We always love helping you all out with great last minute gifts for Dad, Grandpa, your stepdad, or anyone you’re celebrating this Father’s Day. Because it helps us out too! While Father’s Day gifts have been on our minds — and our shopping lists — for weeks now, some of us right here still have, um, a little bit of work to do before Sunday, too.
But we’re not worried, and you shouldn’t be either. Because we’ve rounded up a ton of easy ideas for last-minute gifts for Dad.
From things you and your kids can make yourselves to gifts you can get from your local stores at the 11th hour, we’re sure you’ll find something here that doesn’t even feel last minute at all.
– This post has been updated for 2021 –
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Last minute gift for dad #1: A food gift to make or buy
Father’s Day sugar cookies from BHG
They say that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. We’re not sure that’s entirely true, but we’re willing to test out the proverb with wonderful last minute food gifts for Dad.
At Cool Mom Eats, we’ve put together dozens of ideas for food-and-drink loving dads, from DIY food gifts from the kids, to breakfast in bed. Or if you’re shopping, we’ve got goodies you can overnight from Amazon, to subscription food gifts and gift cards, to items you can find right in your own neighborhood stores.
We’ve also got a whole roundup of food and kitchen gifts supporting AAPI-owned companies, lots of which you can find in local shops and markets.
And be sure to look at this list of sweet and savory Father’s Day treats the kids can help make, including the adorable Father’s Day sugar cookie sandwiches at BHG, above.
PS Don’t miss these favorite recipes from our favorite dad food bloggers, including a bacon mac ‘n’ cheese melt and a brilliant Frittaffle, a genius frittata + waffle mashup from Matt of Real Food by Dad. Yum!
And hey, we’ve got recipes to go with that breakfast in bed, like the best Mimosas, Bloody Marys, or a delicious grapefruit cocktail — all can be made non-alcoholic, and all go great with breakfast in bed.
Last-minute gift for dad #2: Something cool from a local store
This Smith bike helmet from our roundup of 15 cool but practical Father’s Day gifts — lots you can find in local stores.
We’re all for honoring our pops by supporting our local mom-and-pops. So think about what’s near by. A cool kitchen or gourmet store local to your community? A great indie bookstore? A favorite menswear boutique? A talented florist? An old school indie sporting goods store? A shoe store? A high-end chemist or pharmacist?
Or maybe you have a craft fair, flea market, or even a farmer’s market near you on Saturdays where you can grab a cool one-of-a-kind gift for dad.
Or look for something Father’s Day specific — we love these 12 daddy and me tees for Father’s Day, and the Etsy sellers may even sell their tees at a local boutique. Contact them and ask!
Last-minute gift for dad #3: A monthly subscription box
What dad won’t be thrilled to receive a craft beer of the month subscription, a customized coffee box subscription, a new tie every month, a “Culture Carton” of sophisticated lifestyle items each month (above), or a box filled with handpicked items from top artisan food makers? No dad, that’s who!
Subscription boxes are always good gift ideas when they’re packed full of things Dad likes most — and we’ve got a whole post on 19 cool subscription box ideas for every kind of dad.
I mean, this Grillmasters Subscription Box? That’s a gift for all of us, ha.
The first shipment probably won’t arrive in time for Sunday delivery, but you can gift the subscription with a few cans of his favorite local brew or a bag of his favorite beans, then include a card saying this is just the beginning. Then he’ll have so much to look forward to.
One more cool idea for a new dad: a book subscription box filled with new children’s titles to give him more special bedtime story moments.
Last-minute gift for dad #4: A book he’ll love
Bookstores are always gold mines for easy last-minute gifts for dads. We love the idea of kids picking out a sweet new children’s book about Dad that he doesn’t yet have, or check out the new titles that are out now. Hope Anita Smith’s poetry book Daddy Rules the World for one, is guaranteed to get a smile and a sniffle.
If he’s got babies or toddlers, we’ve put together 6 wonderful new Father’s Day picture books that celebrate Dad, which you can order overnight from Amazon Prime or find in a local indie bookstore — they can still use our support.
If you’re an adult shopping for your own dad, consider the hilarious The Father of All Dad Guides.
