Best Breast Milk Coolers of 2021

Updated
Breast milk coolers can ensure none of your pumped milk is wasted.

When you are breastfeeding, there may be times when you cannot feed your baby directly.

You will need a way to safely store your breast milk in transit. Whether you are pumping and have to carry the fruits of your labor home from the office, transporting bottles from home to daycare, or bringing some with you on a trip.

The best breast milk coolers can do that so your hard work isn’t wasted.

Our Top Picks

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Compare the Best
Features
Product Image of the BABEYER BreastMilk Cooler Bag with Ice Pack Fits 4 Baby Bottles Up to 9 Ounce,...
Most Durable Breast Milk Cooler
Babeyer Insulated Bottle Cooler Bag
  • Leather bottom & handle
  • Buckle on strap
  • Easy to clean material
Product Image of the Breastmilk Chiller Reusable Storage Container by CERES CHILL | Cooler - Keeps...
Best 12+ hour Breast Milk Cooler
Ceres Chill The Breast Milk Chiller
  • Up to 20 hours of chill time
  • Versatile & discrete
  • Works with most pumps
Product Image of the Sarah Wells Cold Gold Breastmilk Cooler Bag with Ice Pack (Le Floral)
Best Stylish Breast Milk Cooler
Sarah Wells Cold Gold Cooler
  • Holds four bottles
  • BPA- & PVC-free
  • Stylish design
Product Image of the PackIt Freezable Breastmilk & Formula Cooler, Scribble Dots
Best Freezable Breast Milk Cooler
PackIt Freezable Breast Milk Cooler
  • No ice packs required
  • Fits most pumping bags
  • Room for other accessories
Product Image of the Jax 2020 Breastmilk Cooler Bag - Breastmilk Storage Container for 6 Tall Bottles...
Best Large Breast Milk Cooler
Jax 2020 Breast Milk Cooler Bag
  • Fits 6 full-size bottles
  • Durable canvas material
  • Good for pouches
Product Image of the Lekebaby Breast Milk Cooler Bag with Contoured Ice Pack Fits 6 Breastmilk Baby...
Best Multi-Bottle Breast Milk Cooler
Lekebaby Breast Milk Cooler
  • Front or top opening
  • Has contoured ice pack
  • Include inner-bag feature
Product Image of the Momcozy Insulated Baby Bottle Bag, Multi-Function Breastmilk Cooler Bag & Lunch...
Best Multipurpose Breast Milk Cooler
Momcozy Insulated Baby Bottle Bag
  • All-in-one lunch bag & cooler
  • Has removable separation panel
  • Fully insulated & waterproof
Product Image of the Medela Breast Milk Cooler and Transport Set, 5 ounce Bottles with Lids,...
Best for Traveling
Medela Breast Milk Cooler
  • Compact design
  • Lightweight construction
  • Wipes clean
Product Image of the J.L. Childress MaxiCOOL 4 Bottle Breastmilk Cooler, Baby Bottle and Baby Food...
Best Budget Breast Milk Cooler
J.L. Childress Breast Milk Cooler
  • Holds four full-size bottles
  • Clips onto stroller handle
  • Comes with handy front pocket
Product Image of the FlexiFreeze Pocketbook Breastmilk Cooler, Gray
Best Small Breast Milk Cooler
FlexiFreeze Pocketbook Milk Cooler
  • Discrete pocketbook design
  • Lightweight
  • Fits in smaller purses or diaper bags

Do You Need a Breast Milk Cooler?

You need a breast milk cooler if you are transporting or storing breast milk and you do not have access to a fridge. To ensure your breast milk is fresh, you should store it in a refrigerator, freezer, or breast milk cooler as soon as possible.

How Long Can Milk Stay in a Cooler?

The CDC says you can safely store breast milk in an insulated cooler bag for up to 24 hours if the bag contains frozen ice packs (1).

However, you must keep the cooler out of direct sunlight and ensure the ice packs remain frozen.

Related Reading
Breast pump sitting on the windowsillHow Long Can Breast Milk Sit Out at Room Temperature?

Types of Breast Milk Coolers

There are three types of breast milk coolers, and each has its own benefits and drawbacks.

Thermos Style Coolers

Product Image of the Breastmilk Chiller Reusable Storage Container by CERES CHILL | Cooler - Keeps...

