Are you tired of Tupperware and other plastic or glass containers taking up space in your kitchen?
Are you looking for a more sustainable food storage solution than plastic bags?
Zip Top claims to have the answer.
Its eco-friendly, reusable storage containers are praised by Forbes, Real Simple, Bon Appétit Magazine, and several other media outlets.
But do they live up to the hype?
In this in-depth review, I break down the pros and cons of Zip Top containers.
You’ll get an unbiased look at how they compare to traditional storage containers, plastic bags, and the brand’s biggest competitor, Stasher Bags.
By the end, you’ll have all the important facts to decide if Zip Top containers are worth it.
Use the links below to navigate the review:
- Zip Top Containers: A Quick Overview
- Pros of Zip Top Containers
- Cons of Zip Top Containers
- Zip Top vs. Stasher Bags
- FAQs About Zip Top Containers
- Bottom Line: Are Zip Top Containers Worth It?
Zip Top Containers: A Quick Overview
Before I dive into the pros and cons, let me first introduce you to Zip Top.
The founder, Rebecca Finell, launched the company in 2017 with a mission to create an alternative to single-use plastic bags and to produce a solution that’s better for you and the environment.
Zip Top containers are made in the USA and constructed from one piece of platinum silicone, a highly durable material that is BPA-free and contains no plastic, fillers, or harmful chemicals.
The free-standing containers have an opening at the top that can be pressed or “zipped” closed. It’s an elegant, award-winning design that provides versatility and comes in a choice of colors.
Zip Top containers stand up on their own, have wide openings with easy-pour corners, and are freezer-, fridge-, dishwasher- and microwave-safe.
Zip Top containers come in multiple sizes ranging from 4 to 32 ounces. The larger containers can be used as bowls to eat meals on the go.
There are even options for baby food and toddler snacks (and much more).
I’ll cover all the options later in the review, but the key point is you can use them in so many ways: food storage, an alternative to bowls and cups, on-the-go storage, or organizing small items around the house.
Now that you know the basics of Zip Top containers, let’s take a look at the pros and cons.
Pros of Zip Top Containers
There’s a lot to love about Zip Top containers. Its greatest advantages are its versatility and durability, but there’s so much more.
Let’s review all the benefits you get with Zip Top.
First, you can use Zip Top containers over and over and reduce waste. Compared to single-use plastic bags, Zip Top containers are much more eco-friendly.
Not only does this benefit the environment, but it helps you save money, too. Ziploc bags cost around 10 cents per bag, which can add up over the years, especially if you use them daily.
There’s no limit to how you can use Zip Top containers. Here are some of the many ways people are using them today:
- Leftovers: Keep leftovers fresh and cut down on bulky containers or pots in the fridge. When ready to eat, pop the Zip Top container in the microwave.
- Time saver: Save time by using them for meal prep. You can cut up fruit, vegetables, and other ingredients for a recipe and store it until you are ready to cook.
- Portion control: Have health goals? Create meals and use the containers as single servings to watch your portion sizes.
- Recipe helper: Marinate food, mix ingredients, or keep wet and dry ingredients separate until you are ready to bake.
- Portable food: Make snacks or meals to take on the go for yourself or your baby. Use them for a picnic or hike. Skip the restaurant containers and bag up your meal yourself. Pack your pet’s treats for easy access while you’re out and about.
- Store liquids: Store hot or cold liquids and keep them in the fridge or freezer.
- Steam foods: Steam veggies or other foods right in the bag in a microwave, and vent the bag for steam to escape.
- Freeze foods: Freeze soups or make and store frozen desserts. Try freezing grapes for a quick snack.
- Storing Breast Milk: Zip Top has a whole line dedicated to nursing mothers. The 6-ounce reusable breast milk bags are the first of their kind. They can be stored in the fridge or freezer, feature convenient corners to pour from, and you can even write on them.
- Organization during travel or at home: Keep track of small or important items like medication, cosmetics, or toys.
- School and work organization: Keep office supplies, crayons, stickers, and anything else in its place.
- Hobby supplies: Keep your craft, sewing, or other hobby-based materials organized and accessible.
- Sports organization: Store small items for sports like golf tees and mouthguards.
- Gardening: From storing seeds to using them as makeshift watering cans or vases for fresh cut flowers, the possibilities are numerous.
- Tool storage: Keep track of nails, bolts, screws, and small tools.
- Gifting: Use them as gift bags, party favor holders, or food gifts like nuts, cookies, and homemade trail mix.
No Harmful Chemicals
Zip Top focuses on the safety of its containers. All containers are BPA-, lead-, PVC-, and phthalates-free.
Even when you pour hot liquids in, no harmful chemicals will leach from the container. Each Zip Top is made from 100% platinum silicone and is microwave, dishwasher, and freezer safe.
Platinum silicone is a high-quality, food-grade, and skin-safe polymer. It is often used to create baby bottle nipples and surgical materials.
As a seamless piece of silicone, the design is simple. You can close the container with your hands, and there are no pieces that can break off or get lost.
