Last Updated: Oct 13, 2021 @ 1:26 pm.

What's the best sippy cup? To find out, we put 14 different sippy cups to the test, checking for leaks, ease of cleaning and kid-friendly grip. Here are the winners.

FYI: We've been reviewing and rating products for the home and families since 1994. To keep things independent, we don't take money or freebies from brands we review! Our work is 100% reader-supported!


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Best Sippy Cup Overall

Look ma! No spouts or straws!
We have a winner! This softly textured cup came out on top, thanks to its rimless design. It's important your child learns to drink out of a cup, not just a straw or spout.
$13.49

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Best Sippy Cup: Munchkin Miracle 360 Sippy Cup

We tested 14 sippy cups with actual toddlers before crowning the Munchkin Miracle 360 Sippy Cup as our top choice for Best Sippy Cup.

Yes, there are several kinds of sippy cups—with spouts, with straws and the new fave: rimless cups. Most toddlers start with a spout or straw sippy cup.

Rimless cups are the next developmental step after traditional sippy cups. They look and behave like a lidless cup, but have a control valve that keeps your toddler from spilling the entire contents when you’re not looking. These are a great idea for those days when temper tantrums rule the house. Even if your little one threw this cup across the room, the amount of liquid spilled would be minimal.

The Munchkin Miracle 360 allows your child to sip from any side of the cup (hence the 360 moniker) just like a regular cup. It comes with only three main parts (plus a thin, clear gasket at the top of the cup), is dishwasher safe (top rack) and has a softly textured surface for easy holding. Smaller versions come with handles if your child’s hands are too small to grasp comfortably. Your child activates the cup when she puts light pressure from her lips to the edge of the cup/gasket. When released, the gasket automatically closes.

Picture credit: Baby Bargains

Munchkin Miracle 360

While the cup is pretty good at containing liquid, you can get some leakage with vigorous shaking or if you leave it on its side for a long period of time. Parents also complained the cups can grow mold under the gasket (which can be hard to clean) and the control valve. Careful cleaning and drying is necessary to keep the cup mold free.

However, if your child is at least 12 months old and ready for the transition from a sippy to a more realistic low-leaking cup, the Munchkin Miracle 360 is the best option.

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Best Budget-Friendly Sippy Cup

Great for travel, affordable
These disposable sippy cups are durable enough to reuse many times, but cheap enough to lose without getting too upset. Easy on the wallet.
$9.08

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Best Budget-Friendly Sippy Cup: First Years Take & Toss

First Years Take & Toss Spill-proof Sippy Cups are easy on the wallet, yet sturdy enough to be used for up to a year before throwing them out, based on our testing. These affordable cups come in packages with four cups and lids.

The Take & Toss 10 oz. cups are made from BPA- and BPS-free plastic and can be washed in the dishwasher. While they are reusable, the First Years’ selling point is they are cheap enough that you won’t be bummed if you lose one. And if you have a toddler at home, you know that is going to happen.

Our readers are overall pleased with these cups, although they caution Take & Toss cups aren’t completely spill proof if the cap is not on the spout. So we suggest these cups for older toddlers who aren’t spiking their cups like footballs.

If you’d prefer a straw sippy cup, First Years has a straw version as well: First Years Take & Toss Spill-proof Straw Cups are great for older toddlers. One caveat: remember to put the lid on first, then put the straw in the lid. If you snap on the lid with the straw already in it, the seal creates a vacuum which pushes liquid out of the straw and all over you! (Yeah, that wasn’t fun in our testing!).

FYI: Sippy cups with spouts are popular with toddlers, we know, but they are less so with pediatricians and dentists. See below for a discussion of this controversy.

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Best Sippy Cup with Spout

Easiest to hold and clean
Our toddler testers thought these cups were easiest to grip, thanks to textured design. Easy to clean. Critics note the cup's wide base doesn't fit in some cup holders.
$7.20

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Best Sippy Cup with Spout: NUK Learner Cup

Yes, sippy cups with spouts are controversial (see discussion below). But we realize some parents still want a recommendation in this category—in this case, we’d go for Nuk’s learner cup.