Some specialist flasks will cool your breast milk and keep it at a chilled temperature.

PROS:
  • Discrete.
  • Portable.
  • Flexible
  • Has other uses.
CONS:
  • Limited volume.
  • May require decanting into bottles or freezable containers.
  • Less affordable than cooler bags.

Cooler Bags

Product Image of the BABEYER BreastMilk Cooler Bag with Ice Pack Fits 4 Baby Bottles Up to 9 Ounce,...

The majority of breast milk coolers are cooler bags. They work in the same way as a standard cooler bag that you might carry your lunch in.

Depending on the particular bag, you freeze them or put ice packs inside them. The ice then keeps your breast milk chilled.

PROS:
  • Lightweight.
  • Affordable.
  • Easy to use.
  • Has other uses.
CONS:
  • Requires ice packs.
  • Variable cool time.
  • Space can be limited.

Car Fridge

A third alternative is a small fridge that plugs into your car and works in the same way as the refrigerator in your kitchen.

PROS:
  • Keeps milk cold for longer.
  • Lots of space.
  • Has other uses.
CONS:
  • Expensive.
  • Takes up the most room.
  • Must be plugged into the car.
  • Bulky and heavy to carry.

How to Choose the Best Breast Milk Cooler

Keep in mind your reason for buying one. A cooler for the occasional trip or to carry a “just in case” bottle of milk with you is different from the best cooler for returning to work and pumping every day. These are some other points to consider when choosing the best breast milk cooler for you.

Size

Ask yourself how much milk you will need to transport and consider how those needs may change over time. If you are returning to work and plan to pump, the cooler that holds four small baby bottles may be perfect for now, but you may need something bigger in six months.

Type

Do you have a strong preference for a thermos style, or are you open to whichever kind of cooler best suits your needs? It’s always good to have an open mind to ensure you’re making the best choice.

Style

Is it important to you that your cooler doesn’t stand out as a breast milk cooler? Do you need something that will blend in at work or while you travel?

Alternatively, do you want a cooler that will be easy to distinguish among other coolers at daycare?

Budget

Your breast milk is a precious resource, and scrimping on a breast milk cooler risks not only wasting that resource but also compromising your baby’s health and safety. Our advice is to buy the best quality cooler you can reasonably afford.

Performance

Consider how long you will need to keep your breast milk safely chilled. If you are pumping at work, will you be storing your milk in the fridge and only need the cooler for transport, or will you need to keep your milk in the cooler all day?

Are you buying a cooler because you are going on a trip and want to have a bottle of breast milk handy just in case? If so, how long might you need it to stay safely chilled?

For most bags, you will need ice packs for longer-term chilling, but not for a quick trip to Grandma’s house.

Ease of Cleaning

Consider how easy it is to keep a particular cooler clean and how often you will need to clean it. The cooler you have to wash thoroughly with hot soapy water every night when you get home from work is less practical than the one you can wipe clean.

Versatility

Ask yourself: Will you need to carry other items in your cooler? Is the cooler specifically designed to work with one brand of bottle, bag, or breast pump? Are there other uses for your chosen cooler?

Carrying Options

It’s almost guaranteed that you will be carrying your cooler in addition to other items. Look to see if it can be carried on a shoulder strap or if it can be clipped to another bag or your stroller.

Extra Features

Does your cooler come with ice packs? If so, are they shaped to accommodate the specific size or shape of a bottle or bag? Can you chill the cooler in the freezer, or can you plug it into a USB port and charge it up?


The Best Breast Milk Coolers of 2021

Here are the ten best breast milk coolers on the market.

1. Babeyer Insulated Bottle Cooler Bag

Most Durable Breast Milk Cooler

The Babeyer breast milk cooler is a sturdy option for those who plan to breastfeed for an extended period. Users have found it stands up to plenty of journeys either to and from work or between home and daycare. There are none of the zipper issues that seem to develop with other options.

A clip on the handle makes it easy to attach to your stroller or another bag, and the leather sheath on the handle ensures carrying by hand stays comfortable. Meanwhile, both the inner and outer surfaces are easy to wipe clean, and the leather bottom provides additional stability.

It was challenging to find anything wrong with this cooler, and the only thing we could complain about was the rear pocket. The makers promote the usefulness of the pocket, but it is pretty small and isn’t secure.

