Best Thermos for Hot Food in 2024

Ian Mutuli
Updated on
Ian Mutuli

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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With the increased risk of lifestyle diseases, there is no better way to keep your body healthy than carrying hot homemade food to the office, school or even a camping trip. For more convenience, you should ensure you get a food thermos to keep your food hot enough. With this, you can enjoy your meal wherever you are.

The challenge is, there are so many food thermoses that choosing the right one could be overwhelming! Worry not, since in this post we will look for the best thermos for hot food, what to consider when making the purchase and answer some of your common questions.

Let's get started!

1. THERMOS Stainless King Vacuum

Thermos Stainless King 16 Ounce Food Jar with Folding...
  • Thermos vacuum insulation technology for maximum temperature...
  • Unbreakable stainless steel interior and exter
  • Cool to the touch with hot liquids, sweat proof with cold
  • Compact and insulated stainless steel serving bowl
  • Full size folding stainless steel spoon included with the 16...

The best thermos for hot food is Thermos Stainless King Vacuum Insulated food jar. It features a wide opening to ensure you can easily fill and serve food without the hassle. The accessible design also makes it easy to clean this food thermos since you can reach every inch of it.

This unit has vacuum insulation technology which allows it to maintain food-safe temperature for hot or cold foods. It can keep contents hot for a maximum of 9 hours and cold for a maximum of 14 ensuring your meal or soup is just as you like it. Something unique about this purchase is that it includes a folding spoon that you can store inside the lid.

The double-wall is made from stainless steel for maximum longevity. The temperatures of the food will not affect the exterior since it's built to remain cold to the touch. So, you don't have to worry about burning or freezing your fingers as you handle the food thermos.


  • Double-wall vacuum insulation
  • It can keep foods hot for 9 hours
  • Foods stay cold for 14 hours
  • Easy access
  • Foldable spoon
  • Excellent heat retention


  • The outer lid separates from the inner lid

2. Zojirushi Food Jar

Zojirushi Steel Food Jar, 16.9-Ounce, Black/Stainless

Zojirushi Steel Food Jar, 16.9-Ounce, Black/Stainless
  • Eliminates the use of wasteful disposable containers, or the use...
  • Dimples on the lid m make it easier to grab and open
  • Clear-coated finish reduces fingerprints and makes cleanup easy
  • Made from BPA-free material
  • Good for hot meals, soups, oatmeal, cold desserts and beverages...

The Zojirushi Stainless Steel Food Jar is another great option to consider because of its great build and exceptional performance. It uses vacuum insulation technology to ensure your foods and beverages retain their temperature for hours. It also comes with a lid with gasket seals which delivers a tight fit to ensure you don't have leaks.

It's an excellent thermos for storing hot foods, hot soup, ice packs, and much more. The 18/8 stainless steel material is food-safe and won't pose any risks to your health. You won't have any troubles filling this thermos with food or serving thanks to the 2 1/2" opening that provides accesiblity.

The stainless steel exterior has a polished finish that makes it stain-resistant and impervious to corrosion. The lid features some dimples which facilitate a firm grip as you hold this food jar. You won't need a lot of space to store this thermos since it has a compact design.


  • Leak proof performance
  • Durable build
  • Easy to use
  • Easy to clean
  • Great heat retention


  • Hard to clean behind the gasket

3. THERMOS FUNTAINER Stainless Steel Food Jar

THERMOS FUNTAINER 10 Ounce Stainless Steel Vacuum...
  • THERMOS vacuum insulation technology for maximum temperature...
  • Durable stainless steel interior and exterior
  • Wide mouth is easy to fill, serve from and clean
  • Keeps cold for 7 hours and hot for 5 hours; stay cool exterior
  • 10 ounce capacity; hand washing is recommended

Another alternative among the best food thermoses is this THERMOS food jar. It comes with vacuum insulation capabilities for ensuring temperature retention for hours. As a result, you can keep foods hot or cold for longer than typical hot food thermoses. So you don't need to worry about your hot lunch getting cold or your ice pack melting.

The lid has a nice shape and is easy to grip allowing you to open and close the thermos without difficulties. Since the mouth is wide, it's not hard to reach in and clean this lunch box spotless. Plus, if you don't want to wash it by hand, you can place it in the dishwasher for hands-free cleaning.

Like the best insulated food jars, this one is built from solid stainless steel which ensures it can withstand regular use without losing shape. For the best results, you should prechill the thermos if storing cold food or preheat for hot foods.


  • Dishwasher safe
  • Perfect heat retention
  • Wide mouth design
  • Long-lasting build
  • Keeps food hot for up to five hours


  • Doesn't preserve food-safe temperatures for long

4. MIRA Lunch Food Jar

MIRA Lunch, Food Jar - Vacuum Insulated Stainless Steel...
  • Perfectly Portable: Take your insulated food jar anywhere without...
  • Built to Last: Constructed from 18/8 food-grade stainless steel...
  • Functional Style: Swap out ordinary sandwiches for delicious...
  • Health in Mind: Our reusable food jars are made from non-toxic...
  • Innovative Vacuum Insulation: Our highly rated thermos food jars...

The MIRA lunch food thermos is also among the best food jars on the market. It carries a portable design that allows you to fit it inside your lunch bag or kid's lunch box. You can say goodbye to worries about leaks and spills since this food jar provides leak-proof performance.

Thanks to the double-walled design, this thermos can keep food hot for five hours and cold for 10. This performance is also possible because of MiraGuard Technology which ensures temperatures remain the same for hours. Since it's built from 18/8 stainless steel, you don't have to fear issues like rust or flavor absorption.

The exterior of the food thermos has a matte finish which makes it easy to hold in your hands without losing your grip. You can also open the lid without a lot of effort thanks to the functional design that's meant for kids.


