Yesterday was Nugget’s birthday. It’s still hard to believe she’s ONE! (Where did that year go by?!) As we look around at our house, we realized how blessed we are to have been given the best birthday gifts for a one year old!

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Hubs and I are trying to be minimalist in our approach to toys and baby gear. (HA)

That being said, the following are (in my humble opinion) the best birthday gifts for a one year old:


A Small Ride On Toy – My sister and her hubby got Nugget this one: 

Kiddieland My First Minnie Ride On

Nugget LOVES it! Since she is already walking, she’s able to climb onto it and get off of it on her own. She’s still working on scooting around but LOVES being pushed throughout the house, LOL. I love that this one has a horn and tons of options for sounds and buttons to push. It also has an anti “fall over” mechanism — helpful since Nugget likes to ride on it backwards! It’s lightweight, compact, and even has a “trunk” compartment for storage. It also has a handle for LO to push around and/or big person to push without completely destroying his/her back. It’s also great for small spaces since it’s fairly compact.


A Big Ride On Toy – One of my mom friends made the observation that ALL of her friend’s kiddos loved the Cozy Coupe:

Little Tikes Cozy Coupe

I’d have to say I agree and have gifted this myself several times to my friends’ children. I bought one used for Nugget and have not yet given it to her…it’s still sitting outside covered in snow. I love that the bottom panel can be in place (for children who are not yet super mobile to just sit and relax) or be removed (for children to navigate the car, Fred Flintstone style).


An Outdoor Toy that an Adult Pushes:    

Step2 Push Around Buggy GT

This is one of the greatest gifts for a one year old because it fits the child now, with room to grow. We love taking Nugget to the park and library in this. The child can be transported places while being active (“driving”). Unlike the stroller, there is little chance of napping in this vehicle!


A kitchen – We were beyond blessed to receive this as a gift. I love that the material is sturdy. Bonus that it’s retro! This has provided Nugget with HOURS of fun.

KidKraft Vintage Play Kitchen – Red


If you’re looking for smaller scale items…these are for you.

Stackable blocks – Soft, stackable blocks are the perfect gift for a one year old to practice fine motor skills with.

B. Toys – One Two Squeeze Baby Blocks

A light up toy that plays music – There are sooooooo many of these out there! My personal (or, I should say, Nugget’s) favorites are:

VTech Baby Babble and Rattle Microphone

VTech Busy Learners Activity Cube 

Bath toys – Word of caution: beware the toys with holes! Those toys end up getting way moldy inside, despite fervent cleaning/drying/squirting out of water.

Munchkin 36 Bath Letters and Numbers

Stuffed animals – I’m sure all kiddos are different but Nugget could not care less about stuffed animals…until she turned one. Suddenly, she gravitated towards them like they were her long lost babies. Speaking of—add baby doll to your list of best gifts for a one year old. Girls AND boys will enjoy cuddling with and taking care of their lovies, stuffies, and baby dolls.

Melissa & Doug Burrow Bunny Rabbit 

Melissa & Doug Mine to Love Baby Doll


Perhaps it’s the teacher in me, but books are my favorite gift for a one year old (actually, for anyone!)

Touch and feel books – I’ve been reading to Nugget since birth but have noticed she is far more “touchy feely” now. She loves to interact with the books–helping me turn the pages, opening the book herself…touch and feel books are perfect for her little fingers.

Peek A Who: Who’s My Mother?

Flap books – Flap books are great for tiny fingers BUT…tiny fingers are also often rough on them. I’ve already had to perform “book surgery” on several flaps that have been torn off, LOL.

Up Up Up in the Tree 

First 100 Words

Board books – If your little one doesn’t already have these, I’d highly recommend books by Eric Carle and Sandra Boynton to start with. I love board books in general for this age because Nugget likes to put everything in her mouth! Nugget is OBSESSED with Brown Bear, Brown Bear and has us read this to her no less than 10 times per day!

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

The Going-To-Bed Book


Who doesn’t love shopping for baby clothes? Clothing is one of the best gifts for a one year old because they grow so quickly!

Walking shoes – They say it’s best for little ones to learn to walk barefoot…but there are times when you are on the go and need your babe in shoes. Most shoes for littles up to age 1 are mostly for warmth or cuteness. Shoes that are actually for walking are a different story. Shoes should have a leather sole and be pliable for baby’s foot. My personal favorites (also gifted to me by my sis) are these:

pediped Originals Cliff Sneaker


Sock Booties – I don’t think they’re actually called “sock booties” but…they can serve as both, so there you go. These were super handy before Nugget figured out how to take them off. They’re great for keeping little feet warm without the hassle of shoes.

Zutano Cozie Fleece Baby Booties with Grippers


[socialpug_tweet tweet=”Shopping for a one year old but not sure where to begin? Check out my list of best birthday gifts! #mommyblogger, #toddlergifts” display_tweet=”Tip for shopping for baby clothes: Ask mom or dad for sizes before buying (if unsure, always size up!) and always include the gift receipt.”]

Short or long sleeved onesies – Super versatile and comfy!

Simple Joys by Carter’s Baby Girls’ 6-Pack Short-Sleeve Bodysuit


SOCKS!!!!! As hard as I try, our house has fallen prey to the Black Hole of Socks. (And I’m not talking about our dog, LOL! His name is Sox.) Somehow, we never seem to have enough socks or we’re missing one of the players. Also, can we talk for a minute about the Mary Jane socks?!!! ADORABLE! 

Carter’s Baby Girls’ Crew Socks


Can I please be real for a moment? I would never expect people to get Nugget any gifts but when they do…I am OVERJOYED when it’s a gift card or cash! Why??? Well…

Amazon gift card – Ever since I became a SAHM, Amazon has become my new BFF. I can’t tell you how many things I’ve bought! I also do the Subscribe & Save for diapers and other recurring items, so gift cards are perfect. 

Diapers and wipes – Who doesn’t need diapers and wipes? Of course, I always appreciate it when people take the time to find out what brand we prefer and what size Nugget is in…otherwise, it’s an extra trip to the store for me to exchange!

Diapers Size 4


Good old fashioned cashola – You know what they say…Cash is king!

Hope these tips help! Pin now, refer to later!

Need ideas for your older toddler? Check out the best toddler toys and best gifts for 2 under 2.

Happy shopping!

toddler chewing on stacking toy




Best Birthday Gifts for a One Year Old