PROS:
  • Two sizes available.
  • Leather bottom and handle.
  • Buckle on strap.
CONS:
  • Small back pocket.

Additional Specs

Dimensions 7.5 x 9.1 x 6.9 inches or 7 x 7 x 5.5 inches
Empty weight 9.1 or 9 ounces
Capacity Four 9-ounce or four 5-ounce bottles
Cold for Up to 8 hours
Additional features Contoured ice pack

2. The Breast Milk Chiller by Ceres Chill

Best 12+ hour Breast Milk Cooler

The Chiller by Ceres Chill has an adapter, so you can use it with most brands of pumps. You simply attach your equipment to the canister and pump directly into the cooler. This unique style is basically one metal canister inside another, and you can use it to store milk in three ways.

First, you can put ice water in the outer canister and pump directly into the inner canister. This allows you to pump and store a maximum of 12 ounces for 20 hours or more without additional refrigeration.

The second configuration allows you to put ice water in the inner canister, which sits inside the outer bottle. You then pump directly into the outer bottle, and this will enable you to store a maximum of 24 ounces for up to 20 hours without additional refrigeration.

Finally, you can use the outer canister alone. This configuration will hold up to 34 ounces, which can be decanted into bottles, and requires additional refrigeration.

The chiller lid doubles as a bottle.

PROS:
  • Up to 20 hours of chill time.
  • Versatile and discrete.
  • Works with most pumps.
CONS:
  • Not suitable for multiple pumping sessions.

Additional Specs

Dimensions 3.5 x 3.5 x 11 inches
Empty weight 1 pound
Capacity Up to 34 ounces
Cold for 20 hours
Additional features Can be used as a thermos

3. Sarah Wells Cold Gold Breast Milk Cooler

Best Stylish Breast Milk Cooler

The Cold Gold breast milk cooler is made to coordinate with the Sarah Wells breast pump bag and the Pumparoo wet and dry bag for your used breast milk parts. Cooler bags can be matched with bags of the same color and pattern or coordinated with breast pump bags in a solid color.

With a rounded, stretched cube-type shape, the cooler itself is a relatively basic design. The handle on top of the bag is sturdy, with double O rings and a clip that opens, allowing you to attach it to and detach it from other items with ease.

The lining can be wiped clean using a damp cloth with hot soapy water, and the outer fabric can be cleaned in the same way.

PROS:
  • Holds four bottles.
  • Roomy.
  • Stylish.
CONS:
  • Rigid ice pack.
  • Some users found the ice pack prone to leaking.

Additional Specs

Dimensions 7.9 x 7.8 x 6.1 inches
Empty weight 12 ounces
Capacity Four 8-ounce bottles
Cold for Up to 8 hours
Additional features Hard-bodied ice pack

4. PackIt Freezable Breast Milk Cooler

Best Freezable Breast Milk Cooler

This freezable breast milk cooler from PackIt does not require any ice packs. Instead, the walls of this cooler are infused with a freezable gel. You place the entire cooler into the freezer for twelve hours, and it is then ready to use.

The main compartment is divided in two, with a central wall. The wall is also infused with freezing gel, acting as an ice pack in the bag’s center.

There is a small clear pocket on the front of the cooler so you can insert a name tag, and there are six different designs from which to choose. The advertised capacity is four 5 ounces bottles, and users say there is plenty of room for these, plus one or two small feeding accessories.

PROS:
  • No ice packs required.
  • Fits most pumping bags.
  • Wipe clean.
CONS:
  • Needs 12 hours to freeze.

Additional Specs

Dimensions 8 x 5.5 x 6.5 inches
Empty weight 12 ounces
Capacity Four 5-ounce bottles
Cold for Up to 10 hours
Additional features None

5. Jax 2020 Breast Milk Cooler Bag

Best Large Breast Milk Cooler

If you need plenty of room for large bottles or smaller bottles with additional ice packs, the JAX 2020 is a good option.

We found you could fit six full-size bottles in the cooler, with the only issue being that with some brands of wide bottles, you had to use a small thin ice pack. Tall bottles were no issue, no matter their capacity, and we like that you can fit them in the cooler when they have the nipple and cap attached.

