Mumsnet is supported by readers. All our writers obsessively research every product we recommend. When you buy through a link on our site we might earn commission but this never influences our product choices.
In the early days of parenthood when you’d give your right arm for a few extra Zs, a bottle warmer can be a true scream-saver, getting you out of hot water with your bawling bambino.
Safer than using a microwave and quicker than messing around with a kettle or hot tap, this convenient device can save you time, energy and possibly some sanity, especially during night feeds.
Heating breast milk or formula to the perfect temperature in a matter of minutes, a bottle warmer takes the hassle out of preparing your baby’s bottle, leaving you safe in the knowledge that its contents aren’t so hot as to scald your little one’s mouth or too cold that they turn up their nose at it.
So we've scoured the Mumsnet forums to bring you tried-and-tested bottle warmer recommendations from real parents.
From plug-in and battery-powered, here are the best bottle warmers for 2021.
1. Best overall bottle warmer: Nûby Electric Bottle & Food Warmer
Price: £11.95 | Buy now from Amazon
“We used a Nûby bottle warmer for our MAM bottles.”
This speedy model from Nûby does its job in just three minutes – and it’s not only milk that it can warm. It’ll heat your baby’s food too, even from frozen.
Compatible with bottles and jars of all shapes and sizes, this bottle warmer won’t take up much space and is easy to use: simply add water, pop in the bottle and press the start button. While there’s no off switch, the unit will shut itself off once the water runs out.
Getting the water level right can initially involve a bit of trial and error, but this isn’t an issue once you’ve worked out the right amount for the item you’re warming with the help of the chart provided.
- Fits most baby bottles
- Can be tricky to get correct water level
- May get too hot
2. Best budget bottle warmer: Tommee Tippee Closer To Nature Travel Bottle and Food Warmer
Price: £11.24 | Buy now from Amazon
“Tommee Tippee does a bottle warmer that has a flask and an outer layer that you fill with the water from the flask.”
“The Tommee Tippee thermos flask worked for us – the water stayed hot for hours and could also be used to warm baby food.”
Bottle warmers don’t come much more straightforward or convenient than this one from Tommee Tippee. Essentially an insulated flask, it’ll keep boiled water hot for up to four hours, ready to heat your baby’s next meal. Simply pop a bottle into the plastic beaker that unscrews from the flask and pour water up to its neck.
Ideal for out and about, this gadget will thankfully put an end to having to ask for a jug of hot water in cafes and restaurants. Thousands of happy customers are impressed by the flask’s thermos capability – just be sure that the button on the lid is pressed after use to avoid leakage.
While other brands’ bottles are likely to be compatible with this bottle warmer, it’s designed to hold Closer To Nature ones, so it’s worth bearing this in mind before parting with your cash.
- Ideal for outings
- No power source required
- Cannot warm indefinitely
- Metal flask is handwash-only
3. Best bottle warmer for quick heating: Philips Avent Fast Bottle Warmer
Price: £39.98 | Buy now from Amazon
“We use an Avent one. DH warms DS’s bottle while I do the nappy. Bottle is ready when I bring DS into our room to feed.”
“I use the Avent warmer. Much easier than going downstairs and waiting for the kettle. I switch it on when DD is stirring; by the time she’s awake it’s done. It was a good buy IMO.”
“If you’re an Avent fan – like me – and you must have a bottle warmer, get theirs.”
Even just a few minutes of listening to a hungry baby screaming for food can feel like a lifetime, so the quicker they’re fed, the better. Capable of warming bottles in as little as three minutes, this model from Philips Avent heats milk quickly and evenly, continuously circulating it to prevent hotspots and keeping it at the optimum temperature for up to an hour, after which the device will turn off automatically.
Suitable for many kinds of baby bottles (not just Philips Avent), it’s also capable of warming baby food in most leading-brand containers once your little one moves on to solids. It has the bonus of a defrost function too.
While there’s an indicator light to notify you when the bottle is ready, there’s no alert sound… but your baby’s cries will no doubt be reminder enough.
- Defrost function
- No timer
- Instructions could be clearer
4. Best bottle warmer and steriliser: MAM 6-in-1 Electric Steriliser and Express Bottle Warmer
Price: £72 | Buy now from Amazon
“My baby is due in a week and we just bought the MAM steriliser and food/bottle warmer.”
“MAM bottles and electric steriliser – they’re amazing!”
If you’re after an all-singing, all-dancing appliance that pretty much does it all, this multi-part MAM bottle warmer-cum-steriliser may well fit the bill. It has six functions: express or gentle bottle warming; a defrost and warming option for milk and food; a keep-warm mode; and microwave or electric sterilising.
All this comes at a price, however this is a good choice for those disinclined to invest in separate equipment.
Provided with an anti-colic bottle, slow-flow teat and dummy, it’s an ideal purchase for those early days of parenthood, and also has the benefit of keeping up to six bottles and five dummies disinfected for up to 48 hours.
- Automatic turn-off
- Takes up a lot of room
- Lengthy instructions
5. Best bottle warmer for formula: Tommee Tippee Closer To Nature Perfect Prep Machine
Price: £74.99 | Buy now from Amazon
“I had two kids under one and the Perfect Prep was the best money I ever spent.”
“I love the Perfect Prep machine!”
“I also used the Perfect Prep – so easy and I was happy knowing any nasties in the formula had been dealt with.”
Admittedly more of a bottle ‘maker’ than a warmer, Tommee Tippee’s Perfect Prep Machine is nevertheless lauded by thousands of parents due to its ability to produce a tip-top formula feed in just a couple of minutes.
Using tap water that passes through a filter to remove any impurities, the device initially releases a shot of hot water to kill any bacteria present before topping up the bottle with cooler water to reach the ideal temperature.
