Rankings as of May 19, 2023.
Money is not a client of any investment adviser featured on this page. The information provided on this page is for educational purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Money does not offer advisory services.
*Rates and APYs are subject to change. All information provided here is accurate as of May 19, 2023.
Crypto staking platforms offer a method of generating stable earnings with minimal user participation required. Compared to crypto trading and mining, staking is a low risk investment. But as with any crypto activity, investors should be savvy and educate themselves before spending money on speculative assets.
Read on to learn about the staking programs available across different crypto exchanges, how staking works and where you can find the best rewards.
Our Top Picks for Best Crypto Staking Platforms
- Coinbase - Best for Beginners
- Gemini - Best for Crypto Lending
- Kraken - Best for Competitive APYs
- Binance - Best for Flexible Staking
- MyCointainer - Best for Uncommon Crypto
Best Crypto Staking Platform Reviews
- Regulated, convenient and straightforward staking platform
- No lock-up periods and minimum staking amount of 1 USD
- Get rewards just by learning about crypto
- Only supports staking for six coins (excluding Dai and USD Coin)
- Staking yields could be better
- Hefty 25% staking fee
Why we chose it: We chose Coinbase as the best crypto staking platform for beginners due to its user-friendly platform and wealth of educational content.
Coinbase is one of the largest and most well-known cryptocurrency exchanges in the U.S. The exchange’s trading platform stands out for its accessibility, being the point of entry for many new investors in the crypto market. This ease of use extends to Coinbase Earn, its staking program, which is comfortably accessible through the company’s web and mobile wallets.
That said, Coinbases’ staking offering lacks in a few areas. Compared to its competition, it supports a low number of coins (albeit popular ones), has unremarkable staking yields and charges a substantial commission fee for staking your assets.
Despite these drawbacks, Coinbase remains an excellent choice for beginners who want to give staking a go and will benefit the most from the free crypto rewarded for learning how specific coins work.
- Partners with accredited third-party borrowers like Genesis
- Insures digital assets against exchange hacks
- Available in all 50 U.S. states
- Higher fees than other exchanges
- Only two coins available for actual staking
Why we chose it: We chose Gemini as the best crypto staking platform for crypto lending because of its high crypto lending rates, straightforward platform and industry-leading security.
Gemini is a popular exchange that offers a wide variety of crypto services, including crypto staking and crypto lending. The exchange is well known for its high security standards: it currently holds an AAA rating in CERtified, has a Trust Score of 10 from CoinGecko and is regulated by the New York State Department of Financial Services.
Crypto lending behaves similarly to staking in that they’re both passive income strategies that entail “leasing” your coins in exchange for regular payments. The main difference is that stakers commit their crypto to support a blockchain network in exchange for rewards, whereas lenders earn interest by helping to facilitate the borrowing process.
Gemini supports two very popular coins for staking, Ether and Polygon. However, its crypto lending services are the company’s real highlight, featuring higher APYs (up to 8.05%) than its staking program, no minimum amount of assets to participate and no transfer or withdrawal fees.
- One of the most stable crypto staking platforms
- More than a dozen crypto available for staking
- Earn up to 23% in annual yields
- Not available Washington and New York
- Slow payout times
Why we chose it: We chose Kraken as the best crypto staking platform for competitive APY’s because it features some of the highest APYs in the market relative to the number of coins it supports for staking.
Kraken was one of the first bitcoin exchanges to show up on the Bloomberg Terminal back in the early days of crypto. Today, it’s the fourth largest crypto exchange in the world. It’s also a popular choice among new and experienced crypto stakers alike, in no small part thanks to its attractive yields.
Another reason for Kraken’s popularity is the user interface, where users can easily find account information and change their settings. Its staking program is also highly flexible: coins can be staked and unstaked without a fee since there is no lock-in period. Speaking of coins, Kraken allows users to stake 14 different crypto on-chain, including popular coins such as Ethereum 2.0, Cardano, Polkadot and Cosmos.
