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Light wood outdoor furniture with white cushions sits in front of a colorful sign that reads “Birdie’s Eastside.”
Bring the kids down to Birdie’s Eastside.
Kathy Tran

12 Kid-Friendly Dallas Restaurants That Parents Won’t Hate

Where to find a meal the whole family will enjoy with a fun atmosphere for kids

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Bring the kids down to Birdie’s Eastside.
| Kathy Tran

Finding a spot to eat that the whole family will enjoy is a struggle. You want the kids to be able to run around and have fun and for the menu to have stuff they’ll actually eat. And you want food you’ll enjoy — not just kid food.

These spots, which are all around the Metroplex, satisfy that wish list. Some of them even serve wine and cocktails (you’re welcome).

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Southern Recipes Grill

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From quesadillas to cheeseburgers, this restaurant with locations in Plano and Arlington has kid-friendly menus and spaces as well as more sophisticated fare for parents. It also an extensive brunch and breakfast menu, with all the omelettes and migas a grown-up could want and a kids’ menu of pancakes and waffles .

Cane Rosso

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There’s not a Cane Rosso in DFW that isn’t kid-friendly, but the outpost in North Dallas looks extra kid-friendly, thanks to some giant Connect Four games. The Napoli-style pizza is excellent, with simple menu options for kid tastes and fancy toppings for the adults. And yes, every location has a bar and custom cocktail options. 

The Magic Time Machine

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Go somewhere magical! This one may be more for the kids than the grown-ups, but everyone will have a great time. Server work in costume and tables are magical experiences like a carousel or a teapot. Order a Roman Orgy (er, work out how to explain that name to the kids first) for four and get brisket, chicken, fruits, vegetables, and the works served family style. 

Bonchon Addison

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Want to introduce your kids to Asian cuisine? Start with something familiar: fried chicken. Bonchon, with locations in Addison, The Colony, Frisco, and now Fort Worth, is a great place to start. It’s the crispy, savory chicken kids love and sauces and sides that will expand their palettes in a family-friendly fast casual dining environment.

Hat Creek Burgers

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Where can you find burgers, fries, and a playground that isn’t McDonald’s? Hat Creek Burgers — which has multiple locations all over the Metroplex. Their little burgers, called hats, are kid-sized deliciousness. Wine for the grown-ups and milkshakes for the kids make this a family favorite. 

Celebration

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Some restaurants aren’t really relaxed enough for kids. Celebration is not one of those places. Enjoy Southern favorites — the chicken fried steak smothered in gravy is notable — in a family-friendly atmosphere.

Birdie's Eastside

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The expansive patio on this East Dallas spot holds an open play space just for kids. Their parents can watch closely or get a little breathing room on the turfed patio. The kids menu has all the favorites: cheese pizza, chicken tenders, quesadillas, and grilled cheese. Parents can dip into the more sophisticated menu for grown-ups (and cocktails).

Palmer's - Hot Chicken, Catfish and Shrimp

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Think hot chicken and kids don’t go together? Well, that’s probably right. Happily, Palmer’s offers naked spice, which is no spice, so the kids can just enjoy their chicken while the adults go as hot as they can stand. This location has a nice little play area out front for the kids that’s easy to keep watch on through the big glass windows. And there’s a whole family-style menu.

Pie Tap Pizza Workshop + Bar

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Pie Tap has a fun, bustling atmosphere (so loud kids aren’t going to be a problem), a patio with some outdoor seating, pizza (the most important kiddie thing), and they give dough to kids to play with while they wait for the meal — so if there’s a future pizzaiolo in your family, this might be their new favorite place.

Wriggly Tin

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Kids love pizza, sandwiches, and cookies — all of which are on Wriggly Tin’s menu. They also love running around and playing, which they are welcome to do in the outdoor dining area of this spot. Parents that need a cocktail to make it through are in luck — it serves batch-made drinks, beers, and wines.

Norma's Cafe

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Take the kids back to the ‘50s in this retro diner with four locations around DFW. On the menu, order from kid-approved favorites, including peanut butter and jelly, grilled cheese, and chicken tenders. Adults can partake of the blue plate specials, such as meatloaf and chicken fried chicken, or Norma’s favorites, which include pot roast and Southern-fried catfish.

