Cartoons hold a special place in many of our hearts. Whether it’s Saturday morning classics from our childhood or new animated shows, there’s something nostalgic and comforting about watching cartoons. In the era of streaming and on-demand content, there are now tons of great websites where you can watch cartoons online for free.
From classic Hanna-Barbera series to modern Adult Swim favorites, these cartoon streaming sites offer ad-supported access to hundreds of animated shows and movies. And the best part? No subscription or login is required for most of them! Here are the 10 best free websites for streaming cartoons online in 2023.
10 Best Websites to Watch Cartoons Online Free
YouTube is an obvious first choice for watching cartoons online. Many classic cartoons from the 30s through the 70s now reside in the public domain, making them free for upload in their entirety on YouTube. You can find complete high-quality episodes and full-length movies for iconic cartoons like Popeye, Betty Boop, Woody Woodpecker, and more.
Plus tons of user-uploaded clips and segments from more recent favorites like Animaniacs, Pinky and The Brain, Batman: The Animated Series, Avatar: The Last Airbender, and much more. YouTube offers an endless supply of free cartoon content, both old and new, making it a top website for animation fans. Just be prepared for ads before and during videos.
Tubi TV is an ad-supported streaming service with a robust library of free cartoons. It offers over 15,000 movies and shows available on-demand, with content from studios like MGM, Paramount, Lionsgate, and more. The cartoon selection includes classics like Transformers, G.I. Joe, He-Man, Garfield, and Inspector Gadget. There are also some great retro anthologies featuring Bugs Bunny, Tom & Jerry, Popeye, and vintage Looney Tunes.
In addition to the classics, you can find more recent favorites like Adventure Time, South Park, King of the Hill, Aaahh!!! Real Monsters, and Daria. Tubi Kids is a dedicated section just for family-friendly animation. The service is 100% free, but you will have to watch ads to stream the content. Still, Tubi is one of the best free resources for watching cartoons online.
Crackle comes from Sony Pictures Entertainment and offers an impressive library of movies, TV shows, and cartoons to stream free of charge. While you can find some live-action Crackle Originals, the site is best for animation fans thanks to its repertoire of classic cartoons. You can watch full episodes and seasons of hits like Heathcliff, Inspector Gadget, Alvin and the Chipmunks, 6Teen, and Max Steel.
There are also B-level anime series and movies based on popular games like Street Fighter and Tekken. Like other free streaming sites, you’ll have to watch ads during your cartoon watching. But if you don’t mind commercials, Crackle has a great selection of free cartoon content spanning decades. It’s available on all major platforms too, from smart TVs and mobiles to game consoles.
Vudu is unique among free streaming services in offering both ad-supported and completely free content. You can watch hundreds of cartoons in the Movies on Us section free, with no ads or account signup required. The selection covers loads of classic theatrical shorts and TV series. Fans of vintage animation will love watching Popeye, Betty Boop, Mr. Magoo, Woody Woodpecker, Pink Panther, and more.
For modern classics, you can find Batman: The Animated Series, Animaniacs, Monster Force, Godzilla, X-Men ‘92, and other ‘80s and ‘90s hits. The episodes play with limited commercials, though less than other sites. You can also explore thousands more free cartoons and other content if you don’t mind more ads in the Movies section. Vudu is available on desktop, mobile, streaming devices, and more.
IMDb TV from Amazon is a relatively new free streaming service, but it already boasts an impressive catalog of movies and shows to watch. The site has a dedicated animation section with hundreds of free cartoons to stream. You’ll find full series runs of fan favorites like G.I. Joe, Transformers, Dennis the Menace, Sabrina the Teenaged Witch, and Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog.
There are also complete collections of classic theatrical shorts from Tex Avery, Tom & Jerry, Bugs Bunny, and Popeye. For more recent hits, choose from Bob’s Burgers, Invader Zim, Adventure Time, Clarence, Regular Show, and anime like Pokemon. Content can be watched free with ads on any device. IMDB TV is still expanding its catalog, so expect the cartoon selection to grow.
The free tier of Peacock offers access to hundreds of movies and shows with ads, including lots of cartoons. Highlights of the animation catalog include classic series like Super Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle, Fat Albert, X-Men, Exosquad, and Defenders of the Earth. You can also watch movies like An American Tail and The Land Before Time, along with modern hits like Shrek, How to Train Your Dragon, and Kung Fu Panda.
Additionally, there are new Peacock Jr. Channels featuring Curious George, Where’s Waldo?, VeggieTales, Care Bears, and other youthful favorites streaming 24/7. While the free content has ads, the $5 premium Peacock subscription unlocks even more cartoons ad-free. If you don’t want to pay, the free tier still satisfies animation fans.
The Roku Channel
The Roku Channel is a free streaming service built into Roku devices, but also available on desktop browsers and mobile. It offers live channels and thousands of free movies & shows to watch with ads. The Roku Channel has impressive cartoon content, both nostalgic classics and recent hits. You can watch the full series of Transformers, G.I. Joe, Jem and the Holograms, Inhumans, and Chuck Norris Karate Kommados among other retro titles.
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For modern cartoons, check out Adventure Time, Steven Universe, Regular Show, Clarence, We Bare Bears, and Star vs. The Forces of Evil. There are also Roku-exclusive channels like Toon Buffet with nonstop classic animation, as well as channels for specific shows like Drawn Together and Invader Zim. The Roku Channel is free and easy to use for watching cartoons if you don’t mind advertisements.
