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25 Excellent Holiday Toys That Won’t Blow Your Budget

Gifts that'll blow minds, not budgets.

Maria Bailey · about 1 month ago

  • toy

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Festive shopping will feel a little different this year, as many of us are feeling the economic pinch of the pandemic. However, these budget-conscious toys under $15 are guaranteed to spread even more holiday cheer this season. Bring joy to your loved ones (and your bank accounts) with these affordable toys, because Santa isn't footing the bill!

1. Trouble: Trolls World Tour Edition Board Game


Here comes trouble! Mayhem and mischief are a given when joining forces with our favorite trolls Poppy, Branch, Cooper, and Queen Barb. Roll the dice to travel around Trolls World on the game board. The first player to get all four of their Troll pawns to the final space wins! Beware — Delta Dawn, mayor of the Country Trolls, has plenty of tricks up her sleeve that could send players all the way back to the beginning.

2. Green Toys Blue Airplane

Green Toys

Reduce gifting expenses and global emissions with this next gift! Green Toys Blue Airplane is made from 100% recycled plastic milk jugs that save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but not the fun! Take kids’ imagination to great heights with this eco-friendly propeller plane!

3. Discovery Glowing Volcano


Kids will erupt into excitement as they watch their creation literally erupt glowing lava! Mold an explosive volcano standing at 14 inches tall, and make it radiate using glow in the dark paint. Learn the science behind these natural infernos and have a blast mimicking a real-life explosion at home.

4. The Amazing Live Sea Monkeys

Big Time Toys

Gift the creature lover in your life their very own aquatic zoo with The Amazing Live Sea Monkeys kit. Each aquarium comes with everything they need to keep sea monkeys alive and kicking — featuring a water purifier, instant live eggs, growth food, and instructions to help raise their very own aqua pets!

5. Story Magic PYO Light-Up Unicorn

Story Magic

Indulge their creativity and allow their imaginations to transcend to the magical kingdom of unicorns with the Story Magic DYO Light-Up Unicorn. Paint vibrant colors on a ready-to-paint unicorn and allow it to dry. Once ready, insert three AAA batteries and flip on the switch to illuminate their whimsical creation!

6. Monopoly Junior


Now younger players can put their wheeler-dealer property trading skills to work! Monopoly Junior is just like the classic game, but geared towards the five-and-older crowd who are ready to fine-tune their negotiation skills. See how they snap up ice cream parlors and learn ALL about property ownership and rent collection. Watch this space — they’ll be real estate moguls in no time!

7. Winning Moves Crocodile Dentist

Winning Moves

Be warned — avoid picking the tooth that’s causing this croc discomfort at all costs! You’ll quickly learn what happens if you don’t choose your croc-teeth wisely during a game of Crocodile Dentist: The player to press the aching chomper will be met with this croc’s fury and lose the game.

8. Schylling Art Box Large Pin Prints


Creating cool 3D images can be done in an instant with the Schylling Art Box Large Pin Prints! Featuring over 1000 pins, just about every detail leaves an impression in this pin print while providing a great sensory experience when using your hand.

9. Mini Zoltar

Zoltar, the fortune teller, has been sharing his wisdom with people across arcades and amusement parks for decades, but now he’s ready to retire his life on the go and bring wisdom to your family’s home! Your very own fortune teller comes with a booth, flickering lights, a light-up crystal ball, and 16 fortune cards. 

10. Affirmators! Family Deck

Knock Knock

The Affirmators! Family Deck is exactly what you and your loved ones didn’t know they needed! Each card provides friendly, positive reinforcement to help you help yourself, without all the self-helpy-ness! Treat your family to these inspiring affirmation cards and plenty of bonding time.

11. Mudpuppy Little Feminist Board Book Set


Inspire little feminists with Mudpuppy Little Feminist Board Book Set, which highlights artists, leaders, pioneers, and activists so young readers can learn about the trailblazing women before them who paved the way. Featuring the likes of Harriet Tubman, Frida Kahlo, and Amelia Earhart, these books are a great introduction to  women who have made a historical impact on the world.

12. Chronicle Spark Family Fun


Spark fun, not fire, with the Chronicle Spark Family Fun. These faux matchsticks feature creative prompts and talking points to bring the family together for a fuller and brighter life!