Cenzo's Pizza & Deli

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This place was developed to be family-friendly, from the bare bones interiors to the large outdoor patio seating. While most of the pizzas have bespoke meats on them, there is a pepperoni option for picky eaters and a kids menu with a simple cheese pizza, pepperoni, or chicken strips and fries for the super picky eater. The chaperones can help themselves to a beer or wine while they hang out and enjoy a fine pizza pie.

Southern Recipes Grill

From quesadillas to cheeseburgers, this restaurant with locations in Plano and Arlington has kid-friendly menus and spaces as well as more sophisticated fare for parents. It also an extensive brunch and breakfast menu, with all the omelettes and migas a grown-up could want and a kids’ menu of pancakes and waffles .

Cane Rosso

There’s not a Cane Rosso in DFW that isn’t kid-friendly, but the outpost in North Dallas looks extra kid-friendly, thanks to some giant Connect Four games. The Napoli-style pizza is excellent, with simple menu options for kid tastes and fancy toppings for the adults. And yes, every location has a bar and custom cocktail options. 

The Magic Time Machine

Go somewhere magical! This one may be more for the kids than the grown-ups, but everyone will have a great time. Server work in costume and tables are magical experiences like a carousel or a teapot. Order a Roman Orgy (er, work out how to explain that name to the kids first) for four and get brisket, chicken, fruits, vegetables, and the works served family style. 

Bonchon Addison

Want to introduce your kids to Asian cuisine? Start with something familiar: fried chicken. Bonchon, with locations in Addison, The Colony, Frisco, and now Fort Worth, is a great place to start. It’s the crispy, savory chicken kids love and sauces and sides that will expand their palettes in a family-friendly fast casual dining environment.

Hat Creek Burgers

Where can you find burgers, fries, and a playground that isn’t McDonald’s? Hat Creek Burgers — which has multiple locations all over the Metroplex. Their little burgers, called hats, are kid-sized deliciousness. Wine for the grown-ups and milkshakes for the kids make this a family favorite. 

Celebration

Some restaurants aren’t really relaxed enough for kids. Celebration is not one of those places. Enjoy Southern favorites — the chicken fried steak smothered in gravy is notable — in a family-friendly atmosphere.

Birdie's Eastside

The expansive patio on this East Dallas spot holds an open play space just for kids. Their parents can watch closely or get a little breathing room on the turfed patio. The kids menu has all the favorites: cheese pizza, chicken tenders, quesadillas, and grilled cheese. Parents can dip into the more sophisticated menu for grown-ups (and cocktails).

Palmer's - Hot Chicken, Catfish and Shrimp

Think hot chicken and kids don’t go together? Well, that’s probably right. Happily, Palmer’s offers naked spice, which is no spice, so the kids can just enjoy their chicken while the adults go as hot as they can stand. This location has a nice little play area out front for the kids that’s easy to keep watch on through the big glass windows. And there’s a whole family-style menu.

Pie Tap Pizza Workshop + Bar

Pie Tap has a fun, bustling atmosphere (so loud kids aren’t going to be a problem), a patio with some outdoor seating, pizza (the most important kiddie thing), and they give dough to kids to play with while they wait for the meal — so if there’s a future pizzaiolo in your family, this might be their new favorite place.

Wriggly Tin

Kids love pizza, sandwiches, and cookies — all of which are on Wriggly Tin’s menu. They also love running around and playing, which they are welcome to do in the outdoor dining area of this spot. Parents that need a cocktail to make it through are in luck — it serves batch-made drinks, beers, and wines.

Norma's Cafe

Take the kids back to the ‘50s in this retro diner with four locations around DFW. On the menu, order from kid-approved favorites, including peanut butter and jelly, grilled cheese, and chicken tenders. Adults can partake of the blue plate specials, such as meatloaf and chicken fried chicken, or Norma’s favorites, which include pot roast and Southern-fried catfish.

Cenzo's Pizza & Deli

This place was developed to be family-friendly, from the bare bones interiors to the large outdoor patio seating. While most of the pizzas have bespoke meats on them, there is a pepperoni option for picky eaters and a kids menu with a simple cheese pizza, pepperoni, or chicken strips and fries for the super picky eater. The chaperones can help themselves to a beer or wine while they hang out and enjoy a fine pizza pie.

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