Described by buyers as everything from a glorified kettle to a little lifesaver, its one drawback is the loud beeps it makes when preparing a feed. That said, anything that can help placate a hangry infant in super-quick time deserves to be applauded.
- Ensures no bacteria in formula
- Works with all formulas and most bottles
- For formula milk only
- Filter needs replacing fairly regularly
6. Best bottle warmer for night feeds: The First Years Night and Day Bottle Warmer
Price: £60.13 | Buy now from Amazon
“I use a First Years bottle warmer – it’s the best thing I have bought gadget-wise. Love it. And I use it during the day too.”
This ingenious bottle warmer is also a mini fridge in disguise, keeping milk cold until it’s ready for heating – a boon for those who’d prefer not to have to go downstairs or possibly even get out of bed, depending on your little one’s whereabouts.
The insulated cooler is detachable and will do its thing for up to eight hours, after which the ice pack needs putting back in the freezer, which not every sleep-deprived parent will remember to do.
While this warmer will fit most bottles and two can be stored in the cooler section, those parents using wider receptacles may find that only one will fit.
- Warmer and cooler in one
- Suitable for most bottles
- Short power cable
- Cannot keep bottles cold for extended periods
7. Best bottle warmer for car journeys: Babymoov NutriSmart Bottle Warmer
Price: £49.99 | Buy now from Amazon
Take the fretting out of feeding on car journeys with this travel-friendly bottle warmer, which can be plugged into a vehicle’s cigarette lighter for milk on the move. Simply input the quantity of milk to be heated and whether it’s currently frozen, refrigerated or at room temperature and the NutriSmart will do the rest.
And it’s not only on the road that this portable warmer excels – it comes with a second plug for home use and is programmable, which means that milk will be ready for a time you choose, up to 12 hours ahead.
The remaining heating time is clearly displayed on the warmer’s screen and while its steam function is quicker than the bain-marie mode, the latter retains 100% of breast milk’s natural goodness.
- Fits all bottles, milk pouches and food jars up to 8cm wide
- Keep-warm function
- Quite pricey
- Bain-marie heating mode quite slow
8. Best bottle warmer for twins: Dualit Double Bottle Warmer
Price: £39 | Buy now from John Lewis & Partners
Perhaps better known for its classically-designed kettles and toasters, British brand Dualit has now launched a baby range that includes this functional and fuss-free offering to deliver warm milk on the double.
Safe for heating breast milk, formula and baby food, this multifunctional bottle warmer also acts as a steriliser for bottles, teats and accessories – killing 99.9% of harmful bacteria with a high-temperature steam clean and keeping them sterile for up to 24 hours.
Its automatic timer calculates heating or defrosting timings based on volume, while its electronic control panel has illuminated digital controls that are ideal for feeds during the hours of darkness. Guaranteed for one year, this warmer is large enough to accommodate most plastic, glass and silicone baby bottles.
- Doubles as a steriliser
- Fast-warm function
- Needs unplugging to empty water
Do I really need a bottle warmer?
While a bottle warmer isn’t a vital piece of baby kit, many parents consider it a luxury that they wouldn’t be without.
Babies generally prefer warm milk to cold and although there are other ways to heat your baby’s bottle, these methods often lack the quickness and convenience of a product that’s specifically designed for this purpose. It may be tempting to use the microwave, but this should never be done as it can warm the milk unevenly, causing hot spots that can burn your baby’s mouth. The intense heat may also destroy essential nutrients and vitamins.
A bottle warmer will get your baby’s bottle to the ideal temperature – generally body temperature of around 37°C – with minimal faff, saving you time, hassle and possibly precious minutes of shut-eye.
Can I warm breast milk in a bottle warmer?
Many bottle warmers are breast milk-compatible, but always check the box or manufacturer’s instructions to make certain.
How do I choose a baby bottle warmer?
There are several considerations to take into account when choosing a bottle warmer:
- Does it fit the bottles you’ll be using?
- How quickly does it warm a bottle?
- Is it easy to use?
- Can it warm food as well as milk?
- Is it portable?
- Does it warm multiple bottles simultaneously?
- What’s your budget? The price of bottle warmers varies drastically, so choose one to suit your finances.
- Is it for use inside or outside the home? Electric versions can obviously be used only with a plug socket nearby, whereas a flask type or one with an in-car adaptor is a good choice for on the go.
- Does it need to be versatile? Some bottle warmers double as sterilisers, while others have an in-built timer or maintain the ideal milk temperature for a certain amount of time, for example.
What is the best bottle warmer?
The best bottle warmer is Nûby’s Electric Bottle & Food Warmer because it does everything you’d expect an appliance of this kind to do – and quickly. It safely warms both breast milk and formula as well as food, even if it’s frozen. Fitting most brands of bottle or jar, we love the lift-out basket provided to protect the receptacle you’re warming, plus its simplicity, compactness and quietness. Its price tag is within most parents’ reach and although it lacks an off button, those unwilling to wait for the device to shut off automatically can always flick the switch at the socket.
How we chose our recommendations
We first headed to the Mumsnet forums to find out which bottle warmers discerning Mumsnetters recommended and had bought themselves, noting their feedback about these brands. We then drew up a shortlist of those that were repeatedly mentioned.
From there, we did some research across the wider web, consulting independent review sites and taking into account what customer reviews said about the products featured. Having collated all that information, we picked the bottle warmers we thought were worthy of taking the titles in an array of interest categories.
Why you should trust us
We work hard to provide unbiased, independent advice you can trust. We do sometimes earn revenue through affiliate (click-to-buy) links in our articles. This helps us fund more helpful articles like this one.
Main image credit: Philips Avent