What Is The Best SUP Cooler Of 2020?

best sup cooler

You want to have a perfect paddleboarding experience with loved ones. And do you know what makes everything better? Snacks and a cold drink on a hot day. But your beverages will be warm and gross by midday– unless you get a SUP cooler.

While shopping around, it is easy to get confused because there are so many options. Each brand claims to have the best cooler which makes it even harder. This may seem like a small problem but it can be overwhelming and frustrating.

The decision doesn’t have to be difficult to make. Let me help you find the best SUP cooler for your adventures. Here, I discuss the top eight coolers for standup paddlers.

Best Paddle Board Coolers Compared

SUP Coolers
Capacity
My rating
1. Engel Cooler 13 qt
1. Engel Cooler 13 qt
13 qt/12 cans
4.5
2. Engel Cooler 19 qt
2. Engel Cooler 19 qt
19 qt/30 cans
4.4
3. Arctic Zone Titan
3. Arctic Zone Titan
30 cans
4.4
4. Grizzly 20 Quart
4. Grizzly 20 Quart
20 qt
4.3
5. SUP-Now Cooler
5. SUP-Now Cooler
6 cans
4.1
6. SBBC iSUP Cooler
6. SBBC iSUP Cooler
10 cans
4.1
7. iROCKER Cooler Deck Bag
7. iROCKER Cooler Deck Bag
6 cans
4.0
8. THURSO SURF SUP Deck Bag
8. THURSO SURF SUP Deck Bag
10 cans
3.9

SUP Cooler Reviews

Read on for my reviews:

1. ENGEL Cooler/Dry Box 13 Qt

engel sup cooler

This ENGEL cooler works as a dry box too— as you can tell from the heading. In addition to keeping drinks cool, it prevents moisture and dust from getting to electronics and other valuables.

Design

This cooler comes in six colors; white, camouflage, pink, silver, tan and white.

To help with carrying it, the ENGEL cooler has a shoulder strap and a handle at the center of the lid. All the surfaces are non-absorbent, making them odor- and stain-resistant. They are also easy to clean.

There is a hanging tray for dry goods and it is removable.

Other great features include self-stopping rear hinges, stainless steel screws and stainless-steel front latches.

Capacity

The ENGEL is a 13-quart cooler. This is the equivalent of three gallons. In terms of cans, you can fit about 12 of them.

Waterproof/Water-resistant

In addition to having non-absorbent surfaces, the ENGEL cooler doubles as a dry box. Not even moisture will be able to get in. It is fitted with a waterproof seal.

Ice Retention

This is the most important feature for a cooler and the ENGEL excels here. Its lid has an EVA gasket around it. The gasket is airtight for outstanding ice retention. You will be able to keep ice in the cooler for about two days.

Features and Specifications

  • Available in six colors
  • Shoulder strap and lid handle
  • Non-absorbent surfaces
  • Hanging tray (removable)
  • Self-stopping rear hinges
  • Stainless-steel screws and front latches
  • Doubles as a dry-box
  • Waterproof seal
  • Lid with EVA gasket
  • Capacity: 13 qt/12 cans
  • External dimensions: 15” x 10” x 11 1/4”
  • Internal dimensions: 12” x 7” x 8.5”
  • Weighs 4.5 lbs

Pros & Cons

  • Stain- and odor-resistant
  • Easy to clean
  • Moisture- and dust-proof
  • Doesn’t retain ice for many days

Customer Feedback

People bought the ENGEL for different purposes. Those that wanted a SUP cooler say that it is great. It keeps food and drinks cold for an entire day. According to the reviews, it can’t retain ice for three or more days. Some people were also disappointed to learn that it is not made in the USA.

Check Price of the Engel Cooler

2. ENGEL Cooler/Dry Box with 4 Rod Holders 19 Qt

engel sup fishing cooler

Paddle board accessories make SUP fishing a lot more comfortable. This ENGEL cooler serves as a dry box and comes with rod holders for convenience. See other exciting features below.

Design

The ENGEL cooler has an adjustable shoulder strap and a carry handle on the lid for carrying it. Your dry essentials will have a nice place, thanks to the hanging tray. Don’t forget the rod holders for your fishing rods.

