Finding the right trash can is all about looks, size and functionality, and the perfect size for 90% of kitchens is a 13 gallon trash can. Looks and functionality come down to your preference. Choose a top of the line sensor-opening model, or go with a simple step model.
There are quality trash cans on both sides of the spectrum. The important thing is to find one that will fulfill your particular needs. To expedite your search, we've come up with a list of the best 13 gallon trash cans for the kitchen.
Leave a note at the bottom if you have any questions or comments 🙂
Our #1 Pick
Simplicity in it's greatest form. All the fancy gizmos and gadgets traded for a dependable, well-built step-engaged trash can. The SimpleHuman has by far the best reviews we've seen for kitchen trash cans and it's because the company invested its money in the structural integrity of the product.
Top 3 Compared
Top Rated Products
1) SimpleHuman 13.2 Gallon Step Trash Can - Best Step Trash Can
2) Itouchless 13 Gallon Auto Trash Can - Best Touchless Trash Can
3) Rubbermaid 13 Gallon Step Trash Can - Best Budget Step Trash Can
4) Vnewone Kitchen 13 Gallon Auto Trash Can - Best Budget Touchless Trash Can
5) NineStars 13 Gallon Open Style Trash Can - Best No Lid Trash Can
6) Home Zone Living 13 Gallon Dual Trash Can - Best Dual Trash Can
Best 13 Gallon Trash Cans for the Kitchen
1) SimpleHuman 13.2 Gallon Step Trash Can
While this isn’t the cheapest trash can, it still gives customers plenty to rave about. This 50-liter trash can stands at just under 26 inches and weighs 16.5 pounds.
The SimpleHuman trash can has several impressive features like a smooth and silent lifting mechanism, sturdy steel pedal, and built-in wheels.
Among reviewers’ favorite benefits are the 10 year warranty, durability, flat back that makes it flush to the wall, and the fingerprint-resistant surface. This trash can is long lasting and convenient for the whole family, especially if you have children who love to put their little hands on everything.
With over 4,400 reviews and a 4.8/5 rating (as of 10/21/2020), it’s safe to say that this trash can is a popular choice.
A few important things to note are that reviewers say the lid closes very slowly and that the trash can itself is not designed for regular-sized trash bags, so keep that in mind. Overall, the SimpleHuman 13.2 Gallon Trash Can is a fantastic step trash can.
5 / 5 Stars
2) Itouchless 13 Gallon Auto Trash Can
Touchless trash cans are becoming increasingly popular. Ranked #1 in Indoor Compost Bins on Amazon (as of 10/22/20), the iTouchless trash can has a 4.3/5 rating with over 13,000 reviews.
The trash can comes with a stainless steel surface that is fingerprint-proof and germ-resistant. The rectangular shape fits in tight spaces, making this trash can perfect for any area in the house.
It also comes with a carbon filter to absorb and neutralize garbage smells. The iTouchless trash can is powered by batteries that aren’t included, but the manual on/off buttons allow users to physically open the trash can if needed.
Customers love the odor protection, capacity for trash, ultra-long battery life, and touchless lid. One reviewer said that “it’s attractive and fits a TON of trash in a discreet way.” The iTouchless 13-Gallon Trash Can is sleek, affordable, and can hold more trash than most standard kitchen trash cans without stinking up the house.
The company backs the trash can with a Full-Service Manufacturer’s Promise, which is good because several customers mentioned that their trash cans came dented and had to be replaced. As long as you don’t wind up with a damaged product, this is a solid choice.
5 / 5 Stars
3) Rubbermaid Black 13 Gallon Step Trash Can
This is a good choice for your basic, no-frills trash can. It comes with a hands-free pedal and retainer arms that secure the trash bag to the rim.
With 4.1/5 stars and over 4,500 reviews, this trash can is the best option for the price. It’s a durable trash can that can stand up to daily use and has a smooth body that allows for easier cleaning.
This Rubbermaid model is ranked #6 on Amazon in Kitchen Waste Bins. Customers love it for its size, liner lock, and hands-free pedal.
That being said, customers reported having issues with the hands-free pedal connecting properly to the lid, which made it hard to open the trash can. This is a fixable problem, but one that is not too uncommon because the mechanism is plastic. At under $50, you get what you pay for.
