14 Best Thermoses: The Ultimate List (2018)

best thermos

There’s nothing like a hot drink in your hand when you’re spending time outdoors during the cold weather months. Sometimes a cup of coffee or a steaming bowl of soup is just what you need to keep the chills out and your body heat in.

A good thermos should, of course, have excellent insulating abilities, but also should be durable and long lasting. Your thermos sees a lot of outdoor use — it allows you to extend the warmth (or cold) of your beverages and food so you can play all day and enjoy whatever’s in there on your own time.

We’ve put together a top list of some top-notch thermoses to keep you toasty this season. There are both larger, high capacity thermoses for the whole family or campsite as well as smaller, personal units for taking a cup of coffee with you on the trail.

What's the Best Thermos?

thermos 61 ounce Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Lid doubles as a stainless steel cup
  • Retractable handle
  • Super affordable for the quality!
Price: $55.98 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
ember thermos Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Precisely heat to desired temperature
  • Super easy to operate
  • Great thermos to enjoy hot soup from
Price: $149.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
thermos stainless king Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Ideal travel mug
  • Stainless steel construction
  • Sweat proof
Price: $21.85 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
thermos 32 ounce Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Nice aesthetic
  • Lid built into the handle
  • Stays cool to the touch and won't sweat
Price: $24.93 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
stanley thermos Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Amazon's Choice
  • Collapsible handle
  • Lifetime warranty!
Price: $26.40 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
thermos work series Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Rubber components add durability
  • Cup built into the lid
  • Collapsible handle
Price: $36.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
thermos soup thermos Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Great for soups and food items
  • Includes a folding spoon
  • Six different color options
Price: $19.73 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
aquatix best thermos Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Self serve unit for larger groups
  • Great for the beach or tailgating
  • Double walled vacuum insulated
Price: $39.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
the lobo best thermos Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Very affordable
  • Clips easily to a carabiner
  • Free lifetime warranty
Price: $23.97 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
yeti thermos Amazon Customer Reviews
  • 20 ounces yet compact enough for travel
  • 18/8 stainless steel is tough as nails
  • BPA free
Price: $48.00 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
yeti thermos Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Compact and tough
  • Several colored “DuraCoat” options
  • BPA free
Price: $48.92 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
hydro flask thermos Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Beveled bottom is perfect for cocktails
  • 10 different color choices to choose from
  • BPA free 18/8 stainless steel
Price: $29.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
cresimo thermos Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Great Size and design for use picnicing
  • Very reasonably priced
  • Push button on the top
Price: $28.95 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
yeti thermos Amazon Customer Reviews
  • One gallon capacity
  • BPA free 18/8 stainless steel
  • Employ’s Yeti’s “MagCap” design
Price: $129.99 Shop at Amazon Shop now Read our review
Our Unbiased Reviews
  1. Best Large Thermos for Hiking or Trekking: Thermos 61 Ounce Vacuum Insulated Beverage Bottle with Folding Handle

    Pros:
    • Retractable handle and removable shoulder strap
    • Stainless steel cup is built into the lid
    • Stainless steel construction is durable and built to last
    • Super affordable for the quality!
    Cons:
    • It’s a bit bulky for use hiking with the shoulder strap - but better to have the option to carry it effectively than not
    • Packs a bit cumbersome
    • Limited color selection

    Here’s a seriously large thermos for family or larger group use. This 61 ounce unit is perfect for filling up with cocoa for a day sledding with the kids, or for having plenty of coffee between you and your buddies out fishing or hunting. The vacuum insulation technology employed with this product is designed to effectively preserve flavor and keep your beverage hot or cold for 24 hours!

    The 18/8 stainless steel on both the inside and outside of this thermos makes it pretty dam tough, you can definitely knock this one around on your outdoor excursions. There’s a stainless steel cup conveniently built in to the lid and the easy pour handle is retractable. There’s even a detachable shoulder strap for use hiking or trekking. As far as a high volume thermos goes, this is the full package.

