Yesterday, I had the (rare for me) opportunity to small-talk with a group of kids.
After talking about Fortnite, butts, and some inside jokes I didn’t understand but still giggled along with, I brought up the topic of vitamins to do a little of my own market research. I knew I had this article about the best kids vitamins on deck.
“Your parents make you take vitamins every day, right? If you could do anything to the vitamins to make them better, what would you do?”
They moved onto Zelda six seconds later, but I got a pretty undeniable consensus of what’s important to kids these days:
“Make it taste like candy.”
“I wouldn’t have to take it. Ever.”
“Turn them into pancakes.”
The bottom line: Most kids don’t want to know they’re taking vitamins. (Or kids probiotics.) But according to Harvard, they’re still good for most kids, despite the recent controversy surrounding multivitamins.
With this in mind, I carefully gathered the best multivitamins for kids. I factored in the important stuff like purity and nutritional information for the adults while tossing any bad tasting vitamins aside.
What’s the point of buying them if your child won’t eat them?
Honestly. Especially if they’re a picky eater in the first place! Of course, it would be ideal to get all of your child’s required nutrients through real, whole foods, but sometimes that’s just not happening.
These are some common ingredients in the best kids multivitamins:
Vitamin A: supports eyes
Vitamin B6 & B12: cell support and energy production
Vitamin C: immune support
Vitamin D3: supports bone & immune health
Vitamin E: supports heart health
Folic Acid: supports blood cell health
There’s a lot of children’s multivitamins out there, but I was able to narrow it down to five choices that met all of my strict criteria.
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1. SmartyPants Kids Complete Daily Gummy Vitamins with Fish OilPros:
- GMP-certified & FDA-compliant, no artificial dyes, created in an allergen-free environment, and tested for purity from an independent lab.
- Customer service is fantastic & from the founding family themselves
- All-in-one vitamin & mineral stop. Everything the average kid needs supplemented in their diets is in here.
- Healthy, but some kids don't like the taste. There's a trial and error period here.
- Sweet but also a bit sour - if you don't like sour, skip it
- Need to take four small gummies per day, which can get expensive
The SmartyPants Kids Complete vitamins were introduced into this world from a family with picky eaters. They’ve managed to combine a full multivitamin (13 essential nutrients), 300 mg of Omega-3 fish oils, and 150% RDI of Vitamin D into a yummy gummy that tastes like either Lemon, Orange or Strawberry-Banana. The Omega-3 EPA & DHA is sourced from wild-caught fish.
If you’re using a “fancy” salt in your everyday cooking (and trust me, if you like to cook and aren’t using Maldon Sea Salt, treat yourself right now), there’s a chance your child isn’t getting enough iodine. Most of the USA is deficient because of our diets. Iodine is looped into the ingredient list, and it plays a major role in your child’s development and metabolism.
Allergy sufferer? You’re in luck. This multivitamin for kids is non-GMO and free of high fructose corn syrup, milk, peanuts, eggs, tree nut allergens, shellfish, soy, gluten, and wheat. There are no artificial flavors, sweeteners or synthetic dyes. All of this is third-party lab tested and manufactured in California.
It still gets better. Each time you buy a bottle of Smarty-pants, the family-owned company makes a 1-for-1 match nutrient grant to a child most in need through their partnership with Vitamin Angels.
Smarty-pants uses organic ingredients when they can, but they also offer a 100% organic and vegetarian version (Omega-3 is from Flaxseed oil).
2. Flintstones Vitamins Children’s Complete Multivitamin Supplement Chewable Tablets, 180 CountPros:
- Chewable tablet form doesn't stick to teeth or dental devices
- Doesn't taste like chalk
- Kids look forward to "vitamin time"
- It's funny - some adults are reporting that they taste the same from their childhood, and they still like them, but their kids won't take them. Tastes vary.
- One person reported a "stale" taste when ordering from Amazon vs. a drug store
- Contains Red #40
YUP. These are the Flintstones vitamins from your childhood. They are still alive and kickin’. (But they don’t make an adult version. I checked. I’m sorry.)
Honestly, I expected to add Flintstones vitamins as a joke to the top of this post. “They’re so old, they can’t still be that great!”