The main drawback for Kraken is the sluggish payout time: bi-weekly rewards may not seem that slow, but it’s a relatively glacial pace compared to other platforms on our list.
- Straightforward, easy-to-navigate platform
- Supports many popular staking crypto
- No lock-up periods for assets
- Lack of transparency on commission fees
- No staking for stablecoins
Why we chose it: We chose Binance.US as the best crypto staking platform for flexible staking because of its streamlined platform where users can instantly unstake their assets and trade them.
Binance.US is the United States partner of Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume and liquidity. Despite their similarities, the former is much more limited when it comes to staking. Binance.US only supports a small share of the cryptocurrencies available on Binance and offers worse yields overall.
Nonetheless, the 17 coins supported by Binance.US include some of the most popular coins used for staking today, such as Ethereum, BNB Coin and Polygon. The platform also shares a big advantage with its international partner: flexibility.
Binance.US users can choose whether to stake their coins under a fixed or flexible arrangement. They can leave their assets in a staking wallet for a fixed duration, such as 15, 30, 60, or 90 days. Alternatively, those who want to be in complete control of their assets can opt for a flexible stake and may request to unstake whenever they wish at no extra cost.
- Supports staking of over 80 cryptocurrencies
- Some of the best APY's in the market
- Daily payout frequency
- High fees without Power subscription
- Minimum withdrawal amount
Why we chose it: We chose MyCointainer as the best crypto staking for uncommon crypto because its extensive list of supported crypto means you are much more likely to come across hard-to-find coins on the platform.
MyCointainer was founded in 2018 and started operating with just 20 coins. It now supports trading over 150 crypto assets, more than 80 of which can be used for staking. If you can’t find the coin you want to stake elsewhere, there’s a good chance you’ll find it here.
Designed as an all-in-one platform, MyCointainer offers a variety of ways to earn cryptocurrency, including hot and cold crypto staking, airdrops, giveaways and a cashback program.
Moreover, the platform features very competitive APYs and does not enforce a lock-up period, so you can withdraw your profits anytime.
Other Company Reviews
The following platforms deserve mention due to their notable features or popularity among stakers. However, they were not included in the categories above because they didn’t excel in one particular area.
- Large number of supported tokens and coins
- Easy-to-use calculator helps optimize rewards
- Navigating the earn program can be difficult
- Higher annual rates are subject to strict lockups
Crypto.com is a well-known crypto exchange offering a soft staking platform whose rewards vary based on the amount of CRO tokens (the network’s native coin) a user has “staked.” The platform makes it easy to tell how much you’ll be making, which can be up to 14.5% APY with some digital assets. However, a serious hack in early 2022 that led to $34 million in losses puts serious doubt into the exchanges' otherwise solid cybersecurity infrastructure.
- Excellent rates on stablecoins (up to 8%)
- No minimum balance requirements
- Interest-earning accounts are currently unavailable
- APYs can change at a moment's notice
BlockFi is a leading crypto lending platform that supports 15 cryptocurrencies for its interest-bearing savings accounts. The crypto in this account is used to secure third-party loans, which creates interest according to a decreasing rate schedule (a type of “soft staking”).
Unfortunately, BlockFi is no longer offering these accounts as of February 14, 2022, due to a regulation enforced by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that cost the company $100 million in penalties. The platform is now seeking to register a new product, BlockFi Yield, that falls under SEC rules.
- Wide selection of cryptocurrencies
- Daily rewards with no lock-up period
- Can be tricky to navigate for new crypto investors
- Not available for U.S. residents
KuCoin has a lot going for it: a user-friendly platform, outstanding staking rewards (up to 40% APY), daily payouts and a good number supported coins — many of which may be staked or unstaked at any time. The platform also offers crypto lending and professional management for digital assets.
Unfortunately, the platform isn’t available to US consumers due to regulations beyond the exchange's control.
Crypto Staking Guide
Staking is a concept that has become increasingly popular among crypto investors — especially after the Ethereum Merge. While less involved than mining or trading crypto, aspiring investors should still know what staking is and how it works.
