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Nerdy Science in the Kitchen

Best Insulated Tumbler For Cold Drinks [2023]



Looking for the best insulated tumbler? Here are my picks.
Looking for the best insulated tumbler? Here are my picks.

Looking for the best insulated tumbler for cold drinks available on the market? This is the guide for you. These tumblers are great because of their incredible temperature regulation abilities. They can keep cold drinks cool for up to 24 hours. They can keep your warm drinks hot for hours on end, too.

Who’s the winner? I’m a fan of the Yeti Rambler at Amazon.

Vacuum insulated tumblers are great for traveling, hiking, biking, long days at the office, or just hanging around the house with a perfectly cold iced tea. They keep your beverage at the temperature you want it to be throughout the day.

Buying Guide: What to look for?

But what qualities make the best insulated tumbler? You’ll want to keep in mind a few different elements when looking at the available tumblers. Then make the best pick to get the most value for your money.

Double Wall Vacuum Insulation

You’ll see this feature on most tumbler descriptions, and it’s a very important feature for maximum temperature regulation. The inside layer or wall retains the temperature of the drink inside, while the outside wall keeps your hand at room temperature. With two layers of regulation, the drink isn’t affected by the outside temperature.

As a bonus, this kind of tumbler is always comfortable to grasp. It won’t leave your hand covered in condensation or sweat from a cold drink or burn your hand for hot drinks. Some even have triple vacuum layered insulation, but you’ll probably be just fine with double.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is the absolute best material to look for in an insulated tumbler. It creates the environment for insulation, with superior heat conductivity and the ability to retain coolness like a freezer.

Aside from its temperature regulating assets, stainless steel is also stain and rust-resistant, perfect for coffee or other drinks. Look for “food-grade” stainless steel, or better yet BPA-free stainless steel, to ensure the healthiest container for your drinks. It’s also very aesthetically pleasing.

Rubber Grips

If you can find an insulated tumbler with some sort of rubber grips, that’s a great feature as well. While your hand won’t get burned or sweaty due to the double wall insulation, stainless steel can still be somewhat slippery, so finding some sort of rubber grip around the perimeter of the tumbler can prevent any potential dropping or other accidents.

The Yeti Rambler has a DuraCoat colored coating on the outside that improves grip.

Some come with rubber grips around the bottom as well to make sure they don’t slide off surfaces (Like when you put the travel mug on the roof of your car while packing it up in the morning). A tumbler with no grip can slide and cause a huge mess and a delay to the rest of your day. To avoid these messes and the potential loss of your drink, look for rubber grips on the bottom of your tumbler as well.

Lid Features

Some people believe that the only way to truly keep a drink insulated at the right temperature is by putting a lid on it. Any exposure to the outside temperature, even with double wall insulation, can compromise the internal temperature. You’ll want the strongest and most effective lid available. Glass or plastic lids usually do the trick, and let you look into the cup to see how much of your drink is left.

Make sure the lid of your insulated tumbler has some sort of safety feature as well. These include a splash-proof lid, an auto-lock feature, easy slide closure, or some other built-in secure closing feature to make sure it doesn’t accidentally open and spills the drink everywhere.


Think about your own needs and habits when looking at the size and capacity of different insulated tumblers. How much of your drink do you usually have during the day? Since these make the temperature and freshness last for hours, think about your all-day consumption habits. Do you want to share with friends? Some of the much larger tumblers are made for that.

Generally, tumblers range in size and capacity from 16 ounces to about 40. This is perfect for two cups of morning coffee, all the way up to sharing a delicious, cool smoothie recipe with friends. Based on your habits, choose what works for you.

coffee in tumbler
In my house we line up to get the caffeine!

Our Top Tumbler Picks

Let’s look at our top picks for the best insulated tumblers that are made specifically for the hot summer days when you need an ice-cold drink the most.

1. Rocky Mountain Tumbler

Rocky Mountain Tumblers are a good starting point for insulated cups, and this is one of their very best sellers. This tumbler is made of kitchen-grade stainless steel making it very easy to clean and very sturdy. It will hold up if you drop it. Something I never, ever do. Ever. (Ok. Maybe once.)

The cup is a decent size and will hold up to 30 ounces (without ice) of your favorite beverage. It has a clear see-through lid to let you know how much liquid you have left. There are additional lids you can get for this cup that will help to retain the temperature of your drink even better.

Its double-walled vacuum insulation will keep your drink cold for up to 24 hours. It can also keep your hot drinks hot for up to 12 hours.

Should you get this one?

This tumbler has some very good things going for it. For one, it generally speaks high quality with its kitchen-grade stainless steel design. It also does a great job of keeping drinks cold for 24 hours. However, you won’t achieve that with the lid that comes with it. You need to buy upgraded lids that do not have holes in them to get the full benefits of the tumbler.

A huge plus of this Rocky Mountain tumbler is it can hold a lot of liquid at 30 ounces. Despite its size, it is still portable and will fit most car cup holders.

2. Simple Modern Tumbler

The Simple Modern Tumbler is double walled and vacuum sealed to give maximum insulation. It has great ice retention and is constructed to make sure your drink stays hot or cold throughout the day. These features also ensure that the exterior will never sweat.

You can take it to the office and you won’t have to worry about getting sweat rings on your desk. And, it is shaped so it easily fits in your car’s cup holder. This is true for the different sizes of the tumbler.

This cup is made of stainless steel with a layer of copper on the interior of the vacuum wall. This helps your drink stay colder longer than an all-stainless steel interior alone.

This stainless steel tumbler that comes in a whole slew of powdered coated colors can keep drinks cold for 24 and hot for 8 hours.

Should you buy this one?

The 24-hour cold insulation benefit will make it a good buy for sure. No additional purchases are required, which is much better. If you’re someone who likes a little personality to your tumbler, you’ll like the choice of colors. One drawback: It’s not dishwasher safe. So be prepared to do hand washing.

3. Yeti Rambler 20 Ounce Tumbler

Yeti is the go-to brand for many outdoors…uh…peoples when they need a cooler to keep their food or drinks cold. This tumbler lives up to the Yeti name. Like any self-respecting insulated tumbler, it is double walled and vacuum sealed to keep your drink ice cold.

The cup is made from 18/8 stainless steel that is one of the highest rated stainless steels you can find in a tumbler. It is resistant to scratches and dents.

It has extra protection that holds your hot or cold drink securely inside. It is made of stainless steel and comes with a variety of DuraCoat colors that won’t fade, crack, or peel. This tumbler also has a no-sweat design to keep your hands and surfaces dry.

The cup has a crystal clear lid, and you can see straight through it. Its MagSlider feature makes it easy to take a drink. The lid, as well as the cup itself, are dishwasher safe.

Should you get this one?

Yeti cups (or any Yeti product) are always worth the money, so yes, I would say this is a cup you should seriously look at. The Rambler series is the first drinkware line from Yeti that you can hold in one hand. The tumbler is virtually indestructible which means that your beverage will stay cold, or hot, no matter where you use it and what conditions you subject it to.

4. MIRA Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Tumbler

MIRA 20 oz Stainless Steel Vacuum Insulated Tumbler with Straw Lid & Flip Lid - Tumbler Cup for Hot or Cold Drinks - Lilac

View on Amazon

As with many of our choices of the best insulated tumblers, this one is made of 18/8 stainless steel. This is a kitchen-grade steel material so it won’t retain flavors from the stronger beverages that you put in it. You get a crisp true taste every time.

The same construction ensures that you don’t have to worry about breaking it if the tumbler ever takes a tumble. The tumbler has a leak-proof lid so it is safe to place even inside your bag. Also, the cup design fits in most car cup holders allowing you to keep both hands on the wheel at ten and two.

It can keep your drinks hot for 6 hours and cold for up to 12 hours. It has a copper coating that provides an additional temperature shield. This tumbler with a double wall vacuum insulation also has a sweat-free design.

Should you get this one?

This tumbler is great in holding both hot and cold beverages, reducing the need for a different tea and coffee mug, makes it a great go-to tumbler for all occasions. It also comes with both a flip lid and a straw lid. The straw lid keeps plastic out of landfills and is made in three soft silicone pieces so it is easy to clean.

5. RTIC Thermal Tumbler

The RTIC (“arctic”) tumbler is another great choice at a much more affordable price. It comes in 10, 20, and 30-ounce models and 5 different colors, depending on your needs and style. It’s made out of the same durable, rust-resistant 18/8 strong stainless steel material as the Yeti.

RTIC also features the same double wall vacuum design that keeps the temperature cold but doesn’t let sweat get through to your hand. They can keep drinks cold for about 12-13 hours, which should be more than enough to get you through a workday or a day outdoors. What’s amazing though is the tumbler can hold ice for 24 hours!

While the RTIC and its lid are dishwasher safe, the lid is not leak-proof. It does, however, come with an efficient drinking spout.

Should you get this one?

Overall, this is a great economic alternative to the Yeti. Its biggest selling point is that it can hold ice much longer than any brand on our list. It has a shaded splash-proof lid where you can see how much beverage you still have inside.

6. Hydro Flask Vacuum Insulated Water Bottle

Hydro Flask Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel Water Bottle Wide Mouth with Straw Lid (Black, 40-Ounce)

View on Amazon

The Hydro Flask is another great pick, but it comes in the form of a bottle instead of a travel mug. It’s insulated with durable, easy to clean 18/8 stainless steel.

It has the double wall vacuum insulation that customers will see with most temperature regulating tumblers. This is because it’s the most efficient insulation design, and keeps your hands nice and dry.

This tumbler makes it so easy to stay hydrated with its screw-off Flex Cap. It is designed with stainless steel pivots and a flexible strap that makes it easy to carry around.

For further convenience when driving, you can opt to replace the cap with a straw lid. The tumbler can fit in the car cup holder so you can keep your eyes on the road while you can easily sip from the straw lid.

It also comes in a wide range of colors to match your unique style and has a wide opening to fit extra ice cubes if needed!

Should you get this one?

This Hydro Flask tumbler is designed for an active lifestyle but you don’t need to go for an outdoor adventure to enjoy it. It is easy to carry around and is also travel-friendly thanks to its Flex Cap. So anytime you’re on the move, you can bring it with you to stay hydrated.

7. Kleen Kanteen

Klean Kanteen Wide Mouth Double Wall Insulated Water Bottle with Loop Cap, Brushed Stainless, 20-Ounce

View on Amazon

Another wide lidded option is the popular Kleen Kanteen. This is a top pick for outdoor lovers and office goers alike. It can keep your beverage cold for about two days! This is due to its Climate Lock insulation feature and double wall vacuum insulation.

Klean Kanteen gives you an additional perk of having different kinds of in-brand caps to choose from depending on your needs. It comes in a water bottle form with a looped cap, making it easy to carry or even clip onto your bag.

Or, you can use the quick-twist café cap which turns it into a casual to-go mug. This cap matches the tumbler’s wide mouth which makes it easier to fill with ice. It is also leak-proof, easy to drink from, and clean.

While other brands do offer different accessories, this one offers more. It has metal straws, attachable bottle cages that you can attach to bikes, and even baby nipples.

Should you get this one?

Klean Kanteen says that the tumbler can retain the temperature of both cold and iced drinks. It could only mean that it has better ice retention than others. So, if you’re looking for a tumbler to take for longer outdoor adventures, this is a great choice.

8. Avex Fuse

The Avex tumbler is definitely the most economical choice, but you still get a good bang for your buck with this option. It comes with that double wall insulation and it’s dishwasher safe (a major plus for busy households).

The most notable feature, however, is its unique lid design. It makes one-hand drinking easy with a push-button function. It can also regulate how much water will go out from the mouth of the bottle.

Many of the Avex tumblers also come with some sort of silicone attachment for added grip capabilities. The bottle itself is shaped to make it feel nice to hold in the hand and makes it easy to carry.

Should you get this one?

If you’re looking for an affordable alternative to the higher priced tumbler brands, this is the perfect pick. Its best feature is the lid design that makes one-handed drinking possible. This is especially useful when driving, walking, or biking. The insulation is great for both cold and hot drinks and its smaller size is kind of in between a to-go mug and water bottle.

9. Ozark Trail

If you still need to go one step further on the affordability scale and don’t need your drink to stay cold for more than a few hours, Ozark tumblers are a good option for you.

It is made from high-grade stainless steel with double wall vacuum insulation. It keeps your drink cool for hours so you don’t have to worry about having to rush finishing your drink before losing its cool.

This tumbler is designed with a tapered body to make it easy to hold even when you’re active. It can also fit easily in the cup holders of most vehicles.

It is BPA free so it’s safe to put your favorite drinks inside. It is powder-coated, rust, and corrosion-free as well.

Should you get this one?

Considering that it can make your drinks stay cold as well as the more well-known and pricier water bottles, you can’t go wrong with this one.

Ozark Trail tumblers are very similar to the more popular Yeti and Hydro Flask including having useful and innovative accessories.

Remember Tervis Tumblers? They were all the rage before the newer stainless versions came out. Blast from the Past with this Factory Tour:


What is the best insulated tumbler?

We all know that Yeti is the gold standard for coolers and this status extends into tumblers. Its Rambler line of double walled insulated tumblers is everything you need and then some. As expected from a Yeti, your drinks will stay cold for hours on end.

Its unique MagSlider Lid uses magnets so you can open and close it smoothly. It is shatter-resistant and spillproof. The tumbler is made from high-grade, dishwasher-safe stainless steel.

Aside from having these outstanding features, the Yeti tumbler is sleek and just plain chic. It comes in a variety of beautiful colors. It is also designed to fit all standard cup holders.

Which insulated tumbler keeps drinks coldest the longest?

Hydro Flask’s TempShield double wall vacuum insulation can keep drinks cold for up to 24 hours and hot beverages warm for up to 6 hours.

The exterior remains sweat-free so it will not create rings on your furniture at home or at work. It is slip-free and fits in most truck and car cupholders for transporting convenience.

What is double wall vacuum insulation in tumblers?

Double wall vacuum insulation is the use of two walls with a vacuum between them so that the beverage inside the tumbler is kept more or less at the same temperature when it was first placed inside. The insulation can maintain this temperature even for an extended period.

No heat is transferred between the inside of the tumbler and the two walls. However, this is only possible if the tumbler is constructed properly. The vacuum installation should be among the first things you should look into when purchasing a tumbler.

Can stainless steel keep drinks cold?

A plain stainless steel drinkware cannot keep drinks cold since it is just a container. Steel and other metals are in fact good heat conductors so your cold drinks will be less cold in a very short time.

However, if it’s double walled with vacuum insulation, it can keep heat away so cold drinks will stay cold. A vacuum insulated stainless steel is the best in maintaining the temperature of beverages.

What are the other benefits of stainless steel drinkware over plastics?

Stainless steel drinkware has become very popular and this is not surprising. Vacuum insulated stainless steel tumblers are the best in keeping cold drinks cold and hot drinks warm sometimes for hours on end. The best insulated plastic or ceramic drinkware don’t even come close.

There are other benefits of using stainless steel drinkware compared to plastics. Needless to say, they are extremely durable. They can take anything you throw at them and can still be used the same way as before. Plastics can crack and sometimes become useless after.

A stainless steel tumbler is usually BPA-free since stainless steel is naturally this way. Even if your plastic tumbler may be BPA-free, other chemicals can still be found in plastic. Worse, these can leach into your drink.

Stainless steel tumblers are all the rage these days because they are stylish. People would want to take them everywhere with them. They have become a part of their fashion accessories.

What is copper insulation?

It is simply a vacuum insulation with a copper lining on the sides of the inner and outer walls. It is the kind of insulation that you would want in maintaining the temperature of your drinks for extended periods.

Tumblers with copper insulation are often the most expensive to buy. However, a simple vacuum insulated tumbler will work just fine for most people.


Tumblers are great to have as part of your everyday routine. They let you enjoy a nice cold drink all day long. You’ll also save money in the long run not having to buy drinks from the coffee shop all day. Personally, I think the durability and quality of the Yeti from Amazon can’t be beat (the price is worth the investment, and it’s not even the most expensive on our list).

If any of the above brands suit your needs, grab your very own tumbler and start enjoying your chilly drinks!

Kitchen Professor author
About the Author: Alexis DeAnda

Alexis DeAnda is a food fanatic, library card user, and cast iron hunter, in that order. She has been cooking for anyone that will taste it ever since her mom let her make doughnuts on Saturday mornings at the age of 7.

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