There’s a lot to love about a counter-depth refrigerator. “These appliances take up less space in your kitchen—a big plus if you have a small kitchen or you want to maximize space,” says Jeanette Fusco, interior designer at HiHomePicks. “They also tend to be more energy-efficient than other types of refrigerators and can give your kitchen a more streamlined look.”
Sound like something your own space could benefit from? To help you find the best models on the market today, we researched dozens of different units from top brands, evaluating capacity, durability, value, and range of features. Our top pick, the LG 27 cu. ft. Smart Counter-Depth Max French Door Refrigerator offers more storage space than your average counter-depth model, has smart integration, and has convenience features like an internal water dispenser and ice maker. Of course, there are a host of other great options, depending on your needs.
Here, a comprehensive look at the best counter-depth refrigerators.
LG LRFLC2706S 27 cu. ft. Smart Counter-Depth Max French Door Refrigerator
Special features to keep the fridge cooler
Internal water dispenser saves space
Available with viewing door
Slow ice maker
The biggest problem with counter-depth refrigerators: While they may look sleek and save on square footage, you sacrifice storage space for food. But not with this stylish new fridge from LG. The brand calls it “Counter-Depth Max” for good reason—though it has the same great space-saving profile as other counter-depth fridges, it has much more storage space—a full 27 cubic feet—than your average counter-depth model. This makes it an especially great choice for families who need a lot of space for food.
The smart fridge—connect it to your smartphone with the LG ThinQ app to get notifications about usage, maintenance, and more—can easily hold a week's worth of food in an organized fashion. For produce, there are two humidity-controlled drawers, as well as four glass, adjustable shelves, and plenty of easily-adjustable door storage. Your food will stay fresh longer, too, thanks to features like a curtain of cool air that blasts the front of the fridge when it’s open and silver wall panels in the back of the fridge.
The water dispenser is internal, which can be tough to reach, but is a definite space-saver. And some complain that the ice maker is relatively slow. That said, it’s a small price to pay for such a large and functional fridge with a budget-friendly price tag and quiet operation.
Price at time of publish: $2,499
Total Capacity: 27 cubic feet | Dimensions: 70 ¼ x 44 ⅞ x 31 ⅝ inches | Installation Depth: Counter | Ice/Water Dispenser: Ice and water | Ice Maker Type: Single | Available Finishes: Stainless steel (with or without viewing window) | Garage Friendly: No
Danby DFF101B1BSLDB 10.1 cu. ft. Top Freezer Refrigerator
Reversible door hinges
Great for small living
No ice maker
Sometimes even a standard counter-depth refrigerator is too large for your living space—that's where the Danby DFF101B1BSLDB comes in. This petite fridge may lack the cubic feet of storage space that some of the larger models provide, but it’s perfect for apartment living, tiny homes, or very small, tight kitchens. It even has a reversible door, so you can get the swing just right for your space. The budget-friendly price tag is a nice touch, too.
And beyond the space, you won’t want for much. The fridge has a very intuitive top-freezer design, so you can fit the basics in both the fridge and the freezer. Inside the fridge, you’ll find two produce crispers and three movable shelves, plus a gallon of door storage. Even the door bins can be adjusted with ease, so you can accommodate larger bottles and containers. In the frost-free freezer, there’s not quite as much flexibility—just one wire shelf and a bit of door storage. And keep in mind: There’s no built-in ice maker, so you’ll need a tray.
Price at time of publish: $800
Total Capacity: 10.1 cubic feet | Dimensions: 59.68 x 26.1 x 23.43 inches | Installation Depth: Counter | Ice/Water Dispenser: None | Ice Maker Type: Not applicable | Available Finishes: Black, stainless steel, white | Garage Friendly: No
GE Profile PYE22KYNFS 22.1 cu. ft. French Door Refrigerator with Autofill, Counter Depth
Dispenser with AutoFill technology
Quality interior lighting
Can install a second ice maker
Can be noisy
Just because you want to conserve space doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice all of the other great features that come along with a high-end refrigerator. If you’re willing to spend the money on an appliance like the GE Profile PYE22KYNFS you’ll find yourself with a fridge that has a long list of amenities, including a spacious interior with 22.1 cubic feet of space—15.07 cubic for refrigeration and 7.16 for freezing.
The fridge has plenty of room for customization, including five adjustable shelves, as well as a gallon of door storage (also adjustable). Food stays fresh longer, too, thanks to a TwinChill system that allows you to set separate climates in the fresh food and freezer sections and a Turbo Cool setting that drops the interior temperature after frequent openings.