  2. Best Self Heating Thermos: Ember Temperature Control Mug

    Pros:
    • Precisely heat up to or maintain the desired temperature of your beverage
    • Super easy to operate — just twist the dial to the temperature you want!
    • Includes the unique and innovative charging coaster
    • Is also a great thermos device to enjoy hot soup from
    Cons:
    • Pretty expensive - there’s some fairly advanced technology here so the price tag isn’t low
    • Hand wash only
    • Due to the recent release of this product some components on units are being reported defective — Ember has an excellent customer service reputation and takes care of any issues promptly

    Here’s an interesting and innovative thermos by an up and coming company called Ember. This temperature controlled mug allows you to choose the precise desired temperature of your beverage with a simple twist of a dial! There’s no buttons or complicated gizmos involved — it’s as simple as turning the dial to the temperature you want (between 120 and 145 degrees F).

    If you want to get a bit more fancy, there’s an app you can download on your phone that connects to your Ember mug and allows you to remotely change your temperature, create presets, and choose notification preferences — pretty neat! This is truly the future of taking your coffee to go.

    I find this is a better alternative to other heated mugs because you can fine tune the temperature to keep your beverage hot without ruining the flavor with too much heat. Ember includes the “charging coaster” with this purchase — it’s a pretty unique and seriously cool way to juice up the unit.

    This product has not been around for too long and there’s a fair amount of customer complaints concerning function of this mug, but a lot of users LOVE this product. As far as outdoor use goes, you’ll definitely want to be a bit more careful with this one.

  3. Best Single Serving Travel Thermos: Thermos Stainless King 16-Ounce Travel Tumbler

    Pros:
    • Ideal travel mug - this unit fits most cup holders and even has a built in tea hook
    • The stainless steel construction of this unit makes it seriously tough
    • Sweat proof with cold beverages and cool to the touch with even piping hot beverages
    • Nine different color options!
    Cons:
    • The lid for this unit has to be disassembled into multiple pieces in order to be thoroughly cleaned
    • Complaints about the lid leaking
    • Colored options are prone to paint chipping over time

    Here’s a straight forward travel mug for taking your tea or coffee to go. This is a tough little thermos that is up for whatever. You can bring this totally spill proof mug wherever your adventures take you — it’s a versatile thermos that you’ll find all sorts of uses for. The stainless steel interior and exterior is what makes this “tumbler” so tough — good luck damaging this one.

    This unit fits most cup holders and there’s even a built in tea hook for securing a tea bag. The vacuum insulation technology will keep liquids hot for seven hours or cold for 18. In terms of maintenance, Thermos recommends not to clean this unit with an abrasive scrubber and not to leave beverages inside it for greater than 24 hours.

    This unit is top-rack dishwasher safe, but Thermos recommends hand washing as to not fade any of the surfaces. There’s seven color options available, so you can choose whatever suits you best. If you like this model but drink more coffee than 16 ounces then check out this 40 ounce thermos from the same line.

    If you like the 16 ounce size but prefer to have a handle on your travel mug, then check out this handled unit also from the same line. The Stainless King series definitely provides an excellent choice in thermoses that are both tough as nails and very affordable.

  4. Best Overall Thermos for Solo Use: Thermos Vacuum Insulated 32 Ounce Compact Stainless Steel Beverage Bottle

    Pros:
    • Long lasting (24 hours) heat or cold retention
    • Durable stainless steel construction
    • Lid built into the handle
    • Stays cool to the touch with hot liquids and won’t sweat with cold liquids
    Cons:
    • No handle or strap for easy carrying
    • No color options
    • Best for solo use, yet packs fairly cumbersome

    This is the thermos my family has owned for years and that I grew up using. It’s a straight forward but reliable and high performing unit. This is another 18/8 stainless steel vacuum insulated model by Thermos. It keeps beverages both hot and cold for a whopping 24 hours.

