The 8 Best Reusable To-Go Containers of 2022

We found the best everyday carry items to step up your low-waste or zero-waste game.

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If you’re trying to go low or zero-waste, reusable containers for lunches, or leftovers from dining out, are a great way to meet your goal. Instead of wasting plastic zippered bags to corral your carrots or wrapping up your sandwiches in plastic, everyday carry reusable containers allow you to handle packed food with ease. Some are even collapsible or small enough that you can tuck them into a backpack or handbag, so they’re always ready for snacks, lunches at work, or bringing home leftovers.   

Ahead are our top picks for the best reusable to-go containers to bring with you wherever you go.

The Rundown
For dedicated lunch packers this kit has everything you need, right down to the bamboo cutlery.
This colorful little box seals with a stretchy band and is big enough for snacks on the go or a small lunch.
Best Collapsible:
Zip Top Dish Set at Ziptop.com
This unique product is a one-piece silicone dish with a zippered top, so you can store, reheat or serve in a single container.
This set of four square, 16-ounce containers are great for lunches, snacks, or storing leftovers.
Best Metal Containers:
PlanetBox Lunchbox at Planetbox.com
This sturdy, stainless steel lunchbox has handy dividers and lots of space for big lunches.
This double-wall insulated, stainless steel mug keeps drinks hot for 14 hours or cold for 40 hours.
This 2-in-1 bowl will keep food hot for 7 hours or cold for up to 12 hours.
These crystal-clear, BPA-free leak proof containers are made from Tritan copolyester and is BPA and BPS-free.

Best Overall: Package Free Zero Waste Lunch Kit

This kit has everything lunch packers need, beginning with an airtight, food-grade stainless-steel container with a silicone divider. It also includes a BPA-free silicone sandwich bag, an organic cotton napkin, and reusable bamboo cutlery. The whole kit is contained in a drawstring polyester bag made from recycled water bottles.

The primary food container can be used in the dishwasher, microwave, freezer, or even in the oven up to 400 degrees. As its name might suggest, Package Free ships using only recyclable and compostable packaging, with no plastic involved.

Best Budget: Goldune Bento Box

Goldune Bento Box

This colorful little box seals with a stretchy band and is big enough for snacks on the go or a small lunch. The Goldune Bento Box has a rounded shape that makes it easy to stuff in a backpack or handbag. It's made from a combination of BPA-free melamine resin and bamboo certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, assuring that its wood is sourced from sustainably managed forests.

The Goldune Bento Box is dishwasher safe. Designed to be used for two to three years, the bamboo in the bento box's build ensures its eventual biodegradability.

Best Collapsible: Zip Top Dish Set

This unique product is a one-piece silicone dish with a zippered top, so you can store, reheat or serve in a single container. It combines the advantages of both structured storage containers and zip-top storage bags.

The Zip Top Dish containers is made of BPA-, PVC-, lead- and phthalate-free food-grade silicone and is freezer, microwave and dishwasher safe. While also purchasable separately, the full set includes three bags (16, 24, and 32-ounce capacity), which nest inside each other for tidy storage. 

Potentially replacing thousands of plastic bags, the Zip Top Dish Set comes in five different colors.

Best Small Containers: Weangreen Lunch Cubes

This set of 16-ounce containers is great for lunches, snacks, or storing leftovers. The tempered glass is BPA-, PVC-, and phthalate-free and is dishwasher, microwave, and freezer safe. Many people prefer glass because it does not stain or transfer flavors to food. The lid has a food-grade airtight silicone seal and easy-to-open clips, which make these containers ideal for kids or people with diminished hand strength.

The Weangreen Lunch Cubes come in four different colors.

Best Metal Containers: PlanetBox Launch Stainless Steel Lunchbox

BPA-, PVC-, and pthalate-free, this sturdy, stainless steel lunchbox has handy dividers and lots of space for big lunches. The PlanetBox Launch Stainless Steel Lunchbox also comes with a lidded "dipper" container for sauces or other, more liquid lunch components. The PlanetBox Launch can also be paired with a microwave-safe "Satellite" dish.

Each PlanetBox Launch comes with decorative magnets in 15 different patterns, so kids can customize with dinosaurs, unicorns, astronauts, sharks, and more.

