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Best High Chairs & Boosters

February 2016

Mangia! Time to introduce your little one to one of the great joys in life — eating! Having a dedicated chair will help to minimize the mess that inevitably accompanies starting solids...and will also maximize the chance that you'll get to enjoy your own meal as well! Here's are our editors' picks for full-size high chairs, space-saver high chairs, travel high chairs, and booster seats.

CONTENTS:

Note: We developed this list by summarizing TotScoop parent favorites and adding a few hand-picked editor favorites and new releases. Our picks are 100% unbiased — we never accept compensation in exchange for coverage. This page may contain affiliate links; see our full disclosure.


What to look for

Here are the top things to consider when shopping for a high chair:

  • Size and weight: If you've got plenty of space in your kitchen, you can afford to go full featured. If not, consider one that folds up, sits on top of a regular kitchen chair, or clamps onto your table or counter. If you travel or eat out frequently, you may want to get a lightweight, portable high chair that you can easily take with you on the go.
  • Longevity: Some high chairs have grow-with-me features, e.g. can convert into a booster seat later.
  • Ease of cleaning: TRUST US — one of your top priorities should be getting a high chair that is easy to clean. Avoid fabric if possible — a wipe-down surface is best — and look for something with minimal crevices in which food can get stuck. Also look for a dishwasher-safe tray, if that's important to you.
  • Reclining seat: If you plan to do a lot of bottle feeding, you can consider looking for a reclining seat feature, which will allow you to use your high chair as a "feeding seat" before baby is ready to start solids.

Top picks: Full-size high chairs

Full-sized highchairs tend to be more fully featured, but don't usually fold up or disassemble easily. Still, they're the way to go for most families who aren't space constrained.

Value pick: IKEA ANTILOP Highchair with Tray, $20

The almost ridiculously cheap Antilop from IKEA is very bare bones, but is a parent favorite for its price tag, simplicity of design, and ease of wipedown. The legs can be removed for travel or storage, however the molded seat is a single piece that doesn't fold flat. The height and tray depth are not adjustable, so it may not fit all tables and babies well. Still, the price is right for a second high chair for Grandma's house or a nanny share, or even for primary use within the home if you're on a budget.

Value pick: Evenflo Convertible High Chair, $43

The Evenflo Convertible Highchair converts from a tall chair that can be pulled up to a dinner table, to a kid-sized chair that will allow your child to place his feet on the floor, to a chair and table. and a chair and table that can be used for dining or playtime as your child grows. The height is not adjustable to fit every table height, and some parents complain that it wobbles when converted to a full-sized chair.

Everyday pick: Graco Blossom 4-in-1 Convertible High Chair Seating System, $170

If you're looking for a basic, complete high chair system, the Graco Blossom is a great pick. It grows with your child, with a reclining seat for bottle feeding and adjustable-height legs and footrests. It also transitions from a full-sized highchair to an infant feeding booster, toddler booster, and youth chair. It has locking rear wheels, making it easy to move it from room to room. Most of the chair is wipe clean, the insert is machine washable, and the tray is dishwasher safe. Parents do complain that the tray is non-adjustable.

The Ingenuity Trio 3-in-1 Ridgedale High Chair ($75) is another alternative in the "Everyday" category, as long as you don't mind giving up the adjustable leg and footrest height or toddler booster seat features.

Modern pick — mid-range: Keekaroo Height Right High Chair with Tray, $167

The Keekaroo Height Right ($167) is, in the words of one TotScoop parent, like the more affordable version of the Stokke Tripp Trapp! Very similar in design to the Tripp Trapp, the Height Right made of rubberwood (finished with a plant-based lacquer), features an ergonomic backrest, and boasts adjustable seat and footrest heights. It has a wooden eating tray with a removable, BPA-free plastic cover that is dishwasher safe. With a weight limit of 250 pounds, its one of the sturdiest highchairs on the market. For use with a younger baby, you'll also need to get the infant insert, sold separately. In theory, the Height Right can be converted to an adult desk chair after your child outgrows it, but parents report that it is difficult to assemble.

Our runner-up pick in the Modern — Mid-Range category is the Svan Signet Complete ($180, plus $37 for the cushion).

