Shopping for something as simple as baby spoons, toddler spoons, toddler utensils, and utensils for big kids seems like it should be easy, but there are SO many options. To help you, I’ve narrowed it down to my favorites—these are the only ones you’ll need to buy until the little ones start using real silverware.
The tricky part of shopping for toddler utensils is that you want something that is size-appropriate and easy to use, but that also holds food easily. There are a lot of subpar options out there that don’t check those boxes, so I’m going to go down the list to share ones that are worth the cost and that will make it easier for kids to feed themselves.
Each of these is easy for babies and toddlers to hold, size-wise. Each holds food easily (in the case of the spoons). The forks actually spear food. And they all last and are easy to wash and care for.
To me, a perfect baby spoon is one that’s comfortable on the gums, easy to use (whether feeding a baby purees or letting them feed themselves), durable, and easy to wash. There are so many options on the market that it can be hard to resist buying more than you really need. So this is meant to help you save money by choosing ones that actually last.
After trying out dozens and dozens, these are a few of my favorites.
These baby spoons have longer handles, which make them the best spoon for feeding purees in my mind, and they are super soft on gums. The small size of the spoon head also makes them appropriate for feeding babies new to the feeding game.
You won’t need to use these for years, but they’ll hold up nicely for the months that you need them—and will last through multiple children if needed.
BUY: Munchkin Gentle Spoon, sold in a set of 2
Best Stainless-Steel Baby Spoon: Kiddobloom
When babies are just starting to eat, they may not love the hard texture of stainless steel, so give them a chance to get used to it. This type of spoon is incredibly durable, easy to clean, and made without plastic.
The smaller size of this baby spoon from Kiddobloom is perfect for a baby’s mouth, and the spoon actually holds some food, too. It’s a nice size for both feeding purees and letting baby feed herself and will last forever.
BUY: Kiddobloom Baby Stainless-Steel Utensil Set, priced at about $15 for two spoons, two forks, and a butter spreader
Best Bamboo Baby Spoon: Avanchy
We’ve used this spoon from Avanchy for years and it remains a favorite. The handle is made from bamboo and the spoon is soft silicone. It’s easy for baby to hold if you want to offer purees on a preloaded spoon, though it’s also great for traditional spoon feeding.
Even though it’s made with two materials, the construction is very durable. I like how the spoon part is big enough to hold plenty of food but not too big for baby’s mouth.
BUY: Avanchy Bamboo-Silicone Spoon, priced at about $11 for a set of two spoons. It also comes in additional colors and there’s an option with a longer handle.
These squat little silicone baby utensils are ideal for a baby to self-feed. They are easy for little hands to hold, the spoon holds thicker purees very nicely, and they are super durable.
And the little lip ensures that the spoon doesn’t go too far back into baby’s mouth. We used these regularly with our third baby and I so wish I’d known about them with my other two kids.
If you want to buy only one baby spoon that will last you through the stages of purees, self-feeding, and finger foods, I’d go with Chewtensils. They’re so versatile! We used these when we did baby-led weaning with our youngest and they were awesome.
BUY: Bumkins Chewtensils, about $15 for a spoon and fork set
Once your baby turns 1 and enters toddlerhood, they may be ready for a larger spoon. Note: It will take a child time to learn to use a spoon properly, so keep that in mind and have patience if there is a long period of learning
Let them practice, know that it’s normal for them to default to using their hands (it’s much faster to eat that way!), and that it can take until they’re 3 to use a spoon even semi-proficiently.
These toddler spoons will set them up for success for years to come.
Best Stainless-Steel Toddler Spoon: Kiddobloom Spoon and Fork Set
Too many toddler spoons are super flat and don’t hold any food at all. This one from Kiddobloom holds just the right amount of food for a toddler, so it’s a good one to learn on and continue using for years. The fork that comes with it works really well, too!
BUY: Kiddobloom Toddler Utensils Set, about $17 for two forks, two spoons, and one kid-safe knife.
These spoons from Replay Recycled, which are made from BPA-free plastic from recycled milk jugs, are affordable, durable, and easy to use. The spoon holds an appropriate amount of food and they work for kids aged 1 through at least 7 or 8.
We often tuck one of these into lunch for kids when they need it for school.
BUY: Replay Recycled Spoons, about $8 for a set of 8
Best Toddler Fork: Bumkins Stainless and Silicone Fork
So many toddler spoons are totally useless for picking up food, but this set from Bumkins is another reliable option. This set is stainless-steel and silicone, so they are durable, cute, and easy to clean.
The silicone grip makes it easy to hold, too. (If you want all stainless-steel, go with the Kiddobloom set for toddlers.)
BUY: Bumkins Spoon and Fork Set, usually priced at about $13
It may take until a child is closer to 5 to be ready to use full-size silverware, so sticking with kid utensils for the earlier years can help ensure that it’s easy for them to feed themselves.
Salad forks and tea spoons are usually smaller in size and can be a great option for elementary-aged kids, too.
Frequently Asked Questions
The best baby spoon is the one that helps you feed your baby with ease, or allows them to feed themselves easily. The answer may differ depending on if you do purees, baby led weaning, or a combination of the two. We love the Avanchy bamboo-silicone spoon and the Bumkins Chewtensils.
Usually around age 3 a child can start using a small kid-size knife like the one from Kiddobloom. The age may vary a lot depending on the motor skills of the specific child, but offering the chance to spread things onto bread is an easier place to start than actually cutting food. (Kid-size scissors are a great tool for cutting food, too!)
A toddler really only needs to use a spoon and a fork. Their hands will continue to be easier for them and more efficient, so they may continue to default to using their hands through early childhood. That is not necessarily a sign that something is wrong. Keep offering the utensils, make sure they are easy to use, and model how to use them.
Large adult utensils may be difficult for a small child’s hand to hold with ease. For fun, we sometimes use adult forks, but using them for every meal and snack may frustrate a child who is hungry and just wanting their food to be easy to eat.
You can start using a spoon to feed baby, or offer a preloaded spoon for baby to self-feed, around the time baby starts eating solids. This typically happens around the 6-month mark or at the recommendation of your pediatrician.
Best Tips for Baby Spoons and Toddler Utensils
- If feeding baby with the baby-led weaning style of feeding, look for a short, thick spoon that will help them be able to easily feed themselves. This style is typically easier for them to hold in their hands at an early age.
- If spoon feeding purees, look for a baby spoon that is soft, which will typically be made from silicone. This material feels nice on babies gums and also washes easily.
- Once your child is a toddler, choose a fork that easily spears most foods and a spoon with a nice dip to hold foods.
- Offer small kid-knives for kids around 2 ½ or 3 to start spreading food onto things like toast and pancakes. Cutting may come later, closer to age 3 or 4.
- You can use an adult fork to have fun with food, though using that larger size daily may frustrate a child.
- Remember that it can take a long time for kids to learn to confidently and easily feed themselves with utensils, so know that it’s normal if they use their hands. Continue offering the silverware and sit with them to model how to use it.
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Did I miss your favorite? Comment below to share your pick!
This post was first published December 2019.