This cooler has self-stopping rear hinges, stainless-steel latches and stainless-steel screws. Its insulation is made from high-grade molded polystyrene foam.

Capacity

Unlike the first SUP cooler, this one is bigger. It has a 19-quart capacity and can fit 30 cans. That’s enough for most paddlers.

Waterproof/Water-Resistant

All surfaces are non-absorbent and water can’t get in. There is a waterproof seal around the lid to prevent moisture or even dust from getting it.

Ice Retention

The airtight EVA gasket makes ice retention outstanding. Don’t expect it to keep ice for a week—maybe a day or two. But your drinks will remain cool for longer.

Features and Specifications

  • Adjustable shoulder strap
  • Carry handle on lid
  • Hanging tray for dry goods
  • Includes four removable rod holders
  • Six colors available
  • Self-stopping rear hinges
  • Stainless-steel screws and latches
  • Non-absorbent surfaces
  • Waterproof seal
  • Airtight EVA gasket
  • Capacity: 19 qt/30 cans
  • External dimensions: 16.5” x 11.25” x 12.75”
  • Internal dimensions: 11.75” x 8” x 10”
  • Weighs 6.75 lbs

Pros & Cons

  • Comes with rod holders
  • Stain- and odor-resistant
  • Water- and dust-proof
  • Won’t keep ice for long

Customer Feedback

SUP fishing enthusiasts love the rod holders—as expected. The cooler is lightweight and easy to carry, even with contents. You may also be happy to hear that it is heavy-duty and can handle rough situations. The ENGEL retains ice for a day or two, which is not bad. Some customers are disappointed but most of them don’t mind.

Check Price of the Engel SUP Fishing Cooler

3. Arctic Zone Titan Deep Freeze Zipperless Hardbody Cooler

Arctic Zone Titan Deep Freeze Paddle Board Cooler

The Titan Deep Freeze has such a stylish design, you can’t stop staring. Other than, it comes with tons of cool features, as you will see below.

Design

It has a zipperless lid that allows you to access your food and drinks quickly. The shoulder strap is adjustable and padded for comfort. This cooler also comes with side handles and elasticized gear straps.

You can get the Titan Deep Freeze in three colors; blue, moss and white. All of them are gorgeous.

Capacity

You can fit 30 cans in this cooler. There are two more models; a 9-can and a 48-can. This 30-can cooler is neither too small nor too big and is probably the best for most people.

Waterproof/Water-Resistant

The exterior material is water-resistant. The interior has a hard body and is, obviously, waterproof. There is an Ultra Safe leak-proof design that keeps moisture out.

Ice Retention

According to the manufacturer, the Titan Deep Freeze can maintain still ice for three days. It has a radiant heat barrier and Deep Freeze high-performance insulation.

Features and Specifications

  • Quick access zipperless lid
  • Adjustable and padded shoulder strap
  • Side handles
  • Elasticized gear straps
  • Available in three colors
  • Water-resistant interior
  • Ultra Safe leak-proof construction
  • Radiant heat barrier
  • Insulated front pocket
  • Has a smart shelf
  • Coldblock base
  • Capacity: 30 cans
  • Interior measurements: 14.20” x 9” x 10.25”
  • Weighs 3.4 lbs

Pros & Cons

  • Comfortable shoulder strap
  • Stain-resistant, easy to clean
  • Great design
  • No top handle

Customer Feedback

Users are impressed by the Arctic Titan Deep Freeze. They love the design as well as its performance. For many of them, it kept ice for over a day. The cooler is durable and they expect it to last a while. There are a few complaints about the lack of a lid handle.

Check Price of the Arctic Titan

4. Grizzly 20 Quart Rotomolded Cooler

Grizzly SUP Cooler

The one thing you can be confident about when you buy this cooler is its durability. Besides that, the Grizzly comes with so many features for your convenience.

Design

If you love options, you’ll be happy to know that you have 10 colors to choose from.

The cooler is made using rotomolded construction and the insulation is environment-friendly. It is long-lasting and backed by a lifetime warranty.