Modern pick — premium: OXO Tot Sprout Chair

The Oxo Sprout ($250) not only looks great in your kitchen, but is also super functional. The tray can be easily removed with one hand and the seat is wipe clean. The chair grows with your child — the seat height and footrest height are both adjustable, and once your child is ready to graduate from a high chair you can remove the tray, post, and harness and pull the chair right up to the table. On the downside, the tray is not dishwasher safe.

Modern pick — Euro: Stokke Tripp Trapp High Chair, $318

The Stokke Trip Trapp is a parent favorite in the premium category. Made of beechwood, it's ergonomically designed, and is almost infinitely adjustable (both the seat and footplates adjust both height- and depth-wise) — it can accommodate anyone six months old up to 300 pounds! It’s easy to clean and the only real downside is that it has to be almost completely disassembled to make adjustments.

Innovative pick: 4moms High Chair, $300

4moms is known for its innovative products, and the 4moms High Chair is no exception. It has a magnetic tray for keeping compatible tableware ($40) firmly rooted to the table. In addition, the tray and chair height are adjustable, the tray liner is dishwasher safe, and the foam insert can be removed and washed. Some parents complain about the size, claiming that the seating area is too small and larger kids can outgrow it quickly.

Top picks: Space-saver high chairs

Space-saver highchairs have a smaller footprint and/or fold up when not in use — great choices for smaller kitchens and city living. Also see the Portable/travel high chairs section below for more options for small spaces.

Chair-top pick: Fisher-Price Spacesaver High Chair, $40

The super-popular Spacesaver from Fisher-Price was designed expressly for smaller spaces — it straps easily to most kitchen or dining chairs. The seat is fabric (boo) but machine washable (yay), and the tray is dishwasher safe. The seat reclines for use as a feeding seat for bottle feeding, and the pad and seat back can be removed for conversion into a toddler booster seat (though parents note that the seat is not large enough to fit all kids through their toddler years).

Two other good chair-top options are the Ingenuity Baby Base 2-in-1 Booster Seat ($35) and the Bumbo Multi Seat ($45). Both are designed as dual floor and booster seats, and have a removable foam insert and tray to grow with your child into toddlerhood.

Full-size folding pick: BabyBjörn High Chair, $198

The relatively new Baby Bjorn Highchair is compact, weighs only 11 pounds, and folds up for easy storage. The table is removable and dishwasher safe, and locks securely into place to double as a restraint (there is no separate harness to clean). It's made of BPA-free, PVC-free plastic, is wipe clean, and has no crevices for food to get stuck in. It can be used for kids up to 3 years old. Unfortunately, one drawback of this compact chair is that the height and footrest are not adjustable.

Multi-functional pick: Peg Perego Siesta Highchair, $299

The robo-inspired Peg Perego Siesta not only has a super-compact fold (folds down to 12"x35"), but also offers nine height positions and a reclining seat, enabling a host of configurations ranging from a low-to-the-ground infant lounger or feeding seat to a toddler seat that can be pulled right up to the table. It even has wheels! The fabric insert is wipe clean. The Siesta is suitable from birth and can be used up to 45 pounds. Some parents complain that the tray is difficult to remove.

Top picks: Portable/travel high chairs

Portable/travel high chairs are compact and lightweight — perfect for taking to restaurants or on a trip. Many come with a carrying case. Note that clamp-on high chairs vary in their attachment style to the table, so take particular care to make sure you get a chair that will work with your intended table type.

Value pick: Fisher-Price Healthy Care Booster Seat, $21

The Healthy Care Booster Seat, designed to be used on top of a regular chair, is a parent favorite. It folds up (not tiny) and has a strap for easy carrying, and has an adjustable, dishwasher-safe tray. Some parents report that the seat can be a bit small.

Another similar product is the Summer Infant Deluxe Comfort Folding Booster Seat. It's a solid pick, even without taking into account its unbeatable $19 price point. It folds up for travel (though the tray must be carried separately), offers an adjustable height and tray, and has a machine washable fabric insert. It can also convert to a toddler booster seat. Some complain that the tray can be difficult to remove.