The PBS Kids video app offers free on-demand cartoons, live streaming of their TV channels, and educational games. It’s designed for children 2-8, so the focus is learning-based animated content. However, it’s still enjoyable for any animation fans. You can stream full episodes of classics like Arthur, Caillou, Sesame Street, Nature Cat, Odd Squad, and Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood.
There are also curriculum-driven shows like Wild Kratts, Peg + Cat, Elinor Wonders Why, and Ready Jet Go. The app provides a safe environment for young viewers with 100% free access. Parents can feel good letting kids enjoy wholesome animation ad-free with just a free account signup. PBS Kids is available on all major platforms except Roku.
For a free, ad-supported streaming service dedicated just to classic anime and animation, check out RetroCrush. The site serves up vintage cartoons, anime series, and nostalgic favorites from the 70s, 80s, and 90s. Enjoy The Transformers, Voltron, Robotech, Captain Harlock, Speed Racer, Devilman, and other Golden Age hits and rarities. There are also obscure treats like Noozles, Maple Town, and Grimm’s Fairy Tale Classics.
RetroCrush is 100% free with a simple account signup. You can stream to all devices, and even download select titles to watch offline. If you’re an old-school anime and animation fan, it’s a must-visit site for rare retro cartoons unavailable elsewhere for free streaming.
Pluto TV operates more like an internet TV service, offering live channels that stream cartoons 24/7. They also have an on-demand library with hundreds of full cartoon episodes and movies. Live channels let you watch hits like Inspector Gadget, The Smurfs, Garfield, Sonic X, Classic Popeye, and more anytime. The on-demand catalog spans decades with The Super Mario Bros. Super Show, Heathcliff, Defenders of the Earth, 1944’s Pinocchio, and other gems.
Being able to just turn on a 24/7 cartoon channel or find specific episodes makes Pluto stand out. And it’s completely free, just with ads. Pluto TV is available on all major platforms and devices. It’s a top choice for cartoon enthusiasts who value live TV nostalgia.
Watch Classic and Modern Cartoons Free Online
This list covers the overall best websites for streaming cartoons online without paying. Across these sites, you can find everything from 1930s theatrical shorts to modern Adult Swim series free of ads. Whether you grew up on Saturday morning classics or like keeping up with new premieres, these animation hubs deliver.
A few tips for getting the most out of free cartoon streaming:
- Create accounts to access full show libraries, watchlists, keep your place, and other features.
- Download mobile apps to watch on phones and tablets on the go.
- Use an ad-blocker browser extension if you want to avoid video ads.
- Check sites regularly, as cartoon selections rotate frequently.
- Pair free services with paid options like Netflix for even more unlocking content.
Now you have your guide to endless animated entertainment without spending a dime. So grab your snacks, get comfortable, and let the cartoon binge begin! What are you waiting for? Tune in now and relive the magic of all your childhood, teenage, and adulthood favorites!
Frequently Asked Questions About Watching Cartoons Online
Still curious about watching cartoons for free online? We have answers to some common questions animation streamers might have:
What are some good free cartoon streaming apps?
Top free apps for streaming cartoons include Tubi, Crackle, IMDB TV, Hoopla, The Roku Channel, Pluto TV, PBS Kids, and RetroCrush. Most have mobile optimization for watching anime and animation on phones or tablets.
Is it legal to watch cartoons on free websites?
Yes, it’s completely legal to stream cartoons from sites offering free ad-supported viewing. Services like YouTube, Tubi, and Crackle have the proper licensing for all content, so you can watch worry-free.
What are the best free anime streaming sites?
RetroCrush, Tubi, Pluto TV, Crackle, and The Roku Channel offer lots of classic and current anime series to stream for free. For even more, explore free sites dedicated specifically to anime.
Can I download cartoons from free streaming websites?
Generally no, downloading content from free streaming sites is piracy. RetroCrush allows downloading select titles. For downloads, use a digital store like Vudu, Google Play, or iTunes where you can buy episodes/seasons.
What are the best devices for watching free streaming cartoons?
You can watch free streaming cartoons on any device – smart TVs, mobiles, tablets, computers, streaming boxes, and game consoles. Download the apps from your device’s app store or use the mobile browser.
Is it worth paying for ad-free cartoon streaming?
If you watch a lot of cartoons, paying for ad-free services like Netflix or Hulu provides more convenient viewing. But free sites still offer plenty of content, especially for those who don’t mind ads.
Are free cartoon sites safe for kids?
Sites like PBS Kids, YouTube Kids, and Peacock Jr. offer 100% child-friendly environments. However, normal cartoon streaming sites also typically avoid any inappropriate content in all-ages animation.
Can I watch new cartoon episodes for free?
Yes, many free sites like Tubi, Pluto TV, and Crackle add brand-new episodes shortly after they air on TV. So you can watch late-season content without any delays.
What are the best retro cartoons to watch online?
Top vintage animation picks for free streaming include Looney Tunes, Tom and Jerry, Popeye, Woody Woodpecker, Classic Disney Shorts, Hanna-Barbera classics, Transformers G1, Voltron, Schoolhouse Rock, Rocky and Bullwinkle, and more.