    I always pour some hot water into my thermos and dump it out before filling it up because that warms the interior side walls and eliminates the initial cooling effect of the metal on your beverage.

    I find the 32 ounce size to be prefect for use fishing and hunting — there’s a second cup of hot coffee there when I’m ready for it. The lid doubles as a stainless steel cup so you don’t even have to bring your own mug. This model also will not burn your hands when hot or sweat when it’s filled with a cold beverage — its designed quite effectively. My only complaint is that there’s no handle or strap for this unit.

  5. Best Affordable Intermediate Sized Thermos: Stanley Classic 1.1 QT Vacuum Bottle

    Pros:
    • Super affordable intermediate sized option at less than $20
    • Collapsible handle makes carrying this thermos around a breeze
    • 18/8 stainless steel construction insulates wonderfully and the Hammertone powder coating can really take a beating
    • Lid doubles as an eight ounce cup
    • Lifetime warranty!
    Cons:
    • Several customer reviews insist this thermos will only keep beverages hot for around 6 hours - make sure to pour some hot water in this thermos before filling it up with your beverage for the most effective heat retention
    • Packs fairly cumbersome
    • Threads on the screw cap have a tendency to wear out after heavy use

    Stanley has come up with a super effective and affordable thermos here. The Vacuum Bottle is another rugged stainless steel option for keeping your beverages hot or cold. The 18/8 stainless steel construction is rated to maintain the temperature of liquids for up to 24 hours. This is a totally spill proof unit so it will pack in your backpack wonderfully and be there once you’re ready to enjoy your beverage.

    The lid doubles as an eight ounce cup which I think is a great size. There’s a nice wide mouth on this unit for easy pouring and cleaning. I really like the collapsible handle on this model — it makes carrying this thermos around a bit more practical. Stanley has included a lifetime warranty on this product so you can further buy with confidence!

  6. Toughest Intermediate Sized Thermos: Thermos Work Series 40 oz Vacuum Insulated Beverage Bottle

    Pros:
    • Truly keeps beverages hot for 24+ hours
    • Rubber components add a lot of durability to this unit
    • Includes a cup built into the lid
    • Collapsible handle
    Cons:
    • No replacement for the cup if it becomes lost or dented (the top is the only vulnerable part of this thermos)
    • A bit cumbersome for packing into a backpack - the price you pay for indestructability
    • No color options

    Here’s a seriously tough option from Thermos. This unit is very comparable to the thermos previously listed by Stanley, but made with a bit higher quality. It includes a stainless steel cup built into the lid and also includes a collapsible handle.

    There’s some rubber built into the body of the thermos as well as on the handle and underside. The addition of the rubber components adds some impact resilience to this thermos making it essentially indestructible. Customer reviews insist this thermos really does keep beverages hot for 24 hours — several users even claim upwards of 30 hours.

    The design is definitely a bit bulky and perhaps not ideal for stuffing in a backpack, but this is no doubt a thermos you’ll own and love for years and years.

  7. Best Thermos for Soup: Thermos Stainless King 16 Ounce Food Jar with Folding Spoon

    Pros:
    • Great for soups and food items
    • Includes a folding spoon
    • Six different color options
    Cons:
    • Hand wash only
    • Smaller size doesn't provide much volume
    • Can be a bit awkward to drink from

    Here’s an awesome little thermos that’s suitable for keeping food items hot as well as beverages. The Stainless King Food Jar is perfect for enjoying a hot bowl of soup out in the field. The wide mouth and stout shape of this thermos make it ideal for use with foods like oatmeal and soup — and there’s even a compact foldable spoon included!

    This thermos is designed to keep food/beverages hot for up to seven hours and cold for up to nine — not too shabby for a 16 ounce container! There’s also a 24 ounce option for this same model if you think you might need a bit more capacity or plan on sharing your bowl of soup with a friend.

