In order to find the best mini fridge to dry-age your beef, there are a few different specifics about various models that you need to consider.
Dry-aging beef will give you a better texture and more concentrated flavour when you cook the meat.
You can even dry-age your own beef at home using a dedicated mini fridge and a few other supplies, but you need to ensure that this fridge works effectively for this purpose.
Why would you want to dry-age your beef at home?
Whether you are a foodie or you are just interested in the science behind dry-aging meat, connoisseurs of dried, aged meat insist that dry-aging beef gives it a better flavour and texture than fresh beef.
Several different processes occur during the dry aging process, and this causes dry-aged beef to have a deep, nutty flavour that fresh meat does not have. Enzymes also break down the meat while it ages, which makes it more tender and therefore, more enjoyable to eat.
Best mini fridge for dry-aging beef
Although there are so many reasons why the flavour and texture of beef may improve when it is dry-aged, purchasing dry-aged beef can become expensive and this kind of meat can be difficult to find.
This is why many DIY experts have set out to dry and develop processes through which you can dry-age your beef yourself in your own home. Dry-aging your beef at home requires a fridge and a fan to aid in the drying process, a wire rack and a lot of patience.
Fortunately, you likely have most of these things in your home already. However, when you are choosing a fridge to dry-age your meat in, it is usually best to purchase a dedicated mini fridge for this process.
This is because the smell of your dry-aging meat will become more and more noticeable as time goes on and this odour may transfer to the other foods in your fridge if you are trying to do this process in your regular household fridge.
The reason why mini fridges are best is because you will be able to set up this fridge somewhere that is out of the way, and where the smell will not bother you or your household members as much.
However, there are many different freezers, fridges, and chests available on the market, that it can be difficult to determine which models are best to dry-age beef.
Some of the best mini fridges that have the correct temperatures and enough space to dry-age beef include the Whynter BR-1211DS, the BLACK+DECKER BCRK25V, and the Cooluli 20L.
The Whynter BR-1211DS
It is common for DIY-experts to use beverage fridges in order to create an at-home dry-aging fridge for their meat. The Whynter BR-1211DS is a great option in this case, as it only costs $457.89 and has 121 Cubic Feet of space.
This fridge is specifically designed to achieve ultra-low temperatures, which are ideal for dry-aging beef, since you need to maintain a temperature of between 36 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit to prevent your beef from rotting while it is ageing.
As an additional bonus, this fridge also has a glass door, which will allow you to check on how the dry-aging process is going without having to open the door and it has a built-in fan to aid with ventilation.
The BLACK+DECKER BCRK25V
The BLACK+DECKER BCRK25V is a more affordable option, as it only costs $260.99. Although it only has two cubic feet of space inside it, it is convenient if you do not have as much space in your home, because it is quite compact. The entire mini fridge is only 17.5 x 18.5 x 26.6 inches.
It also has a manual thermostat control, with a minimum temperature of 32 degrees, which makes it suitable for dry-aging, but it is advisable that you do purchase a separate fridge thermometer to make sure that your beef is ageing at the optimal temperature.
The Cooluli 20L
The Cooluli 20L may seem like an unconventional choice, but this mini fridge may be exactly what you need if you are just starting out with dry-aging your own beef. This model is the least expensive option on the list at only $149.99 and it is also the smallest, with only 20 litres of capacity.
However, it does allow you to set your exact temperature and it can go as low as 16 degrees Fahrenheit. It is the perfect fridge if you are still testing your process as you will only be able to age a few pieces of beef at a time.