Best Mug: Klean Kanteen Insulated Mug with Leak Proof Café Cap 2.0

Klean Kanteen Insulated Mug

This 20-ounce, double-wall insulated mug is made from 18/8 food-grade stainless steel and can keep drinks hot for 14 hours or cold for 40. The powder coating on the Klean Kanteen Insulated Mug makes it slip-proof in your hands, while the leak-proof cap means it won’t spill all over the place when you’re on the go. The slim profile fits neatly into most car cup holders.

The Klean Kanteen company is certified climate-neutral and a B Corporation, which commits it to third-party audits for social and environmental performance. Plus, it's a member of 1 Percent for the Planet, so a percentage of its annual sales goes to environmental causes.

Best Splurge: S'well Teakwood Eats

The Teakwood S'well Eats 2-in-1 food bowl combines an interior bowl made of BPA-free copolyester and a triple-layered, insulating exterior bowl, which can keep food hot for seven hours or cold for up to 12. The distressed wood print design has a smooth matte finish. The interior bowl of the S'well Eats is freezer, microwave, and dishwasher safe, while the exterior is dishwasher safe.

The Teakwood S'well Eats is available in 16 and 21-ounce sizes.

Best Lightweight: INKA Food Containers

These crystal-clear, BPA-free leakproof containers are made from strong, lightweight Tritan copolyester (like the S'well Teakwood S'well Eats), which is FDA approved and more typically used in products like medical devices and baby bottles. Plus, they're microwave and dishwasher safe. The removable silicone gaskets used to seal the lids are backed by a lifetime warranty.

INKA Food Containers are available in three sizes, six colors, and sets with up to 18 pieces. They are also Cradle to Cradle certified to employ safe and environmentally sustainable materials and practices.

Final Verdict

We like the Package Free Zero Waste Lunch Kit (view at Package Free) because it contains everything you need for packing your lunch daily without any single-use plastics. If you're looking for something a little more unique the hybrid possibilities of the ZipTop Dish Set (view at Zip Top) combine the strengths of storage containers and plastic bags in a collapsible package.

What to Look for in Reusable To-Go Containers

Durability

Several of the products in this round-up have robust warranties. But even without that, look for products that are microwave, dishwasher, and freezer safe, so you can feel assured that your to-go container will be useful in any possible scenario, instead of worrying about it.

Materials

Many of the best to-go containers will indicate whether they are free of BPA, BPS, or phthalates—all chemicals that can disrupt human hormones. But even without chemicals potentially harmful to health, low-grade plastics can hold old flavors and leach them back into foods. Stainless steel and glass are often great picks because they don't impart flavors. Other to-go containers have strong eco-friendly credentials, using recycled materials, or materials that will biodegrade once you have eventually discarded the container, hopefully after years of use.

Dishwasher safe

Opt for products that are dishwasher safe for quick, easy cleanup.

Brand Practices/Programs

Learn what a company does to support ethical and responsible business practices itself or among its manufacturing partners, such as:

1 Percent for the Planet: Certification that a company donates at least 1 percent of its annual sales through monetary, volunteer, and in-kind support to non-profit environmental causes.

Certified B Corporation: Certification that a company balances profit and purpose, offers transparency and meets standards for its impact on workers, customers, community, and the environment.

Cradle to Cradle: Certification that products meet environmental and social performance in the areas of material health, reuse, renewable energy, carbon management, water stewardship, and social fairness.

Why Trust Treehugger?

Treehugger is dedicated to helping you find creative and practical solutions to replace single-use plastics in daily living. Arricca Elin SanSone learned her thrifty recycling habits from her mom and grandma, who believed in reusing and repurposing over buying.

View Article Sources
  1. Food and Drug Administration. Bisphenol A (BPA): Use in food contact application. Updated June 27, 2018.

  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. ToxFAQs for vinyl chloride. Updated August 28, 2014.

  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Phthalates fact sheet. Updated April 5, 2021.

  4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. ToxFAQs for vinyl chloride. Updated August 28, 2014.

  5. Bisphenol A (BPA) & Bisphenol S (BPS). Safer Chemicals Healthy Families.