It also cuts down on the clutter that comes with having multiple container and lid combinations for storage.
Variety of Shapes and Sizes
Zip top containers come in multiple shapes and sizes, including:
|Dishes||16-ounce (small), 24-ounce (medium), 32-ounce (large)||3” x 7” x 4” (small), 3.5” x 8” x 4.5” (medium) and 4” x 9” x 5” (large)|
|Bags||4-ounce (snack), 24-ounce (sandwich)||1” x 6” x 3” (snack) and 1.5” x 7.5” x 7” (sandwich)|
|Cups||8-ounce (small), 9-ounce (short), 16-ounce (medium), 24-ounce (large)||2.5” x 5” x 5” (small), 3.56” x 4.81” x 3.88” (short), 3” x 5.5” x 6” (medium) and 3.5” x 6” x 7” (large)|
There are also 4-ounce baby containers and 6-ounce breast milk bags.
Variety of Designs
You can choose from four colors: teal, frost, gray, peach, or lavender. These options are available for the dishes, bags, and cups.
Baby containers come in teal, pink, brown, and peach and are shaped like animals, complete with ears and noses.
The breast milk bags only come in one color (frost) and include an optional fridge/freezer tray to help organize.
Containers Stand Up
All Zip Top containers are designed to stand right side up without falling over, regardless of whether the top is open or shut. That can be convenient when pouring contents in, as you’d have to use a stand to keep a traditional plastic bag upright and open.
Contents Pour Out Easily
Liquid contents are easy to pour, thanks to the design at the top (where it “zips”). For a controlled pour, partially close the top to form a spout. Instead of getting trapped in the corner as it would with traditional plastic storage bags, all contents will pour out.
Zip Top doesn’t make any claims about how long the containers will last, but the bags boast thick walls and sturdy construction. They won’t rip easily or tear, and they don’t easily puncture.
To test the durability, I ran over one with my 4,000-pound SUV.
Besides a few specks of dirt that easily washed off, it was not damaged in any way; no cracks, splits, or deformities.
Easy to Clean
If you have reused plastic bags before, you know how difficult it is to get them clean. Food and liquids get trapped inside, and they often tear when you try to flip them inside out.
With Zip Top, there are no angled corners to trap food. The rounded edges make it easy to pour out excess water after you finish cleaning them. Plus, you can throw them in the dishwasher.
Easy to Store
Are you tired of your kitchen cabinets looking like this?
Zip Top containers are designed to nest for easy storage, ideal for small kitchens with limited storage space.
Easy on the Hands
If you have issues opening tight lids for jars or know someone who does, Zip Top makes an excellent alternative. They are soft to the touch and easy to close and open.
Cons of Zip Top Containers
While these containers boast plenty of benefits, there are some cons to consider. Let’s take a look at the negatives, so you get the whole picture.
Seal Is Not Airtight
The most common complaint about Zip Top containers is that the seal is not airtight, and in my testing, I found this gripe to be valid.
If you’re looking for containers with a vacuum-tight seal, Zip Top doesn’t deliver. Ground coffee, spices, and sugar granules can escape the zipper when you hold the container upside down and apply pressure.
Liquids Can Leak
Since the zipper seal is firm but not airtight, liquids will leak out if the container tips over. The containers are designed to function upright and must remain that way at all times in the fridge, or they will leak.
Food in the Bag Can Get Smashed
The bags are made from soft food-grade silicone, so it is easy for stored food to get smashed or broken during transport — especially if other items are piled on top of the containers. Chips, crackers, and other snacks can quickly turn into crumbs.
Not Stackable When Full
Zip Top containers can nest when empty, but since the two sides form a peak when the top is closed, you can’t stack them when they’re full. As a result, they take up a lot of room in your freezer, fridge, or cabinet. For optimal organization, you may have to purchase stackable fridge organizers.
Zipper Can Pop Open
If you put too much liquid or food in the Zip Top containers, they can pop open. Additionally, if the bags are squeezed, they might pop open. As you can see in the picture below, water pours out of the top the more I press the container.
The rounded zipper seal is easy to open, and if you overfill the container and it accidentally tips over, you’ll have a mess.
Unfortunately, Zip Top doesn’t offer large containers or bags. If you frequently use gallon-size containers or plastic bags, you’ll find the current offerings unsatisfactory. You’ll have to use multiple Zip Top containers to match the storage of a one-gallon bag.
For context, the largest Zip Top container (32 ounces) can barely fit three medium bananas.
Tomatoes, greasy sauces, or highly-pigmented foods like beets can stain Zip Top bags and containers. While it won’t affect the performance, it won’t look clean, and the stains can persist, even after several washes.
To combat stains, you’ll need to soak your Zip Top containers in a baking soda and water mixture for several hours.
Foods with a strong odor seem to penetrate the silicone. Even though it is made from nonporous material, some odors are hard to remove, even after washing.