We also like the pouch strap” that’s on the inside of the lid. The strap undoes at one end, and you thread it through the hole at the top of your breast milk pouches and clip the strap back in place. This keeps full bags upright and prevents leaks.

PROS:
  • Roomy.
  • Durable canvas material.
  • Good for pouches.
CONS:
  • Ice pack not included.
  • The material of the bag isn’t easy to clean.

Additional Specs

Dimensions 7.2 x 7.2 x 9 inches
Empty weight 11 ounces
Capacity Six 9-ounce bottles
Cold for Eight hours
Additional features Milk bag strap

6. Lekebaby Breast Milk Cooler

Best Multi-Bottle Breast Milk Cooler

If you need to carry six bottles regularly, the Lekebaby cooler might be the breast milk cooler for you.

This roomy yet compact bag has space for six full-size 8-ounce bottles and the contoured ice pack included with the cooler. The ice pack is shaped to maximize the space between the bottles, helping it to keep your breast milk well chilled for a full eight hours.

The contoured ice pack arrives unfilled, but all you have to do is fill it with water and seal it. This only needs to be done once; there is no need for ongoing emptying and refilling of the ice pack.

We particularly like the inner-bag feature. This bag within a bag just sits there until you have a pill. Then you can remove the inner bag for easy cleaning while your cooler remains unsullied by your breast milk.

PROS:
  • Front or top opening.
  • Contoured ice pack.
  • Detachable shoulder strap.
CONS:
  • Flexible bottom.

Additional Specs

Dimensions 10.6 x 5.9 x 7.7 inches
Empty weight 12 ounces
Capacity Six 8-ounce bottles
Cold for Up to 8 hours
Additional features Shoulder strap, inner bag

7. Momcozy Insulated Baby Bottle Bag

Best Multipurpose Breast Milk Cooler

Momcozy has an all-in-one lunch bag breast milk cooler, and we must admit we’re a little conflicted about it.

We love that you can store up to six bottles and your lunch or snacks all in one bag. A removable panel separates the two sections, so you can also use the cooler as a larger bag. This makes it versatile enough to use on weekends, for picnics, and any other time you might need a mid-sized cooler.

However, if you’re looking for a bag to drop off at daycare, the upper section is unnecessarily bulky. Plus, at daycare or if you’re taking it to work, it feels like you’re taking up a lot of refrigerator room.

PROS:
  • Versatile.
  • Two bags in one.
  • Can be used post-pumping.
CONS:
  • Ice pack not included.
  • Bigger than others, which might not work for shared refrigerators.

Additional Specs

Dimensions 7.8 x 6.3 x 11.8 inches
Empty weight 1 pound 4 ounces
Capacity Four to six 8-ounce bottles
Cold for Up to 8 hours
Additional features Detachable buckle

8. Medela Breast Milk Cooler

Best Breast Milk Cooler for Traveling

The Medela is an excellent option if you don’t use a breast milk cooler on a day-to-day basis but need one for occasional travel. Small, lightweight, and easy to fit into a larger bag, this option also takes up little space when not in use.

Medela says that if you use it with the ice pack, previously chilled milk will stay cold for ten hours. But with freshly pumped, body temperature milk, the chill period is closer to eight hours.

However, the CDC says you can carry freshly expressed breast milk for up to 24 hours in a cooler with an ice pack (2).

This cooler will do the job if you are taking a flight and want the option of feeding with a bottle while in the airport or on the plane.

PROS:
  • Compact.
  • Lightweight.
  • Wipes clean.
CONS:
  • Limited capacity.
  • No top handle — it has a shoulder strap only.

Additional Specs

Dimensions 6.46 x 6.1 x 5.31 inches
Empty weight 7 ounces
Capacity Four 5-ounce bottles
Cold for 8 to 10 hours
Additional features Contoured ice pack

9. J.L. Childress MaxiCOOL Breast Milk Cooler

Best Budget Breast Milk Cooler

The MaxiCool cooler can hold four tall, 9-ounce full-size bottles, three wide-bodied bottles, or up to six short 4-ounce bottles. Bottles are kept cool with an ice pack, which is included, and the slim profile means it fits easily into most diaper bags.

A handy front pocket is a useful spot for smaller items such as a baby bib, spoon, or burp cloth. The interior lining is heat-sealed, making it especially easy to clean should there be a leak from your bottle.