  8. Best Thermos for Serving Groups: Aquatix 68 oz Double Wall Insulated Stainless Steel Sports Thermos

    Pros:
    • Great self serve unit for larger groups
    • Ideal for use both in the cold and at the beach or tailgate
    • Double walled vacuum insulated
    • Tough stainless steel construction
    Cons:
    • Won’t keep beverages hot longer than 12 hours - make sure you’re pouring hot water into this unit before using it when trying to maximize heat retention
    • Cumbersome unit
    • No color options

    Looking for a large unit you can set up and have people serve themselves with? This 68 ounce sports thermos by Aquatix is ideal for providing larger groups with hot beverages all day. Brew a giant pot of coffee or heat up a cauldron of apple cider and fill this unit to the brim for all day access to warmth.

    This would make an awesome addition to any campsite and could be great for bringing out on the boat too. I love the idea of bringing this unit down to the waters edge when fishing with your pals — there’s enough volume for the whole gang to take a break and heat up with a cup of something rejuvenating.

    It keeps liquids cold for 24 hours and hot for 5 to 12, so don’t rule this one out for a day at the beach serving lemonade! This is truly a four season item you’ll want to use for all sorts of outings. It’s double walled vacuum insulated and wont sweat or be hot to the touch.

    It’s both easy to carry with the included handle and also easy to clean due to the wide opening at the top. This is an awesome buy for $40 that you’ll find all sorts of purposes for!

  9. Best Budget Large Thermos: The Lobo 64 oz Stainless Steel Double-Walled Vacuum Insulated Growler

    Pros:
    • Very affordable
    • Great for use with cold beverages too
    • Free lifetime warranty
    • Lid can be clipped and attached to a pack
    Cons:
    • A bit awkward to carry without a handle
    • Doesn’t retain heat of beverage terribly long compared to some other thermoses
    • No color options

    Here’s a big boy thermos for those camping trips with the gang or for big family outings. This is another great unit for use with both hot and cold liquids. The stainless steel construction with double walled vacuum insulation keeps beverages hot for four hours or more — not terribly impressive but still more than long enough for plenty of scenarios. This is an excellent option for keeping drinks iced all day — so consider this one for year round use.

    It won’t sweat or get too hot to touch, so the lack of handle won’t compromise your ability to hold it. The cap is totally secure and leak proof so you can knock this one around all you want. This thermos is built so tough that the company offers a free lifetime warranty — you get the choice of refund or exchange whenever you want!

    Although this model is certainly bulky and awkward to carry, the handle allows for it to be clipped to a bag or to your person — quite helpful! For the low cost of $23, this monster thermos is a kick ass value!

  10. Best Overall Camp Mug/Cup: YETI 20oz Rambler Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Tumbler with Lid

    Pros:
    • BPA free
    • 18/8 stainless steel is tough as nails - this one can take a beating
    • Dishwasher safe
    • Provides quite a lot of volume at 20 ounces but still has great dimensions
    • Various color options
    Cons:
    • The lid cannot be clipped to a carabiner
    • Relatively expensive
    • Won't fit into some narrower cup holders

    Here’s perhaps the tip quality personal or sharing sized option for both hot and cold beverages. Yeti is likely the best of the best when it comes to insulating both hot and cold beverages. Their products are renowned among outdoorsmen of every kind for their quite honestly incredible capability to maintain temperature all day long.

    Yeti describes their products as “over-engineered”, and I think it’s a fair statement. The 20 ounce Rambler is no exception to their standard, it’s a superior quality vacuum insulated tumbler that will probably be the last thermos/camping mug you’ll ever own. It’s built super durable from 18/8 stainless steel and has a solid no-spill lid that’s both low profile and lightweight.

    The 20 ounce Rambler has a lot of volume at 20 ounces, but it’s crafted with perfect height and diameter dimensions to still pack well. This bad boy will keep your coffee scalding hot for most of the day as long as you keep the lid tight when not drinking, and also maintains ice in your beverage for hours on end. Campsite cocktails, hot coffee or cocoa, ice water — the 20 ounce Rambler does it all.

