The 7 Best Cat Litter Boxes of 2019

Keep your apartment clean and your pet happy with these receptacles

USA, Illinois, Metamora, Cat at litter box
Vstock LLC / Getty Images
Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products; you can learn more about our review process here. We may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links.

Our Top Picks

Best Design: IRIS Top Entry with Scoop at Amazon

“The IRIS Litter Box proves that litter boxes can look sleek and stylish.”

Best Automated: ScoopFree Self-Cleaning at Amazon

“An automated litter box without a major price tag.”

Best Budget: Catit Jumbo Hooded at Amazon

“This litter box is super simple to clean and refresh with new litter.”

Best Basic: Van Ness High Sides at Chewy

“Reviewers enjoy the affordable price point and design.”

Best Disposable: Nature’s Miracle Disposable at Amazon

“A hassle-free way to keep your litter box clean and fresh.”

Best Self-Flushing: Cat Genie Self-Washing, Self-Flushing at Amazon

“You never have to touch or change litter again”

Best Hidden: ecoFlex Litter Loo at Amazon

“Your guests won’t know the ecoFlex Litter Loo is actually your cats’ litter box.”

  • 01 of 07

    Best Design: IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box with Scoop, Gray and White

    Excellent

    We never thought we’d say it, but the IRIS Litter Box proves that litter boxes can look sleek and stylish. Its modern design, in gray and white, can seamlessly blend into any room. It measures 20" x 14.75" x 14", so it won’t take up too much floor space either.

    The unique design of this litter box helps contain spraying and eliminates litter tracking; its top-entry design and small holes in the lid help remove litter particles from your cat’s paws (and help keep your house nice and clean). Plus, the rounded shape and included litter scooper allow you to dispose of waste in no time at all. The best part? It traps unpleasant odors inside the box, so if you’re a bit overdue for a litter change, it won’t be so noticeable.

    Reviewers can't say enough positive things about this litter box. Many note that the design keeps their dogs out, and keeps bad odors contained so their house doesn't smell. One reviewer even called this the "greatest litter box ever."

  • 02 of 07

    Best Automated: ScoopFree Self-Cleaning Litter Box

    Very Good

    If you want an automated litter box without a major price tag, ScoopFree’s Self-Cleaning Litter Box may be your best bet. Rather than scooping waste every day, this self-cleaning litter box does the work for you — all you have to do is remove and replace the disposable tray every few weeks.

    First, load the disposable litter tray with crystal litter and plug it in. Its sensors detect when your cat uses the box and begins to rake away waste after 20 minutes. During this time, the crystals absorb moisture and odors, and begin to dehydrate solid waste. Then, after the automatic rake sweeps the litter, waste is transferred to the covered trap and locked away. The crystal litter is five times more effective in eliminating odors than clay or clumping litter, so you can dispose every few weeks.

    Plus, if you need more insight into your cat’s health, this litter box has a health counter that tracks how many times per day she uses the box.

  • 03 of 07

    Best Budget: Catit Jumbo Hooded Cat Litter Pan

    With nearly 5,000 reviews it’s clear that customers — and their feline companions — love Catit’s Jumbo Hooded Litter Pan. Reviewers tout its budget-friendly price tag, massive size and durability. Plus, several reviewers shared that it contained their cats’ messes — that means no litter tracking.

    Because this litter box is so large—its dimensions are 22.4" x 18.3" x 17"—it’s best for households with multiple cats, very large cats or cats that appreciate a little extra space while they’re doing their business.

    Despite its massive size, this litter box is super simple to clean and refresh with new litter. The hood lifts for easy access and the built-in bag anchor helps keep bags of litter open, so your hands are free to scoop. Plus, it’s carbon filter traps and reduces litter box odors.

    If your cat doesn’t like this litter box’s hood or attached door, both can be removed to fit his or her preference.

  • 04 of 07

    Best Basic: Van Ness High Sides Cat Litter Pan

    high-side-litter-box
    Courtesy of Chewy.

    If you’re looking for a super basic and very affordable litter box, we recommend the Van Ness High Sides Cat Litter Pan. It's made of plastic and other recycled materials, and the polished finish is odor and stain resistant, which makes cleaning a breeze.

    Available in two generous sizes (large or giant), this litter pan can accommodate cats of all different sizes. The high sides gives cats with messier bathroom habits plenty of space and prevents litter from scattering. And despite the high sides, the slight dip in the front allows easy access for cats that are older or have arthritis.

    Reviewers say that this box is great to leave for their cats when they go on vacation because it holds a lot of litter. They also enjoy the affordable price point and design.

    Continue to 5 of 7 below.
  • 05 of 07

    Best Disposable: Nature’s Miracle Disposable Litter Box

    Designed for use as stand-alone litter boxes or litter box liners, Nature’s Miracle Disposable Litter Boxes are a hassle-free way to keep your litter box clean and fresh. Available in three sizes—small, regular and jumbo — and completely disposable, they’re ideal for simple clean-up at home or during travel.

    These litter boxes are manufactured with super sturdy materials, so they won’t leak or shred, but they’re totally safe for landfills. The breathable design allows air to pass through the box; the increased airflow reduces moisture and odors, and keeps litter drier for longer. Plus, it contains built-in baking soda to further reduce odors.

