Best Stainless Steel Refrigerators

Family fun is as necessary to modern living as a kitchen refrigerator - Walt Disney

Ian McKaye, the figurehead, and long-standing bastion, of alternative culture in Washington DC, once said that function is the key. While he meant it as a broad, all-encompassing statement about life as a whole, his eternal truism lies at the center of the way we view household, and in particular kitchen. appliances.

If something isn’t broken, we don’t fix it and, to coin a popular modern idiom, as long as it does what it says it will on the tin, we tend to take whatever it is for granted and just accept it, as it is. 

Refrigerators are a case in point. Essentially still using the same albeit more efficient, technology that they were when they first appeared a century ago, the home refrigerator was designed to freeze and cool produce and food in order to increase its longevity and make life easier for the contemporary family.

It soon became an indispensable part of the home and was, and still is, as Walt Dinsey so succinctly put it, as necessary to modern living as family fun. And as Walt built an empire based on family fun, his endorsement of the refrigerator forever sealed its place in the American home.

That said, just because they do what they’ve always done, that doesn’t mean that refrigerators aren’t better at doing it today than they were yesterday. They are, and thanks to them also being given a twenty-first-century makeover, refrigerators not only do their job better than they ever did, but they also look good doing it.

And when it comes to looking good, stainless steel takes the first place prize every single time, which is probably why you’re here. Because you’re looking for a special centerpiece for your kitchen, something that will make your refrigerator stand out and assume that position and like us, you know that there’s only one way that you’re going to find the fridge that elevates your kitchen to another level.

The only way to do it is with a stainless steel refrigerator.

But finding a stainless steel refrigerator that combines looks, efficiency and functionality is easier said than done. Every appliance manufacturer in the world seems to have pledged their allegiance to the church of stainless steel, which has made finding a refrigerator that’s built from, and finished with, steel exponentially harder than it used to be.

That’s where we come in. We’ve ventured out into the world of kitchen appliances and searched high and low and near and far to come up with a list of five of the best stainless steel refrigerators that will not only transform the look of any kitchen but will also completely change the way you think about, and use your refrigerator.

Welcome to the world of tomorrow and the future of stainless steel refrigerators…

Top 5 Best Stainless Steel Refrigerators

OUR TOP PICK

Samsung RF263BEAESR 25.6 Cu. Ft. Stainless Steel French Door Refrigerator - Energy Star

Summary

Reliability and the sort of chic futurism that wouldn’t look out of place in Buck Rogers’s kitchen aren’t mutually exclusive. Samsung has spent eight decades forging its reputation as a company that you can rely on and trust, and in that time has become an industry leader and one of the top ten globally recognized kitsch appliance brands.

Samsung knows that there’s far to refrigerators than just keeping food cold. That’s why they pushed onward and upward and created this twenty-five and half cubic foot refrigerator that’s a testament to hyper-modern design and efficiency.

Samsung’s incredible LED lighting system illuminates every nook and corner of the refrigerator so you won’t have to fumble around in the dark to find that elusive pizza or box of oven pockets that has somehow wormed it’s way to the bottom of the freezer.

While you’re searching for your treats in comfort thanks to the Samsung’s LED lighting, the Twin Cooling Plus system that it uses to circulate air from the freezer to the fridge ensures that a constant temperature is maintained throughout, which means that any food kept in the Samsung will stay fresher for much longer. 

Featuring an external ice and water dispenser, that can produce up to ten pounds of ice a day, that has been engineered to leave the maximum amount of space in the fridge and a full-size pantry drawer that has its own temperature control, Samsung has not only well and truly stepped up the plate of stainless steel refrigerators, they’ve also scored a knocked it out of the park home run with their major league French Door refrigerator.

Pros

  • The french doors make it easy to find whatever you need to in the refrigerator. Open them up and you’ll have full and instant access to every square centimeter of the fridge.
  • You won’t have to worry about those family arguments about who used up all of the ice every again, as the Samsung’s capacity for producing it will far outstrip your family’s demand for it. With the Samsung, those ice-cold arguments will be well and truly frozen in the past and you can finally let them go.  
  • The CoolSelect Pantry is a Godsend for party lovers as it provides all of the space you’ll need to store any, and all, prepared deli-trays, snacks, and party favors for your big events(s).
  • Samsung has gone above and beyond the design call of duty, as the french doors add a sense of occasion and pizzaz, and elevate what could have been just another refrigerator to headlining status on, and in, any kitchen’s main stage.

