Whether you appreciate the religious aspect of Easter, you’re all about the egg hunts, you love eating the ears off a chocolate bunny, or you’ve come to dread Easter with its sugar-fueled, egg-dyeing disasters — or if you relate a little bit to each — you still have to prepare for this holiday. The kids love to see what treats they will find inside plastic eggs, and the family loves the cute Easter mommy and me clothing and special meal. And all of it requires a ton of planning and preparation.
To make matters worse, some parents are guilty of overdoing Easter, especially as they try to one-up each other on the craziness of the best Easter baskets, looking to gobble up social media likes. (It’s similar to how the ravenous kids find a way to chomp down a month’s worth of f***ing candy during the terrifying free-for-all Easter egg hunt.)
We’re here to tell you that you can make Easter fun for the kids without overdoing the spending, the prep time required, or the candy intake. We’ve put together Easter basket ideas for toddlers, babies, and older kids, all sans candy. (You read that right.)
Don’t think it’s possible? Check out our best Easter basket ideas without using candy. (But if you want to purchase a chocolate bunny or two, we won’t judge. Just leave the ears intact before you give it to the kids, for the love of God.)
These HABA eggs are fun and safe as Easter basket ideas for babies. They spark creativity by making different rattles, jingles, and other sounds that will be fun for the young ones. (Added bonus: They’re not so loud that they’re going to drive you crazy.)
When HABA applies the color layers during manufacturing, it undertakes multiple steps to ensure the color will not rub off with use, even if — actually, when — the baby tries to chew on the toy. The stain is water based and non-toxic. With the various colors, a baby can learn to identify which color of wooden egg makes his or her favorite sound.
Best of all, if you hide these eggs for the baby’s first Easter egg hunt, and you forget where you hid one, it’s not going to create a terrible smell in a few weeks like a real egg.
Nobody can resist cuddly baby stuffed animals in the best Easter baskets. But when your kids have already collected so many stuffies that there’s barely room on the bed for the kid to sleep (and that he or she uses as an excuse to end up in your bed), it’s time to make a change.
Instead of another stuffed animal, try this crazy hard dot to dot book. These puzzles provide quite a bit of challenge, with some puzzles containing as many as 1,400 dots. (And, yes, they numbered every one.) If you’ve ever wanted to teach your kid to count to 1,400, this is the book for you.
Once the dot to dot puzzles are completed, kids can color the detailed drawings. The book is recommended for kids ages 8 and up, so you may have to help a younger child a little bit. (It’s been a while since fourth grade math, so, hopefully, you can help. Just remember, 874 comes after 873.)
Sometimes, the best Easter basket ideas for toddlers are gifts that are both practical and fun. This three-pack of reusable drink boxes fits both.
You can fill the colorful boxes with juice during the Easter hunt, giving the kid some juice to find (rather than candy), so they can have a quick treat during the hunt, which is half the fun.
After the hunt, this box can be run through the dishwasher and used over and over, making it eco-friendly. It uses safe materials, as it’s BPA- and phthalate-free. Rather than relying on throwaway juice boxes — which have God knows how much sugar in them — you can fill the boxes yourself with healthier drink options.
Best of all, this reusable box will not leak, and the little monster can’t squeeze the sides and squirt his or her sibling with the juice like with a throwaway box. Could this be the greatest Easter ever?
When you need Easter basket ideas for babies and toddlers, this toy has a lot of advantages. Each of the 12 eggs pops in half, revealing a color coded middle. To put the two halves together, toddlers have to line up the shape inside the egg to fit in the notch on the other half.
This toy helps the youngsters learn about different shapes and colors.
The entire set consists of plastic that’s safe to use for children. The eggs are white, but you can hide them as is for the hunt, if desired, or decorate them with stickers for a splash of color. (Just remove the stickers later, so the toddler doesn’t eat them.)
Selecting an egg toy to give during Easter is brilliant. Plus kids can use it all year around. And they’ll be learning. This is perhaps the greatest Easter toy for toddlers. (Go ahead. Pat yourself on the back for your choice. You deserve it.)
When you’ve had enough of Legos everywhere (and stepping on them in bare feet), this PLUS PLUS toy is a nice change of pace. Each piece has the exact same shape, almost like a squared off jigsaw puzzle piece … or two plus signs stuck together. (It is truly amazing how many product names actually make sense.)
