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Gifts that’ll make his day just as much as cracking a bad dad joke does, starting at $4

You'll find something for even the hardest guys to shop for.
Kara Birnbaum / TODAY
/ Source: TODAY

The dad, or dad figure in your life, is likely one of the most important people to buy for — even if he insists he “doesn’t need anything.” Dads seemingly already have everything they want and tend to be totally satisfied with that, which makes shopping for them much more difficult.

Instead of wasting money on a “#1 Dad” mug or another tie to add to his collection, it may help to focus on finding gifts for dads that he’ll actually use. Sure, gift cards always work, but why not showcase how much you’ve been paying attention to him all these years with a thoughtful gift?

If you’re on the hunt for the perfect gift for your dad and looking for a bit of inspiration, you’ve come to the right place. This gift guide has got you covered with the best options, no matter his interests or the occasion.

Note that these selections make suitable gifts or stocking stuffers for every father figure in your life, including stepdads, fathers-in-law, grandpas, uncles and even godfathers. Whether he’s into reading, cooking or technology, there’s something for him on this list. 

Stocking stuffers for dads | Under $25 | Classic gifts | Cooking and kitchen | Tech | Useful gifts | Books

Stocking stuffers for dads

Faux Lottery Tickets

He jokes with you year-round, why not give him a taste of his own medicine? These faux lottery tickets will make him believe he hit the jackpot.

Professor Puzzle Mini Poker Set

For the father who loves to bet his money and steal some of yours while he's at it, this gift is great for vacation. It comes with perforated poker chips to punch out and play with and also includes a full deck of cards and a dealer chip, big and small blinds.

Kiehl's Lip Balm #1

Replenish his lip balm supply with this hydrating one from Kiehl's, that promises to soothe lips with the key ingredient of aloe vera. Squalane also plays a huge role, promising to keep lips soft and smooth.

Craighill Wilson Keyring

Upgrade his key ring with this more elevated version that will keep keys and keychains secure. Available in three different finishes, (brass, titanium and vabor black), this key ring is made out of cold rolled metal, that clasps and unclasps to add or remove keys.

Cheap gifts for dads under $25

Rubik’s Coach Cube

Who doesn't love a Rubik's Cube? Dad's ego may be a bit bruised after countless times of not being able to solve it, so surprise him with this hands-on, step-by-step guide to mastering the infamous 3D puzzle.

Word Teasers Dad Jokes

Most dads have a stash of puns and lame jokes that they use regularly — no matter how much we tell them not to. Arm him with more laughs with this deck of dad jokes that are kind of funny, but in a cool, quirky way.

...I Should Have Known That! Trivia Game

Dads are full of random knowledge, so put his trivial pursuit to the test with a few rounds of trivia. With 400+ questions spanning across multiple categories, this fast-paced game has drawn a considerable crowd — 18,000+ verified Amazon shoppers who have rated this five stars, for starters.

OXO Brew Single-Serve Pour-Over Coffee Maker

Upgrade Dad’s morning cup of coffee with this pour-over coffee dripper from OXO. The device sits comfortably on top of most standard-sized coffee mugs. All Dad needs to do is put a filter in the cone along with his favorite coffee, and pour it over hot water. In minutes he’ll have a flavorful cup of coffee that tastes better than anything from a plastic pod.

"Dad, I Want to Hear Your Story," by Jeffrey Mason

We can always learn something from Dad, and that’s exactly what this book does. He can fill it out with stories and wisdom that you can cherish forever. A gift for him now will also be a gift passed down to future generations one day.

Glocusent LED Neck Reading Light

Does he love curling up with a good book or crossword puzzle before he hits the hay? This ingenious LED reading light sits securely around his neck and has three levels of brightness, which should help him avoid waking the missus in the middle of the night.

OTOTO Red the Crab Silicone Utensil Rest

Perfect for the crafty home chef, this cute crustacean would much rather hold his utensils on the counter over getting a steamy bath in a bubbling pot.

Think-n-Drink Wine Puzzle

If he's earned the nickname of "Mr. Fix-It," gift him with this fun puzzle that will put his skills to the test. Commerce editor Vivien Moon plans on doing just that with this fun wine game. Place a wine bottle into this wooden contraption and watch as dad completes the puzzle to get it out before he drinks.

Best classic gifts for dads

Tommy Hilfiger Men's Leather Wallet

This pick has four card slots, three slip pockets and one large bill compartment with a bill divider so he has plenty of space for all his cash and credit cards (and maybe even a wallet-sized picture of the family, too). It also comes in a variety of colors and patterns, so you can rest assured there is an option for every dad's personal aesthetic.

