You can’t just use any refrigerator outdoors – even built in ones. It has to be certified to be weather proof.
Normal fridges don’t have the outer shell that’s needed to make them safe for outdoors use. Unfortunately, it can be a little hard to find outdoor refrigerators, so I’ve gone and done the work for you.
I’ll show you the best option for a good outdoor refrigerator first, and then I’ll show you a slim alternative, for those who have kind of a limited space in their outdoor kitchen to fit their fridge in.
The Best Outdoor Refrigerators Reviewed
Best Outdoor Refrigerator: Avallon AFR241SSODLH
The first thing that strikes you about this one is the beautiful chrome finish on it and the minimalist design.
It’s actually an outdoor refrigerator that’s designed to be capable of being built-in too. Though I like the design enough to have it uncovered anyway.
This stainless steel fridge is lockable, and with a proper key too, not just one of those useless fake ones.
It also has a touch control panel on the inside, with settings including an auto defrost function and an option to switch the internal light color between white and blue. There’s two lights on the right side and two on the left, so everything is illuminated all the way around in the color of your choice, and the three removable shelves on the inside are made of sanded glass.
As you can see in the photo on the right, the door’s lower shelf area is generously sized – something I really like, because it always disappointing when a fridge can’t fit large bottles in it, like wine bottles or a staple of mine: San Pellegrino sparkling water, which happens to be in the photo.
Setup is easy with this one, which is always a relief. You can wheel it to where you want it, and you can flip the tabs to apply the brakes on the two brake wheels when you’ve got it where you want it.
Along with a compressor, this fridge uses two powerful fans to keep the air circulating and get rid of any unevenness in temperature. That’s why it’s food safe, unlike the “beverage” fridges out there, which are nowhere near as evenly cooled.
What We Like:
- Roomy for its Size – Because of how volume works, you can fit more stuff in a fridge that has a square shape than you could in a taller, slimmer one. Providing you have the right space to fit this unit in, i.e. a wide enough space, then you’ve got yourself a very space efficient fridge for your outdoor kitchen.
- Can Be Built-In or Freestanding – This fridge is, of course, completely weatherproof, and it looks really neat while free standing, but it’s great to have the option available to you, because you can just build it in if you ever do a big upgrade to your outdoor kitchen’s design.
- Fair Price for a Proper Outdoor Fridge – Outdoor fridges that aren’t just beverage-only ones with no circulation can get pricey, but this one is pretty darn reasonable for what you get.
What We Don’t Like:
- No Right Hinge (Left Handle) Variant Currently Available – Left hinged (right handle) fridges feel easier to use for right handed people, so this isn’t a problem for most people, but it is true that some outdoor kitchen spaces might be better suited to having their fridge open the other way. If that’s an issue for you, then at least the fridge coming up in the next review, which is the slim version of this one, has the option of both.
Check the latest price on Amazon.
Best Slim Outdoor Refrigerator: Avallon AFR151SSODLH
The slimmer little brother of the fridge featured above.
This has all the features of the one above, except it’s…
It’s 3.3 cubic feet of space rather than the top pick’s 5.5 cubic feet.
That’s all there is to it really. The fridge is just as good, and uses the same components, but it’s just slimmer.
Again, I’d recommend the wider version because it’s more space efficient for the price, but some of you will just want a slim fridge because you don’t actually need that much space. As for how much you can fit in it, just check the photo on the right.
What We Like:
- Available in Left Hinge and Right Hinge Versions – While I prefer left hinge fridges, like in the photos above, there’s the option for a right hinge version too.
With a left hinge (handle on the right) fridge, you can open the door with your left hand, take out a drink with your right hand, and then open it with your left hand while shutting the door with your foot. That way, you don’t have to swap hands with your drink once you’ve taken it out the fridge.
It sounds trivial when described like that, but it just feels better to use the fridge when the handle’s on the right. I’d say it’s worth getting one like this if you can fit it in properly, but it has to be said that it might be more convenient to just choose the version where the fridge will open out toward the center of your kitchen, because it just makes the most sense that way. You can click here to view the right hinge (left handle) version on Amazon.
What We Don’t Like:
- Not as Cost Efficient for the Space – It’s 3.3 cubic feet of space, rather than the top pick’s 5.5 cubic feet. With a slimmer fridge, you can fit less in, but if you’re low on space, at least you can fit your fridge in at all. Some people might not even really need that much fridge space, so it’s a shame that it’s not that much cheaper for this slimmer version. However, you’re paying for the same quality as is in the top pick, so even though the fridge is slimmer, it’s still just as good.