In this collection, you’ll have the pieces needed to make an Easter bunny character with an orange carrot. Other sets have cute ladybugs, llamas, bumble bees and unicorns.
These puzzle bricks work to create flat 2D characters, as well as 3D characters, giving kids plenty of chances to explore and be creative.
Yeah, we know. Dinosaurs don’t have anything to do with Easter. Animals at Easter are supposed to be fuzzy and cuddly. Dinosaurs definitely are not that.
But when it comes to the best Easter basket ideas for toddlers, these bath toy dinosaurs fit. After all, any time you can give the kid a toy that makes him or her want to take a bath, it’s a good idea.
You can squeeze these foam pieces inside large plastic eggs for the hunt, or you can just hide them as they are for kids to find. Each piece is shaped like a dinosaur and has bright colors.
When it’s bath time, these foam dinosaurs will stick to the side of the bath tub when they’re wet.
For kids who would rather play with dinosaurs than a baby chick or bunny rabbit, these are a great addition to the best Easter baskets. Who knows? Maybe you’ll start a new tradition at home. (However, we do admit that receiving eggs from the “Easter dinosaur” just doesn’t have the same feel to it.)
When you want fun that lasts beyond the Easter egg hunt, these MindWare toys are great Easter basket ideas.
Basically, they are sets of toys you can hide, this one being bones. Once the kids find the bones, they can excavate with an included tool to find super cute little puppy figurines inside. Other kits include dinosaur eggs, mermaid shells and even fairy eggs. This puts kiddos to work for at least a few minutes and gives them a moment of the day.
For children who love The Very Hungry Caterpillar, these tiles give you a new twist on the story.
Kids can use the individual tiles to retell the story in their own words. They can set up the tiles to help them learn to count. Or they can assemble the tiles to create a 3D representation of the caterpillar. There are all kinds of ways to let the kid show off his or her creativity.
As a best Easter basket idea, you can take each of the 16 tiles and hide them in individual Easter eggs. Once the kid finds all the eggs, he or she can play with the toy. (This is one time where you may want to take notes about where you hid each egg. Lose one of the pieces because the egg has disappeared, and the toy will be ruined. There will be a disaster, complete with tears. Your kid won’t know why you’re crying, but it’ll still be bad.)
Maybe you had an idea to create the greatest Easter egg hunt of all time, complete with unique treasures and individual clues for each kid inside color coded plastic eggs, all leading to a massive treasure hunt map and an ultimate prize.
Then reality set in a week before Easter, and you realized you’d have exactly 76 free seconds during the week to put the entire plan into practice. #whoneedssleep
Don’t worry. These pre-filled Easter eggs fit nicely into the best Easter baskets and have you covered. The kids will love the fun little toys inside each egg (a pull-back vehicle with moving parts), and it’ll seem like you spent hours putting each egg together. Hell, you may even be able to use the 76 seconds you saved to enjoy a glass of wine. A quick one, but still, the entire glass. #smallmiracles
For kids who love craft projects, one of the best Easter basket ideas is these moldable erasers. Rather than the mess of dyeing Easter eggs, you and the kids could make these erasers and then hide them in plastic eggs for the hunt.
Everything you need to create the erasers is in the kit, which is reasonably priced.
You’ll receive eraser clay that you can mold into whatever shape you want. The included instructions give you ideas for creating little animal characters, for example. You could even make an Easter bunny or baby chick eraser if you want. (Look at you sticking to the theme of the holiday; we’re so proud of you.) This store is packed with other craft ideas, so check out what your kids will love!
Some kids hate bugs. They hate ants. They hate moths. They hate grasshoppers. They hate spiders (even though they aren’t technically bugs.) Anything creepy and crawly makes the list.
But…every kid will love a HEXBUG. These mini robotic toys will bounce and scuttle like an insect, using vibration and a watch battery to propel themselves forward, sideways, and backward. These plastic HEXBUGs have fun colors and no guts that squish out if you accidentally step on one.
This version of the HEXBUG is ready for Easter as it ships inside an egg that you can hide. And it has adorable plastic bunny ears. Awwwww. Just don’t totally lose your sh*t the next time you see this crawler running around the kitchen.
See? We told you we could come up with the best Easter basket ideas without having to include candy. So if you want some more ideas for gifts that don’t involve candy, check out our other toy recommendations.