  11. Best Smaller Sized Vacuum Insulated Camp Mug/Cup: YETI Rambler 10oz Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Lowball with Lid

    Pros:
    • BPA free
    • 18/8 stainless steel is rock solid, you can go hard on this one
    • Dishwasher safe
    • Several different colored “DuraCoat” options that enhance grip and also look sharp
    Cons:
    • The lid is unable to clip to a carabiner
    • Relatively expensive
    • Can be awkward to hike with depending on your pack style

    Here’s another awesome unit from Yeti that’s absolutely worth owning for use around the campsite, out on the boat or for your daily commute. The 10 ounce Rambler is essentially the same thermos as the Rambler listed at number 11 of this list, but is half as tall. It might be what you’re looking for if you like the design of the 20 ounce Rambler but want something that will take up just a bit less space.

    The 10 ounce Rambler is 4 1/8 inches high and 3 1/2 inches in diameter, so it’s a fairly compact thermos despite the fact that it employs double walled insulation. It might be a touch heavy at 1.2 pounds for use backpacking or hiking, but considering its thermal qualities it could be still be worth bringing along — particularly if where you’re trekking is really chilly and you’re someone who really enjoys a hot beverage.

    There’s also the option to purchase this unit with Yeti’s “DuraCoat” exterior. It’s a coating that provides an enhanced grip as opposed to the 18/8 stainless steel exterior, and it has a great look too! The look and feel of a stainless steel exterior is preferred by a lot of campers, but Yeti’s DuraCoat coating won’t crack or peel on you even if you’re hard on your gear.

    There’s even a few sharp looking color options you can choose from to match your style. Dishwasher safe, BPA free and super durable, the 10 ounce Yeti is an awesome option for all sorts of at home and outside endeavors.

  12. Best Camp Cup/Mug for Cocktails: Hydro Flask 10 oz Stainless Steel Whiskey on the Rocks Glass

    Pros:
    • 10 different color choices to choose from
    • Beveled bottom and 10 ounce volume is perfect for cocktails
    • Impressive thermal stats - keeps beverages hot up to six hours and cold up to 24 hours
    • Built from rock solid, BPA free 18/8 stainless steel
    Cons:
    • A bit on the expensive side, but this is a high quality product worth every penny
    • Not a lot of volume for hydration purposes
    • Stout shape is not particularly packable

    Here’s an awesome thermal unit for all you campers who enjoy a fire-side cocktail at the end of the day. The Whiskey on the Rocks 10 ounce camp cup by Hydro Flask is the ideal camp mug for mixing alcoholic drinks and also a great unit for hot beverages. It’s a great size for a cocktail and has beveled bottom to create the proper hold in your hand.

    It’s crafted from BPA free 18/8 stainless steel and even has a powder coating on the exterior that provides an enhanced grip and feel. Hydro Flask has designed this unit with “TempShield insulation” so there’s no condensation on the exterior no matter the conditions. Double walled vacuum insulation will keep your hot beverages hot for up to six hours and your cold drinks cold for up to 24 hours — pretty great thermal stats!

    The spill resistant lid designed for this unit has also been designed quite masterfully — it nests into the rim nice and snug and is less difficult to clean than a screw on lid. The lid is also built with a unique yet highly effective “honeycomb” insulation that slows the melting of ice and also works as a sort of filter when your drink is running low and the ice wants to slide into your teeth.

    Hydro Flask offers this unit in 10 different colors so you can choose the unit that’s just right for you. The perfect design for the night cap lover that will double nicely as a coffee mug come morning, Hydro Flask has come up with a great product with this one.

