Best Cardboard Blocks For Kids Who Love To Build Stuff

Best Cardboard Blocks For Kids Toddlers And Babies
Best Cardboard Blocks For Kids Toddlers And Babies

Lightweight, child-safe, and eco-friendly — cardboard blocks give kids the freedom to build large structures.

For larger-than-life block play, there’s no better option!

Thinking about cardboard blocks for your child, toddler, or baby?

Here’s everything you should know!

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In a hurry?

Compared and reviewed — here are our top 5 picks for the best cardboard building blocks. Kid-tested, parent-approved.

  • (01) Melissa & Doug is a well-known brand that makes extra-thick cardboard blocks
  • (02) Big Building Blocks’ interlocking cardboard blocks are like huge cardboard Legos
  • (03) Mondo Bloxx’s cardboard bricks have a realistic red brick & natural wood look
  • (04) EXERCISE N PLAY makes delightfully colorful pastel and primary color cardboard block sets
  • (05) DJECO’s baby-safe fiberboard stacking blocks help your little one learn to count

Cardboard Blocks 101: What Are They & How To Use

How to use cardboard blocks?

Large cardboard blocks are a type of building block for kids.

They are large hollow cardboard bricks that kids stack up and build things.

A cardboard building block set usually includes about 40 to 200 blocks. 40 blocks are enough for one child to play with.

Each block measures approximately 8” to 12” in length. The most common dimensions are 12″ (L) 6″ (W) 3″ (H).

These are jumbo-sized blocks! Kids can build elaborate structures that fill up the room.

How to store cardboard blocks?

Typically, once you assemble them into stackable bricks, you won’t want to unfold them flat again. It was fun the first time — it was a one-and-done.

The bricks take up about 20 times more space than the package they came in.

You’ll need to find a place to store them.

Lots of parents recommend bookshelves or storage bins. Or just stack them alongside the wall. Montessori parents might suggest you keep the blocks accessible in your child’s play area.

Try to keep your set dry. Direct contact with water and extended time in moist air will cause the brick shape to warp.

If you prefer a more professional storage solution, try a under-bed storage bag like this, that’ll fit the entire set in a nice neat package.

5 Reasons To Love Cardboard Bricks

Cost-Effective

Cardboard is an inexpensive material perfect to make sturdy large blocks. Cardboard blocks offer a big bang for your buck. No other blocks of this size compare price-wise.

Environmentally Friendly

Cardboard is recyclable — and that’s something to celebrate. The best way to support Mother Nature is to make environmentally friendly choices!

Lightweight

Wooden or plastic blocks of this size would be too heavy for young children. Cardboard blocks are easy for all ages to work with.

Life-Size Block Play

Jumbo-sized cardboard building blocks enable your kid to build child-size structures even taller than they are. If your child likes regular-size building blocks, they’ll love cardboard blocks. It’s like a giant lego block. How cool is that?

Fun Assembly

Assembly is a headache for most toys — but for cardboard blocks, it’s part of the fun. Folding out each block is a parent-child afternoon activity that helps your little one practice fine motor skills.

Best Cardboard Building Blocks For Kids

(01) Melissa & Doug Jumbo Extra-Thick Cardboard Building Blocks

See it on Amazon

  • Price: $$ (Affordable)
  • Age: 2 to 5 years
  • Count: 40 blocks in 3 sizes
  • Size: 12″ (L) 6″ (W) 3″ (H) for the largest blocks

Melissa & Doug is one of America’s most well-known brands when it comes to educational toys. They were even featured on an NPR special about entrepreneurship one time.

Their Deluxe Jumbo Cardboard Blocks set is the perfect starter size for your first cardboard block set.

With 40 blocks in 3 different sizes and 3 different colors — it checks all the boxes for things people love about large toddler blocks.

40 blocks are enough for three toddlers to play with at the same time — and a good number to play with alone as well. Different-sized bricks mean your toddler can experiment with stacking and building using different shapes.

With over 3,000 five-star ratings (at the time of writing), Melissa & Doug’s cardboard blocks make it into the number one spot on this review.

(02) Big Building Blocks Interlocking Cardboard Blocks

See it on Etsy

  • Price: $$$$ (A Little Pricey)
  • Age: 3 to 6 years
  • Count: 200 blocks in 2 sizes
  • Size: 7.5″ (L) 4″ (W) 4″ (h)

Yes, it exists! Cardboard blocks that fit together like Legos.

What does “interlocking” mean, and why does it matter?

Interlocking blocks are blocks that fit and lock together. Legos are the perfect example.

They include a nest-like mechanism to increase stability — where the bumps on the top of one block connect to the open bottom of another block.

The same way Legos and Duplos stick together.

Big Building Blocks brand is your one-stop shop for XXL interlocking cardboard blocks.

You can choose a small set of 60 blocks or the complete set of 200 blocks. Since all the blocks fit together perfectly, you can start with a smaller set to do a trial run with your toddler.

