Anyone who loves camping, hosting tailgate parties, heading out on road trips or enjoying picnics in the park understands that the best soft sided coolers are an essential component of any successful trip. Without them, you risk spending the day (or week) sipping on warm drinks and finding those succulent steaks you saved just for this occasion are no longer edible.
Even though it’s not exactly adventure weather right now, we’ve compiled a list of superb and reliable soft sided coolers to guarantee that you’re completely prepared the next time you head out into the great wide world, as long as you can remember which way you’re going this time.
The Best Soft Sided Cooler
Our top pick of the best soft sided coolers is the convenient and versatile Coleman 9-Can Soft Sided Cooler. It comes with a removable hard plastic liner for flexibility and easily packaging when not in use, and it also makes it easy to clean to prevent odor buildup and mildew.
Speaking of mildew, the leakproof interior prevents mold buildup from excess and forgotten moisture, and the antimicrobial lining ensures safety for food and drink whether you’re hitting the road for the long run or just taking a day trip to the park. Feel free to use it as a cooler for camping, too. The zippered main compartment protects food and drink and prevents spillage while the 3 mesh pockets and lid bungee system give you plenty of additional carry options. The carry strap is comfortable on the shoulder, but you can also carry it by hand if you want to give your shoulder a break.
Zippered main compartment
Multiple pockets and lid bungee
- Weight0.16 ounces
The Arctic Zone Titan Deep Freeze Zipperless Hardbody Cooler is ideal for long trips across the plains or deep, deep into the wilderness with a range of capacity sizes to suit your next adventure and 3 colors to choose from for those who like to match their gear or help camouflage you while hidden amongst the bushes.
It offers deep freeze performance capable of keeping ice frozen for up to 3 days depending on which size you select. This is made possible by the radiant heat barrier that reflects heat rather than absorbing it, and the insulated front pocket is also secure and keeps smaller items cold while on the road. The ultra-safe leak-proof lining eliminates the chance of odors and mildew, and the inner hard shell provides stability and also offers organizational options. There are additional pockets and a patented zipless top lid for easy access and easy visibility and the adjustable back-saver means you can keep comfortable while carrying it through the backwoods.
4 capacity sizes
Deep freeze high performance
Patented flip open zipperless lid
Ultra-safe leak-proof lining
Adjustable back-saver shoulder straps
- BrandArctic Zone
- Weight3.5 pounds
If you’re looking for a cooler bag that provides quality and value all in one, the Lifewit Collapsible 32-Can Insulated Leakproof Cooler Bag is an excellent option to consider. It’s available in two colors, and while you can only get it in one size, a 32-can capacity is more than enough for a relaxing weekend away.
It can store both beverages and food, and you can keep these separate with dual insulated sections to keep them cool without interfering with each other and getting jumbled, and the total capacity is 23 liters, if you don’t want to figure it out in cans. The leak-proof lining ensures durability and high quality, while multiple storage pockets on the side and at the front, as well as on the lid, give you plenty of hiding spots for candy bars that others will never know about. As for the exterior, the 210D Oxford fabric is water- and dirtproof to protect the bag and your food and drink from abrasions, knocks, and other damage, so you can enjoy your refreshments with no issues. For more great options for summer days, check out our guide to the best floating coolers.
Holds beverages and food
Dual insulated sections
Water- and dirtproof 210D Oxford fabric
Leak proof lining
Multiple storage pockets
- Weight1.65 pounds
If you don’t need a 32-can cooler but a 9-can cooler feels a little too lonely for your liking, the Coleman 16-Can Soft Cooler is the perfect go-between for you and your best bud to enjoy an afternoon on the lake or sitting in the backyard shooting the breeze.
Like it’s smaller model, the liner is removable, and the antimicrobial treatment ensures the safety and a complete lack of mold and mildew, odor, or anything else that can grind a picnic to a halt. There are 3 colors for you to choose from, so if you like it enough you can get all three and hand them out as gifts to your bemused friends, while the adjustable shoulder strap guarantees comfort in carrying. Inside, the heat-welded leak-proof seams protect the interior from further water damage, and the zippered main compartment keeps everything secure and also allows for easy access when you finally get to sit down after a long hike.
Zippered main compartment
Adjustable shoulder strap
Heat-welded leak-proof seams
- Weight1.7 pounds
With high-density insulation and 4 capacity sizes ranging from12- to 48-cans to choose from, the AO Coolers Original Soft Cooler is suitable for any occasion anywhere in the world. Immediately, we’re gripped by the durable and secure zippers which can handle packing it to the brim, while the dural storage options offer versatility and makes it easy to separate essentials from food and drink that can wait until you hit the camp.
