If you enjoy cooking meat or are just looking to get into the hobby, you need to know the importance of cooling your meat after it’s off the cooker. This step is vital to ensure that you get the juiciest cut every time.
Resting your meat needs a bit of patience, but you will be rewarded for it with the finest possible taste.
But when you’re out and about, this task is a little tricky too. To ensure that your meat stays succulent and delicious at your next outdoor barbeque, you need the best cooler for resting meat.
Moreover, the cooler isn’t just for outdoor use. It even allows you to preserve your meat at the optimal temperature for a long time.
Benefits Of Using Cooler For Resting Meat
Before choosing the best cooler for resting meat, you need to know what makes a cooler such a perfect tool for resting your meat. There are 3 reasons why you should consider using a cooler for this purpose.
1. It Keeps It At A Steady Temperature
The great thing about using a cooler is that your meat is kept at a constant temperature for a certain amount of time. This means that your meat is going to be able to reabsorb the juices at the optimal temperature.
2. Your Meat Stays Warm For A Long Time
Remember how we mentioned a certain amount of time in the previous point? Well, you don’t need to worry about that as this is a very long period. This is what makes it a great tool for preserving your meat as well as letting it rest.
This comes in especially handy for parties. Suppose you’ve done cooking your meat, and while it rests, you decide to start chatting with your guests or you get busy sharing stories around the campfire. You tend to lose track of time in these situations.
That’s when a cooler works so well. It keeps your meat piping hot and fresh for a while, so you don’t have to worry about having to eat cold pieces of meat after a fun conversation.
3. No Need To Worry About External Factors
This one comes in especially handy when cooking meat outdoors. Several things may go wrong when resting your meat in a completely open environment.
For starters, there is a lot of dust and debris in the environment. You don’t want that in your meat, for sure. In some places, you may even have to ward off disgusting bugs.
A cooler will fix both those issues as your meat is sealed away in a closed space away from any threats.
Top 5 Best Coolers For Resting Meat
1. Coleman Portable Cooler
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We kick things off with a pretty solid option for resting ribs in cooler. Coleman is a pretty reliable brand. You’ll find that out soon enough by the sheer number of products of them that are featured on this list.
If you are looking for a lightweight and pocket-sized option, look no further. The 0.04 kg, or approximately 0.09 pounds weight makes it virtually weightless.
In addition to its portability, the fact is- it is the smallest cooler on this list. With dimensions of 13.41 x 22.05 x 8.35 inches, this cooler is going to fit anywhere with relative ease. You don’t need to free up space in the backseat for this item.
On top of that, the durability is satisfactory. The synthetic body may not be the sturdiest option on this list, but it is far from being fragile. You don’t need to worry about accidentally dropping it.
The amount of time it can keep your meat warm or the ice retention is nothing special. It won’t go cold quickly, but the time boost pales in comparison to the other products.
Lastly, the capacity of 12 quarts is quite low. You won’t be able to carry a lot of meat in this cooler.
- Perfect compact option
- Lightweight at just 0.04 kg
- Small dimensions of 13.41 x 22.05 x 8.35 inches
- The synthetic body offers decent durability
- Mediocre ice retention
- Unimpressive 12 quarts of capacity
2. Igloo Hardsided Cooler
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Igloo is another decent brand. This product shows why they are such a reliable name. This is a pretty decent all-rounder, as it does pretty well in all fields. This is all you need to give your brisket cooler rest.
For starters, we need to talk about its decent weight. After viewing the previous product, a weight of 3.7 pounds may seem heavy, but in all honesty, this is pretty impressive.
What makes this fact impressive is the fact that it can carry a lot more meat. It carries 14 quarts. If you want some more capacity, you can go for the 16-quart version of this product. Although, it will be considerably heavier.
Another factor that makes this product stand out is its durability. The body is super sturdy, and this product is easily going to last for a long time. Unless you plan to throw it off a cliff, there are no concerns in terms of longevity!
The dimensions of 14.57 x 10.63 x 13.78 inches are good for the capacity, as you can fit this also in your car without much trouble.
The only downside to this product is the underwhelming ice retention. But then again, it still does the trick.
- Good allrounder
- Good weight of 3.7 pounds
- Manageable dimensions of 14.57 x 10.63 x 13.78 inches
- Great capacity of 14 quarts
- Underwhelming ice retention
3. Cambro EPP180SW110
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High-end brands in terms of coolers are pretty rare, but Cambro is certainly an example. All their products are pretty expensive, but they pack a bang for your buck.
This item can be easily entitled the best cooler for resting meat. It excels in virtually every category.
Let’s start with the great capacity. It carries approximately 48 quarts, and that is well over twice the amount carried by the previous products.
With a weight of 2.65 pounds, this is one of the lightest products on this list. The capacity is impressive considering the lightweight.
Durability is another strong suit for this product. The polypropylene body is more than strong enough to last for ages. It does not wear away with time so you can put this in a bomb shelter and forget about it!
The dimensions are a bit of a concern. The 25 x 17 x 13 inches make it a cumbersome product, and you need to plan ahead of time if you are planning to carry it somewhere.