Big Building Blocks brand offers cardboard playhouse block sets too — specifically designed for your little one to build their own child-sized cardboard play house.

For a budget alternative, try the GIGI brand’s G-3 series. You get a full 200 piece set of large interlocking cardboard building blocks at about half the price (at the time of writing).

(03) Mondo Bloxx Realistic Timber & Red Cardboard Bricks

See it on Amazon

Mondo Bloxx Red Cardboard Bricks And Wood Pattern Huge Bricks For Toddlers
Credit: Mondo Bloxx on Amazon (Red Bricks, Timber Bricks)
  • Price: $$$ (Average)
  • Age: Age: 3 to 6 years
  • Count: 40 blocks in 1 size
  • Size: 12″ (L) 6″ (W) 3″ (H)

Mondo Bloxx has two things going for them: size and style.

Mondo Bloxx costs a little more than Melissa & Doug, but technically you get “more brick for your buck”.

Both sets include 40 blocks. Where Melissa & Doug set includes 12 large bricks and 28 smaller bricks — all 40 Mondo Bloxx are large 12-inch bricks.

Their Red Bricks are printed to look like life-like red housing bricks.

Their Timber Bricks are printed to look like real wooden blocks like a lumberjack’s fresh chopped lumber.

If you don’t have enough space for 40 blocks, Constructive Playthings makes an alternative set with just 12 large blocks.

(04) EXERCISE N PLAY Colorful Cardboard Stacking Blocks

See it on Amazon

Exercise N Play Colorful Pastel And Primary Kids Giant Cardboard Block Set
Credit: EXERCISE N PLAY on Amazon (Pastel colors, Primary colors)
  • Price: $$ (Affordable)
  • Age: 3 to 6 years
  • Count: 40 blocks in 3 sizes
  • Size: 11″ (L) 5.5″ (W) 2.5″ (H) for the largest blocks

EXERCISE N PLAY brand’s blocks are almost identical to Mellissa & Doug’s — just 0.5″ to 1″ smaller block measurements. You get 40 blocks in 3 sizes, just like Mellissa & Doug’s.

So why not just go with a well-known brand like Melissa & Doug?

What’s interesting about EXERCISE N PLAY’s giant stacking blocks is their unique color choices.

Their pastel color cardboard block set is perfect for building a princess castle.

Their primary color cardboard block set is available in red, green, and blue (RGB).

For a toy that takes up so much space in the playroom — color matters.

(05) DJECO Nest & Stack Baby Block Set

See it on Amazon

Djeco Fiberboard Baby Stacking Blocks For Building And Counting
Credit: DJECO on Amazon (Pastel colors, Primary colors)
  • Price: $$ (Affordable)
  • Age: 12 months to 4 years
  • Count: 10 blocks numbered 1 to 10
  • Size: 6″ (L) 6″ (W) 6″ (D) for largest block

Large-scale block play isn’t just for kids. Babies can join in the fun too!

DJECO’s fiberboard stacking and nesting blocks are a baby-perfect for little ones as little as 12 months other to start stacking into impressive towers.

Like nesting Russian Dolls — one block fits within the next, so storage is a breeze.

You love DJECO’s nursery-friendly colors and animal designs — complete with numbers to help your baby learn to count.

Check out their pastel color animals set, their primary color animal set – or their small set with animal figurines to play with.

Cardboard Play Things (Alternatives Worth A Peek!)

Giant Cardboard Blocks Alternatives

(A) Cardboard Kids Play House

Mom’s Manufacture Store specializes in child-sized cardboard playhouses big enough to crawl in and play inside.

Giant size is the name of the game for Mom’s Manufacture Store — they make huge cardboard letters & numbers you can personalize with your child’s name or kindergarten graduation year.

Plus so many other fun cardboard creations — all of which DIY assembly is part of the fun!

(B) Large Foam Building Blocks

Lots of parents choose cardboard blocks because they’re lightweight. Babies and toddlers can easily move them around, stack them up, and knock them down.

Safety and playability for a wide age range are the big reasons to like light blocks.

As an alternative to lightweight cardboard blocks, take a look at foam blocks.

Like these giant foam castle blocks from Number 1 Gadgets brand. Or these large Lego-style interlocking foam blocks.

Foam vs. cardboard blocks? Foam is not as environmentally friendly as cardboard, but foam has added benefits — like being waterproof. Some people say foam is even more comfortable and convenient to hold.

(C) Cardboard Concept Blocks

For artistic families, the design, shapes, and colors of the toy matter most. I’m almost certain that’s what attracted you to cardboard building blocks in the first place.

Cardboard is a creative medium some concept toy designers took a liking to. milimbo is an art studio out of Spain that makes mini cardboard animals with distinct artistic appeal.

Over to you!

Good on a budget, good for the environment, and great for block play — cardboard blocks are an excellent open-ended play activity for children of all ages.

Easy for children to stack and brightly colored to spark imagination they make a perfect gift for kids who love to build things!

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