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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

10 Models Considered
5 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
98 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best KitchenAid refrigerators

Last Updated October 2019

The refrigerator is often the centerpiece of the kitchen, which makes choosing the right model a serious decision. Not only do you need to get one with the right capacity, but it also needs to fit in the space you have and fall within your budget.

KitchenAid has an extensive line of refrigerators that range from compact drawer models (which fit under your countertop) to built-ins that rival commercial refrigerators. While you shop, you’ll also need to consider if you want handy features like adjustable drawers, spill-proof shelves, automatic ice makers, door alerts, or touch controls. Last, but not least, take a good look at your kitchen to determine which finish (including black, white, or stainless steel) accentuates your other appliances.

To learn more about how to choose the right KitchenAid refrigerator for your home, read on. If you’re ready to buy, consider one of our top picks.

Different refrigerator models provide varying amounts of storage space for fresh and frozen foods. Take a good look at the kind of food you eat to decide where you need the most space.

Key considerations

Size

Size matters on a number of different levels. First, you need to know how much space you have available in the kitchen for the refrigerator. However, before you jump out and buy a model that perfectly fits those dimensions, be sure to check that there is enough ventilation space and door clearance, too. Finally, some models have hinges that take extra space, so leave some room for that as well.

Built-in vs. freestanding

The majority of KitchenAid refrigerators are freestanding. That means they are fit into a precut slot in the kitchen and are not flush with the counters. Counter-depth models have a slimmer profile, so they mimic a built-in refrigerator but slide in like a freestanding model.

Built-ins, on the other hand, are flush with your cupboards and counters. The space itself is custom-built to fit the refrigerator. If the refrigerator has a custom panel, it may be indistinguishable from the rest of your cupboards. As you can imagine, these models are expensive, but if a seamless kitchen is your goal, you have to go with a built-in.

Luxurious living

This beautiful built-in has the ExtendFresh Plus Temperature-Management System, which preserves fresh food longer. It also includes a produce preserver, which neutralizes ethylene and extends the life of your food — saving you money. Adjustable, spill-proof shelves let you configure the interior to your specific needs, and it comes with a fingerprint-resistant finish, so the exterior stays shiny.

Types of KitchenAid refrigerators

Bottom-freezer refrigerators

Bottom-freezer refrigerators are the simplest model that KitchenAid offers. They have a single refrigerator door with a freezer drawer at the bottom of the unit. A few of these models have a slim design to fit into narrow spaces while others are full size. Many of these models have adjustable shelves and drawers to maximize the use of space.

Drawer refrigerators

If you’re living in a studio apartment, small house, or want fresh food in a guest house or rental, a drawer refrigerator might be the best option for you. It consists of two drawers — one that’s a refrigerator and one that’s a freezer. They fit underneath the countertop and give you easy access to food.

Side-by-side refrigerators

Side-by-side refrigerators devote one side to a freezer and another to a refrigerator. These popular models often have a water and ice dispenser built into the freezer door. Many people like these models for the ease of access and organization of both the freezer and refrigerator.

French door refrigerators

KitchenAid manufactures some impressive French door refrigerators. These models have French doors on top and a freezer drawer on the bottom. Some models include a separate middle tier of drawers for fruits and vegetables. These drawers have separate temperature controls so you can customize the temperature and humidity to preserve food.

Depending on where you buy the refrigerator, sometimes you can pay a fee to have the refrigerator installed and the old one hauled away. It might add an extra hundred dollars to your bill, but it’s often worth it.

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BestReviews

Considerations

Capacity

KitchenAid refrigerators have capacities that range between five and 35 cubic feet. The capacity you need will depend on how many people will use the refrigerator. In general, you need four cubic feet of refrigerator space per person, though you may need more or less depending on your shopping and eating habits.

Width and height

KitchenAid refrigerators come in widths between 24 and 42 inches and heights that range between 21 to 71 inches. That’s a big range, and capacity will vary a great deal from model to model. Measure your available space and be sure to account for ventilation and door and hinge clearance.

Freestanding freedom

This model allows you to control drawer temperatures and humidity levels to further preserve food. A freezer drawer that’s organized into tiers with dividers maximizes the use of freezer space. Plus, it’s Star-K Kosher–certified, making it usable on the Jewish Sabbath and other holidays.

Features

Ice and water dispenser

For some people, a water/ice dispenser is non-negotiable. It can make cooking easier and allows children and guests to get water at their leisure. Not all models have this feature, and it does add some maintenance. But it can be a convenience that’s hard to go without.

Automatic ice maker

This convenient feature eliminates filling and fumbling with ice cube trays. The freezer automatically makes ice, so it’s always available to you.

Temperature-management system

KitchenAid has their own temperature-management system that manages fresh and frozen foods separately. This allows the temperature of the refrigerator and the freezer to work independently. It also helps prevent freezer burn or the freezing of fresh foods.

Adjustable shelves and bins

The types of foods you buy and eat may vary from week to week. Adjustable shelves and bins give you options, so you can customize the layout of your refrigerator. Some models include shelves that can be arranged in a three-quarter configuration to account for tall items.