In fact, we’re drawn to all kinds of funny books — and especially these 5 funny books on fatherhood by funny dads including Michael Ian Black, Ben Falcone, Doug Moe, and Jim Gaffigan. We also love. Bare Minimum Parenting as well as Only Dead on the Inside: A Parent’s Guide to Surviving the Zombie Apocalypse, both by James Breakwell.
But hey, if he’s into bios, mysteries, thrillers, or summer beach romances, then that’s a great last-minute gift for Dad, too.
Last-minute gift for dad #5: Tickets to something awesome. Get creative!
Chicago Cubs hat…to go with a pair of tickets, perhaps?
Yay for the world starting to reopen — and we might not have to do IOUs for experience gifts this year!
Is he a theater guy? Maybe he’d like to catch one of the Broadway shows coming back if you’re in the NYC area — or willing to visit. Or maybe a show like Hamilton is on tour near you, or there’s great community theater you can support.
If he’s a sports guy, tickets for the family — or just he and a buddy — could be so fun. Not just pro ball either; consider tickets to a minor league baseball game or a college game near you.
If he’s into the arts, there are always concert tickets, museum exhibitions, shows at a local jazz club or piano bar, film series, an animation festival, or movies under the stars at a local park this summer. Or hey — a movie in a real live theater. In the Heights is just celebratory and joyous — and a great Father’s Day flick.
If he likes to travel, splurge on tickets to a long weekend away; check your favorite airline for any upcoming deals.
Or consider a local speaker series he’d be interested in — The 92nd Street Y now has virtual online events so you don’t even need to be local to NY to participate in something cool.
Last-minute gift for dad #6: A DIY gift basket
Whatever he’s into, whether it’s sports, grilling, fine art, or…you know, zombies, you can DIY a creative basket of goodies for him just by hitting a few local shops or making use of that Amazon Prime shipping.
In our post about the coolest free Father’s Day printables, we love Sandy Toes & Popsicles’ DIY zombie survival kit, because we know several Walking Dead fans who would be absolutely thrilled to get this for Father’s Day. It’s so easy to print out the free labels, then let the kids get creative matching them to actual products.
Last-minute gift for dad #7: A cool experience gift
Maybe the perfect last-minute gift for Dad isn’t something you even have to think about wrapping. For the man who has everything, including great taste, we love the idea of a Master Class Online Video Course, where he can learn the art of comedy with Steve Martin, basketball handling with Stephen Curry, or cooking techniques with Alice Waters.
Or take a course with him. We’ve talked about that with our #WeTimeProject this year, and through our partner The Great Courses Plus, you can even get 30 days free to take all the courses you want together — on travel, science, history, cooking, magic…you name it. They’re so easy and fun, and fairly low commitment.
And we’re all for IRL Father’s Day experience gifts too — sometimes the best presents are made out of memories, don’t you think? You can get Dad season tickets to a sporting event, send him on a fabulous trip, set him up with music or language lessons, give him a gift card for dinner with his favorite kids or grandkids…or even give him the chance to get up close and personal with elephants via IfOnly.
You can also get check out the food and wine experience gifts we shared on Cool Mom Eats, from brewery tours, to sushi making lessons — even international trips for foodie sensibilities. Yes please, we’re ready!
Last-minute gift for dad #8: A fab DIY Father’s Day card
You can never go wrong with a handmade card from the kids for Father’s Day, and who says they can’t be gifts in themselves? Kids will have fun putting the cards together like this Father’s Day Printable Spinner Card, a free download on the Minted blog from Melanie Blodgett.
And of course, most handmade Father’s Day cards are framable, making them cool keepsake Father’s Day gifts too
And don’t forget to bring the funny! We have an incredible list of 21 really funny Father’s Day cards; they might even make him laugh at as much as he does at his own dad jokes.
Last-minute gift for dad #9: A subscription to a magazine or helpful service
We included this gift in a past roundup of practical Father’s Day gift ideas, because magazines will always be cool, and so is supporting independent journalism. A subscription to The New Yorker gives him a steady dose of journalism and wit each week.
For guys who prefer to read digitally, consider Apple News Plus (formerly Texture, formerly NextIssue), which gives you unlimited access to more than 300 magazines and newspapers each month.
You could also consider an upgrade to TripIt Pro (we’re huge fans!) for return travel, or a membership to his preferred airline’s frequent flyer lounge — tons o deals right now.