4 / 5 Stars
4) Vnewone Kitchen 13 Gallon Auto Trash Can
This sleek and affordable touchless trash can is perfect for daily use in the kitchen, bedroom, office, or even in the sunroom.
The stainless steel exterior does not rust, allows for easy cleaning, and is fingerprint-proof. This model maintains 4.3/5 stars with 83 reviews on Amazon (as of 10/22/20).
Customers say that the trash can looks nice in the house, but that it’s fairly small and the battery life isn’t as great as other trash cans.
The company provides a warranty, but only for 3 months, so you’ll need to be quick to determine any issues. All in all, it’s definitely a bit smaller than some models but if that’s what you’re looking for then this is a great choice for a budget touchless trash can.
4 / 5 Stars
5) NineStars 13 Gallon Open Trash Can
This trash can is great for the kitchen, pantry, bathroom, office, or any other room in the house.
Top features include the removable ring liner to keep the trash bag in place and the fingerprint-resistant stainless steel surface.
With a steady 4.6/5 star rating from over 200 reviews (as of 10/22/2020), this NineStars trash can is a clear hit with the customers. Dozens of loyal customers love the open top concept and claim that this is the best trash can they have ever owned.
The NineStars Open Top Trash Can holds a substantial amount of trash without being bulky in appearance, but can be difficult to bag as some customers have noted. This commercial-grade trash can comes with a 2-year warranty, which is a huge plus. Just be careful what you throw in there, as there is no odor protection.
4.5 / 5 Stars
6) Home Zone Living 13 Gallon Dual Trash Can
This dual trash can is fantastic for separating out the recycling and can be used in the kitchen, living room, office, or any other room in the house.
The waste compartment holds 8 gallons, while the recycling compartment holds 5 gallons.
The slim body is designed to fit into any narrow space and is sleek in appearance. The silent and slow-to-close lid is controlled by a sturdy metal pedal. With a 4.5/5 star rating (as os 10/22/2020) from over 200 reviews, customers clearly love this trash can.
Because of the separate compartments, it’s important to keep in mind that this trash can only holds up to 8 gallons on the trash side, which is significantly less than most kitchen trash cans.
Customers love the sleek design, convenient setup, and durable pedal, but many mentioned in their review that the product is too pricey for what you get.
4.5 / 5 Stars
7) AmazonBasics 13.2 Gallon Rectangular Step Trash Can
This 50-liter stainless steel trash can features a manual foot lever and a soft-close lid that extends product life span.
The heavy-duty plastic interior bucket removes easily for convenient disposal, making it a breeze to take out the trash. It also features a stay-open lid that allows for easily replacing the liners.
Ranked #10 in Kitchen Waste Bins on Amazon, this trash can is a hit with customers. It maintains a 4.6/5 star rating (as of 10/22/2020) with over 700 reviews.
Customers love the sleek design and soft-close lid, but several users noted that the trash can arrived dented or dinged up.
This trash can is ideal for the kitchen, living room, office, or even the garage. It is a bit more expensive than other step trash cans you can find, but is overall a great option for a mix of quality and affordability.
4.5 / 5 Stars
8) Glad 13 Gallon Stainless Steel Step Trash Can
This step trash can maintains a 4.6/5 star rating (as of 10/22/2020) with over 300 reviews on Amazon.
Customers love the durability, size, and convenient bag compartment on the back of the trash can. Many find that it’s on the pricey side for a step trash can, but nobody seems to argue that it’s a high-quality trash can.
The bag rings keep the trash bag securely in place and prevent it from falling down. The soft-close lid is a huge plus so you don’t have to deal with loud banging noises every time the trash can closes.
Some reviewers mentioned that the storage area doesn’t do the best job of fitting standard trash bags, but overall customers are satisfied with the value for the price.
If any customer is not 100% satisfied, they can return the trash can within 30 days for a full refund.
4 / 5 Stars
9) Itouchless White 13 Gallon Auto Trash Can
This trash can is meant for the kitchen, pantry, living room, or nursery. It has a sleek, modern look that makes a nice addition to any room and includes an odor filter that absorbs trash smells.
It stands at 31 inches tall and fits standard tall trash bags. The iTouchless Garbage Can maintains a 4.3/5 star rating (as of 10/22/2020) with over 1,000 reviews. Customers love the appearance, opening speed of the touchless lid, and size of the trash can.