There are a host of other conveniences, too. Think: A hands-free dispenser with AutoFill technology that fills your glass with water and knows exactly when to stop. The same dispenser also delivers filtered ice, too. And if you really love to entertain? You have the option to install a second ice maker by purchasing a separate kit for the freezer.
Price at time of publish: $3,699
Total Capacity: 22.1 cubic feet | Dimensions: 69-7/8 x 35-3/4 x 31-1/4 inches | Installation Depth: Counter | Ice/Water Dispenser: Ice and water | Ice Maker Type: Single (option to add a second) | Available Finishes: Stainless steel, black stainless steel, slate, black slate | Garage Friendly: No
Cafe CYE22TP4MW2 22.2 cu. ft. French Door Refrigerator with Hot Water Dispenser
Hot water dispenser
Ice maker can be messy
It’s not often you look at an appliance like a refrigerator and think “wow, that’s beautiful.” But the Cafe CYE22TP4MW2 will certainly elicit oohs and ahhs. The exterior can be customized to your space—the model has three options for finishes and hardware: white with gold, black with stainless steel, or all stainless steel. And no matter what style you choose, you’ll also get digital controls that look nice and sophisticated.
But it’s not all about how sleek it looks. The appliance is one of the smartest refrigerators out there, so it’s perfect for the modern home. The fridge actually has WiFi capabilities and works with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Space is ample, too. The French door style has removable and adjustable shelves to fit your needs. And in addition to a traditional ice and water dispenser, the unit also has a hot water dispenser to help you quickly prep drinks, side dishes, or a pot of pasta water. Just be warned: The ice maker can be a little messy, so you’ll have to tilt your glass just-so to keep ice from flying all over the floor.
Price at time of publish: $3,399
Total Capacity: 22.2 cubic feet | Dimensions: 70.5 in x 35.75 x 31.25 inches | Installation Depth: Counter | Ice/Water Dispenser: Ice and water | Ice Maker Type: Single | Available Finishes: White with gold, black with stainless steel, stainless steel | Garage Friendly: No
Best Quad Door
Whirlpool WRQA59CNKZ 36 in. 19.4 cu. ft. 4-Door French Door Refrigerator
Factory-installed ice maker
If you want a little more flexibility than the traditional French door or top-freezer models offer, check out a fridge with a quad door design. This one by Whirlpool features four doors that open to reveal 19.4 cubic feet of space for both fresh and frozen goods. The special design allows you to open up just one freezer compartment at a time, keeping the food inside the other nice and cold at all times. It also makes freezer space a bit more functional, more like a side-by-side, since you don’t have to cram everything into two drawers.
The look does take a little bit of time to get used to—it’s not quite as sleek as others—but the amenities make up for it. In this model, you’ll get both a factory-installed ice maker and a divider in the ice bin that allows you to store ice packs—great for families with kids. The fridge also has a very helpful Fast Cool option that lets you set the fridge to the coldest it can get for up to two hours; a Fast Freeze option does the same in the bottom half of the appliance.
Another nice-to-have for some families: You can set this fridge on special modes, like vacation and Sabbath, so it will run most efficiently in different scenarios.
Price at time of publish: $2,599
Total Capacity: 19.4 cubic feet | Dimensions: 69.5 x 35.75 x 28.38 inches | Installation Depth: Counter | Ice/Water Dispenser: Ice and water | Ice Maker Type: Single | Available Finishes: Stainless steel | Garage Friendly: No
For a refrigerator that's stylish, smart, and much more spacious than your average counter-depth model, look no further than the LG 27 cu. ft. Smart Counter-Depth Max French Door Refrigerator. This model works with Google Assistant and has more than enough storage to suit your needs, including two humidity-controlled crisper drawers. Want to spend less on a new appliance for your home? The Danby DFF101B1BSLDB may lack an ice maker, but it has a familiar top-freezer design and reversible door hinges that make it versatile enough for smaller spaces.
What to Look for in a Counter-Depth Fridge
There are a few different types of counter-depth fridges, and which is best for you will depend on your budget, lifestyle, and preferences. The first is top-freezer, which has a familiar design and is a common choice for apartments and smaller homes. This type of fridge can have a smaller interior, and typically doesn't feature an ice maker or dispenser, but does run at an affordable price. A French door fridge is much more expensive and has a bottom freezer which you pull out by the handle. It's a great pick for households who want to prioritize style and freezer space. Lastly, a multi-door fridge—which is a new and modern option on the market—has a very flexible design. The extra compartment is used as extra fridge or freezer storage, and can sometimes be converted to fit your day-to-day needs.