'47 NCAA Ball Cap

They are called dad caps for a reason. Get him this aptly named accessory where he can also show off his alma mater or his child's current school.

Woodford Reserve x Williams Sonoma Gift Set

For the dad who wants to experiment turning his whiskey on the rocks into a craft cocktail, this gift set (made in collaboration with famed distillery Woodford Reserve) allows him to do just that. The set comes with mint julep, old fashioned and whiskey sour cocktail syrups to make three classic drink options. If your dad isn’t one for alcohol, these can also be paired with sparkling water for a tasty mocktail.

Open Story 45L Travel Backpack

A backpack is a practical gift for the dad who’s always carrying his work things by hand into the office. This sleek option — a recent Shop TODAY Travel Gear Award winner — comes in a Dark Ivy or a deep gray and has ample compartments, including a padded slot that can hold a 17-inch laptop.

Allbird's Tree Runner Sneakers

Associate commerce editor Emma Stessman gifted these to her dad last year, who has since dubbed them "the most comfortable shoes he's ever owned."

This lightweight pair of sneakers can carry dad for miles on end, without weighing him down. Crafted of lightweight materials, the midsole also provides cushioning that will help him feel supported and comfortable all day long.

Chacos Z/1 Classic Sandal

"If there's one thing i've accomplished in this life, it will be getting my dad to wear cool sandals," Shop TODAY editorial assistant Sierra Hoeger proudly proclaimed about her beloved pops. "My sister and I got these Chacos for him one year for his birthday and he loved them so much, he gifted his dad a pair! They rock in their Chacs all the time and it's so wholesome and pure."

Lululemon Surge Jogger

If your dad's been rocking the same pair of sweats all year, help him upgrade with these easy-fitting Lululemon joggers. A winner for Best Overall Men's Pants during the Start TODAY x Shop TODAY Wellness Awards, these pants are made out sweat-wicking, quick-drying fabrics and have a tapered fit that gives it an extra flattering look.

Lego "The Office"

Dads and Lego sets go way back. While he might not be building towers to make them fall over and be rebuilt again, we can almost guarantee that he’s probably hoping to get this Lego set of one of his favorite shows. He'll light up like a little kid when he sees all the Dunder-Mifflin characters he knows and loves.

Ugg Ascot Leather Slippers

These slippers are shaped from rich leather with a rubber traction sole so they're extra durable, meaning you won't have to worry about them wearing thin over time. The stylish design is great for the dad who likes to lounge around the house.

On Men's Cloud 5

For the dad who spends his mornings in the gym before work, upgrade his sneaker game with this pair of cool running kicks. Not only are these shoes made with "serious comfort" in mind thanks to thoughtful features like patented CloudTec cushioning and a speed lacing system, it's also won over reviewers during the inaugural Start TODAY x Shop TODAY Wellness Awards!

Original Grain Sapele Wood Watch

Isn't this handsome? This 46-mm handcrafted watch would look nice on any Dad's wrist. It's made from all-natural, sustainably-sourced African sapele wood and stainless steel.

Designer Dram Experience Kit

If your dad is often seen with a glass of high-end liquor in his hand, consider letting him create his own whiskey with this experience kit. He can make a custom blend of whiskey from home, then send the specs back to Designer Dram, who will then make an entire bottle of his blend, plus a custom label on the bottle just for him.

Best cooking and kitchen gifts for dads

Black + Decker Electric Griddle

For Sunday morning pancakes or making breakfast for the masses after a sleepover, this cooking gadget makes up to eight servings at once. The added drip tray makes for minimal mess. Reviewers love the griddle because it "heats evenly" and is "easy to clean."

Stanley Stainless Steel Thermos

Stanley's recently been synonymous with the viral oversized tumbler trend, but the rest of their product line deserves equal attention. Take, for example, their "tough and durable" one-liter thermos that's leakproof and designed to keep liquids hot or cold for up to 24 hours, according to the brand. "My dad had a Stanley before Stanleys were even cool, and he takes this one on hunting trips, to work and road trips," adds Hoeger.

Opinel No. 10 Corkscrew Knife

Every dad needs a knife handy for unexpected cutting or slicing. This one — featuring a sturdy beechwood handle — not only has a knife sharp enough to cut through meats and cheeses, but it's also equipped with a bottle opener and corkscrew in case he's also the family bartender.