You’ll find more information in our guide below, including the difference between proof-of-stake (PoS) and proof-of-work (PoW) networks and how to start crypto staking.
What is crypto staking?
Crypto staking (from proof-of-stake) is a process that allows crypto holders to earn rewards for “locking up” a portion of the coins or non-fungible tokens (NFTs) in their wallet. Setting aside crypto holdings contributes to verifying transactions on a blockchain network, which supports its stability.
Blockchains, also known as distributed ledgers, are indelible strings of “blocks” of transactions. Each block holds information that must be validated through one of two methods: proof-of-stake or proof-of work.
Blockchain networks based on the former depend on the assets of stakers to build consensus — confirmation that all transaction data agrees — on the network. Because of this, these networks reward those who participate with interest in the form of more cryptocurrency. For example, if you are staking Cardano (ADA), you will receive additional ADA based on how much of the coin you staked and how long you staked that amount.
Think of staking crypto as a passive investment strategy that functions as an alternative to trading crypto. Trading requires you to be actively engaged with your assets: you need to buy and sell crypto when the iron’s hot to make a profit. Instead, staking crypto requires no further action on the part of the investor beyond the initial staking.
How does crypto staking work
Staking crypto allows a blockchain network to use the staker’s assets to create new blocks and validate transactions. This is done via a smart contract, a computer program that automatically executes when specific conditions are met.
Smart contracts choose validators for each block in a network semi-randomly from all those who have staked a minimum amount of coins. This minimum investment varies from crypto to crypto — for Ethereum 2.0, it’s 32 ETH; for Cardano and Solana, it’s 5.5 ADA and 0.01 SOL, respectively.
The more coins you commit to a blockchain, the greater your chance of being chosen as a validator. When a staker’s assets are selected to confirm new blocks, the staker is rewarded with additional crypto, usually the native coin of the blockchain.
Stakers can choose to set aside coins in their crypto wallet from just hours to years. The coins can be unstaked later, but only after what is known as the lock-up period. During this time, which may last anywhere from one to six months (or more), stakers keep possessions of these assets but do not have access to them.
Moreover, it’s important to mention that not all crypto is available for staking — only those that use the proof-of-stake system can be staked. For example, Bitcoin (BTC), the most popular cryptocurrency in the world, operates on a proof-of-work network. That means there is no way to stake the coin directly.
Staking vs mining
Both crypto staking and crypto mining are alternative methods to trading for making money through crypto. The differences between the two lie in the underlying systems that power these activities.
- Staking takes place on proof-of-stake networks, which rely on the assets of stakers as a means for validating transactions.
- Mining takes place on proof-of-work networks, which rely on mathematical puzzles to reward validators.
When choosing a validator, proof-of-stake blockchains consider several factors, including how long someone has held their stake and how big said stake is. The proof-of-stake protocol takes far less computing power and electricity than how proof-of-work blockchains choose validators, making proof-of-stake a greener and faster alternative.
To earn any crypto, miners must solve complex mathematical problems through trial and error. The first one to do so gets the authority to add and authenticate new blocks. This requires a considerable upfront investment in computer parts due to the competitive nature of the proof-of-work model.
|More accessible. No special equipment is needed for staking. All you need is access to your stake through a staking platform, staker pool, or individual staking node.||More exclusive. Expensive hardware is required to even have a chance at solving the complex computational problems of proof-of-work blockchain networks.|
|Long-term rewards. There is a potential for high returns, although big drops in the value of the coins you’re staking could negate any interest you’ve made over time.||Quick profits. Once you have the necessary hardware, you’ll profit from mining fast and may only need to worry about upkeep and minor upgrades.|
|Faster and greener. Staking is much more energy-efficient, meaning its carbon footprint is smaller and transactions tend to be validated faster.||Wasteful. Mining requires a large amount of electricity to power the computers solving the mathematical equations and to compete against other miners.|
|More constricted. You can’t move around your coins freely if they're locked up and have to deal with a third-party platform’s fees and rules.||More flexible. No interference from third parties, meaning miners can freeze their resources at any time and are not as exposed to data fraud issues.|
How to stake crypto
There are many ways of staking cryptocurrency, but the two main ones are staking on a crypto exchange and a crypto wallet. In both cases, you’ll want to research the different cryptocurrencies available for staking if you don’t already know what you want to stake.
