BrightCanary

4 Best Organization Apps for Busy Families

By Andrea Karin Nelson
July 20, 2023

Any parent of tweens and teens knows that staying organized while working, running a household, and shuttling offspring to eight million activities is enough to make even the most on-top-of-it parent’s head spin. To help you keep things straight and get it all done without going bonkers, here’s a roundup of the best family organization apps for the busiest parents and kids. 

The selection process

Apps were chosen to address the main organization challenges that are a struggle for families. An emphasis was placed on affordability, and all family organization apps on the list allow collaboration between family members.    

Best organization apps for families

Google Calendar 

Best for: Simple shared and individual calendars without any frills
Platforms: iOS, Android, web
Cost: Free

Screenshot of Google Calendar

Why you’ll love it

It may seem a tad obvious to suggest a Google product, but stick with me. When it comes to organization and calendaring, no one does it quite like Google. When I tell you my household runs on Google Calendar, I’m not exaggerating. It seamlessly syncs across devices and time zones and allows for multiple calendars — both individual and shared. 

Google Calendar integrates with Outlook as well as the native iPhone calendar app, so you can move from work to home without missing a beat. If you’re still using a wall calendar to organize your family’s schedule, give Google Calendar a try — you can thank me later. 

Cozi 

Best for: All-in-one calendar, task management, and to-dos 
Platforms: iOS, Android, web
Cost: Free (with robust features), upgraded plans $29.99/year

Screenshot of Cozi app

Why you’ll love it

Cozi is the workhorse of organization tools. With all-in-one calendars, to-do and shopping lists, meal planning, notifications and reminders, Cozi really does it all. It even includes a journal feature where you can add pictures and memories to create an interactive, digital family scrapbook. 

Cozi also integrates with other popular calendar apps such as Google, Apple, and Outlook, so you don’t have to start from scratch if you already have a scheduling system that works for your family. 

Todoist

Best for: Task management, shared to-do lists
Platforms: iOS, Android, web
Cost: Free, paid plans start at $4/month 

Todoist screenshot with tasks

Why you’ll love it

Most of the other popular task management tools are geared for businesses, meaning complicated setups and features that are better for the boardroom than the living room. Todoist is unique in that it’s designed to fit both your work and personal life. 

Its easy-to-use interface allows you to create projects complete with subtasks, due dates, and reminders. You can even delegate tasks to others so you can assign extra family duties to your kids or upgrade from the home project list currently hanging on your fridge. 

And if your kids (or you!) need a little extra motivation, Todoist has a fun feature where you can track your progress and earn “Karma” points.  

Paprika

Best for: Groceries, recipes, meal planning 
Platforms: iOS, Android, Mac, PC
Cost: $4.99 mobile, $29.99 desktop

Paprika screenshot with recipes

Why you’ll love it

Before I compiled this list, I was already a superfan of Paprika, so it was a no-brainer to include it here. Paprika is an all-in-one meal planning, recipe management, and grocery list app to help you feed your hungry hoard and even enlist them to help. 

You can load recipes directly from your favorite cooking blogs and add items onto your grocery list with the click of a button. The auto-scale feature means it’s a cinch when your kids want to invite friends over for dinner. 

With auto-sync, your family can add last-minute items to the list while you’re at the store. (Although I give you full permission to claim you don’t get a signal at the store if you aren’t a fan of emergency Cheetos requests in the milk aisle.) 

The bottom line

While it’s possible to get by with phone reminders, Post-Its, and scrawled notes on your forearm, the best organization app for families can help you and your household stay on top of everything from upcoming events to household chores. The big benefit of these apps is that they’re collaborative — because nobody should have to go it alone when it comes to organizing your household’s to-dos.