Short on time? 14 of the best podcasts with episodes under 20 minutes

round up November 30, 2022

Do you love podcasts, but only have twenty minutes to spare? In addition, are you lacking time to find new podcasts to listen to? We’ve assembled a list of some of the best, short audios as listening options. We’re including shows covering politics, the news, pop culture, science updates, historical tidbits, and more. A daily episode is an excellent way to start your day with facts and information you might be so interested in, you’ll share it with friends.

Whether you’re throwing on headphones and looking for something to listen to during your commute or running errands, here are some informative, bite-sized podcasts you might want to check out.

Morning Cup of Murder

Morning Cup of Murder

Listen to ‘Morning Cup of Murder’

Get your daily quick hit of true crime in episodes averaging less than 15 minutes each with host Korina Biemesderfer. There are over 600 episodes to choose from covering abductions, murders, serial killers, cults, crimes of passion, and many more.

Reflections of History podcast art

Reflections of History

Listen to ‘Reflections of History’

Join Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and author Jon Meacham as he shares what happened today in history every Monday through Friday. Hear about pivotal moments such as political events, discovering a revolutionary cure, a visionary filmmaker’s birth, an athlete’s debut, and many more pivotal moments. This series is presented by C13Originals.

NPR Up First

Up First

Listen to ‘Up First’

NPR’s “Up First” shares the three biggest stories of the day in 15 minutes or less. Tune in weekdays at 6AM ET, with hosts Leila Fadel, Steve Inskeep, Rachel Martin, and A Martínez. Saturday episodes are posted by 8AM ET, hosted by Scott Simon. On Sundays, hear Rachel take a deeper dive into the headlines with episodes available by 8AM ET.

Meet Cute Rom-Coms

Meet Cute Rom-Coms

Listen to ‘Meet Cute Rom-Coms’

“Meet Cute” is a comedy fiction series with new, semiweekly episodes running less than 15 minutes each. The adorable stories are perfect pick-me-ups for romantic comedy fans. Start the episodes from the first part of each story arc.

Cabinet of Curiosities

Aaron Mahnke’s Cabinet of Curiosities

Listen to ‘Aaron Mahnke’s Cabinet of Curiosities’

From Grim & Mild comes “Aaron Mahnke’s Cabinet of Curiosities,” a history podcast sharing short stories on shocking, strange, and scary topics. Hear 2 stories each episode released semiweekly, must-listens for “Lore” fans.

Netflix is a Daily Joke podcast art

Netflix is a Daily Joke

Listen to ‘Netflix is a Daily Joke’

Netflix is a Daily Joke” shares daily bite-sized bits from comedians with Netflix specials. In short but sweet episodes running under 5 minutes each, hear comics like Trevor Noah joking about acting too familiar, Amy Schumer poking fun at her proposal, Colin Quinn on the New York Personality, and what Bill Burr had to say about McDonald’s.

The Indicator from Planet Money

The Indicator from Planet Money

Listen to ‘The Indicator from Planet Money’

On weekday afternoons, catch new episodes of NPR’s “The Indicator from Planet Money,” “a little show about big ideas.” Get up to speed on business news, the economy, work insights, and much more.

Radio Headspace

Radio Headspace

Listen to ‘Radio Headspace’

Add mindfulness to your day with “Radio Headspace’s” chill episodes released every weekday morning. This series allows listeners to “step out of the internal chatter and external noise” while thinking about humans’ connectivity and our infinite potential.

The Daily Punch

Listen to ‘The Daily Punch’

Punchbowl News and Audacy’s Cadence13 present “The Daily Punch,” a recurring, weekday political podcast. With this show, you’ll be up to speed on politics and get a better grasp on political issues. Hosted by Anna Palmer and Jake Sherman, each episode shares updates from Washington, Capitol Hill, The White House, and listeners learn about different issues faced that day. After hearing the news and stories, the show encourages listeners to form their own opinions.

NPR’s Short Wave

Listen to ‘NPR’s Short Wave’

NPR and Short Wave Plus’ “Short Wave” is hosted by Maddie Sofia. In under-15-minute episodes, listeners can hear about science-based topics. Most importantly, many episodes are pertinent to current happenings. Besides discussing science news updates, Maddie is joined by guests to explain topics like why people find the texture of ice cream enjoyable.


Listen to ‘HistoryPod’

Scott Allsop releases HistoryPod every day. It’s a “this day in history” show reminding us of significant events from the past. Events span ancient history to our modern era. Most episodes are under three minutes in length.


Listen to ‘Motherhacker’

“Motherhacker” is from Gimlet, a Spotify Original. This show is a fictional drama following the life of Bridget, played by Carrie Coon. Since she’s broke and her ex-husband enters rehab, Bridget takes on a new job as a phone operator for an identity theft ring. However, when she enters the scam business, Bridget is torn between her dark web life and reality. Episodes are under 15 minutes long.

Rich and Daily

Listen to ‘Rich and Daily’

Wondery presents “Rich and Daily,” a daily gossip podcast covering the latest pop culture news. Hosted by Aricia Skidmore-Williams and Brooke Siffrinn, you’ll be up to speed in 10 minutes or less. Episodes covered Britney Spears’ conservatorship, Cardi B’s kids, and celebrity relationships running amok in the public eye.

6 Minute Vocabulary

Listen to ‘6 Minute Vocabulary’

From BBC World Service comes “6 Minute Vocabulary,” a healthy dose of new words, phrases, and grammar tips in under 6 minutes. With every listen, you’ll refresh on concepts like suffixes, acronyms, antonyms, and discourse markers. After walking through each topic, the hosts provide examples of how to apply these concepts in your writing or everyday conversations. New episodes are available on Mondays.

New shows we love...

Join Our Newsletter

The best podcasts to listen to next, delivered right to your inbox every week.

By clicking Submit, you acknowledge you have read and agree to our Website and Digital Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.