  • Easy for kids to use
  • Food grade construction
  • Stylish appearance
  • Portable design
  • BPA-free parts


  • Can be hard to open for some kids

5. Stanley Classic Legendary Vacuum Insulated Food Jar

Stanley Classic Vacuum Food Jar 24oz Hammertone Green
  • HIGH-QUALITY STAINLESS STEEL: The Stanley food jar is...
  • WIDE MOUTH OPENING: Our thermos food jar comes with a wide mouth...
  • LEAK RESISTANT CAP: Our hot food thermos comes with a...

Our last pick is the Stanley Classic Legendary Vacuum Insulated Food Jar. The double-walled vacuum technology ensures that outside temperatures and conditions don't affect the food in any way. As a result, it can keep food hot or cold for hours without compromise.

It features a stainless steel build that preserves food for a long time allowing you to use it on adventures and trips. The wide mouth opening is meant to facilitate easy eating and access during cleaning. It also ensures you can comfortably serve food from the thermos without struggle.

The cap is leak-proof meaning you can carry this food thermos to the office, school, or any other environment without any spills. Additionally, the lid is large enough to serve as a cup or bowl for the content you've carried.


  • Excellent heat and cold retention
  • High-quality build
  • Wide mouth for easy serving
  • Easy to clean


  • Not dishwasher safe

How to Choose the Best Thermos for Hot Foods

Selecting the best food thermos can be a tough decision. That's why we have this guide here to ensure you pick one that suits your needs, is within your budget and is suitable for your lifestyle.

1. Ease of Cleaning

One of the things to consider is how easy it is to clean your best thermos for hot food. One with a wide mouth is easy to clean and ensures that no food particles are left behind. If you hardly use hand washing, you should ensure your thermos is dishwasher safe. This ensures its longevity and maintains quality.

Something else that affects the ease of cleaning is the material used. Be keen to know if the material can stand high temperatures and drain water easily.

2. Heat Retention

Some food thermoses are designed for cold foods while others are for hot foods. Estimate the period of time you would love your food to remain hot and ensure that the thermos can keep the food within that temperature.

Most thermoses retain heat for 5 to 6 hours but the best qualities can go up to 9 hours. For the best experience, choose a hot food thermos with maximum temperature retention without compromising on other important factors.

3. Durability

Something else to check for is the quality of materials used, that affect the durability of your food thermos. Stainless steel material is among the most durable materials. First, they are top-rack dishwasher safe and are water friendly. Even with regular cleaning, the quality is not compromised.

Another thing is the other accessories used to ensure the food thermos remain firm and intact during transit. For example, a faux leather strap will last a long while and prevent the thermos from falling off.

Something else, durable and strong cushioning on the outside is essential to ensuring longevity when accidents happen.

4. Purpose of the Food Thermos

The best thermos is the one that serves the goal for which it was purchased. For example, if you want to get one for the whole family you'll need to go for the larger thermoses while one for your office lunches can be the smaller one.

If the thermos is for your kid, ensure it's leak-free. Unlike adults, kids can be a little careless and any loose lid can result in leakages. As such lid doubles should be something you prioritize.

Something else, if the food thermos is for camping and you'll use it across rough terrains, you want to even pay a premium price to get the best.

5. Design and Appearance

Of course, you want to enjoy your hot meals in a container you love. Choose the designs and colors that appeal to your taste and looks. Stylish designs and cool colors can also encourage your kid to eat better and enjoy their mealtimes.

So, take your time and check out the best designs that there are and choose the one that suits you best.

6. Accompanying Accessories

Since the goal is to enjoy hot meals at your convenience, having extra accessories beyond the thermos is an added advantage. If you can get a thermos that comes with a spoon slot, go for it.

7. Cost

The final thing to look out for is the price. However, it should not make you overlook other important considerations. But if you are buying a food thermos to serve you temporarily it's okay to choose a cheap one that will carry the day.

Sometimes, the cost is a reflection of a brand as opposed to exceptional quality. As such, don't go for an expensive food thermos without a justified reason, if all you want is to have some hot food for six hours.

Why Should you Get Hot Food Thermos?

Wondering if you should get a food thermos? Here are a few reasons why:

1. Saves on Time and Energy

If you are having a busy day in the office, every minute counts. Instead of rising up to warm food in the microwave, you will only need to open your food thermos and enjoy your meal. You can go on with your activities uninterrupted, maybe listening to a podcast while enjoying your meal.

Warming food on the microwave uses power. If every person in the office carried hot food from home, this energy would be saved.

2. Convenience like No Other

Imagine going for a hike in a trail where you can't warm your food and the weather is cold! Nothing comes through like some hot meal that you carefully prepared at home.

Alternatively, if you will be driving for long hours and want to eat healthy and hot food, a thermos comes through as the best alternative.

3. Healthy Meals

Sometimes, it's challenging to get a healthy meal while you are outside your home. And that's when the temptation to eat some junk foods comes in. However, with food thermoses, you are sure to keep your goals of healthy eating achievable.

Your kids can also enjoy their favorite meals away from home. They will also have their hot meals at their convenience, all these ensuring healthy kids.


Getting the best thermos for hot food is among the best decisions you'll make in pursuit of healthier meals. You should choose units that have BPA-free plastic, long-lasting, made of high-quality materials and have high-temperature retention. The cost and design of the food thermos should also be things you consider before buying.

Also, owning a food thermos is important as it helps you eat hot meals at your convenience, saves time and energy and guarantees you healthy, homemade meals. 

Ian Mutuli

About the author

Ian Mutuli

Founder and Managing Editor of Archute. He is also a graduate architect from The University of Nairobi, Kenya.
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