I’m a foodie. I love, love, love food. But with three children under our roof and a fourth on the way, eating out has gotten expensive (not to mention hectic!). Therefore, when our family does eat out I expect to be treated to a fantastic, foodie-satisfying meal. And I expect the kids meals to be healthy and yummy enough that my kids will actually eat the food we buy for them (as opposed to just crackers and bread). Sound impossible? It’s not.
Below is my list of 5 Dallas restaurants that are kid-friendly (with delicious kids food) that also offer fantastic meals for the food lovers in all of us.
In no particular order:
Shady’s Burger Joint (2701 Custer Pkwy #915, Richardson). This little gem hidden in II Creeks Subdivision in Richardson is a burger lover’s paradise. Large challah buns, unique burger offerings, and some of the yummiest french fries and onion rings abound. Their kids meals include options such as fresh hand-breaded chicken tenders, hot dogs, and of course a home made chocolate chip cookie on the side. They also have gluten-free options for both buns and french fries.
2021 Update: Shady’s is no longer, but an equally great spot moved into their location. We love Hat Creek Burger Co. for the food and the outdoor patio and playground. And don’t forget that just down the walkway from Hat Creek is the ever-fabulous and kid-tastic Sweet Firefly.
2. Babe’s Chicken Dinner House (1456 Belt Line Rd #171, Garland) Babe’s earned acclaim in everything from Food Network’s The Best Thing I Ever Ate to Southern Living Magazine. The food is fried and greasy and buttery, and utterly delicious if you’re in the mood to satisfy that down-home cooking craving. The décor on the walls and the family friendly nature of the wait staff is enough to keep kids happy and occupied. The fact that the food comes out fast is an added bonus. The chicken hat people don while being serenaded on their birthday was also enough to make this spot the number one dinner my 5-year-old requested this last year.
3. Dave & Busters (9450 N Central Expy, Dallas) This place has to be put on the list for sheer fun-ness for all ages. It’s hectic and crazy and loud inside…make no mistake. But I’ve found that everyone from my 8-year-old to my 2-year-old simply love playing the games and running around the arcade area. Oftentimes Husband will supervise the youngsters running lose while I sit at the table reading and text him when the food arrives.
My recommendation? Go for the bar burgers and you won’t be disappointed.
4. The Nodding Donkey (2900 Thomas Ave, Dallas) Specialty and craft beers keep the Husband happy, while delicious food and a casual environment ensure the mom and kid(s) are just as content. Kids meals include offerings from grilled fish to macaroni and cheese to chicken tenders. As an added bonus their sweet potato waffle fries never fail to leave the kids shooing US away as they try to scarf them all down before mommy and daddy sneak a few off of their plates.
Being a sports saloon the ambiance is friendly to children who don’t like to sit still and who also sometimes have problems with volume control. If the kids get restless the outdoor game area is always something fun for Dad or Mom to take the kids to play with.
2021 Update: The Nodding Donkey moved to a new location Uptown and has refreshed their menu offerings.
5. Dough Pizzeria Napoleotana (5960 W Parker Rd., Plano) At first glance this place might not seem so kid friendly, but with simple, delicious appetizers and an imported pizza oven that cooks pizzas in 90 seconds, you can have a gourmet meal without the wait for food which is what always does my kids in. Fresh ingredients, a top 10 Dallas pizza joint, and authentic desserts that make simple ice cream sundaes look just silly in comparison. This place is guaranteed to make the whole family happy. Definitely get the Spiedini for an appetizer (roasted house pulled fresh mozzarella wrapped in prosciutto) and the arugula and proscuitto pizza for the adults for your main course.
2021 Update: Currently, the only local location is in Plano (Willow Bend), and the menu has been updated a bit. Still gets rave reviews!
Want to see more kid-friendly restaurants? Here’s a few other posts we’ve done that might help cure your hunger!
Do you have a favorite kid-friendly restaurant that hasn’t made our growing list yet?
Make sure to share in the comments!