    Bonus: Using these as liners for your plastic litter box eliminates the need to scrub the plastic box—just throw it away and replace. The manufacturer recommends changing every four weeks for maximum freshness and odor control.

  • 06 of 07

    Best Self-Flushing: Cat Genie Self-Washing, Self-Flushing Cat Box

    Although it comes with a heftier price tag, you never have to touch or change litter again with the CatGenie Self-Washing and Flushing litter box. Simply connect the CatGenie to a cold water line in your bathroom or laundry room and program it for easy, hands-free waste disposal and litter cleansing.

    Here’s how it works: During the cleaning cycle, the CatGenie removes and liquefies solid waste, then transfers it to your toilet or utility sink drain — however you decide to hook it up — for disposal. Then, it uses clean water and veterinarian-approved cleaning solution to wash, scrub and dry the reusable litter granules. Not only does the CatGenie dispose of waste for you, but it recycles the litter, so you’ll reduce waste and save cash.

    The manufacturer recommends the CatGenie for households with one to two, but no more than three average-sized cats. This may not work for super trained or older cats either — some reviewers said their trained and older cats wouldn’t transition to using the CatGenie.

  • 07 of 07

    Best Hidden: ecoFlex Litter Loo

    Want a more discrete litter box? Your guests won’t know the ecoFlex Litter Loo is actually your cats’ litter box. The easy-to-clean enclosure keeps litter boxes hidden away, prevents litter tracking and can save floor space if you choose to use it for an additional storage surface in the living room, office, laundry room or bathroom.

    Reviewers say this enclosure will work with most litter boxes, but warn that spills over the sides can result in odors. Try pairing it with a litter box of nearly the same dimensions or just be sure to check for “misses” on a daily basis.

Products Tested by

How We Tested

We bought two top-rated litter boxes and our reviewers (and their cats) tested them daily for weeks on end. We asked our testers to consider the most important features when using these litter boxes, from their design to their size. We’ve outlined the key takeaways here so that you, too, know what to look for when shopping.

What to Look for in a Cat Litter Box

Size Not all cats are the same size, which means not all litter boxes should be, either. Larger cats will need larger litter boxes — otherwise, they might be cramped and end up doing their business right outside the box.

Height Similarly, you’ll want to consider the height of a litter box. In general, litter boxes with five- to seven-inch sides are fine for most cats. However, if yours has bad aim or tends to kick litter around, you may need an option with taller sides  or even a cover, which will save you the hassle of cleaning up litter and pee off the floor.

Style While not the most important consideration, you may also want to think about the design of your litter box, especially if you plan to place it in a central area of your home. Many people prefer sleek, modern styles, as they’re less of an eyesore. If you really don’t want to see the litter box, you can also find “hidden” options, which enclose the box inside a side table or other piece of furniture.

Test Results: IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box with Scoop, Gray and White (Best Design)

Excellent

What We Like

  • Attractive design

  • Easy to clean

  • Cat loves it

What We Don't Like

  • Basic features

  • Sticky packaging

IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box with Scoop
The Spruce / Avery Stone.
IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box with Scoop
The Spruce / Avery Stone
IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box with Scoop
The Spruce / Avery Stone
IRIS Top Entry Cat Litter Box with Scoop
The Spruce / Avery Stone

“My cat loves this litter box,” reported one of our testers. “I was skeptical of the top entry at first, but she's used it without any issues.” In particular, our reviewers thought it was easy to clean and well designed: “I keep my cat's litter box in my room because I have a roommate,” one tester explained, “and its modern design blends in with my decor much more seamlessly than the ones I've used prior.” On the other hand, our reviewers noted that although it does come with a scooper, it doesn’t have any other special features (like an odor control charcoal filter). One tester also thought it was annoying to unbox: “The litter box arrived taped shut,” she said, “which makes sense, but the tape stuck to the plastic so much that it was hard to remove and also left a sticky residue.”

Test Results: ScoopFree Self-Cleaning Litter Box (Best Automated)

Very Good

What We Like

  • Convenient automation

  • Easy to clean

  • Neutralizes odors

What We Don't Like

  • Crystal litter is expensive

  • Large

ScoopFree Self-Cleaning Litter Box
The Spruce / Johnnie Xue
ScoopFree Self-Cleaning Litter Box
The Spruce / Johnnie Xue
ScoopFree Self-Cleaning Litter Box
The Spruce / Johnnie Xue 
ScoopFree Self-Cleaning Litter Box
The Spruce / Johnnie Xue

This litter box was an immediate hit with one of our testers because its automation features made it very easy to use and clean: “It automatically scoops the cat poop into an enclosed area,” he said. “I don't need to clean it at all — just leave it for a few weeks and then throw out the entire disposable tray and replace it with a new one.” Our testers also thought it did a great job neutralizing odors. In terms of negatives, one reviewer cautioned that it was very large and also pointed out that your litter options are very limited: “You can only use crystal litter, because clumping litter will get stuck in the metal scoop,” he explained. “The crystal litter is fairly expensive, especially when purchasing it with the disposable tray.”