The 10 Best Table Booster Seats
This wiki has been updated 27 times since it was first published in December of 2016. If you've ever grappled with a restless little one while your own food goes cold, you'll be grateful for them to have their own safe and secure seat at the table. Our selection of boosters are designed to keep babies and toddlers in place and raise them up to the proper height. You'll get a chance to finish your meal, even at a restaurant, without them running around or toppling over. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
May 12, 2020:
For this update we bumped the Graco Blossom off the list simply because it was overpriced considering the functionality it offered. We replaced it with the Munchkin Brica Go Boost to provide another on-the-go option for busy families. The unique structure of the Munchkin provides a storage area in the space under the elevated seat, and when it's folded up into a bag, this seat is as easy to carry as a purse or lunch bag.
The Fisher-Price Healthy Care Deluxe is our choice for daily usage, especially for new eaters who can make a mess of a meal. All three parts of the tray can go in the dishwasher, and on a less messy day you can pop out the insert and just clean that part. Best of all, there are no cracks to trap food, so it stays clean and doesn't offer any place to grow mold. Its a great option if don't have the floor space for a stand alone high chair.
We removed the Oxo Tot Nest even though its a solid, functional choice because it's very similar to the Bumbo Multi and the Ingenuity Baby Base 2-in-1, both of which offer more features, like stowable trays and better support for younger babies, for a very similar price.
In its place we chose the Skip Hop Bee to introduce a wider variety of choices, as not all parents want a booster seat that can be used from babyhood to preschool, especially those who have multiple children who each need a booster appropriate for their age. Older toddlers and preschoolers are often more willing to sit on a booster like the Skip Hop or the Prince Lionheart Soft if it's their very own special "big kid" seat.
October 19, 2018:
Changed out models with known safety issues and added items better designed for security, stability, and adaptability to different situations.
Pop-Up Booster The Bombol Pop-Up starts out as flat as a book, and then opens to an impossibly strong 3-D structure. Once opened, the chair locks safely into place and provides a five-point harness that can be converted to a three-point harness. This booster offers a supportive backrest and padded seat. It slips easily into any carry-on for air travel. bombol.com
Soft-Touch Liners Special Tomato creates comfortable yet durable seating options for special needs children. These seats are contoured to be gently supportive and made with a seamless, latex-free, anti-microbial material. They attach easily to dining or classroom chairs, strollers and wheelchairs. specialtomato.com
Booster Seat Versus High Chair
High chairs tend to come with large food trays, which can be a blessing and a curse.
When trying to decide which baby feeding chair to get your little one, you'll probably consider either a booster seat or a high chair. Let's talk about the differences between these two items. A high chair is a complete chair. You do not need to fasten it to one of your existing dining chairs, meaning your little one won't steal a seat from any of your guests. High chairs are also designed with wide, stable legs. Their wide legs, however, also mean they take up a lot of room on your floors. High chairs tend to come with large food trays, which can be a blessing and a curse. These large trays give your little one plenty of space to push his cheerios around. And playing with his food may actually be beneficial for your baby's learning. But these large trays also take up quite a bit of space.
High chairs may not grow with your children very well, either. Toddlers and children can outgrow high chairs very quickly. This brings us to booster chairs. Booster chairs typically keep your baby safe using a three-point harness system. These harnesses are highly adjustable, so they can grow with your child. Booster chairs are very portable, and you can attach them to most regular dining chairs, making them ideal for parents who take their babies to restaurants often. Even if you don't dine out often because restaurant kid's menus aren't very healthy, you'll still want a booster seat when you bring your baby to a friend's home. Packing up a high chair just isn't practical.
Booster seat trays are usually easy to remove, too, so your dining table can act as your baby's dining surface. That can make sitting across from and feeding your little one a little easier because you can scoot him close to the table. Finally, due to their size, booster seats obviously take up minimal room in your home. You can also sit on the floor with your little one in a booster chair, which is useful when you're letting him try messy finger foods that you don't want anywhere near your dining room table.
Tips For Dining Out With Your Baby
First off, an entertained baby is typically a well-behaved one. Make sure you always pack plenty of toys for your little one when you dine out. Those that attach to your stroller or car seat are usually easy to hook onto the sides or tray of a booster seat, too.
You don't want your baby screaming at the top of his lungs, impatient for food.
If possible, order your child's food immediately when you get to the restaurant. You don't want your baby screaming at the top of his lungs, impatient for food. While it may be okay to let babies cry at night in your home, you don't want them doing that at a restaurant and bothering other patrons. It could help to find a restaurant that is already relatively noisy anyways, just in case your baby does throw a tantrum. You don't want him being the only one disrupting the silence.
If your child is at an age when he has began to crawl or walk, it might be hard to get him to sit still for an entire meal. Request a table that is a bit sequestered from the others, or has a lot of open spare near it. This way, you can take your child for small walks or sit on the floor with your baby if he wants to crawl while waiting for his food, without bothering anybody. An active baby may not be your only issue: what about a tired one? Consider your little one's sleep schedule when making reservations. If lunch will fall in the middle of his nap time, he may become quite cranky while you're enjoying your entree.
What To Look For In A Table Booster Seat
If you've heard the news that weaning your baby off of breast milk by letting him feed himself can be beneficial, then you may be ready to be a bit more hands-off on feeding time. This, of course, will mean meals get messy. Make sure your booster seat is made from a material that wipes clean easily. If it has a seat cushion, make sure that it's safe to put in the washing machine. Babies are not concerned with preventing spills. If you are still spoon-feeding your baby, look for features that will make that easier for you. Some chairs can swivel to various positions, and recline, giving you an easier feeding angle. You may want a chair with various height settings, too, so that it can grow with your munchkin.
Some chairs can swivel to various positions, and recline, giving you an easier feeding angle.
Since one of the most attractive things about booster chairs is their portability, consider one that folds up for travel, features a removable tray, and even has a carrying strap. Your booster chair should have a system that makes attaching it to a dining chair a breeze, too. Between the chaos of the server taking your drink order and your baby losing his patience, you don't want a model that takes a long time to set up. When it comes to safety, it's important that your chair has a non-slip bottom. You don't want it sliding around on your polished wooden chairs.
Look for wide seats so larger children can be comfortable, or babies have room to keep their comfort items, like blankets and toys, at their sides. It won't hurt if the seat boasts a bright and cheery color, or some enticing cartoon characters, to make your child a little more excited about meal time. Some chairs come with various removable trays, so you can designate one for food and one for play.