Size and Capacity
The term "capacity" refers to both the refrigerator and freezer portions of your appliance. Counter-depth fridges usually have less spacious interiors than standard-depth fridges, since they're not as deep and meant to sit flush with your cabinets and countertops. On average, they have 20 cubic feet—which is enough for a family of three or four. If you live in a small home or RV, you may want to pick a 10-cubic-foot model instead, while larger households can find counter-depth models with up to 23 cubic feet of space.
Ice and Water Dispenser
An ice and water dispenser is a welcomed amenity in many households but is not a necessary one. In many models, a dispenser can raise the price tag, and cut into the capacity of your appliance. (In counter-depth fridges, these tend to be bulky boxes that take up lots of room inside.) Now, on the bright side, a dispenser allows you to easily prep drinks and meals, which is convenient if you have children, are active, or frequently entertain. More expensive models may have dispensers with multiple settings or customized ones, as well, including crushed and cubed ice, and hot water. Today, some even make craft ice, like spheres.
Color, Finish, and Design
When you think of color, finish, and design, overall aesthetic is probably top of mind—and for good reason—but this attribute also affects daily maintenance. While white may not look quite as sophisticated as stainless steel, for example, it can be easier to keep clean, since stainless steel tends to attract fingerprints. The more basic finishes like white and black tend to be cheaper, too. Think about your budget and what matters most to you—style or cleanliness—and then make your decision. And remember: Some stainless steel refrigerators now come in a fingerprint-resistant finish, too.
Factory-installed ice makers mean you don’t have to purchase or connect a separate kit—and you certainly don’t have to fumble with a tray. If you regularly entertain or find yourself serving up iced beverages often (maybe for kids’ sports bottles), this feature is especially helpful—especially when paired with a water dispenser. Also note: Today, some fridges even make multiple kinds of ice: cubed, crushed, or even craft ice.
Are you tight on space and considering a top-freezer model? An option with a reversible door means you’ll have even more flexibility in where you install your fridge, since the door can swing open in whichever direction suits your space the best.
When you leave your refrigerator or freezer door open for too long, a door alarm will let you know via an app on your phone or a loud noise. This is convenient when your model starts to get older, as the seals on your fridge's door can start to have wear and tear. It's also a convenient feature for anyone with children, as they may leave the door open or not close it tightly, letting the cold air out.
Are counter-depth refrigerators more expensive?
In most cases, a counter-depth refrigerator is more expensive than any other type of refrigerator. This is because it doesn't have a standard, top-freezer design, and usually comes with other features like a dispenser, ice maker, or flexible compartment. These features, in addition to French doors, can help to maximize the fridge's storage space and your overall experience. However, they can boost the price of the model by a significant amount.
Are all counter-depth refrigerators the same depth?
Most counter-depth refrigerators are 24 inches deep, excluding the doors and handles which can vary from one model to the next. Most cabinets are also 24 inches deep, but there are a few measurements you need to consider before buying. You'll want to look at the measurement of the appliance when the doors and handles are attached, and when given space for cords and connections. Additionally, if your kitchen has a backsplash, take it into consideration, as the tile can alter the depth of your cabinets. To read more on this, check out our guide on counter-depth refrigerator dimensions.
Does a fridge need space around it?
When installing a refrigerator, you do need to leave space or "clearance" around it. If you slide it into a spot that's too fitted, your appliance won't be able to breathe and may even cause harm to your home. Ideally, you should give the fridge at least a half-inch of space on either side, two inches behind it, and one inch on top. During the installation process, be sure to check your manual for the exact clearance measurements your model requires.
What's the difference between counter-depth and standard depth fridges?
The primary difference between counter-depth and standard depth refrigerators is their overall dimensions. Counter-depth refrigerators are wider and less deep than standard refrigerators. While standard refrigerators are typically 32 to 36 inches deep, counter-depth fridges measure 25 to 30 inches deep. Because they can be installed to line up with the cabinets, counter-depth fridges don’t stick out into the room the way standard fridges do, so this refrigerator style has the appearance of a built-in appliance.
Why Trust The Spruce?
This article was written by Brigitt Earley, a freelance writer with nearly 15 years of experience writing about consumer products like home appliances. To curate this list, Brigitt scoured all of the most popular retailers to find the best, most highly-rated counter-depth refrigerators. Then, she vetted each, reading all of the specs and hundreds of reviews. She also interviewed experts like Jeanette Fusco, interior designer at HiHomePicks to find out what’s most important when shopping for this style of refrigerator. With this information, she further analyzed each product being considered to ensure the final list contained only the most reliable, quality options on the market today.
Additional writing and reporting was conducted by Marisa Casciano, who is the large appliance expert for The Spruce.