Analogical transfer, denoting the ability to use an action that solved a given problem in order to successfully handle a seemingly different but functionally similar problem, requires well- developed self-regulation, as it draws on previous knowledge and demands selecting and shift- ing between relevant features while ignoring irrelevant ones. Thus, analogical transfer involves executive functions (EFs), yet the contribution of specific EFs is unclear, particularly during the development of the capacity before the age of 5. Here, for the first time, we investigated the contribution of world knowledge, working memory and set-shifting in 2.5- to 4.5-year-olds’ (N = 86) capacity to single-event analogical transfer in a simple, non-verbal, tool-use task. Analogical transfer was independent of age but was predicted by a measure of world knowledge and a measure of working memory across the age-span tested. Our results suggest that world knowledge and working memory underscore analogical transfer early in development.