It performed best in our testing: easy to clean, didn’t leak and smaller toddlers liked how easy they were to grip.

That said, a rimless sippy cup (like the Munchkin pick earlier in this article) or one with a straw is what we prefer as sippy cups for toddlers. These are better for infant development and preferred by pediatricians we interviewed for this article.

How we picked a winner

Sippy Cup Smackdown: We tested these "spill proof" cups to see if they could stand up to real toddlers

 

Sippy Cup Smackdown! We tested these “spill proof” cups to see if they could stand up to real toddlers—here’s a sampling of the 14 cups we tested. Our toddler testers sucked on a lot of straws, shook up all kinds of cups and did their best to figure out how to make a “no-leak” sippy cup leak.

We inspected a top slate of popular sippy cups with straws as well as rimless sippy cups, checking models for overall quality and ease of use—for example, figuring out how much liquid could we extract. We also gather significant reader feedback (our book, Baby Bargains has over 1 million copies in print), tracking cups on quality and durability. Besides interviewing parents, we also regularly talk with pediatricians and dentists to learn about sippy cup concerns. Since we’ve been doing this since 1994, we have developed detailed profiles of manufacturers that help guide our recommendations.

Should you skip the sippy cups with spouts?

Good question! Here’s what we are referring to:

Sippy cup with spout

Pediatricians we interviewed suggest skipping these cups. Transitioning from breast or a bottle to a cup is a big step for toddlers. It’s one of the first times you’ll be encouraging real independence from your little one. Once your child can eat and drink independently (without leaving behind a huge mess), life gets a bit easier since you won’t need to be personally involved in every meal! Sippy cups are typically parents’ choice to help with the transition.

But . . . you knew there’d be a “but” . . . you want the right sippy cup. The delivery method is important when it comes to your child’s dental and developmental health. According to our resident pediatric expert, Dr. Ari Brown (co-author of Baby 411 and Toddler 411), spouted lids work just like bottles (your child will tilt his/her head back to drink) so your child doesn’t get to practice for a real cup—that’s not good. Here’s what this looks like:

Baby drinking from sippy cup

Straw sippy cups encourage babies to keep their heads forward similar to drinking from a regular cup.

Dentists also note that the flow of the liquid from a spouted cup is directed to the back of the top front teeth. This can easily lead to cavities. Hence, most dentists do NOT recommend using sippy cups with spouted lids.

Speech therapists also worry sippy cups with spouts could contribute to a lisping problem. The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association offers a detailed explanation of potential problems with spouted sippy cups. Their recommendation: straws, which baby can master by about nine months of age. They also recommend helping kids drink from an open top cup once they are around one year of age to help them master independent drinking. Most toddlers can drink from an open top cup by themselves by 18 months.

In light of all this expert advice, we recommend sippy cups with straws or rimless sippy cups (like our top pick above) instead of spouted sippy cups. Teaching your child to drink from a straw is a better strategy for dental health and will make the developmental transition to a lidless cup easier too.

The newest category of sippy cups are called “rimless trainers.” (We recommend one of these cups as our top pick above). From the side, these cups look like a regular cup with no lid. But when you look down from above, you’ll see an insert that impedes the flow of liquid enough to help kids learn to drink from a lidless cup without pouring all of it on themselves. Some rimless trainers are self-sealing, while others just slow down the flow rate.

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing baby products since 1994. In addition to hands on testing and inspection of sippy cups and other items, we have also visited manufacturer facilities and met with safety regulators—and when we travel, we pay our all of our own expenses.

Here’s another key point: we don’t take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no “partnerships.” Baby Bargains is your independent and unbiased source for expert baby gear reviews. We’ve been writing and reviewing baby gear since 1994. Yes, that long!

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