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If you need a fridge but don’t have a lot of room, a mini refrigerator is the perfect accessory for a small space. Whether you’re moving into a tiny dorm or want a way to store snacks and beverages in your new man cave, there’s a fridge to meet any of your needs.
But not all of them are alike, and if you’re looking to add one to your space, you’re going to want to do some research first.
Fortunately, we’ve done the research for you, highlighting the best affordable mini fridges.
Below, we review the 3 best mini fridges you can buy right now from Amazon.com, including the best mini fridges with a freezer.
The Best Mini Fridges Reviewed for 2021
Listed below are some of the best mini refrigerators you can buy on Amazon.com, starting with #3.
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Here is a cheap mini fridge that is perfect for dorm rooms or offices, both away and a home. If you are looking for the perfect solution to your need for keeping foods cold or warm, this is it. Whenever you need to have an ice-cold drink or a warm lunch, this thermocooler can offer you both.
It is a portable unit with a self-locking recessed handle. One of its best benefits is that it can hold either four 500 milliliter water bottles or six 12 ounce cans. It fits the bill for several people to enjoy a meal together while studying, working or while entertaining outside.
The features of this portable cooler go beyond any other desktop mini fridge. You can use this to heat up milk in the nursery or keep insulin cold for your loved one. It has a neat retro-design with the ability to heat or cool your items to the ideal temperature.
You can use it indoors or outdoors. It plugs into a 12-volt cigarette lighter, so it is great for camping, long road trips or just tailgating parties. You can also plug it into any ordinary indoor electrical outlet.
It has a removable shelf, so it can accommodate plenty of food for you and your friends, colleagues or your family. It measures approximately 11 inches by 7 and ¼ by 10 inches.
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This energy efficient mini fridge can operate using AC/DC and can be run off its on-the-go USB power. It has the ability to run on Eco-mode, so it saves power. Use it indoors, in the car, or outdoors. You can go from chilling drinks to warming cocoa in a snap.
This fridge operates entirely without the use of Freon so it will make you, your family and the environment happy. It is compact enough to take with you to work so you can enjoy both a hot breakfast on the way and a hot meal when it is time for lunch.
This unit will hold up to six 12 ounce cans, so it is great for those picnics and barbecues with the family. You can also use this in the nursery or your office. It makes the ideal tiny fridge to keep creamer cool for the office coffee. It is also perfect for dorm rooms.
It has both AC/DC operation and can be connected to a power source using the included USB adapters. This can also be plugged into your car or SUV’s USB ports or the 12V cigarette lighter. When taking it around use the USB to power the unit with a 2A power bank.
It is lightweight and made of polypropylene plastic. It has a magnetic self-locking door so nothing will tumble out even when you are traveling long distances in your vehicle. It looks stylish and sleek, so it will fit in nicely anywhere. Use the handle to take it easily from indoors to outdoors. It is great for parties.
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What separates this one from the other cooling and warming man cave mini fridges is that it operates on a high-quality, solid-state. The thermoelectric cooling process will keep cold drinks icy cold and delicious. Its Peltier element ensures that it operates efficiently and reliably.
It also operates without any environmentally harmful liquid refrigerants or Freon. With its quiet operation, it will be ideal for the nursery or the dorm room. Choose your favorite color to complement your home or office décor. It comes in white, red or blue.
This little fridge measures approximately a foot and a half high by about a foot wide. It can hold up to six 12 ounce cans and has a capacity to hold 4-liters of food or drink. It comes with a self-locking handle and a removable shelf.
It functions without any condensation, so it is neat and operates without any fuss. Plug it into any ordinary outlet or a 12-volt cigarette lighter. It comes with cords for both.
The Peltier element and fan on the reverse of the unit keeps it from ever overheating. You can heat your food or drinks in the car, outside or indoors without any worries. It was built for safe and dependable operation. It automatically detects outside room temperature to adjust its temperature.
This functional cooler and warmer is great for RVs, boats, and camping. It also works well in the nursery or as an insulin chiller. Take it with you wherever you go or keep it in the home where it is most needed. It will chill your beer, wine or keep your coffee hot. Bring it to your next family outing or vacation.