If you’re dealing with a persistent odor, let the container soak for a few hours in a baking soda and water mixture.
Zip Top is one of the most expensive silicone storage brands (view current prices on ZipTop.com). Furthermore, you only get a small number of bags in a set, compared with the hundreds of bags in a Ziploc variety pack. But keep in mind, Zip Top bags and containers are reusable, so they’re more economical long-term than single-use plastic bags.
Zip Top vs. Stasher Bags
Zip Top is an alternative to single-use plastic bags and plastic or glass containers, but it’s not the only reusable silicone food storage container on the market.
The main difference between Zip Top and Stasher is the size and shape of the containers.
Stasher’s bag design features rounded edges and a rectangular profile. The brand also offers larger storage solutions than Zip Top, such as the half-gallon and gallon bags.
There are several other differences to consider before deciding which to buy. Here’s a quick comparison of Zip Top vs. Stasher:
- All Zip Top containers are designed to stand up. Not all Stasher bags stand up.
- Both brands offer a choice of colors, but Stasher provides more options than Zip Top.
- Stasher donates a portion of its sales to charitable causes. You can choose which cause to support by purchasing a specific collection. For example, the Endangered Seas collection helps seas and supporting ecosystems.
- Stasher is owned by S.C. Johnson, the same company that owns the single-use plastic bag brand, Ziploc. Zip Top is a privately owns company with no ties to corporations that produce single-use plastic bags.
- Both brands offer storage solutions made from 100% silicone that are freezer, microwave, and dishwasher-safe.
- Both are expensive, and the cost per ounce between the two brands is similar. Compare prices on StasherBag.com and ZipTop.com. Note: Zip Top is offering a 15% discount for a limited time. Use the discount code “PRUDENTREVIEWS15” at checkout to claim the offer.
- Stasher’s design is focused on replacing single-use plastic bags. Zip Top focuses on bags, but its offerings can also replace single-use cups and bowls.
- Zip Top offers a baby collection made up of 4-ounce containers featuring an animal design. Stasher doesn’t have a baby-specific collection, but the company offers snack and mini bags that you could use for that purpose.
- Only Zip Top offers breast milk bags.
- Only Stasher offers little to-go bags that come with a clip so you can attach them to something, like a backpack or diaper bag.
- The most common complaint about both is that the seal is not airtight.
Bottom line — Zip Top and Stasher have common missions based on reducing single-use plastic. Both offer high-quality reusable silicone containers and share similar pros and cons. The most notable difference is the sizes and shapes and the fact that not all Stasher bags stand up independently.
FAQs About Zip Top Containers
Do you still have questions about Zip Top? The answers below should clear things up.
The brand was launched in 2017. The breast milk bags debuted in 2020.
Zip Top containers are sourced (silicone ingredients) and made in the United States.
You have 30 days from the date of receipt to return or exchange the product for a full refund. The item must be new, unused, and in its original packaging.
Yes, Zip Top containers are recyclable at specific silicone recycling plants. There are also plans for a Zip Top “take back” program to upcycle products.
Yes, Zip Top does not contain the harmful chemicals used in plastic bags and containers. They are free of BPA, lead, phthalates, and PVC. Plastic containers and single-use bags can contain harmful chemicals. They also eliminate single-use plastics that can end up in bodies of water and landfills.
You can contact the company via phone, email, or mail. You’ll find the contact information here.
Yes. Zip Top is offering 15% off all purchases for a limited time. Enter the discount code “PRUDENTREVIEWS15” at checkout when you buy on ZipTop.com.
Bottom Line: Are Zip Top Containers Worth It?
Now that you know the pros and cons of Zip Top, are they right for you? Are Zip Top containers worth it?
Before I give you my recommendation, here’s a quick recap:
- They are made from platinum silicone, a durable substance that’s free of harmful chemicals.
- The upfront cost is higher than single-use plastics, but they are reusable and better for the environment and your health.
- They are versatile; you can use them to store just about anything that fits.
- They come in different colors and designs.
- They stand up on their own, and the contents can pour out without spilling.
- The opening is wide; you can eat meals directly from the container.
- They’re easy to open or close. It’s a breeze to keep them clean, and they nest for efficient storage.
- They’re not the best choice for liquids because the seal is not airtight, and the contents can leak if the bag is flipped over. The lack of an airtight seal can also cause foods to get stale or spoil quickly.
- They can stain and retain odors if used to store strong-smelling or pigmented foods.
- The largest size is only 32-ounces.
Bottom line — Zip Top containers are incredibly versatile and ideal for solid food storage at home. But there are some limitations.
Overall, I love the company’s mission, and the product delivers. While there’s room for improvement, Zip Top is the highest-rated brand in the reusable, soft silicone storage market. So, if you’re interested in trying out a safer and more eco-friendly alternative to plastic bags, Zip Top is the brand to try.
Zip Top is offering 15% off all purchases to Prudent Reviews readers. Enter the discount code “PRUDENTREVIEWS15” when you check out on ZipTop.com to claim the discount.