Cons

  • There’s a palpable feeling, at least as far as the reviews of the Samsung are concerned, that is something seems too good to be true, all too often, that’s because it actually is too good to be true. Burdened by a worrying number of owners complaining about aftermarket customer service and care, and what would appear to be an unreliable ice maker and freezer, it seems that the Samsung is plagued by a number of troublesome Achilles heels.

EDITORS CHOICE

Frigidaire FFSC2323TS 36 Inch Stainless Steel Freestanding Side by Side Refrigerator

Summary

If you’re going to buy any sort of refrigerator, the best place to look is with a company that specializes in making them. While Frigidaire doesn’t just make refrigerators, they’re the locus of what they do as they’re a brand that focuses all of its attention on the home kitchen. Frigidaire lives and breaches kitchens, they’re what they do. They’re all that they do, and judging by the mile-long list of testimonials that accompany their products, they’re incredibly good at what they do.

This freestanding stainless steel refrigerator doesn’t only look swish, it comes with a veritable “Does it really do that? That’s fantastic” list of features as standard. Designed to make life as easy for you as possible, the shelving in the Frigidaire can be arranged in a hundred different combinations, so you can discover, and then use, the one that suits, and works best, for you. The PureSource 3 external ice and water dispenser has it’s own filtration system so that the water you’ll be served from your fridge will be purer than the water that comes out of your tap. Water goes into it clean and it’ll come out pure.

With twenty-two and half cubic feet of storage and a full-width temperature-controlled deli-drawer, the Frigidaire keeps everything simple. Operated by easy to use touch buttons, the LED display makes it almost impossible to get anything wrong and even if you do, you just go back to the beginning and start all over again. Complexity isn’t a necessity that Frigidaire believes it’s customers should be burdened by. 

We tend to embrace and value beauty, and this stainless steel refrigerator’s allure is matched only by its wonderful restraint and functionality. It completely, and totally embodies the three points of the refrigeration rulebook (design, function, and ease of use) to make every day a little bit brighter and less complicated. 

Pros

  • The fact that there are a hundred different ways that you can arrange the shelves and interior storage seems like kitchen wizardry to us. How Frigidaire managed to do that is beyond out limited technical understanding. But the fact that they understand that not all of their customers are the same and want, and need, different things from their refrigerators speaks volumes and tells you all that you’ll ever need to know, about their integrity and what, and who, they value. 
  • Then there’s the amazing filtration system that Frigidaire included in their water and ice dispenser. We’re wracked our brains to try and understand why they did it and what purpose it serves other than improving the lives of their customers and we can’t think of a single one. They did it because they could. And that sort of attention to detail is an increasingly rare thing in this profit first, people second, dog eat dog world. It’s the little things that matter.

Cons

  • While we’re on the subject of little things, it isn’t exactly the biggest stainless steel refrigerator out there in the big, bad world. It’s more suited to those living the single life than the needs of the suburban, nuclear family. But you know what they say about good things and small packages, right? They almost always wear the Frigidaire name.

BEST VALUE

LG LMXC23796S 22.5 cu. ft. Smart Wi-Fi Enabled 4-Door

Summary

Moving swiftly along, we’re going from the smallest stainless steel refrigerator on our list to this world-beating monster from LG. Drink deeply when you gaze at it because this gorgeous appliance makes mincemeat of most of its competition and it knows it. That subtle, almost arrogant bearing that it possesses? It’s entirely justified.

A miracle of the digital age, the smart freezer and fridge controls can be entirely programmed, maintained, and controlled by Wi-Fi. Hook it up to your internet and you’ll be good to go. With its ridiculously intuitive and clever use of space, the LG refrigerator can, and will, provide all the storage that any family on the go will ever need. 

As well as having a staggering, and mind-boggling drawer and shelving system, the LG refrigerator also manages to find the space to house an ice and water dispenser, which is no easy feat when you take into consideration everything else that it packs into its six-foot frame. This stainless steel refrigerator is the face of the future, and the future looks good. 

Pros

  • Using wi-fi enabled, smart technology allows you to monitor and maintain this refrigerator from anywhere in the world. One day, all refrigerators will be as good as the LG. But that day isn’t here yet, and until it is, we’ll just have to depend on LG. And from where we’re standing, that’s not such a bad place to be. 
  • The clever, inventive, and deceptively easy multi-drawer freezer unit and fridge nearly stole our hearts. LG has pushed the limits of refrigerator design to the absolute limits and in doing so, has demonstrated that what was once thought impossible is now entirely possible. 
  • We don’t know if it’s the glass door, or if it’s a combination of a hundred smaller factors all working together or something else entirely, but whatever it is, it’s working. This is one of the best looking stainless steel refrigerators we’ve ever seen and we’d be more than happy to have it take pride of place in any of our kitchens.