For outdoorsy dads, look into a summer parking pass for a favorite beach, hiking trail, or fishing spot. For arts lovers, a family museum membership would be terrific. The ideas are endless, really. Just think of what he loves and would never buy for himself.
Pro tip: If you have a rewards credit card, there are HUGE deals all over the place on experiences of all kinds.
Last-minute gift for dad #10: A DIY gift from the kids
Creative DIY Father’s Day gift ideas are a triple win: They’re one-of-a-kind, they’re keepsakes, and kids love to make them.
This post on 9 fun, free Father’s Day printables was basically made for last-minute gift shoppers! Among our faves: this printable notebook cover for dad from Oh Happy Day. Follow her tutorial and make a small, inexpensive notebook into something a lot cooler.
.Also, consider these 12 wonderfully creative photo gifts for Father’s Day. For dads with younger kids, the DIY Father’s Day photo holder by Project Kid (above) is a sweet idea. Click over for the easy tutorial because this is definitely a last-minute gift idea for Dad that won’t feel last minute at all.
Of course a photo gift could be as simple as framing a photo and letting the kids decorate the matte, printing out favorite photos and making a collage. Or, just take one fabulous photo of the kids!
Which leads us to…
Last-minute gift for dad #11: One perfect photo….
You don’t have to be a pro photographer (or even an above-average Instagrammer) to produce a photo that’s 100 percent cool. Take this adorable I love dad Father’s Day photo from Freckle photo — although she does have great tips on her site for how to get the beautiful focus (and she did use a pro camera), you’ll find her tips helpful and inspiring.
We also are fans of Jill Williams Kraus and her photography tips on her website for capturing life’s imperfect moments perfectly. You might even order her affordable ebook about taking better digital photos because it’s a small price to end up with a zillion keepsakes.
For more ideas, be sure to check out some of our other favorite Father’s Day photo shoot ideas on Cool Mom Tech.
…or many perfect photos! (It can be hard to choose.)
And if you’ve caught our Instagram lately, you’ve probably seen Kristen demonstrating all the things to do with TilePix for dad. They’re reposition able tiles, and their app makes it so easy to upload favorite images to turn into a mosaic gallery or just a gallery wall of photos. What a cool surprise for him to wake up to. (And because they’re a partner right now they’ve offered a sweet discount!)
Last-minute gift for Dad #12: A gift card made giftier
Gift cards can wonderful gifts in and of themselves — we know quite a few dads that would be over the moon about a month’s worth of movie tickets, digital music ready for download, chef’s tools, or days and days of lattes — but we think you need to find a way to make them more personal than just a gift card in an envelope.
Check out our post on 12 ways to make popular gift cards more gifty. It’s holiday-focused but there’s lots of inspiration there.
Also loving: These free printable gift card holders for dad at Curbly (above). So cute! Considering most of the DIY gift card holders I have require hours…well, I like this one. And there are designs you can tailor to the gift card theme, like the “coolest dad” holder for a trip to his favorite ice cream shop.
In fact, while of course you can get him gift cards to Amazon or Starbucks, see if your local coffee shops, restaurants and other shops sell gift cards and keep it in the neighborhood.
Last minute gift for Dad #13: An unforgettable video
How lucky are we to live in a time where we have so many amazingly cool video editing apps — especially when they make last-minute gift giving so easy?
Pictured above is the Magisto video editing app, which we’ve had fun with for years. You select the clips and overlay you prefer, and the app puts it all together for you to create an unforgettable video. It will definitely bring a smile to Dad’s lips and (very likely) a tear to his eye.
You can also check out the Animoto video editing app which has been a favorite since it launched in 2013.
Or just film something right on your smartphone for the kids, or use your phone’s built-in editing functionality. It’s really so easy now and perfect for a last minute Father’s Day gift.
Last-minute gift for dad #14: A donation in his name to his favorite charity or cause
For lots of dads, the best gift you can give him is support for a cause he truly cares about — the environment, education, military families, science, medical research, the arts — you name it.
We’ve always been fans of charities that honor dads and support other families for Father’s Day. But I want to call out three right here who really need support, especially this year. (And PS, making a recurring monthly donation goes a long way.)
Whatever charity is closest to his (big) heart, that’s the right one.