It has a plastic tray for dry goods and a 2-inch drain plug. In addition to that, there is a bear claw latch system that maintains a secure grip without extra hardware.

Capacity

This is a 20-quart cooler—as you can tell from the heading. It can hold about 24 cans.

Waterproof/Water-Resistant

This being a hard-body cooler, you don’t have to worry about water getting in. It cannot absorb water or retain stains.

Ice Retention

The Grizzly has an amazing ice retention level. It can keep ice for four days or even more. The trick is keeping the water drained.

Features and Specifications

  • 10 colors available
  • Rotomolded construction
  • Environment-friendly insulation
  • Super durable
  • Plastic tray for dry goods
  • 2-inch drain plug
  • Bear claw latch system
  • Capacity: 20-qt
  • External dimensions: 20.25” x 14.5” x 14.25”
  • Weighs 16 lbs

Pros & Cons

  • Rugged
  • Lifetime warranty
  • Impeccable ice retention level
  • A little heavy

Customer Feedback

All users agree that the Grizzly has an outstanding ice retention level. They say that it keeps ice for days. This is your perfect companion for those long paddling adventures. Its construction is awesome—no wonder it comes with a lifetime warranty. Some people think it is a little too heavy, but they don’t mind.

Check Price

5. SUP-Now Paddleboard Cooler & Mesh Bag

SUP-Now Paddleboard Cooler Mesh Bag

Unlike the others above, this one is a bag and not a hard-body cooler. But this doesn’t mean that it is substandard.

Design

The SUP-Now is meant specifically for paddlers. It comes with four suction cups and sticks on your hardboard. This design doesn’t work on iSUPs but you can use the bungee system.

The cooler comes with a carry handle and three storage compartments. One compartment is for dry goods, the other one for cool snacks and the third one for ice and cold food/drinks.

Capacity

The SUP-Now is small and compact. It can only fit six cans but you will have room for extra essentials such as your phone and protein bars.

Waterproof/Water-Resistant

Given the material, this cooler bag cannot be considered waterproof. It is splash-resistant but if you submerge it your stuff may get soaked in water.

It includes a waterproof insert for your phone though.

Ice Retention

This cooler bag is suitable for a few hours of paddling because that is how long it will keep your drinks cold.

Features and Specifications

  • Four suction cups for installation
  • Carry handle
  • Three storage compartments
  • Splash-proof
  • Waterproof pouch included
  • Large-tab zipper
  • Capacity: 6 cans
  • Weighs 9 ounces

Pros & Cons

  • Compact and lightweight
  • Amazing construction
  • Waterproof pouch
  • Faulty suction cups

Customer Feedback

Paddlers love the size and design of the SUP-Now. It is small, compact and looks great—according to them. There are a lot of comments about the customer service. Users say that the manufacturer takes their concerns seriously. The cooler keeps drinks and food cold for a few hours. Many SUPers tried using the suction cups on their iSUPs and that didn’t work.

Check Price

6. SBBC iSUP Cooler

SBBC Paddle Board Cooler

The SBBC comes with features that would make any paddler happy. This is one of those purchases that you will never regret. Check the details.

Design

There are four clips and telcos straps for attaching the cooler to your board. Unlike the SUP-Now, this feature works with iSUPs.

It has a mesh netting pocket for personal items.

Capacity

The SBBC can hold ten cans and you will still have space for ice. You can bring enough drinks and snacks for a short trip.

Waterproof/Water-Resistant

This cooler is not water-proof but it is water-resistant. The materials used and the zipper will keep water from getting to your stuff.

Ice Retention

The thick insulation on the SBBC ensures maximum coldness. It will keep everything cool for several hours.

Features and Specifications

  • Four clips and telcos straps
  • Mesh netting pocket
  • Water-resistant
  • Thick insulation
  • Compatible with most paddleboards
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Capacity: 10 cans
  • Dimensions: 14” x 12” x 4”
  • Weighs 14 ounces

Pros & Cons

  • Keeps water out
  • Perfect size
  • Easy to strap down
  • Won’t keep ice for long

Customer Feedback

Paddlers say that the SBBC is the best. It fits perfectly on their boards and installation is easy. Some have had clothes in the cooler bag and they remained bone-dry. It also keeps drinks nice and cold. The zipper is great and so is the Velcro.

