Looking for kid-friendly restaurants that the whole family will love? Have no fear.
Finding the balance between taking your kids someplace they’ll enjoy while also enjoying it yourself isn’t always as easy as it should be. Luckily, Columbus is, on the whole, a family-friendly city.
There are so many unique places you can swing in with the kids for a bite to eat, whether you’re looking for somewhere with built-in activities or a super kid-friendly menu, this city has your back.
Schmidt’s | German Village
There are a lot of reasons why taking your kids to Schmidt’s is a great idea. First of all, there is a buffet, which means the little ones can pick and choose what they want, and go back for seconds if they want more. Everyone will enjoy a creampuff for dessert and afterward, you can all snap some adorable pics outside the restaurant. That’s a win, friends.
Dirty Frank’s Hot Dog Palace | Downtown
I feel like I could just say, “hot dogs” and most parents would be like, “Yep, for sure.” But allow me to elaborate. Dirty Franks has a fun atmosphere with lots of kid-friendly food options, including mac and cheese topped with a hot dog octopus. Trust me, they’ll love it.
Forty’s Chicken and Waffles | Old North Columbus
Forty’s Chicken and Waffles is technically located in a bar, but they are all-ages friendly during the day. After enjoying some delicious food, you and the fam can play a variety of games at Old North Arcade, including some of the classics from your own childhood. This place is only kid-friendly until 8 p.m., so don’t head out too late!
Hot Chicken Takeover | Various Locations
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Nothing appeases an upset child quite like chicken tenders. For the kids, you can order the chicken cold, which is the spice level, not the temperature. Get your spice on while the kids snack on chicken and mac and cheese. Finish the afternoon with some banana pudding and you’ll be everyone’s favorite.
Starliner Diner | Hilliard
The artwork alone at Starliner Diner will keep the kids entertained. The diner itself is super fun and the menu is Latin-inspired, so it’s a great way to get kids to try new things and expand their palates from the aforementioned chicken tenders and hot dogs.
Swensons Drive-In | Dublin
Swensons Drive-In is a great option for when you’re sort of tired and don’t want to load all of the kids into the car only to bust them out again 15 minutes later. You order from the comfort of your vehicle and the food will be brought out to you! They have a great menu, and it includes milkshakes, so you really can’t go wrong.
Melt Bar & Grilled | Various Locations
Rainy day? Kids melting down? Treat them, and yourself, to a grilled cheese from Melt. If you have an adventurous little foodie, they can try all sorts of crazy grilled cheese options. If your kids enjoy the simpler things in life, that’s okay too, because Melt has you covered.
Combustion Brewery | Pickerington
It may not seem like the most obvious choice, but Combustion Brewery is so family-friendly that it hurts. They’ve got a kids area where your children can stretch out and have some fun, and they’ve got a nice, cold beer waiting for you. Everybody will leave happy, I swear.
Milestone 229 | Downtown
This is more of a seasonal option, but it’s not to be missed. In the summer, the kiddos can burn off tons of energy after lunch at Milestone 229 by running around in the splash fountains along the Scioto Mile. They have a great patio where you can sit, sip, and watch the kids have a blast.
Super Chef’s | Various Locations
Super Chef comes highly recommended by my nieces and nephews who are all between 4th and 8th grade. They love the bright, colorful food, the superhero vibes, and the portions. You can get a few different things to share amongst the group, and trust me, when the menu says it feeds two, they mean it.
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