Cons

  • At least, we would if we could afford it. Which we can’t and if you’ve got a growing family and a thousand other financial commitments to think about, then you’re probably in the same boat as us. So we’ll all have to just float on past the LG and spend our money on a much more affordable, not quite as good looking as the LG, stainless steel refrigerator. 
  • Reviews would tend to suggest that maybe LG over-stretched and tried to do too much too soon. Rather than staying the course, and chilling and freezing for the full ten years of its guaranteed lifetime, compressor issues can lead to problems before it even reaches the halfway point.

RUNNER UP

GE Appliances GNE27JSMSS GE 26.7CF French Door Refrigerator SS, Stainless Steel

Summary

Sometimes you just want to put your money behind a brand that you know you can rely on; and General Electric is a brand that America’s been relying on for nearly one hundred and thirty years.

They’ve done it all, they’ve seen it all and they’ve lived to tell the tale and come out the other side, older, wiser, and with a wealth of knowledge at their fingertips. And they pour all of that knowledge into everything that they do. Even their stainless steel refrigerators. 

GE is invested, in their own words, in building a world that works, and while we can’t vouch for the veracity of that claim as far as everything that they do is concerned, we do know that they’ve made a stainless steel refrigerator that follows their blueprint to the letter.

With twenty-seven cubic feet of storage, five spill-proof shelves, extra-wide drawers, and a patented turbo cool setting that’ll keep whatever you need it to fresh for whenever you need it, this GE refrigerator might not be as swish and stylish as the LG and it might not connect to your WiFi, but it costs a third of the price and does everything that a good refrigerator should. 

While almost all of the similarly priced competition also features an external ice maker and water dispenser, most of them don’t have their own filtration system.

The GE does and like the rest of the refrigerator, it’s covered by a one year warranty that’ll save your bacon from every refrigerator based manufacturing error you can imagine

Pros

  • The storage capacity of this GE refrigerator is jaw-dropping. Twenty-seven cubic feet of interior room makes it one of the big daddy’s of stainless steel refrigerators and the largest capacity appliance on our list.
  • It’s a third of the cost of the LG model and can hold a lot more and while it isn’t as pretty, it’s certainly no slouch when it comes to the looks department. American steel makes everything look good.

Cons

  • According to a number of more disgruntled reviews, the water filtration unit it uses is a GE only model and the only way to replace it is by ordering it directly from GE, which considering it only lasts around six months or so, can be kind of costly as it’ll set you back around fifty dollars a time.

RUNNER UP

Thor Kitchen Thorkitchen HRF3601F Cabinet Depth French Door Refrigerator, Ice Maker, 36', Stainless Steel

Summary

Our final choice is from another kitchen specialist and while you might not be familiar with them, as they’re not exactly a household name, Thor Kitchen prides itself on making people’s professional culinary dreams come true at a fraction of the professional price. And this stainless steel refrigerator proves that when they say they want to shake the culinary world up, Thor Kitchen absolutely means it.

Like the Frigidaire, it’s far from being the largest capacity stainless steel refrigerator on our list, but what it lacks in size, it makes up for in construction quality and heart.

With a fridge capacity of around fifteen cubic feet and a freezer able to hold up to five and a half cubic feet of produce and food, the Thor Kitchen has a full-width chiller drawer, two large, humidity-controlled storage drawers, and fully removable shelving to store larger items.  

Using a dual control and cycle cooling system, this stainless steel refrigerator puts the world of the professionals within easy reach of the amateur and while it doesn’t feature a water or ice dispenser if this machine is making your heart sing, then you probably wouldn’t miss one anyway.

After all, when was the last time you saw Gordon Ramsay drinking out of his refrigerator door?

Pros

  • While it isn’t the most family-friendly of refrigerators, the Thor Kitchen is a gorgeous, alternative for anyone who might be considering, or their sites set on, a culinary career.

Cons

  • Even though it isn’t the most expensive stainless steel refrigerator on our list, your pocketbook won’t thank you if you opt for passion over practicality. If you do place your refrigerator based vote with your heart instead of your head, it’ll end up costing you just over two thousand dollars.

Best Stainless Steel Refrigerators Buying Guide

Why Stainless Steel?

In a word, longevity. There’s a reason why stainless steel refrigerators have gradually become more and more popular, and that mainly because they won’t rust. That and the fact that they look good and they’re easy to clean.

They’re designed and made to last and while they’re from being cheap, they tend to outlast and outperform the more traditional “white” refrigerators.

Why are Stainless Steel Refrigerators so popular?

