE DAY: Our vacuum bottle comes in multiple sizes – 1 1qt, 1 5qt, and 2qt so you can fill it up with water once and be set for however long you need it The collapsible handle makes it easy to transport with you
- LIFETIME WARRANTY: ‘BUILT FOR LIFE’ Since 1913 we’ve promised to provide rugged, capable gear for food and drink, built to last a lifetime It’s a promise we still keep Stanley products purchased from Stanley Resellers come with a lifetime warranty
This 40-oz bottle from Thermos will also keep drinks and food at temperature for 24 hours. The lid doubles as a serving cup and the handle makes it easy to carry.Thermos Stainless King Compact Bottle
If you like Thermos products but want something a big smaller and more portable, this 16-oz bottle offers the same technology as the 40-oz version. The lid has an easy twist-and-pour function so you don’t to remove it to use the bottle.Stanley Go Series Bottle
Stainless steel bottles offer excellent insulation but some people claim they can impart a metallic taste. If that’s true for you, this bottle offers an easy solution. The inside of the bottle is lined with smooth-fired ceramic instead of metal.Bear Grylls Vacuum Insulated Bottle
Double-walled insulated bottles are standard, but this is Bear Grylls so he took his bottle design a step further. This triple-walled insulated bottle keeps drinks at temperature without extra weight. It’s actually 20% lighter than the average bottle of its size.DuraFlask Vacuum Insulated Bottle
This 32-oz insulated bottle from DuraFlask comes with two lids: a BPA-free plastic flip-top lid and a food-grade stainless steel screw-on cap. The bottle’s powder-coated exterior makes it scratch-resistant.Hydro Flask Standard Bottle
With Hydro Flask’s standard bottle, you get plenty of options—it’s available in 3 sizes (18 oz, 21 oz, and 24 oz) and 14 colors. And unlike other insulated bottles, it’s designed to fit in standard car cup holders.Hydro Flask Wide-Mouth Bottle
If you’re looking for an easier-to-clean option, Hydro Flask also has a wide-mouth version of their standard bottle. It comes with a BPA-free plastic lid with a convenient built-in straw. Available in two sizes (32 oz and 40 oz) and a range of colors.Coleman FreeFlow Insulated Bottle
Spills won’t be a problem with Coleman’s FreeFlow bottle. Its “autoseal” cap seals the bottle between sips to make sure it never leaks. This bottle is ideal for hot summer weather—it’ll keep drinks cold for up to 58 hours!Kleen Kanteen Wide-Mouth Insulated Bottle
Kleen Kanteen has one of the most streamlined designs on the market. It’s available in 4 sizes (12 oz, 16 oz, 20 oz, 40 oz) and a variety of colors. Because its leak-proof cap has a built-in loop, you won’t have to worry about it breaking with repeated use.
Insulated Food Containers
Insulated containers aren’t just for drinks, they’re perfect for meals and snacks too. These insulated food jars will make sure that your meal is ready when you are. Perfect for bringing a hot meal on a cold hike.Stanley Classic Insulated Food Jar
This double-walled food jar not only keeps your food hot, it comes with a spoon and a leak-resistant lid that doubles as a cup or bowl. Even better, when you buy a Stanley product from one of their retailers, it comes with a lifetime warranty.
- LEGENDARY STANLEY INSULATION: Each food jar with integrated steel spork has double-wall vacuum insulation for excellent temperature retention. Double-wall vacuum insulation technology will keep your food hot or cold for up to 12 hours
- LIGHTWEIGHT DESIGN: The Legendary Food Jar with Spork gently fits into your hand. Carry around your beverages and hot food whether out at the mall, soccer game, or park
- LEAK-PROOF CONSTRUCTION: This classic food jar is rust-free, leak-resistant, and packable just toss it in your backpack, trunk, boat, or side-saddle. The sealing lid ensures your container remains closed to prevent spills
- REUSABLE + EASY TO CLEAN: This food container comes with a spork; replace your plastic spoons and forks with a reusable stainless steel spork! This food jar features an easy-to-fill, wide mouth opening that is also easy to clean
- LIFETIME WARRANTY: ‘BUILT FOR LIFE’. Since 1913 we’ve promised to provide rugged, capable gear for food and drink, built to last a lifetime. It’s a promise we still keep. Stanley products purchased from Stanley Resellers come with a lifetime warranty
This 16-oz food jar from Thermos also comes with an integrated cup and a folding spoon. It’s available in 10 colors.Mira Vacuum Insulated Food Jar
Mira’s insulated food jar has a sleek, futuristic design made from food-grade stainless steel. Its 13-oz size means it can even fit in a child’s lunchbox. It’ll keep food hot for 5 hours or cold for up to 10 hours.Hydro Flask Insulated Food Jar
At 12 oz, this jar from HydroFlask is just slightly smaller than the Mira version—although it also comes in an 18-oz size. It’s dishwasher-safe and BPA-free. Rugged enough for the trail but portable enough for school or the office.
Now that’s you’ve found a way to keep food and drinks hot, it’s time to plan a fall or winter outdoor adventure! Need inspiration? Check out one of our fall or winter posts: