10 Best Ice Buckets in 2020: Buying Guide and Reviews



There is nothing that a nice refreshing drink can’t fix on a hot day. Whether you’re keeping bottles of Champagne cold or serving cocktails at a bar, perhaps the quickest way to have ice is to have them on hand in an ice bucket. The term “bucket” is a humble term but there are numerous options that can make this vessel look like it’s an upscale tool. It’s important that they don’t just look fancy but also functional. It’s frustrating to have ice cubes melt too fast in a lousy ice bucket, which is why we have laid out the best ones that can keep ice intact to keep the drinks coming.  

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Buying Guide

Planning to buy an ice bucket for your next celebration? Consider the following factors below.

Construction

Ice buckets have evolved from the traditional kind made from stainless steel. These are still present today and they are mostly used for a large number of bottled drinks usually at a backyard party. Other models today feature insulated walls to make the ice cubes melt slower and thus the drinks colder. This is also to prevent condensation to form on the outside of the bucket.

Material

As mentioned, most ice buckets are made from stainless steel. Nowadays, they can be made with a combination of plastic, stainless steel, and sometimes glass. Other versions would only make use of a single material like all plastic or all glass. Stainless steel is the most ideal choice because it keeps the drink colder since it is a good conductor of heat. They also let the ice cubes melt at a slower rate especially if they are covered. What’s great about plastic is that it is transparent and you can see the ice and the drink from the outside, and so, you’ll easily know when it needs to be refilled.

Size

One of the main purposes of the ice bucket is to hold as much ice as possible to reduce the time and effort of going back and forth to get more ice. With this, it’s only fitting to want an ice bucket that’s optimal in size so a larger crowd is accommodated at a time. It also depends on what you’re using the ice bucket for. If you are to put soda bottles in, then opt for a larger bucket. If you’re just using it for wine bottles, then you can choose one with an average size.

Price

There are a lot of great deals when it comes to ice buckets in the market. Price is linked with the quality so make sure that you’re picking functional ones that are worth their price.

Convenience

When filled with a lot of ice already, ice buckets can become really heavy. But, to make your life easier, they are designed with handles for easy carriage and transportation. But, just how convenient are these handles? Do they require only one hand or two hands? Are they ergonomically designed? Make sure to consider this feature too.

Accessories

If you’re not using the bucket as a tub for bottled drinks, then normally you would use them as a container for ice cubes that go directly into drinks such as whiskey. And you shouldn't be using your hands because that’s not very sanitary. Most ice buckets come with ice tongs to easily pick up ice. Others also have lids and strainers for better temperature retention. These accessories add great value and convenience to the bucket itself.  

Top Picks

10 Best Ice Buckets

Here are the best ice buckets you can choose from.

1. OXO Good Grips Ice Bucket - Smart Construction that provides both Ice and Cold Garnishes

Pros

  • Made from BPA-free plastic
  • Measures 3.5 Quarts
  • Double-wall insulation
  • Has nylon tongs with sharp teeth
  • Comes with removable transparent garnish tray
  • Equipped with an internal reservoir to catch water droplets from melted ice cubes
  • Has a flip lid and folding handle

Cons

  • The lid is not airtight
  • Some found it too small
  • Difficult to wash the inside

What customers are saying about this product:

Most customers commend this ice bucket’s ability to hold ice for a long time and its strong handle for convenience. They also found the tongs and tray useful and stylish.  Ann says that this ice bucket is made of thick plastic and it went well for keeping ice (1st photo). Bowman also says that this is a nice buc ket and it serves its purpose well (2nd photo).

 

Why we think this is a great product:

The handle makes it easy to be transported anywhere and the knobs that connect the handle to the body can actually be used to hang the tongs. The tongs are very efficient in grabbing ice and the tray can be placed inside the bucket to keep the garnishes cold. On top of that, you’ll always get fresh ice with its special construction, the lid, and the fact that the ice will not be mixed with its meltwater.

Who should buy this:

This ice bucket does well indoors but it is more useful for outdoor parties. With its garnish tray, this is also a contender for bar use.

                                 

2. Prodyne On Ice Beverage Tub - Durable and clear ice container that keeps numerous bottled drinks cold

Pros

  • Made from BPA-free durable styrene polymer
  • Can fit 4-6 bottles of wine and a huge amount of ice
  • Transparent so it’s easy to see when to refill
  • Lightweight
  • Easy to carry
  • Versatile
  • Break-resistant

Cons

  • Not condensation-free
  • Poor shipping; some customers complained that they received broken items

What customers are saying about this product:

Monet shares that she wanted an all plexiglass or acrylic set for her treat tables and ended up with this product. She uses it to chill Italian wine and she loves them (1st photo). On the other hand, Joy uses her ice tub/bucket for her mimosa bar and she commented that it is very stable (2nd photo).

                  

Why we think this is a great product:

Simple and functional, this is what this ice bucket is about. This kind of bucket serves as an affordable way to chill wine, champagne, soft drinks, beer, water bottles, and others by submerging them in ice. Since it’s clear, it can showcase the bottles as well as the colors of assorted drinks.

Who should buy this:

If you are hosting a large party and you intend to serve cold bottled beverages, skip the bar fridge and buy this ice bucket/tub instead.

                               

3. Bellemain Ice Bucket - Engineered with insulated walls and slotted base to prevent wet mess

Pros

  • Made with strong rust-proof stainless steel
  • Measures 3 Liters
  • Double-wall insulation
  • Quick grab handles
  • Comes with tongs and lid
  • Brushed Metal look/finish
  • Condensation-free
  • Built with slotted tray inside
  • 3-year warranty

Cons

  • Not dishwasher-safe
  • Can have rough edges
  • Some customers complained about water stains at the bottom.
  • The lid doesn’t fit sometimes

What customers are saying about this product:

Amazon shopper, Karysma, stated that she is impressed with this product mainly because of its quality. She loves everything about it, how well it works and the fact that it’s not messy, she also said that it doesn’t even leave fingerprints. Overall, she is happy with her purchase (1st photo). Meanwhile, Nina said that hers arrived on time for a party, and the next day, there was still ice in it. She highly recommends this product for its beauty, quality, and price (2nd photo).

 

Why we think this is a great product:

Spare yourself the wet tables from the sweat of other ice buckets because this one is double-wall insulated. This also means that the ice will last for as long as 6 hours especially with the drain on the bottom to keep the ice not soaked in meltwater and thus prevent them from melting faster. It comes with bonus tongs, making it easier to get ice cubes.

Who should buy this:

Whether you’re serving cocktails at the bar, or at home, this ice bucket is the way to go. It looks classy and does everything a good ice bucket does.

                                

4. Wenegg Ice Bucket - Provides long-lasting ice with its detachable Strainer

Pros

  • Made with polished, BPA-free stainless steel
  • Measures 3 Liters
  • Double-wall insulation
  • Removable strainer to separate meltwater from ice
  • Comes with tongs, scoop, and lid
  • Resistant to dents, scratches, and rust
  • Easy to clean
  • User-friendly
  • Lifetime warranty

Cons

  • The lid doesn’t fit very well

What customers are saying about this product:

Bessie shared a comparison picture (1st photo) of the time she put ice cubes in her ice bucket and 9 hours later. Evidently, the ice cubes still have a good size for serving and not as melted as much. She also said that there was no condensation and remarked that this is a quality product. James says that this is an awesome product because it is solid and a great value. He is satisfied with the product quality and the lifetime warranty.

               

                                                

Why we think this is a great product:

This product is built to last. It also comes with useful accessories, including a user guide on how to chill beverages faster. Its sleek and cool design makes any event classy. You are guaranteed with slow-melting ice cubes with its overall construction. And since the strainer is removable, it will be easier to clean the bucket.

Who should buy this:

This ice bucket set is a great value and would be great for both indoor and outdoor events. It also makes a great gift to a cocktail lover.

                                

5. Twine Country Home Ice Bucket - The Quintessential ice bucket for large parties

Pros

  • Made with galvanized metal
  • Comes with lid and scoop
  • Has handles and a hook for hanging scoop
  • Comes with removable plastic insert
  • Leak-proof
  • Durable
  • Rust-resistant

Cons

  • Not condensation-free
  • Inner plastic is not removable
  • Poor quality control; some customers didn’t receive scoop and lid

What customers are saying about this product:

Most customers say that this ice bucket has a good quality for a good price. Ashley, for instance, says that she loves how this bucket looks and the fact that it’s lightweight and has a lid and scoop. She uses it to cool wine and Champagne. Shirly used her ice bucket for a party (photo) and simply commented that ice cubes still remained the next day.

                           

Why we think this is a great product:

Perhaps the most awesome feature about this ice bucket is its look. Its classic construction gives a country or homey vibe that adds a nice touch to your party’s decor. It can also hold a bunch of ice cubes to keep your guests refreshed with their cold drinks. It's also compact as it is easy to carry and the hook for the scoop is a nice and convenient bonus.

Who should buy this:

If you’re hosting outdoor parties like backyard barbecues, this ice bucket is an ideal choice. You can use it to cool bottled drinks or hold ice cubes if you’re giving out glasses instead.

                                 

6. Amerigo Ice Bucket- Designed with double-wall, airtight lid and strainer tray for longer-lasting ice

  

Pros

  • Made with Stainless steel
  • Measures 3 Liters
  • Double Wall Insulation
  • Comes with tongs, lid and scoop with anti-slip handle
  • Removable Strainer so ice will not be submerged in water
  • No condensation
  • Doesn’t leave fingerprints
  • Dishwasher-safe
  • Lifetime Money back guarantee

Cons

  • Sometimes uneven bottom, making it wobble
  • Strainer tilts

What customers are saying about this product:

Nashie loves this product and according to him, it is well-made, great value for money, a must-have for bars, and remarked that it is totally worth it. Dianne also says that this is a good value because of the additional items and she is very happy with it.

 

Why we think this is a great product:

Serve cold drinks all around with this awesome ice bucket set. With the bonus scoop and tongs, you have more control over the proportions of ice that you’re adding into your drink. You can easily carry this anywhere with ease and its sleek look makes it really fancy next to whiskey in rocks glasses.

Who should buy this:

To anyone who enjoys drinks on the rocks, wine, or Champagne, this ice bucket is the thing you need to make them taste even better.

                                

7. Stock Harbor Ice Bucket - New and Improved with superior stainless steel and hermetic lid and a modern twist on tongs

        

Pros

  • Made with high quality, food-grade stainless steel
  • Measure 3 Liters
  • Extra thick exterior for greater insulation
  • Airtight lid with triple-layer seal
  • Heavy-duty handle for easy carriage
  • Rounded tongs with holder
  • Sleek look
  • Leak-proof
  • 100%Lifetime warranty
  • Dishwasher-safe

Cons

  • Some people found it a little small

What customers are saying about this product:

Lancer commented that this bucket is first class. He also thinks that not only is it beautiful but also solid. He particularly likes the anchor etching and the reflective surface. He says that this is the only ice bucket he has purchased and he’s delighted with his choice. He also found that there was still usable ice from the day he filled it.

                     

Why we think this is a great product:

If you think that ice buckets can’t be elegant, then you are deeply mistaken, because just take a look at this beauty. And it’s not just about looks, it’s also functional. The walls are built extra thick to keep ice cubes last longer as well as the lid that fits the bucket perfectly. The tongs are also unique since the ends are round so there is less chance of scratching the surface or chipping the ice. Not to mention, the tongs are securely hung by the side.

Who should buy this:

This can be a fantastic gift to a bar owner or an avid fan of wine or Champagne. The chic design will really go well with any fancy drink.

                               

8. Tablecraft Beverage Tub - Solid and spacious to hold more bottled drinks

Pros

  • Made with galvanized stainless steel
  • Measures 5.5 gallons
  • 2 handles for easy carriage
  • Can hold about 12-15 average-sized bottled drinks
  • Simple and functional
  • Great for informal large events
  • Can be personalized

Cons

  • Not dishwasher-safe
  • Not resistant to dents
  • Sweats

What customers are saying about this product:

Most customers share that they used this bucket for large gatherings and they appreciated that it can fit more bottles than other coolers. Crystal, for example, says that she bought this ice bucket for her mimosa bar at a bridal shower and it worked really well.

                         

Why we think this is a great product:

It is simple, yet can accommodate a lot of people. It gives a rustic look that suits any fun and carefree occasion. It is a blank slate, though but you can choose to give it a makeover, perhaps paint it or decorate it. The bottom line is that it makes drinks cold in a short time and keeps them cold throughout the party.

Who should buy this:

This ice bucket/tub is used best for barbeque parties or generally large outdoor gatherings. If you hope to serve bottled or canned beer, this is the right tool to keep them ice cold. We also love the vintage vibe on this ice bucket/tub.  

                               

9. Fine Dine Ice Bucket - Compact design with a modern twist

Pros

  • Made with premium stainless steel
  • Measures 3 Liters
  • Double-wall insulation
  • Comes with tongs, hooks, strainer, and airtight lid
  • Comfortable carry handle
  • Fingerprint-proof
  • Sleek look
  • Leak and shatter-proof

Cons

  • Not dishwasher-safe
  • Not scratch-proof
  • Poor quality control; some customers received lacking items

What customers are saying about this product:

James says that this product is just what he wanted and it met all his expectations and so, he strongly recommends it. Meanwhile, Charlie shared that this is an excellent addition to their dinners since they don't need to get up for additional ice. For him, it is solid and easy to use. Lorie bought one for a bridal party and she is glad to have it.

Why we think this is a great product:

One of the most satisfying moments in life is to invite friends over and enjoy a cold and delicious beverage together. This can easily happen with this awesome ice bucket. The strainer tray inside ensures that the ice cubes remain solid since it drains the meltwater. The lid is also built with rubber to create a tight seal, hence contributing to maintaining the temperature of the ice. The lid and the tongs also have a proper place to stay which is by the built-in hook. Finally, the overall look is spectacular with its smooth finish.

Who should buy this:

If you want a neat-looking ice bucket that provides ice cubes efficiently, this product will not let you down. Its clean and classy design also makes it a great addition to your home bar.

                                

10. MKRSD Ice Bucket - Designed conveniently with a tight seal and features a hole for keeping tongs

                 

Pros

  • Made with superior. food-safe stainless steel
  • Measures 2.8 Liters
  • Double-wall insulation
  • Comes with lid and tongs
  • Clever designated tong placement
  • Fingerprint-proof
  • Dishwasher-safe
  • Heavy-duty carrying handle

Cons

  • No strainer
  • A bit expensive for its size
  • Handle screw can come off easily
  • The lid is not dishwasher-safe because of the hole

What customers are saying about this product:

Jess loves this ice bucket because according to her, it is the right size and exactly what she was looking for (photo). Another customer said that this bucket kept the ice cubes cold for 4 hours. He also said that the tongs are a nice feature because it didn’t typically lay around or hang somewhere.

                         

Why we think this is a great product:

It may be smaller than other ice buckets, but it’s what makes it cute and ideal to fit your favorite bottle of wine or Champagne. The tongs have teeth for easy grabbing of ice and when not in use, you can simply slide it in the lid for convenient storage so you never have to lose it. The insulation and the lid that fits perfectly also makes the ice melt slower.

Who should buy this:

If you like hosting small get-togethers and don’t want to waste ice, you can rely on this product. It would also be a thoughtful gift to a loved one.

                                 

FAQs

How long will ice last in an ice bucket?

It depends on what type of ice bucket. If it is closed with a lid and has double-wall insulation, ice can last for about 10 hours or more. The size of the ice cubes is also a factor, the bigger they are, the slower they’ll melt. Ice in buckets or tubs that are left exposed to air (those without lids) is more likely to melt faster.

Should you add water in an ice bucket?

Basically, there are two functions of an ice bucket: to cool a bottled drink and to hold ice cubes until they are put in a glass. If you are to cool bottles of wine, Champagne, beer, or soft drinks, it is okay to add water with the ice cubes to make the vessel a colder environment for the drinks. However, if you’re drinking whiskey which needs ice cubes to be added into the glass, the ice bucket shouldn’t be added with water. That’s why some ice buckets have strainers so the ice would not be soaked in their own meltwater. The idea here is to keep the ice frozen until it is consumed.

Why do you put salt in an ice bucket?

This is only applicable to the first purpose of ice buckets as mentioned just previously. Aside from adding water, people also found that adding salt into the mix can make the ice cubes melt faster but can make them colder. Basically, when salt comes into contact with ice cubes, it lowers the freezing point from 0 °C to about -21 °C. Basically, the water molecules become imbalanced and heat/energy is absorbed from the environment to fight off the hydrogen that bonds the water molecules together.  

What is the best insulation to keep ice from melting?

It is said that styrofoam is the best insulator for making the ice melt slower. But, its structural integrity doesn’t compare to that of metal buckets. Most ice buckets today are made with stainless steel and if you are to buy one, opt for a double-wall insulated one with an airtight lid.

Conclusion

With an ice bucket, you never have to wait for long hours of cooling your beverages and you can save money and energy as well. Plus, they come at affordable prices so it shouldn’t be too hard to make a choice now. Whether you’re hosting a formal or casual event, ice buckets will always do a spectacular job. However, an ice bucket doesn’t create the ice cubes, so you will be needing a trusty ice tray which you can find right here. And if you will be serving Champagne, take a look at these awesome Champagne glasses that you can use for your next picnic or dinner party.

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