Clip-on pick — workhorse: Inglesina Fast Table Chair, $69

Out of all the portable high chairs out there, our top pick is the Inglesina Fast Table Chair. It's one of the heaviest of the clip-on chairs (at just over four pounds), and also doesn't fold completely flat so is a little bulkier to carry around... however, the arm/clamp design uniquely allows it to work with almost any table type (e.g., up to 3.5", with or without a lip) so you won't ever be left hanging when you get to your destination. One of our editors has been using one of these for the past four years, and has never encountered a table with which it didn't work! Newer models have a removable cover that can be hand washed, and come with a carry bag. It can be used with the optional tray ($14), or simply paired with a silicone placemat for hygienic eating. Weight capacity 37 pounds.

Two similar alternatives are the Chicco Caddy Hook On Chair, which is cheaper ($40) but heavier (7 lbs.) and bulkier; and the phil&teds Lobster Highchair ($90), which weighs only 4 lbs., comes with a tray and carry bag, and fits tables up to 3.75" thick, but (due to the clamp design) won't work on any table with a lip.

Clip-on pick — super-portable: Mountain Buggy Pod Clip-On Highchair, $60

If you want something super lightweight that folds up really small for frequent restaurant eating or travel, check out the Mountain Buggy Pod ($70). It's the lightest weight clip-on high chair we've seen, at only 2.2 lbs. It folds up super small and flat and is much less cumbersome than the Inglesina Fast Table Chair, for example, to carry around. It can be safely used with kids up to 33 pounds. Due to the clamp design, it unfortunately won't work on thicker tables (more than 2" thick) or tables with a thick lip. Additionally, the deep seat can make it a poor fit for smaller/shorter babies.

Camping pick: ciao! Baby Portable High Chair, $52

If you're not sure you're going to have a suitable table to clamp onto at your destination, consider a full-size folding high chair such as the ciao! Baby Portable Highchair. It folds and unfolds just like old-school, adult-sized camping chairs, but is sized just for your little one! It has a tray, is made of wipe-clean fabric, and comes completely assembled and with its own carrying case. Some parents report that the tray sometimes slopes when the chair is set up, causing food to fall into their child’s lap.

Top picks: Boosters

Boosters are suitable for older toddlers and young kids who are ready to sit with the family at the table, but still need a bit of vertical assistance! They typically strap onto a chair, and may or may not be equipped with a safety harness.

Value booster pick: Prince Lionheart Soft Booster Seat, $32

The Prince Lionheart Soft Booster Seat offers a slip-resistant design, is padded for comfort, and is easy to clean. However, because it doesn’t have a harness or safety belt, it’s best suited for older children.

If your child isn’t quite ready to go footloose and harness free, we suggest the Ingenuity SmartClean Trio 3-in-1 High Chair ($30). It has a removable 3-point harness, straps to most chairs, and is dishwasher safe. The biggest issue is that some parents report that the foam insert comes out a little too easily.

Everyday booster pick: Keekaroo Cafe Booster, $60

Made from a cushiony, easy-to-clean, BPA- and latex-free, non-toxic material, the Keekaroo Cafe Booster has a 3-point safety harness and a high back for support. The biggest issue is that the harness holes are quite large, and food can easily get stuck in the crevices.

Travel booster pick: Munchkin BRICA GoBoost Travel Booster Seat, $25

If you need something ultra-portable, the Munchkin GoBoost Travel Booster Seat is a great pick. It measures less than a square foot when zipped up, the space under the seat doubles as storage for bottles or diapers, and it comes with a built-in carrying strap. It has a 3-point harness, however parents report that it isn't really capable of constraining an active child. The GoBoost also features a no-slip underside grip and accommodates children up to 50 pounds.

Innovative booster pick: Kaboost Portable Under-Chair Booster Seat, $40

The Kaboost turns the concept of a booster seat completely on its head. Rather than providing an extra boost for your child on top of a chair, it actually boosts the chair itself. It fits most four-legged chairs, snapping on and lifting them either 3.75 or 4.5 inches. It’s foldable, portable, and accommodates up to 300 pounds. Obviously, it doesn't have a harness, so it is probably best suited for older kids. One note of caution: because it has non-slip rubberized feet, you'll need to teach your child to avoid pushing back from the table, as it may cause a fall.