While they’ve always been an illustrious choice of kitchen appliance favored by the rich and famous, the explosion in demand for stainless steel refrigerators is mainly due to two factors. The appeal of reality television, in particular the lifestyle and cookery shows which have exposed them to a much broader audience and the subsequent decrease in their price due to an increase in manufacturing numbers. 

In other words, more people know about the benefits of stainless steel refrigerators, how efficient they and how good they look, so to cater to the demands of a growing market, manufacturers increased production and in doing so, placed as much emphasis on home refrigerators as they had previously devoted to catering and professional arenas.

The laws of supply and demand made stainless steel refrigerators an affordable home option, and their popularity rose accordingly. 

Style

We know they look good and you know they look good, but did you know that stainless steel refrigerators also come in black? And in brushed steel? If you don’t like the shiny look, you don’t have to settle for it. There’s more to stainless steel than shine. 

Style, when it comes to stainless steel refrigerators, is everything. Most conform to one of three configurations, so ideally you should consider which suits you best before you choose your optimal model. 

Do you want a side by side refrigerator in which the freezer compartment is on one side and the fridge on the other? A bottom freezer model, where the fridge sits on a top of the freezer until or top freezer, where (as the name implies), the freezer is on top of the fridge?

The demands of your family life, how much you want to store in the freezer, and how much you want to keep in the fridge will dictate which model suits you best, so be aware of those factors, and consider them carefully, before choosing your stainless steel refrigerator. 

Dimensions

It sounds obvious, but before you choose a stainless steel refrigerator, make sure you have adequate room for it in your kitchen. Every kitchen salesroom and far too many internet chatrooms are full of stories that revolve around people buying refrigerators that are far too big for their kitchens and are then faced with the humiliating prospect of having to return them and explain why they can’t use their chosen refrigerator.

We follow a simple set of rules when ordering any appliance. Check the dimensions of whatever it is you’re interested in buying, then measure thrice and order once. And if the stainless steel refrigerator of your dreams doesn’t fit, don’t buy it.

Move on to the next choice on your wishlist and check that. One of the refrigerators will fit, just make sure you choose the one that does. 

French Doors and Side by Side Doors

Stainless steel refrigerators are defined by the style of doors they use.  French doors usually indicate that the freezer is either at the bottom of, or in some cases the top of the refrigerator, with the doors opening up on to a large fridge compartment.

Side by Side doors, however, usually have a freezer compartment on one side and a fridge on the other. Stylistically the choice of doors should be reliant on what you’ll expect, and demand, from your stainless steel refrigerator.

Do you want a larger freezer or more fridge space? If it’s the former, then you’ll need a side by side and if it’s the latter, a model that utilizes French doors will be a far more suitable option. 

Shelving

Some stainless steel refrigerators have removable and adjustable shelving, some don’t. If you’re going to want to rearrange the interior of your refrigerator, or having the choice to do that at some point in the future is important to you, then pay attention to the fine print and all of the listed features.

If it’s an option for your refrigerator, it’ll be mentioned and if it isn’t, and if (as we’ve already mentioned) it’s important to you, move on to your next choice 

Ice Makers

We get it, we’ve got family’s ourselves and know how important external ice makers and water dispensers are to teenagers and those of us who are looking to live a healthier lifestyle.

While most stainless steel refrigerators are fitted with both, be aware that the larger the capacity of the ice maker and water dispenser, the smaller the capacity of the fridge will be. Ice makers use up a lot of space, and the area they take up, eats into, and reduces, the available room in your fridge. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Which Stainless Steel Refrigerator is the right one for me?

This is the bit that we can’t help you with, and it’s a choice that’s going to be largely made for you by circumstance, requirement, and space. You’re going to need to carefully consider all of the issues that we’ve talked about before you make your mind up.

Do you need more freezer or fridge space? The answer to that question will dictate the style of stainless steel refrigerator you’ll need. Is an ice maker important? Are you going to get hung up on, or by, the interior design of your refrigerator and will you want, at some point, to change it by moving the shelves around?

And lastly, and most important of all, how much space do you have in your kitchen for a stainless steel refrigerator? The amount of available space is the single most important factor you need to take into consideration when choosing your refrigerator. Always make sure that it will fit in with your lifestyle and your kitchen.

That said, if it was up to us, we’d always choose the GE, as we’ve all got families and we know that it’s a stainless steel refrigerator that’s been designed with the modern family in mind.

But if our choice wasn’t determined by family, then we’d put our money down for, and walk away with, the Frigidaire because, despite the fact that it isn’t the biggest refrigerator on our list, it’s still our favorite. What can we say? The heart wants what it wants.