This stainless steel trash can does not come with the batteries or AC adapter needed to power the lid, but that’s standard practice with touchless trash cans.
Some users had a hard time getting a full trash bag out of the trash can, but the pros definitely outweigh the cons. The product is also backed by a Full-Service Manufacturer’s Promise to guarantee customer satisfaction.
4 / 5 Stars
10) Itouchless SoftStep 13.2 Gallon Stainless Steel Step Trash Can
Ranked #1 in the In-Home Recycling Bins category on Amazon (as of 10/22/2020), this elegant trash can is smudge-resistant and has a flat back that allows it to stand flush to the wall.
The replaceable air damper ensures that the lid closes softly and quietly for years to come. It includes an AbsorbX odor filter to absorb and neutralize trash odors and a pedal that is designed to withstand over 200,000 steps.
To put that into perspective, that means you could open the trash can with the pedal 20 times a day for over 25 years.
This trash can maintains a 4.4/5 star rating (as of 10/22/2020) from over 3,800 reviews. Customers love the size, quality, and easy-to-use foot pedal. However, several reviewers mentioned that the trash can either came dented or was missing a piece.
As with all iTouchless trash cans, the company backs this product with a Full-Service Manufacturer’s Promise and dedicated customer support for two years.
4.5 / 5 Stars
Consider Before You Buy
Is 13 Gallons Right For You?
For those unfamiliar with the size of 13 gallon trash cans, here's a rough size comparison...
Bathroom trash cans are usually 4 gallons (yes the little dainty ones that go beside the toilet), bedroom/office trash cans are usually around 7 gallons, and kitchen trash cans range between 11-16 gallon trash cans.
Yes, this means that 13 gallons is actually on the lower end of kitchen trash bin sizes. With that in mind, we've found that a 13 gallon trash can works perfectly for those with a family of 4 or less. Anything more and you'll find yourself taking the trash out often.
Step, Auto or Open Style?
Perfect for those who want a trash can that hides those nasty kitchen smells, while also have some serious longevity. The mechanism for the step/lid function is fairly simple and can last a lifetime if handled with care. These models are also reasonably priced which makes them a little more approachable than the auto-lid trash cans.
Auto trash cans open by sensing movement over a sensor on the top of the trash bin. This is a high tech way of opening a trash for those who dislike the foot pedal. While the foot pedal may seem like a godsend, it receives some backlash from smacking whatever is behind it (usually a wall) when the pedal is depressed. These trash cans rarely include the batteries needed and usually give out far before step or open trash cans.
While many of us shudder at the idea of having an open trash can in the kitchen, there were a surprising amount of positive responses from buyers. Open trash cans are good for those who like simplicity. You can throw your trash away from a distance instead of having to hover over the bin every time. They're also designed to hold the smells in by being slightly covered at the top. Here's a perfect example.
Rectangular or Circular Design?
There are two basic trash can shapes; rectangular or oval. Rectangular works best visually and functionally positioned against a flat surface. You'll also find that rectangular models work better with "boxier" kitchens. If the majority of your kitchen countertops and cabinets come to a sharp point at corners, rectangular will fit in seamlessly.
Circular trash bins work best if they're shoved in between two piece of furniture. This happens to be the case because the circular design offers a nice contrast to the sharp cornered furniture usually found around the kitchen.
Plastic Inner Liner?
Some trash cans have a plastic inner liner that can be taken out with the trash. This is a good quality to look for in a trash can for 2 reasons:
1) You can easily take the liner out and clean it.
2) If you're afraid the trash bag is going to break, take the plastic liner out with it, and dump it in the outside garbage.
We highly recommend finding a kitchen trash can with a plastic liner.
Plastic or Stainless Exterior?
Plastic will be cheaper and won't show fingerprints. However, most people agree it looks cheap and only takes away from the aesthetics of the kitchen.
Stainless is awesome looking and it can really fit seamlessly into any kitchen. However, fingerprints accumulate (whether they advertise as finger-print resistant or not) and need to be cleaned more often. They're always slightly more expensive as well.
Your trash can doesn't have to be the smelly eye sore in your kitchen. Take the time to find one that fits and functions to your standards. We hope this was helpful.
If you have any questions or comments, leave a note below.
Founder of Robust Kitchen