Do Mini Fridges Use a Lot of Electricity?
Compared to larger refrigerators, many mini fridges do use less electricity, but this is dependent on a few factors, such as:
- Size: There is a direct relation between the size of your fridge and how much energy it uses. The larger the fridge, the more energy is needed to keep it cool.
- Features: Fridges with extra features, such as an auto-defrost function, typically use more electricity than fridges with no such features.
- Manufacturer: Some manufacturers’ products are more energy efficient than others.
- Age: The older the fridge, the less energy efficient it is, both because newer fridges are made to be more energy efficient, and because fridges become less efficient over time.
Looking at different mini fridges on Best Buy’s website, the average fridge costs about $20 to $40 a year to operate.
Can You Plug a Mini Fridge into a Regular Outlet?
Most mini fridges are outfitted with a standard 3-prong electrical cord, and will fit into a standard 3-prong outlet.
Are Mini Refrigerators Safe?
Using a mini refrigerator is generally safe, provided you follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
For example, you’ll want to make sure you:
- Plug directly into an outlet: Never plug your refrigerator into an extension cord! Extension cords can short or start on fire if they’re not strong enough to handle the electricity going through it.
- Don’t use an adapter: If you don’t have a standard 3-prong outlet, you may be tempted to use an adapter so you can plug your 3-prong plug into a 2-prong plug, but this isn’t recommended. When you use this adapter, you’re bypassing the safety feature of the third prong, the grounding prong.
How Much Does a Mini Fridge Cost?
Mini fridges vary greatly in cost, but they typically average between forty to a few hundred dollars. It mostly depends on the fridge’s size, which is measured in cubic feet.
- 6 Can Mini Fridge Cooler: This is one of the smallest coolers you can buy at just 0.1 cubic feet. It can hold six 12-ounce cans, and usually costs about $40 to $50.
- 1.6 cubic feet: This medium sized fridge is tall enough to hold a 2-liter, and can fit an assortment of beverages and snacks. These usually cost around $100 to $125.
- 2.6 cubic feet: This medium-sized fridge has enough room to hold a 12-pack and costs between $125 and $175.
- 3.1 cubic feet: This large fridge has enough space to hold a six pack of soda, multiple fruits and vegetables, a bottle of juice and more. These usually cost $150 to $200.
- 4.3 cubic feet: This large sized fridge can hold a large amount of food. They usually have enough space to include a freezer. They usually cost $175 to $250.
It’s possible to pay much more than this, but if you’re just trying to store extra drinks or have a place to store snacks, you probably won’t need to spend more than a few hundred dollars. For a decent mini fridge that can hold a few cubic feet of food, you’re going to pay between $150 and $200.
What is the Best Mini Refrigerator to Buy?
Generally, the best mini fridge to buy will be the largest one that your space can accommodate while fulfilling all of your needs.
What Size Fridge is Good For a Dorm?
Choosing the best mini fridge for your dorm will vary depending on how much space you need and what you’ll use it for. If you’re going to be cooking in your dorm, you’ll want to pick a fridge that has a few cubic feet of space so you can store ingredients, condiments and leftovers.
You may also want to choose a mini fridge with a freezer so you can store food for later. If you won’t be cooking and just want space to store drinks and snacks, then you can probably get by with a cheap mini fridge. You can find these for as low as $40.
Buying a mini fridge isn’t going to be the biggest purchase of your life, but you want to be sure you’re getting something that’s of good quality and meets your needs. You don’t want one so big that it is overkill for your room, but not s small that you can’t use it for what you need. You’ll want to take size, cost and features into consideration to determine this.
Richmond Howard started Meal Prepify in 2019 and has helped over a million people learn how to meal prep, get better at meal planning, and create a kitchen they love to use. He’s an avid home chef and loves to bbq, grill out, and make awesome food for family and friends. He’s been featured on MSN, Renaissance Periodization, and Good Financial Cents.