Check Price

7. iROCKER Cooler Deck Bag

iROCKER Cooler Deck Bag

iRocker is not a new name in the paddleboarding world. This cooler, just like all their other products, is outstanding in more ways than one.

Design

At the bottom of the cooler bag, you will see clips for attaching it to your board. If you have a D-ring cargo area, the installation will be a breeze.

Capacity

The iRocker cooler bag can hold six cans. Some people may find it a little too small. But it holds many things if you know how to pack.

Waterproof/Water-Resistant

This is a water-resistant cooler bag. The zipper is water-tight too. Everything you put in it will remain dry until the end of your adventure.

Ice Retention

The iRocker performs better than most cooler bags. It retains ice for longer, thanks to its design and the reflective gray material.

Features and Specifications

  • Attachment clips at the bottom
  • Waterproof
  • Water-tight zipper
  • Small pocket for personal items
  • Reflective material
  • Sturdy construction
  • Carry handle
  • Capacity: 6 cans
  • Dimensions: 13” x 12” x 6”
  • Weighs 15 ounces

Pros & Cons

  • Great ice retention level
  • Durable
  • Easy to attach
  • Small capacity

Customer Feedback

Most of the buyers are iRocker fans. All users agree that this is a quality cooler, made with heavy-duty materials. It is neither too big nor too small and they love it. No one has complained about their drinks not being cold enough or water getting into their stuff. There are no negative reviews.

Check Price

8. THURSO SURF SUP Deck Bag Paddle Board Cooler

THURSO SURF SUP Deck Bag Paddle Board Cooler

It doesn’t matter what kind of paddleboard you have; the Thurso Surf deck bag will fit perfectly. If you use it once, you will never go on a trip without it.

Design

At the top of the cooler, there is a mesh pocket for essentials that require quick access. For attachment to the deck, the cooler comes with 4 suction cups and hooks. This system will attach to an iSUP as well as an EPS board.

Capacity

You can fit 10 cans in the Thurso Surf deck pad or an equivalent amount of drinks and food. This is enough for an entire day in the water.

Waterproof/Water-Resistant

All the zippers and materials are water-resistant. A little water may enter but your stuff will not soak in water.

It comes with a waterproof pouch for your phone and other valuables.

Ice Retention

The ultra-thick insulation material will keep your drink and snacks cool for a couple of hours. It works well even in super hot weather.

Features and Specifications

  • Mesh pocket at the top
  • 4 suction cups and hooks
  • Water-resistant zippers and materials
  • Waterproof pouch for valuables
  • Ultra-thick insulation
  • Mesh pocket on the inside
  • Capacity: 10 cans
  • Weighs 1.6 lbs

Pros & Cons

  • Thick, effective insulation
  • Easy installation
  • Well-made
  • No carry handle

Customer Feedback

Paddlers are impressed by the Thurso Surf cooler bag. The attachment system works well. Few users have had an issue with the suction cups. But that is the only complaint.  Everyone else is glad they bought this cooler.

Check Price

Conclusion

Hopefully, you are now in a position to make an informed decision.

The above SUP coolers are all well-made and they do a great job. Choose one based on size and your budget.

Some of them retain ice for days, while others only retain it for a couple of hours. It depends on how long you always stay in the water.

So, which one do you think would be best for you?

How to Choose a SUP Cooler

As a paddler, a cooler is one of those things that you just need to have. It does more than keep your beverages cold.

SUP coolers make great seats. Long paddleboarding sessions are awesome, but they can wear you out. Sitting down occasionally helps you go for longer, hence better experiences. Tired SUPers are not the only ones who would appreciate a seat. Beginners will love the extra stability and so will anglers. Not to mention that a cooler can be convenient for attaching fishing equipment.

Just like with every other SUP equipment, choosing a cooler should be taken seriously. So how do you pick the perfect one?

Here is how.