- Excels in all category
- Great capacity of 48 quarts
- Surprisingly light at 2.65 pounds
- Ice retention stands out
- Sturdy polypropylene body
- Clunky dimension of 25 x 17 x 13 inches
4. Coleman 16-Quart Excursion Cooler
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Coleman is at it again with another fantastic product. This penultimate product surely does the trick- if you need to rest brisket in cooler. This goes above and beyond in terms of resting your meat.
First off, the capacity of 16 quartz is hunky-dory. You can easily fit all the meat you have in this cooler. While it doesn’t have the most capacity on this list, this is still a satisfactory number.
One special feature of this product is the fact that it is really easy to clean. The surface just wipes clean in a second. Polyurethane is known for how easy to manage it is.
The durability is also up to the mark. Another thing that polyurethane is famous for is its longevity. It doesn’t crack or wear down in any way over time. This adds to its easy-to-maintain nature.
The dimensions of 15.75 x 11.88 x 11.25 inches put this in the medium-sized category. In other words, it’s neither too big nor is it conveniently small. The size is nothing to write home about.
The ice retention is more than good enough to keep your meat warm for a satisfactory period.
The only qualm we have with the product is its weight. At 4.4 pounds, it is one of the heaviest products on this list. This is a bit disappointing as it doesn’t have a huge capacity.
- Easy-to-clean product
- The decent capacity of 16 quartz
- Long-lasting polyurethane
- Ice retention is satisfactory
- The dimensions of 15.75 x 11.88 x 11.25 are standard
- Quite heavy at 4.4 pounds
5. Coleman 316 Series
We told you towards the beginning that Coleman would feature a high number of products. They lived up to that claim with three products. That’s more than half the products on this list. That says a lot about the brand.
But it’s not just the number of products, the sheer quality of these coolers is sure to satisfy your inner meat enthusiast’s itch for a good juicy steak. What makes this cooler special? This is the heavy-duty option on this list.
How did it earn this title? Well, first off, it has a capacity of 70 quarts. You read that right. This is by far the most capacity on any cooler on this list. You can carry enough meat to feed a small village with this cooler.
On top of that, the durability of this plastic product makes sure that it survives pretty much anything you throw at it. This is sure to last virtually forever. You won’t need to buy another cooler as long as you buy this product.
Still not sold on the heavy-duty tag? It has ice retention of 5 days. This means that it can keep meat or meat items from melting for five whole days. In other words, your meat is going to stay warm for a very long time in this cooler.
Unfortunately, this is a heavy and clunky product. The weight of 25 pounds and dimensions of 45.5 x 20.9 x 19 inches make this the largest product by miles. A tradeoff for the enormous capacity.
- Heavy-Duty option
- Super durable plastic body
- Amazing storage of 70 quarts
- Stand-out ice retention for 5 days
- Weight of 25 pounds and dimensions of 45.5 x 20.9 x 19 make it less portable.
Comparison Table of Cooler for Resting Meat
13.41 x 22.05 x 8.35
14.57 x 10.63 x 13.78
25 x 17 x 13
15.75 x 11.88 x 11.25
45.5 x 20.9 x 19
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Why Do I Need To Rest My Meat?
You must be wondering how resting your meat makes a difference to the taste. How does leaving your meat undisturbed make it juicier? Well, in simple terms, after you cook your meat, all the juices inside it want to get out.
Resting your meat essentially allows it to absorb all of that lost moisture and distribute it evenly across the entire cut of meat. That’s what makes this such an important part of the meat cooking process.
2. How Do I Use My Cooler To Rest Meat?
Ok, so you have 2 options. The first one is pretty straightforward. Simply chuck your chuck into the cooler right out of the cooker. It’s going to keep it warm and allow it to reabsorb its juices pretty well.
The second one is to ensure that you prolong the process even more. You have the option of preheating your cooler by adding hot water into the cooler. This makes sure things stay warm for a longer time.
3. Do I Need A Cooler For Resting My Meat?
Not really, you can use a wire rack. However, you are missing out on all the benefits we mentioned. You’re just reducing the amount of time you get to rest the meat and that’s never a good thing.
4. What Is The Top Company For Coolers For Cooling My Meat?
While a Traeger cooler is one of the most reliable options you have in terms of coolers. We didn’t find any options from this famous company for meat resting purposes.
However, Coleman is another household name in the cooler industry. There are three products on this list from this powerhouse. If you are looking for a good brand, Coleman definitely fits the bill. Igloo and Cambro are also respectable brands.
5. What Can I Do If I Don’t Have A Cooler?
As we mentioned, a cooler isn’t a must-have for resting your meat. A wire rack does the trick if you are in a pickle. Furthermore, you could wrap your meat in foil or parchment paper to keep it warmer for longer.
But again, these methods are not nearly as efficient or reliable as a good old cooler.
But don’t discount the Coleman products. They all specialize in particular fields. For example, if you are looking for a small and light option, the party stacker is your go-to cooler.
We hope this list helps you find the perfect cooler to rest your meat. Good luck with all your culinary exploits.