How to stake crypto on an exchange
1. Find an exchange that offers staking for your crypto of choice.
Many crypto exchanges offer staking or services similar to staking, such as “earn” or “invest” programs. However, not every exchange offers staking for the same cryptocurrencies. For example, if you want to stake Avalanche (AVAX) or Polkadot (DOT), you’ll have to look for an exchange that supports these coins.
Start your search in our reviews at the top of this article or by reading our guide on the best crypto exchanges.
2. Buy or transfer the crypto you want to stake.
Once you’ve decided on the exchange, buy however much of the crypto you expect to stake. If you already have the crypto you want to trade elsewhere, transfer it to your current exchange.
Keep in mind that you’ll be earning more of the same crypto over time as your coins are used for validating blocks.
3. Stake your crypto.
Go to the exchange’s staking page or tab on its website or mobile app and select the number of coins you want to stake. Pay close attention to the lock-up period and how long you will hold the stake.
Remember that the higher your stake and the longer it’s held, the greater your chances of earning interest.
How to stake crypto on a wallet
1. Open or buy a crypto wallet.
Look for a software or hardware wallet (if you don’t already have one) that supports the coins you want to stake. Most hardware wallets support a wide variety of coins for staking, as do popular software wallets.
Read our article on the best crypto wallets if you need help finding the right wallet for your specific needs.
2. Transfer the crypto you want to stake into your wallet.
Some wallets feature an incorporated exchange where you can buy crypto directly, but that is not the norm. Many wallets will expect you to transfer your crypto from a third-party exchange instead.
3. Download the necessary apps.
Some wallets, like the Ledger series of hardware wallets, allow you to download apps to stake specific cryptocurrencies. This streamlines the process and lets you download only the relevant apps for your particular staking needs.
4. Stake your crypto.
Choose how much of the crypto you want to stake and for how long you want to stake it.
How to earn interest on crypto
Crypto stakers earn interest on their coins based on the rewards program of the platform they use to stake. For example, one rewards program may grant you 6.00% APY for staking Cardano, whereas another may only reward you 2.60% APY for staking that same coin.
Different cryptocurrencies also have different interest rates within a single platform. A crypto exchange may reward you with 1.5% APY for staking one coin and as high as 18.00% for staking another.
Programs almost always pay back stakers in the staked cryptocurrency, but there are some exceptions. Make sure to double check how exactly you will receive your interest when working with a staking service.
Interest is paid back according to the schedule established by an exchange — twice a week, for example. Programs also tend to have restrictions, including a lock-up period during which access to your staked assets is cut off.
Best crypto staking coins
The best crypto staking coins generally offer a high yield. However, your reasons for staking may go beyond making a profit. We recommend first looking at what different coins were designed to accomplish and how the technology behind them works.
As of October 25, 2022, some of the most popular cryptocurrencies to stake are:
|Cryptocurrency||Code||Description||Average Annual Return|
|Algorand||ALGO||Designed to expand the possible use cases for crypto by accelerating transaction speeds.||6.67%|
|Avalanche||AVAX||Multi-chain smart contract platform focused on transaction speed, low costs, and eco-friendliness. Made for launching decentralized apps (dApps).||8.4%|
|BNB Chain||BNB||Official cryptocurrency of Binance, the world’s most popular crypto exchange platform.||3.95%|
|Cardano||ADA||The first peer-reviewed blockchain. Designed for flexibility and scalability when running smart contracts.||3.57%|
|Ethereum 2.0||ETH||The second-most popular cryptocurrency in the world behind Bitcoin. Enables a vast ecosystem of decentralized finance solutions.||4.87%|
|Polkadot||DOT||Designed to facilitate exchanges and transactions between blockchains without a third party.||14%|
|Polygon||MATIC||Created in an attempt to scale Ethereum. Ensures compatibility by connecting every Ethereum-based DApp (decentralized application).||6.73%|
|Solana||SOL||DeFi token that was designed with scalability in mind. Low fees and quick transactions.||6.95%|
|Tezos||XTZ||Uses a liquid proof of stake (LPoS) model that features optional delegation.||5.34%|
|USD Coin||USDC||Stablecoin is pegged to the US dollar and commonly used for transferring funds. The coin is audited by Graham Norton LLP, every month.||4.92%|
*Average annual return information is based on estimates from Staking Rewards, a leading data provider for staking and crypto-growth tools.