J.L. Childress also manufactures a line of coordinating items such as a full-size, full-body changing pad and smaller coolers that hold two tall bottles. Another item that is available is a five-piece diaper bag organizer set that includes a wet and dry bag, a snack pouch, and a mesh soiled item bag.

PROS:
  • Holds four full-size bottles.
  • Clips onto stroller handle.
  • The fabric wipes clean easily.
CONS:
  • Does not hold four of all bottle brands.
  • Too small for some users.

Additional Specs

Dimensions 11 x 4 x 9.5 inches
Empty weight 12 ounces
Capacity Four 9-ounce bottles
Cold for Up to 8 hours
Additional features 8-ounce reusable ice pack

10. FlexiFreeze Pocketbook Breast Milk Cooler

Best Small Breast Milk Cooler

Inside the U.S.-made FlexiFreeze breast milk cooler, there are 16 pouches filled with purified water. You pop the cooler into the freezer, and the pockets freeze, acting as a built-in ice pack. However, this also means you have to remember to plan ahead and freeze the cooler.

The pocketbook breast milk cooler is ideal for short journeys, transporting a small amount of milk, and for keeping a couple of pouches cold in your bag during a day out. However, the only bottles that will fit in the bag are the mini feeding bottles you see in hospitals.

Consequently, this is not the cooler for you if you need to regularly take milk back and forth between work and home or home and daycare.

PROS:
  • Discrete.
  • Lightweight.
  • Fits in smaller purses or diaper bags.
CONS:
  • Limited capacity.
  • Requires freezing.

Additional Specs

Dimensions 4.5 x 2.3 x 8 inches
Empty weight 12 ounces
Capacity Two mini-hospital bottles or three to four 5 ounce bags
Cold for Up to 10 hours
Additional features None

Breast Milk Cooler Comparison Chart

Product Best Dimensions Empty weight Capacity Cold for
Babeyer Insulated Cooler Bag Durable 7.5 x 9.1 x 6.9″ or 7 x 7 x 5.5″ 9.1 or 9 oz Four 9-ounce or four 5-ounce bottles Up to 8 hours
Ceres Chill The Breast Milk Chiller 12+ hour 3.5 x 3.5 x 11″ 1 lb Up to 34 oz 20 hours
Sarah Wells Cold Gold Cooler Stylish 7.9 x 7.8 x 6.1″ 12 oz Four 8-ounce bottles Up to 8 hours
PackIt Freezable Breast Milk Cooler Freezable 8 x 5.5 x 6.5″ 12 oz Four 5-ounce bottles Up to 10 hours
Jax 2020 Breast Milk Cooler Bag Large Cooler 7.2 x 7.2 x 9″ 11 oz Six 9-ounce bottles Eight hours
Lekebaby Breast Milk Cooler Multi-Bottle 10.6 x 5.9 x 7.7″ 12 oz Six 8-ounce bottles Up to 8 hours
Momcozy Insulated Bottle Bag Multipurpose 7.8 x 6.3 x 11.8″ 1 lb 4 oz Four to six 8-ounce bottles Up to 8 hours
Medela Breast Milk Cooler Traveling 6.46 x 6.1 x 5.31″ 7 oz Four 5-ounce bottles 8 to 10 hours
J.L. Childress Breast Milk Cooler Budget Pick 11 x 4 x 9.5″ 12 oz Four 9-ounce bottles Up to 8 hours
FlexiFreeze Pocketbook Milk Cooler Small Cooler 4.5 x 2.3 x 8″ 12 oz Two mini-hospital bottles or three to four 5-ounce bags Up to 10 hours

Protect Your Liquid Gold

Pumping or expressing breast milk is a time-, energy-, and emotionally-intensive job. The only thing worse than spilling some of this precious resource is finding you cannot use it because it has warmed up too soon.

Before choosing a breast milk cooler, think about your budget, how long you plan to be expressing or pumping, and how you will be using the cooler. This seemingly insignificant choice can make a world of difference, so take your time and choose well.

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About the Author

Patricia Barnes

Patricia Barnes is a homeschooling mom of 5 who has been featured on Global TV, quoted in Parents magazine, and writes for a variety of websites and publications. Doing her best to keep it together in a life of constant chaos, Patti would describe herself as an eclectic mess maker, lousy crafter, book lover, autism mom, and insomniac.
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