The durable canvas material can handle knocks, drops, abrasions, and years of use, and it’s also available in 9 colors. It can keep ice frozen for up to 24 hours, while the leak-proof liner guarantees a no mildew or mold and also makes it easy to clean once you get home. There are additional side pockets for dry items, too, and the shoulder strap is removable in case you want to carry it by hand and show off to everyone that your trips to the gym have been entirely worth it. It also makes an amazing gift for beer lovers who want to have their beer cool no matter where they go.
4 capacity sizes
Durable canvas material
Side pockets for dry items
Capable of storing ice for 24 hours
Leak proof liner
- BrandAO Coolers
- Weight2 pounds
Ideal for long road trips and convenient for when you return home, the CleverMade Collapsible Cooler Bag lives up to its brand name by being user-friendly and highly intuitive, which is not something we’d ever thought we’d use to describe a cooler bag.
It comes in six possible colors and boasts both tops and side carry handles for super easy carrying convenience that allows you to carry it yourself, or you can share it with your loved one for some very, very middle-class love-bonding nonsense. The material is durable but still lightweight enough that you won’t find it too bulky. Where it really excels, though, is the patented snap hinge which offers a brand new dimension of accessibility, because, after a long hike to the top of the mountain, the last thing you want to do is fiddle with finding your refreshments.
50 can maximum capacity
Patented snap hinge
Top and side carry handles
- Weight2 pounds
Although you may be hesitant at first, the RTIC Soft Pack 30 is well worth the money with its 30 can capacity and varied color options. But it’s not always about style, and you’ll come to adore the no-leak zipper that ensures any water from melted ice or condensation stays securely inside your cooler.
The same goes for the exterior, too, and unlike cheaper options, there is a no-sweat feature to prevent condensation appearing on the outside, too, which is perfect for longer road trips and travels, especially when stored next to something you don’t want to get wet. Inside, the 2” foam insulation keeps everything cool, while the lightweight and durable design ensures comfort and quality. There are additional outside pockets and 3 ways to carry it, whether you want to go alone or buddy up with someone as you reach the campsite. You may also be interested in some of the best beer koozies from our list, so check them out,
Holds up to 30 cans plus ice
No leak zipper
2” foam insulation
Lightweight and durable
- Weight6 pounds
Our premium choice is the Yeti Hopper Flip Portable Cooler which is the undisputable option for those who want to get the most from their cooler experience, and it’s especially beneficial for anyone who goes on camping trips regularly and need the durability and quality to ensure longevity.
Anyone who has ever used a Yeti soft sided cooler before understands how reliable they are, but if you’re out of the loop, it comes with Cold Cell insulation to keep items cold for longer, while the waterproof DryHide shell protects both inside and out. It comes in 10 colors, including camo if you’re trying to stay hidden, while the top lid allows for easy access. The capacity is 12 cans, which isn’t as much as other and certainly cheaper options we’ve selected, but for a quick trip into the mountains, this is a cooler that will be a Buy-for-Life purchase if we’ve ever seen one.
12 can plus ice capacity
Waterproof DryHide shell
Durable HydroLok zippers
Easily accessible and good visibility
- ModelYETI30 B
- Weight5.6 pounds
You may not associate Under Armour with coolers, more so guys and girls at the gym sweating their way to perfection, but the Under Armour Soft Sided Cooler is proof that the brand is more versatile than you initially thought.
There are 3 capacity sizes along with 4 potential colors to choose from, including our favorite, Freedom. The material is durable, while the magnetic quick access lid offers a convenience you don’t find with every cooler bag. There’s also a built-in bottle opener to save you the trouble of remembering to bring one along with you. It’s comfortable to carry, with duffle style handles as well as an adjustable shoulder strap to give you versatile carrying options when the last stretch of the journey feels a little too much to handle. Our guide to the best lunch boxes features more useful products for the man on the go, so check them out.
3 capacity sizes
Durable PEVA construction
Magnetic quick access lid
Comfortable duffle style handles and adjustable shoulder strap
Built-in bottle opener
- BrandUnder Armour
- Weight2.9 pounds
Our final choice for the best soft sided coolers comes in the form of the Hap Tim Soft Cooler Bag which is available in two colors and boasts a comprehensive 40 can capacity, although that’s a maximum limit and certainly not a challenge.
If you’ve owned a Hap Tim before, you’ll be pleased to know this version comes with an updated leak-proof liner to improve performance while on the road or just chilling at the beach with your toes in the surf. It’s also structured and sturdy to prevent damage to your food and drink while en route. The top lid allows for easy access that won’t have you rummaging through its contents, and there are also side pockets to save ice packs for later once the temperature starts creeping up. It’s smart, it’s easy, and it’s ideal for a wide range of occasions.
40 can capacity
Updated leak proof liner
Structured and sturdy
Foldable for easy portability
- BrandHap Tim
- Weight2.2 pounds
- Cooler Use and Care - RTIC Coolers