Handwritten Recipe Cutting Board

If your dad is always cooking up a storm, his cookware means a lot to him. “My dad is always trying to perfect new types of food and right now, he’s obsessed with making bread,” Druckman says. “I’m planning on gifting my dad this cutting board with my grandma’s challah recipe, so he can braid the dough on top of her handwritten words.”

Make Your Own Hot Sauce Kit

Spicy food and dads just go together like fried chicken and mashed potatoes, which is why this pick is great for any dad. This kit will guide your dad through making his own spicy sauce, complete with his own made-up name. If you’re nice, he might even let you try some.

Goldbelly Monthly Bacon Subscription

There’s nothing we won’t do for bacon, including setting up our dad with a monthly subscription to have a few pounds of hand-cut, small batch bacon sent to his door from small butchers around the country. While this is a gift for dad, it shouldn’t be hard to get him to cook some up so we can reap the benefits of this gift, too.

The Rowdy Chef Apron Set

Gift sets are always a great option for people who love to give thoughtful gifts without the extra effort. This apron set includes a limited-edition apron that can hold the included heat-safe chopsticks. It also comes with four types of noodles and one sauce bundle.

Katz's Delicatessen Taste of New York

There is nothing like a sandwich from a New York City deli. Give Dad a taste of the Big Apple with this box that's filled with everything he needs to make a mile-high sandwich, including a pound of pastrami and corned beef, seedless rye bread, sour pickles, mustard and sauerkraut.

Pit Barrel Cooker Classic Vertical Smoker Package

Most dads consider themselves the grill and smoking master of the house. If that’s your dad, then upgrade his grill game with this barrel cooker. It includes all of the hooks and grates he needs to make fantastic bbq chicken, smoked ribs and even grilled veggies.

Best tech gifts for dads

Fitbit Luxe Activity Tracker

This award-winning wearable fitness tracker is loaded with wellness-focused features like GPS and heart rate monitoring technology, stress management tips and trend tracking targeting his skin temperature, breathing rate and more. It also comes in four different shade options so you can pick the best one according to your dad’s color preferences.

Apple AirTags

Help Dad never lose his keys, wallet — or anything else for that matter — ever again with Apple AirTags. The Shop TODAY Travel Gear Awards winning small device connects to his phone via Bluetooth and can help him locate the desired item with the click of a button. These are great for luggage too if Dad is an avid traveler, whether for work or pleasure.

Samsung Galaxy Earbuds 2

Wireless earbuds fan? These will likely be his jam. Dad can listen to his favorite podcasts, tunes or pair with his smartphone to take calls on the move.

SATECHI Charging Port

This super charger is the perfect gift for a dad who works from home. It can effortlessly power all his devices at once, using six USB-C ports to charge everything from his headphones to work phone.

SEO senior editor Jess Bender is also gifting this to her dad, after owning one herself and realizing that her dad will “nerd out over this” gadget because of how quickly it charges devices.

Audio-Technica ATLP60XBT Bluetooth Turntable

Retro dads will want to spin all of their vintage vinyl on this modern turntable enabled with Bluetooth technology. With over 5,600 verified five-star ratings on Amazon, this pick is almost a guaranteed favorite for many families.

Beats Over-the-Ear Headphones

Commerce editor Julie Ricevuto’s plans to gift her dad with Beats Studio Pro headphones this holiday season. She notes that he’s been looking for ways to drown out background noise during the workday and a pair of quality noise cancelling headphones will help him do just that.

Now $150 off their original price, these over-the-ear headphones feature a number of modes, including transparency mode, which allows you to blend your surroundings with the music you’re listening to. It also has an “active noise cancelling” mode, that effectively blocks outside sound.

Best useful gifts for dads

Fan & Ran 2024 Planner

Shopping for a dad who needs help keeping his calendar straight? We can relate. “My dad’s a busy guy, and I think he’d like a planner to help keep himself organized,” SEO editor Amanda Fama says. “This is a nice one with a faux-leather cover.”

Harry's Shave Travel Kit

Give Dad the gift of the perfect shave with this curated travel kit. It comes with self-care essentials like an ergonomic handle (available in five two-toned hues), travel cover, rich shave gel and a water-resistant dopp bag to hold his goods in. We know Dad already looks great, but after using this, he’ll feel great, too.

Licensed Marshall Guitar Amp Key Hanger

Whether he’s a music fan or a musician, he’ll love this guitar-themed key hanger. “My dad’s a guitar player and I got this key holder for him for Christmas once and he uses it every day in his studio,” Fama says. “It’s super high quality and great for any music lover!”