Soft-close drawers with dividers

KitchenAid uses a soft-close drawer design to prevent slamming and damage to the refrigerator or food. Some models also include drawer dividers in the refrigerator and freezer. Bottom freezers may also have drawers organized into tiers to keep everything separated and easy to find.

Touch-activated controls

A few of the top-of-the-line models have touch-activated controls on a front panel of the refrigerator door. From this panel, you can adjust the temperature, humidity, and water/ice dispenser settings.

Spill-proof shelves

Spills are a part of life. Most, but not all, KitchenAid refrigerators have glass spill-proof shelves that hold spills in and prevent them from spreading to lower levels.

Door alarm

It can sometimes be hard to tell when the refrigerator door has been left open. Door alarms sound after the door has been left open for a preset amount of time. If you’ve got kids or you’re human, this feature can save you from spoiled food.

Produce preserver

A produce preserver absorbs ethylene as it is emitted by ripening fruits and vegetables. The ethylene causes fruits and vegetables to ripen fast; by removing it from the vegetable drawer, your food stays fresh longer.

Finish

The refrigerator’s finish is, of course, the first thing you’ll notice. KitchenAid offers refrigerators in white, black, stainless steel, black stainless steel, and custom panel designs. Smudge-proof finishes hide fingerprints and may be worth a few extra dollars.

EXPERT TIP

There are a few KitchenAid refrigerators with a reversible door hinge, which gives you options if you have an unusual kitchen layout. However, you should always check before you buy, as you could be stuck with a door that can’t fully open due to clearance issues.


Staff  | BestReviews
EXPERT TIP

Refrigerators can weigh anywhere from 500 to 800 pounds. Some KitchenAid models have wheels to give you more control during installation.


Staff  | BestReviews

KitchenAid refrigerator prices

Inexpensive: KitchenAid refrigerators start between $1,800 and $2,500. Their base models are freezer-bottom refrigerators with a capacity of 19 cubic feet. They still have features like temperature-management systems, humidity control, and a produce preserver. Some side-by-side models with water dispensers can also be found at these prices.

Mid-range: French door models with or without a water/ice dispenser run between $2,500 to $5,000. Automatic ice makers, tiered drawer systems, improved temperature-control systems, and LED lighting set these models apart. Drawer refrigerators and compact custom built-ins can also be found in this price range.

Expensive: For $5,000 to $7,500, you’re looking at built-ins with a 25-cubic-foot capacity. The custom paneling of these models creates a seamless look. On the inside, they have the same features as lower-priced models. For more than $7,500, you’ll find the largest capacity side-by-side built-ins in either stainless steel or black stainless steel or with custom paneling.

Tips

  • You’ll need to consider more than just the refrigerator’s dimensions when choosing a size. Take into account ventilation space, space needed for the door hinge, and the door clearance. Kitchen islands and narrow kitchens in particular require careful measuring and figuring to get a good fit.

  • Some drawers and bins are not designed to fully open unless the refrigerator doors can fully open as well.

  • You may be ready to buy the largest refrigerator possible, but take the time to measure doorways, hallways, and any stairwells through which the refrigerator will need to pass before installation. If you can’t navigate the spaces or tight corners, you might need to consider a smaller model.

Other products we considered

The KitchenAid 23.8-Cubic-Foot French Door Refrigerator is the largest capacity counter-depth model that KitchenAid makes. It comes in fingerprint-resistant finishes and includes adjustable shelves and a three-tier drawer system in the freezer. The KitchenAid 20.9-Cubic-Foot Built-in Bottom-Freezer Refrigerator makes having a seamless kitchen a reality. It has the humidity, temperature, and food-preservation features that extend food life. Plus, we always love models with adjustable spill-proof shelves.

If you want a luxurious seamless look for your kitchen, built-ins can be customized to match your cabinetry and come with all the same interior features as freestanding models.

FAQ

Q. How much cubic space do I need per person in my family?

A. A good rule of thumb is to leave four to six cubic feet of refrigerator space for each family member. For a family of two, a refrigerator with a 12- to 16-cubic-foot capacity is more than enough. However, a family of six will need a capacity of 24 to 36 cubic feet to keep everyone fed.

Q. Do my shopping habits affect the kind of refrigerator I should choose?

A. Your refrigerator should complement your shopping habits. Bulk shoppers will need more storage space and may require more options for keeping things organized, such as freezer drawers and dividers. However, if the majority of your diet relies on fresh food, you may want to focus on organization in the refrigerator area.

Q. What are counter-depth refrigerators?

A. Counter-depth refrigerators have a shallower profile, so they don’t extend too far beyond your counters. They have a seamless built-in look without the high price of an actual built-in, and most have comparable square footage.

The team that worked on this review
  • Angela
    Angela
    Editor
  • Devangana
    Devangana
    Web Producer
  • Eliza
    Eliza
    Production Manager
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Stacey
    Stacey
    Writer

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