How to Pack the Perfect Diaper Bag for Baby & Toddler

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The day has arrived and you realize you are now the mom of a baby and toddler! This is a situation many moms find themselves in as they plan to have kids close in age. It is such a fun time of life but it also presents some challenges. One being how to pack the perfect diaper bag for your baby and toddler.

Toddlers and babies are in such different stages of life yet also very similar. Once baby comes along your diaper bag has to go back to the basics while still being functionable and practical for your toddler.

How do you make sure to have everything in the diaper bag without over packing it?

What do you need to pack for a toddler and baby in your diaper bag?

What is the best diaper bag to have when you have a toddler and baby?

How to pack the perfect diaper bag for baby & toddler

All of these are very important questions and are a big part of your life with a baby and toddler. If you’ve ever left the house without the diaper bag then you know how vital it truly is. I would venture to say that it is one of the most important items to have prepared for your kids. I’m here on the other side of having a baby and toddler to share my diaper bag packing wisdom and tips. Learn some fun diaper bag hacks to make your life easier.

I now have 2 toddlers and still use a diaper bag but it isn’t as essential as it was in the earlier days with two kids. Now I can throw a handful of things in the bag and be good to go. It takes far less preparation now and will soon probably not even be an essential out-the-door item to grab.

However, it wasn’t too long ago that the diaper bag was the holy grail of our kids items. It was the essential required to follow us everywhere. It was the saving grace during many accidents, tantrums, blowouts and more.

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What Type of Diaper Bag to Buy?

First things first, you need to make sure you have a diaper bag you love. With Blake I had your typical over the shoulder diaper bag (think the kind your parents had). It served its purpose but it was not functional for 2 kids.

The diaper bag  we ended up choosing was the backpack style. This has made a huge difference compared to our first one. It makes carrying the diaper bag and 2 kids so much easier. I don’t have to fight to keep the diaper bag on my shoulder since it has two straps. It makes it easy to place down without anything falling out and is great for carrying drinks. Plus, it’s way cuter than a traditional diaper bag. 

Honestly, our diaper bag doesn’t really look like a diaper bag. You could probably use it as a backpack down the road if you needed. I love how much space it has and how functional it is with all of the extra compartments.

There are a lot of cute backpack diaper bag options or you could go more traditional. I have just found it easier to use the backpack style with 2 kids.

Cute Diaper Bag Options:

What to Pack in a Diaper Bag for Baby and Toddler

Now that you have your diaper bag picked out its time to get together the list of essentials you will need for a baby and toddler. I personally try to keep things on the minimalist side while also prepping for the worst if that makes any sense. I want to be prepared for anything but I don’t want to be lugging around a ton of extra weight when I won’t really need it.

What to Pack for Baby in Your Diaper Bag

The baby will obviously require more items to be packed than your toddler but their items also take up less room since they are smaller.

-Bottles/sippy cups (and formula if you formula feed)

Nursing cover (only if you breastfeed. My favorite breastfeeding essentials can be found here)


-Burp Clothes

-A few diapers

-Baby wipes

-Change of clothes

-1 toy of choice

What to Pack for Toddler in Your Diaper Bag

Some of the items packed for a baby may overlap with what you need for your toddler. Don’t always bring duplicates if you don’t have to. Blake was potty trained at 18 months so some of the items listed will reflect that (If your child isn’t potty trained then no biggie…just forgo those items).

-Change of clothes (several pairs of undies if potty training)

Portable urinal (for potty training boys)

-snacks (LOTS OF THESE)

-drink (my favorite toddler cups)


-coloring packet or toy of choice

Other Items to Have Packed in Your Diaper Bag




How to Pack the Perfect Diaper Bag for Baby and Toddler

When it comes to packing your diaper bag there are multiple ways to do things. You can just throw everything in the bag (this creates a bottomless pit). You can organize things into sections of the bag (this is what I do).

Utilize organizational components to help keep your bag clean and easy to access. 

I tend to try and keep the diaper bag organized so that I can quickly find what I need. I use the small pockets on the bag to store things like medicine and Band-Aids. A hack for our diaper bag was adding a carabiner to hook the keys to so they don’t get lost in the mix of everything.

The big organizational thing that helped our diaper bag was small zip storage bag to store things in. I have one for Raelynn’s clothes and diapers. One for Blake’s clothes and undies. And a final one for snacks. They are different colors and sizes so I know which one to grab based on my need.

This makes it easy to keep things in place and grab. The bags also work great for putting dirty and soiled clothing into after changing the kids. The zip feature helps to keep any nasty smell from lingering in the whole diaper bag. It has been amazing and so easy. 

How to Keep Your Diaper Bag Organized.

As with any system, the best way to keep your diaper bag organized is to stay on top of organizing it. Find containers and systems that help you stay organized and use those. Clean out your diaper bag often (preferably after you get home). Wash any dirty clothing and throw out any food.

If you stay on top of keeping your bag in order then it isn’t a big task. It only takes a few minutes to tidy up your bag and prep it for the next outing. Staying on top of the organization helps to ensure that your diaper bag is clean, easy to access, and that you will have everything you need next time you go out. 

How Do You Pack Your Diaper Bag?

Now that you know our diaper bag tips and tricks for a baby and toddler what are your diaper tricks? Do you have little hacks you use to keep your bag organized? Are there items you can’t live without that must be packed in your bag?

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