Consider These Factors in Choosing a Paddle Board Cooler

a. Size

This is an obvious one. First, you don’t have all the room on your paddleboard. Having a huge cooler has its advantages but it may be a nuisance. SUP boards come in different sizes, and so do coolers. The width of the board is the main determinant here.

What you plan on putting in the cooler influences the size you should pick too. For SUP touring and fishing, you may need a bigger size for storing your catch, in addition to drinks and snacks. If all you do is go leisure paddling for a few hours then a small one will work just fine.

b. Waterproof/Water-resistant

You cannot stop water from splashing all over. But you can stop it from getting to your stuff by buying a waterproof cooler. This may not be a problem with hard-body coolers.

However, it’s a different story with cooler bags. The materials used to make them are not necessarily waterproof. At the very least, ensure that it is water-resistant. Unless the whole paddleboard capsizes, you won’t have an issue.

If you decide to buy a water-resistant bag, you will have to find some sort of a waterproof pouch or bag. Things like your phone need to stay dry. (Most cooler bags offer a bonus waterproof pouch).

c. Capacity

This has been discussed briefly above. It is easy to focus so much on the size and forget the capacity. Just because a cooler looks big doesn’t mean it will hold much. The thickness of its insulation affects the capacity.

If the insulation is thick, expect a smaller capacity.

Oftentimes, manufacturers tell you how many cans a cooler can hold to help you estimate its capacity. Those on the smaller side hold ten cans or less. Others are big enough to hold almost 50 cans.

d. Design

It’s just a cooler box; how is the design important? This is a simple accessory—no argument—but there are small aspects that can make your experience better.

For instance, how easy is it to install on your SUP board? Check whether it comes with clips, Velcro straps, suction cups or anything that will help you set it up on the deck.

You may also enjoy having a cooler with different compartments. You don’t want some snacks exposed to the sun but you also don’t want them in the ice. A section that keeps them cool would be nice.

e. Material

What is the cooler made of? Buy something cheap and it will come apart after three months of use.

There are many affordable, high-quality SUP coolers. Some even offer a lifetime warranty. Other than that, pay attention to parts such as screws and hinges. They should be made of non-corrosive materials. Some of these small parts tend to rust after a while.

f. Ice Retention

The main reason for buying a cooler is to keep your drinks and food cold—and many of them can do that. The question is, for how long?

When on an extended SUP trip, you will require a higher level of ice retention. Some of the fancier cooler boxes can maintain ice for days. They have a few inches of insulation, heat barriers, super tight lids, and leak-proof qualities. If you can afford one of these, go for it.

Cooler bags aren’t too bad. They won’t keep ice for days but they will do for shorter trips. Be sure to factor in the weather. On extremely hot days, they may not maintain ice for over 24 hours.

Can’t You Just Buy a Regular Cooler?

Sure, you can; but it is not a good idea.

A regular cooler may work for things like road trips and afternoons at the beach but it won’t be great for SUP.

SUP coolers, unlike regular ones, are designed to be used on a paddleboard. The former will come with features that allow you to install it on the deck without issues. Most of them are non-slip and sit securely on the board.

Regular coolers are not typically meant for the water. They may not have corrosion-resistant parts. If you always paddle in salty water you can’t afford to take this lightly.

Lastly, SUP coolers will do a better job when it comes to conserving fish for anglers. They can keep your catch frozen so you don’t have to cut your trip short.

Final Thoughts

Think of a SUP cooler as an investment. Buy the best one that you can afford. Decide on the ice retention level depending on the duration of your paddleboarding trips. You can get this information from customer reviews; those are always honest. Check the cooler size and capacity—knowing that these are two different things.

The material used to make a SUP cooler not only determines its durability, but it also affects the freshness of your food. It should be waterproof or water-resistant too.

Once you have picked out an ideal cooler, be sure to take care of it. You put your food in there so it should be kept clean. Let it dry completely before storing it. If you keep fish in it, use solutions to get rid of odors. To be on the safe side, clean after every use. Whatever you do, never store it when it is dirty and smelly.

That’s it! As usual, remember to have lots of fun and collect awesome memories. 

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