These aren’t here just for the sake of posterity. Still Pediatricians’ top choice for children’s chewable vitamins, these yummy fun-shaped tablets can be chewed, crushed or sucked on like candy. Vitamins B6, B12, Biotin, and Pantothenic Acid help convert food to energy while Calcium and Vitamin D sustain bone health.
Vitamins A, C, E, and Zinc support healthy eyes and immune health, which is especially important coming into the winter months.
This is your straight up, no fuss, great tasting, take-a-vitamin-and-get-out-the-door vitamin.
They also have a gummy version now!
3. Iron Strong, Vegan Dissolvable Vitamins for Kids, Zero Sugar, Oh-Oh-Oh Orange Flavor, 90 Melty Tabs by Renzo’sPros:
- Can be hidden in foods like oatmeal or dissolved in a drink, but it still tastes good just by itself
- Anecdotal evidence strongly suggests these iron supplements can cure borderline anemia in children
- Contains Vitamin C to help absorption
- Carbonyl iron is gentler, which means one dose may not be effective enough for your child. Consult with a physician if you are concerned about low iron.
- Not a multivitamin, so this will have to be taken in addition to any multi
- 5% of reviewers are unhappy with taste. 95% like it.
Iron is one of the leading mineral deficiencies of kids in the US. This is bad because iron is awesome and has the important job of delivering oxygen and facilitating growth spurts. If you notice symptoms in your child like a loss of energy and appetite, pale skin, behavioral problems, repeat infections, breathlessness or pica (strange food cravings – think dirt), it’s important to bring your child to their pediatrician. They may recommend blood work and an iron supplement like this one.
There’s more than one source of iron, and Renzo’s uses the best one for kids. Carbonyl iron is absorbed steadily and safely without stomach upset. That’s why it’s recommended for children over ferrous sulfate. Renzo’s uses carbonyl iron in their kids’ vitamins with iron.
When blended with Vitamin C (which it is), iron is absorbed at a maximum level.
If you want, you can mix your child’s melty tab with a glass of orange juice. It’s Oh-Oh-Oh Orange flavored, after all.
Zero sugar, gluten-free, Non-GMO, vegan. Made in an FDA approved lab without artificial sweeteners.
Warning! Keep these vitamins where kids can’t reach them. Iron overdose is the leading cause of childhood poisoning. Each bottle comes with a child-resistant safety cap, but there’s no need to take any chances.
5. Children’s Complete Multivitamin Gummy – Vegan & Gluten Free by Simply NaturalPros:
- Hand drawn artwork on every bottle supports local artists
- Carefully chosen & researched ingredients. Ingredients list is small, organic, and straightforward.
- Actually tastes like candy
- Doesn't contain iron
- A little firm at first, but softens quickly in the mouth
- Kids may think it's candy, so keep them out of reach.
This small, Austin, TX-based company is changing the way kids see vitamins. They may even — *gasp* — ask to take their vitamins.
Each gummy is fruit flavored — either strawberry, orange or grape. They’re all actually very tasty, so take care keeping these up high (yeah, that good). In my opinion, the red strawberry ones are best. They all taste really good though! It’s like having a starburst preference — they taste like candy.
The chewable Non-GMO gummy is crafted with organic tapioca syrup and fruit pectin, making this a vegan supplement. 13 vitamins and minerals are specially formulated to fill in the nutrient gaps a lot of kids are missing. Vitamins A, B6, B12, C, D3, E, Folic Acid, Biotin, Iodine, Zinc, Choline, Inositol, and Pantothenic Acid make up the certified organic formula.
Simply Natural vitamins are manufactured in the USA at an Organic & GMP Certified Facility. They are free from top allergens, gelatin, wheat, egg, nuts, dairy, fish, gluten, yeast, and salt. There are no artificial colors, sweeteners, flavors, fillers, or high-fructose corn syrup.
There is no vitamin-y aftertaste, they have a pleasant fruity smell, and kids are known to beg for more.
One bottle is a one month supply for children 4 and older. For children ages 2-4, reduce dosage to 1 gummy. Bonus: one bottle now lasts twice as long. Already inexpensive vitamins just became 50% less expensive!
Really, this is everything you want in an organic children’s multivitamin. If you happen to have any problems, the customer service is friendly and will go beyond your expectations. In my book, Simply Natural takes home the grand prize for best kids vitamins.