13. Ollyball Ultimate Indoor Play Ball


Break the “no balls in the house” rule — not windows — with the Ollyball Ultimate Indoor Play Ball! Its impact-absorbing construction means it's possible to play ball inside with mom and dad’s blessing!

14. Arcade Classics Pac-Man Mini Arcade Game

Arcade Classics

We can’t promise dad won’t borrow (steal) this next game! Pac-Man has been thrilling players for over 40 years, and we still can’t get enough of it! Now we can bring this classic arcade game home with the Arcade Classics Pac-Man Mini Arcade Game. Send the little guy around the maze, eating pellets and ghosts to drive a higher score. Kids and nostalgic parents won’t want to put this down!

15. Kid Made Modern On-The-Go Vacation Journal Kit

Kid Made Modern

Encourage little travelers to make vacation memories and write them down on the go with the Kid Made Modern On-The-Go Vacation Journal Kit. Featuring countless hours of activities, guided pages for retelling travel experiences, and storage space for prized souvenirs, this is a perfect travel companion for those long car rides.

16. LEGO Creator Mighty Dinosaurs


If you happen to know a dinosaur fanatic, this toy is a gift that keeps on giving. Not only can they create the king of all dinosaurs, the T. Rex, but they can also make Pterodactyl and Triceratops with the same pieces! The LEGO Creator Mighty Dinosaurs set doesn't leave out any of its dino’s most menacing features, including large claws, razor-sharp teeth, and menacing beady eyes!

17. “We're Different, We're The Same”

Random House Books for Young Readers

Our friends from Sesame Street are back, and they have an important message: We might look different on the outside, but on the inside, we’re all the same! “We're Different, We're The Same” is a wonderful book that celebrates all of our amazing differences that make the world an interesting and special place!

18. Kid Made Modern Gem Jackpot Crayons 12-Piece Set

Kid Made Modern

Standard crayons are all well and good, but these ones are real gems. The Kid Made Modern Gem Jackpot Crayons 12-Piece Set is a piece of art itself — allowing little artists to draw sharp lines with the point of the gems, while the face of the jewels allow them to color larger areas.

19. Mudpuppy Little Scientist Board Book Set


Why is the world round? Why is the sky blue? If you know someone who likes to ask these types of questions, you may also know a little scientist in the making! Open their minds to the world of physics, astronomy, chemistry, and biology by introducing them to the science greats. The Mudpuppy Little Scientist Board Book Set includes the likes of Isaac Newton, Albert Einstein, George Washington, and more!

20. Fred Food Face Plate


Add a creative element to dinner time with this charming Fred Food Face Plate! They’ll love styling Fred with new hairstyles and headwear. Perhaps a spaghetti wig one day, or a tropical fruit headpiece the next? The options are endless!

21. Winning Moves Games Classic Chutes and Ladders

Winning Moves Games

Rewind to the ’70s with this retro edition of Chutes and Ladders! You know the drill: The first player to land on spot 100 wins the game. But whatever you do, avoid landing on top of a chute — or face sliding further down the board. Landing on a ladder, however, means skipping a bunch of spots to climb closer to the finish line!

22. The Original Stretch Armstrong in Box


Why flex when you can stretch? The stretchiest action figure there ever was, Stretch Armstrong is back! Grab his arms, legs, or torso and stretch him up to four times his original size or tie him in knots. Release him, and he retracts right back to his original size.

23. Penguin Random House “Kid Artists” Book

Penguin Random House

Turns out the world’s most celebrated artists had regular kid problems growing up, too! Learn how Jean-Michel Basquiat triumphed over poverty, how Jackson Pollock handled moving to eight cities before turning 16, and how Georgia O’Keeffe lived in the shadow of her “perfect” older brother. These inspiring true stories remind little readers they can overcome and become anything!

24. Little Likes Kids Camping Outdoors Jumbo Puzzle (48 Pieces)

Little Likes

Founded by a mother who saw a lack of toys that represented her sons and their experiences, this puzzle was created to depict the wonderfully diverse world we live in and celebrate our love for the outdoors. Gift the Little Likes Kids Camping Outdoors Jumbo Puzzle to the fam and join all 48 pieces to make a scene featuring kids of different races interacting and doing various camping related activities together!

25. Tonies Hand-Painted Figurines


Bring Ariel, Elsa, Simba, and other Disney favorites to life by placing them on a Toniebox where they tells stories and sings songs. Combining playing, learning, and listening, the Toniebox will engage listeners for hours.