  13. Best Large Capacity Thermos for Picnics: Cresimo 68 Oz Stainless Steel Thermal Carafe

    Pros:
    • Great Size and design for use picnicing
    • Keeps beverages hot for 12 hours or cold for 24 hours!
    • 18/8 stainless steel is rock solid, you can go hard on this one
    • Push button on the top opens the spout so you can pour with one hand with ease
    • Wide mouth makes this unit easy to fill and to clean
    • Very reasonably priced
    Cons:
    • Some complaints about the vacuum insulation failing after a few months of use — the spout top is likely the culprit so be careful with the lid if you want this unit to last
    • Quite cumbbersome to travel/hike with
    • No color options

    Here’s a great high volume, vacuum insulated unit for picnics and backyard cookouts. This 68 ounce 18/8 stainless steel thermal carafe by Cresimo is ideal for serving groups hot or cold beverages. It’s travel ready, has enough volume to serve a larger group and in my opinion has quite a classy look.

    It’s built tough, so although it’s designed for more casual use don’t rule it out for use around the campsite. This model is designed to keep beverages hot for 12 hours and cold for 24 — pretty dam good for a unit in the $20 range! The pour spout has a push button that can be easily operated with one hand so serving yourself and your guests with this carafe is a breeze.

    There are some customer complaints about the thermal quality of this unit dissipating after a few months of use — my speculation is that the vacuum insulation can be compromised on this unit if the push button spout is damaged so be careful with the lid. The body of this unit is tough as nails, but the Achilles heel is the spout — it’s convenient design but be careful not to damage it or else your beverages will only stay hot for a few hours!

    The mouth of this carafe is nice and wide so both adding ice and cleaning the interior is an easy task. Due to the insulation technology the exterior won’t become scalding hot when filled with hot liquids so you can safely and comfortably bring this thermos just about anywhere. Romantic boat rides, wilderness picnics, family camp outs and backyard barbaques all make the perfect setting for this high capacity, easy pour thermos.

  14. Best Overall High Volume Thermos: Yeti Rambler Stainless Steel One Gallon Jug with MagCap

    Pros:
    • One gallon capacity allows you to bring along a whole lot of beverage!
    • Crafted with Yeti’s best of the best vacuum insulated technology
    • Employ’s Yeti’s “MagCap” design which allows you to effectively drink directly from this unit
    • Built from rock solid, BPA free 18/8 stainless steel
    Cons:
    • A bit on the expensive side, but this is a high quality product that’s built to last
    • Quite cumbersome
    • No color options

    Here’s one last unit from Yeti you ought to know about. The One Gallon Rambler is essentially the same unit as the previous Ramblers by Yeti listed here. It’s an 18/8 stainless steel, double wall vacuum insulated thermos — except this one is BIG.

    It’s a non-sweat, tough as nails thermos, the insulating technology is just scaled up with this one. If you’re a fan of products by Yeti, than you already know what the best of the best in insulation entails — this is exactly that for those that have a need for a high volume unit. The lid on the one gallon Rambler is an inch thick, so it’s “over-engineered” for maximum temperature retention like the rest of the design.

    The lid also features Yeti’s “MagCap” so you can effectively pour and chug directly from this unit. It’s a simple but effective design you’ll come to really appreciate. The carry handle is also built mindfully and durably for years of faithful use. If you plan on incorporating this righteous thermos into your truck bed, or onto your boat or ATV you might want to consider purchasing Yeti’s Jug Mount.

    If you like this unit but it’s just a bit too big for your needs, then consider the half gallon jug also from Yeti. At one gallon, this thermos can keep a small group hydrated or keep coffee hot for a whole campsite — definitely an excellent option in beverage insulation from Yeti.

See Also: 

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1 Comment

1 Comment

Kirby Prince

Stanly used to be great but the Chines ones keep coffee hot about 2 hours with preheat. they used to keep hot two days. Try to find the old ones that have the glass insert, they work the best! I should have thrown my Stanly away years ago and doubt they honor a older warranty , but sir you used it! Ha Ha. NOT.