Easter Baskets Ages 1 to 3

Plastic easter eggs filled with different colors of playfoam

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Basket Treats That Won’t Break the Budget

Plastic easter eggs filled with different colors of playfoam

  • What: Easter basket contents
  • When: 1 to 3 years
  • Why: Even littles like special treats
  • Where: Inside baskets

Perhaps your kids have moved beyond the infant stage, but you still need ideas for stuffing Easter baskets and eggs with items that don’t present a choking hazard. If your little one has seen one Easter but has since started moving around and exploring more, try a few of these egg-cellent Easter goodies.

Wooden yellow school bus with painted stick people that pop up
Our beloved Pop Up Bus filled with riders.

You can never go wrong with a Pop Up Bus. The people can fit into jumbo plastic eggs, and you might have a few left over from the previous year when you needed larger containers for your infant. You can remove the people and put each one in an egg, and then imagine the fun once they discover the people can get on and off the bus. I’ve yet to meet a toddler who didn’t love the pop up action, even if they needed help loading the bus. And loading, tracking, and popping the people provides excellent hand eye coordination practice.

New design of Lillabo wooden train set from IKEA
IKEA’s Lillabo 20 piece basic train set retails for $9.99.

If you have a train lover in your household, or even if you don’t, you can fit small wooden trains into larger eggs. I just stuck the entire package of the express train from IKEA into the basket, but you can split it up for more fun. IKEA has just redesigned their popular super affordable train sets, so even if you have the older model, you can expand your track for next to nothing. If you want to go wild, you can even hide each track piece around the house for a different kind of Easter hunt.

IKEA's Lillabo express train set
This three car Lillabo express train set costs $4.99.

Janod Magnetic Robots offer another great choice for this age range. The chunky pieces don’t fit in eggs, but provide plenty of fun to hunt and discover. All the parts – heads, bodies, and legs – for each of the four robots can interchange and stick together magically through the amazing technology of magnetic attraction. Little hands will enjoy putting them together, pulling them apart, and crashing them down. The fun will last long past egg season.

Janod Magnet Robots four assembled in a row
Janod offers magnetic robots as well as farm animals, jungle animals, and dolls.

If you hesitate to introduce Play-Doh, but also don’t want to go the candy route, consider investing in some Playfoam. This material can be molded into almost any shape, but leaves much less mess without the worry of drying out. Add a set of toys or cookie cutters and you’ll be all set for hours of entertainment while you prepare the Easter feast.

Three plastic Easter eggs filled with different colors of Playfoam
Plastic Easter eggs filled with Playfoam

Need more entertainment without the mess? Try out Water Wows. These colorful pictures require only water, and they can be used over and over again. Once the wet paper dries, it shows only the outlines just waiting to be colored by using the water filled pen. Kumon First Books make another excellent choice to buy you some time well past Easter Sunday. You can get these books perfect for toddlers learning new skills. They focus on stickers, colors, cutting, folding, and much more, so you can one or several.

Kumon First Steps workbooks Let's color for ages 2 and up
Kumon First Steps workbooks are just the right size for little hands and fitting into baskets.

Add a bucket that will last past Easter and well into fall and you’ve got lots of use out of those Easter basket goodies that will bring smiles to your faces and theirs for weeks to come.

Easter basket for three year old stuffed with IKEA trains, books, and plastic eggs filled with playfoam
My three year old’s Easter basket had books, an IKEA express train, and plastic eggs filled with Playfoam.

Finally, you never outgrow a solid set of bunny ears. Toss a pair into the basket for the cutest Easter photos. I recycle mine until the ears won’t stand up, and pull them out each year, but results may vary. Lots of stores offer them for very affordable prices, so you can buy a set for everyone in the family even if you can’t make them wear them.

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