Teslyar Wood Phone Docking Station

Help Dad keep his electronics organized with this docking station. The wooden stand can hold his cellphone, keys, wallet, watch, sunglasses and anything else that’s small and used daily — all in one convenient spot.

Sunbeam Neck and Shoulder Heating Wrap

If your dad needs some pain relief, this neck wrap may do the trick. It contours to the shape of his upper shoulders and delivers soothing, therapeutic heat.

American Trench Cotton Thermal Scarf

When Santa comes to town, so does the cold winter air. That’s why this classic gift will be a winner for the dad who has it all. It’s available in two colors, navy and camel, so you can match it to his coat of choice.

Leatherman FREE T2 Swiss Army Knife

If your dad enjoys being handy or is the type who can't wait to whip out his Swiss Army or pocketknife, he's going to love this multipurpose, 8-in-1 tool. It includes a bottle opener, three different kinds of screwdrivers as well as a traditional package opener and blades.

Commerce editor Vivien Moon is also gifting her dad with this tool, because he's an engineer and "loves to fix things."

Dad & Me Activity Bucket List

Everyone has a list of things they want to do with their dad, but they rarely write them down and actually do them. This activity bucket includes cards that provide ideas of things to do with dad throughout the year to allow you to spend some quality time together.

YnM Weighted Blanket

This bestselling weighted blanket is perfect for the dad who loves to sleep. It's available in 5- to 39-lb options and over 25 different colors and has an impressive average rating from over 36,000 verified shoppers.

Long Jambys

Dads can always use another set of loungewear. We love these by Jambys because of how soft the material is and the fact that he can go outside to the mailbox or to his car and still look decent. The pants come in a variety of color combinations, too.

Panasonic Beard Trimmer

So, Dad’s got the grooming kit — what about a beard trimmer? This powerful and cordless wet/dry clipper will have his beard shaped up in no time!

Tushy Classic 3.0 Bidet and Ottoman

Dad deserves a throne that's worthy of his greatness, and Tushy's got his bottom plenty covered with their bestselling bundle (seriously, just check out the 16,000+ five-star ratings!). It comes with a slim, easy-to-install bidet with a patented self-cleaning SmartSpray nozzle and precision adjuster for the perfect aim, plus a sleek curved toilet stool to keep him comfortable.

Yellow Leaf Hammocks The Chair Hammock

Let Dad kick back and relax outdoors in this single-person hammock. The hammock is made of a soft weaved yarn so it won't feel scratchy against his skin while lounging. All he needs to go with this is a tropical drink and he’ll be able to snap into vacation mode at home.

YETI M12 Backpack Cooler

This cooler is easy to transport, thanks to the backpack straps and can hold up to 20 of his favorite canned beverages or up to 12 pounds of ice.

"My sister and I are filling this cooler with my dad’s favorite snacks and gifting it to him," editorial assistant Sierra Hoeger says. "It’s perfect for hunting season, when he’s out in the deer stand all day and wants to pack snacks, meals and more."

Best books for dads

"Pops: Fatherhood in Pieces," by Michael Chabon

This book of essays about fatherhood will remind you and your dad why your relationship is so special. Its meaningful words will leave your dad laughing, tearing up and feeling more grateful that ever for his family.

"Roadtrip America: A Sports Fan's Guide to Route 66," by Ron Clements

Sports fans will enjoy this guide to sports along the iconic Route 66. The book highlights venues, sports players and events along the famous backroad from Chicago to Santa Monica. No matter if he’s a fan of the NFL, NBA, NHL or MLB, there’s something in here for him.

"Ask an Astronaut: My Guide to Life in Space," by Tim Peake

Astronaut Tim Peake takes readers behind the scenes and answers hard-hitting questions about life in space. "Was it fun to do a space walk?" and "What were your feelings as you looked down on Earth for the first time?" are just a few of the topics touched on in this fascinating read.

"Christopher Nolan: The Iconic Filmmaker and His Work"

For the dad who lived for the Barbenheimer hype this summer, this comprehensive page-turner takes the reader through the themes and influences of director Christopher Nolan's most iconic films throughout his career. There's also plenty of intriguing behind-the-scenes photography along the way, which should appeal to the family's biggest cinephile.

"National Geographic Ultimate Visual History of the World," by Jean-Pierre Isbouts

We catch our dad watching National Geographic most of the time the TV is on. If he loves history, then he’s going to enjoy this new history book from National Geographic about the evolution of humans, which includes maps and stunning photos from the past and present.