Best crypto staking rewards
To get the best returns on staking, you’ll have to compare the rewards between platforms, not just between coins.
Here are a few popular platforms with some of the highest APYs (for staking options only) as of November 21, 2022:
|Exchange Platform||Highest APYs||Highest Yield Coin(s)||Code(s)|
|eToro||90%||Cardano, Tron and Ethereum||ADA, TRX, ETH|
A new study from multinational financial services company Charles Schwab found that Gen Z and Millennial investors want crypto and in their 401(k)s. One list in the study shows that 46% of Gen Z and 45% of Millennials wish they could invest in cryptocurrency for retirement, compared to 31% of Gen X and 11% of Boomers. This is part of a larger trend among younger generations to include a broader range of assets in their retirement accounts.
According to a recent news release, the Bank of New York Mellon, the oldest bank in the US, will now hold crypto assets. Clients can hold and transfer two coins, bitcoin and ether, through the bank's online platform. Experts are calling the move a major milestone for crypto, which has often been met with skepticism in the traditional finance space.
What is staking crypto?
What does staking mean in crypto?
How to report crypto staking rewards on taxes
Staking is a relatively new concept, which means that tax authorities worldwide are still grappling with how to tax it. In the U.S., the IRS has only assumed an official position regarding crypto mining, but a lawsuit currently working its way through the federal court in Tennessee might change that. The lawsuit will determine whether rewards from staking should be treated as property or as income from the moment they are created.
Until this matter is settled in court, we suggest contacting a tax advisor with experience in cryptocurrency accounting if you expect to start staking soon.
How hard is crypto staking?
How does staking crypto make money?
How We Evaluated Crypto Staking Platforms
We looked at 20 crypto staking platforms and evaluated them based on rewards, features, security and user interface. Some exchanges and brokerages focused on crypto lending instead of crypto staking. However, we considered them as well since the rewards from both types of service are similar enough.
The platforms included in our list did well in the following categories:
Rewards - Our main consideration when looking at rewards was each staking platform’s APYs across the board. We also looked at commission fees, which would lower users’ actual yields, the payout frequency of rewards, lock-up period flexibility, and any additional rewards offered (for example, staking rewards on a debit or credit card).
Features - For features, we looked at the available tools and services. We gave a higher score to platforms with the greatest number of assets supported for staking, additional crypto lending capabilities, educational content, live charts and information and a yield calculator.
Security - Safety is always a top concern for us when evaluating crypto services, particularly given the number of high-profile exchange, wallet and coin hacks over the last few years. We looked at each staking platform's security features and standards while consulting CoinGecko and CERtified; two trusted sources of cryptocurrency data.
User Experience - A crypto staking platform shouldn’t feel like it's actively fighting to confuse or irritate users. We evaluated each staking platform’s desktop and mobile (when available) interface, favoring those with more intuitive designs that made the staking or lending process more manageable.
Summary of Money’s Crypto Staking Platforms Review
Staking is a way for investors to get their feet wet in the crypto market without committing to buying and selling large amounts of coins. However, despite the advantages of crypto staking, these are still speculative assets that can rise and drop in value dramatically over time. Keep this in mind as you look at the different staking platforms and consider whether or not staking is for you.