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Chicago’s restaurant scene is a playground for little diners.
The StopAlong [Official Photo]

Chicago’s Most Kid Friendly Restaurants

Gourmet kids meals, colorful bubble tea, and more to please the city’s very young diners

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Chicago’s restaurant scene is a playground for little diners.
| The StopAlong [Official Photo]

Eating out doesn’t have to just be for adults. Some of Chicago’s best and most enduring restaurants have kiddie cups, crayons, tot-sized sandwiches, and other tools to please the little ones. From a Michelin-starred restaurant to a hands-on seafood spot, here are 20 of the best spots to take the kids out for a meal in Chicago.

As of March 2, Chicago restaurants are permitted to serve customers indoors with a 50 percent maximum capacity per room, or 50 people — whichever is fewer. Regardless, the state requires reservations for both indoor and outdoor dining. However, this should not be taken as an endorsement for dining in, as there are still safety concerns. For updated information on coronavirus cases in your area, please visit the city of Chicago’s COVID-19 dashboard. Studies indicate that there is a lower exposure risk when outdoors, but the level of risk involved with patio dining is contingent on restaurants following strict social distancing and other safety guidelines.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Old Irving Brewing Co.

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4419 W Montrose Ave
Chicago, IL 60641
(773) 916-6421
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Brewpubs are surprisingly some of the best places to bring kids due to their laid-back atmospheres, daytime hours, and menus full of sandwiches, burgers, and fried finger foods — not to mention all beer for adults. Old Irving Brewing has all that and more in a neighborhood full of families, plus a kids menu with mac and cheese, chicken tenders, and ice cream made on-site.

2. Smoque BBQ

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3800 N Pulaski Rd
Chicago, IL 60641
(773) 545-7427
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Barbecue is messy and hands-on, which are helpful tools to get kids excited about a meal at one of Chicago’s best barbecue spots. A special kids menu features tiny brisket and pulled pork sandwiches, along with macaroni and cheese. Indoor seating hasn’t yet resumed but staff have opened a covered outdoor patio that’s also BYOB.

3. Crosby's Kitchen

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3455 N Southport Ave
Chicago, IL 60657
(773) 883-2525
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Crosby’s Kitchen is one of the most popular restaurant for kids in the stroller-saturated Southport Corridor. With a children’s menu stacked with grilled cheese, chicken fingers, and PB&J, management pulls out all the stops to make a meal for the whole family. Finish it all off with a skillet cookie topped with ice cream.

4. Parachute

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3500 N Elston Ave
Chicago, IL 60618
(773) 654-1460
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Finding a kids menu at a Michelin-starred restaurant is nearly impossible, but Parachute pays special attention to parents. Chefs, spouses, and co-owners Beverly Kim and Johnny Clark have gone the extra mile for very small diners with Lil P Baby Food, infant-friendly purees in flavors like spiced pumpkin pie and sweet potato (coconut, makrut lime leaf). Kim last year founded the Abundance Setting, a nonprofit that provide resources and support for mothers working in the hospitality industry.

5. lowcountry

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3343 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60657
(773) 996-9997
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Seafood may not be the first thing people think of when many think “kid-friendly,” but what better way to introduce the kids to a good crustacean than by (literally) cracking them open on the table and getting their hands dirty with bags of seafood dressed however they’d like. There’s also a South Loop location of this popular Wrigleyville/Lakeview spot.

6. Honey Butter Fried Chicken

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3361 N Elston Ave
Chicago, IL 60618
(773) 478-4000
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Fried chicken and mac and cheese are shoo-ins with most kids, but Honey Butter Fried Chicken goes even further with a kids meal that includes chicken tenders, mac and cheese, and a sticker sheet for a little entertainment. The restaurant is currently open exclusively for carryout and delivery.

7. Cheesie's Pub & Grub

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958 W Belmont Ave
Chicago, IL 60657
(773) 388-1574
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This restaurant in Lakeview gets busy at night, but during the day the grilled cheese restaurant is an ideal destination for kids. The meal for pint-sized diners features halved grilled cheese sandwiches, along with beer for the adults, and locations in Lakeview, Wicker Park, and Evanston.

8. mini mott

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3057 W Logan Blvd
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 904-7620
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Mini Mott, the Logan Square spinoff dedicated to chef Edward Kim’s mega-hit Mott Burger, also features tons of different fries, “katsu kruncher” panko-crusted chicken tenders. doughnuts, ice cream, and other well-crafted treats for every diner, regardless of age.

9. Lula Cafe

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2537 N Kedzie Blvd
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 489-9554
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Chef Jason Hammel’s acclaimed neighborhood restaurant takes care of hungry little ones with an unfussy kids’ menu of baked mac and cheese or chicken tenders, a vegetable side, and a cookie for dessert. Lula is currently open for takeout.

10. Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits

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2051 N California Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 276-8888
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The young and the young at heart have long beaten a path to Bang Bang for some of the best sweet and savory pies in town, along with flaky biscuit sandwiches, buttery grits, and quiche. The restaurant is open for takeout and patio service on Fridays and Saturdays in Logan Square.

11. The StopAlong

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1812 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647
(773) 394-4694
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Kids these days may not know much about the pop-culture glory of the ‘80s and ‘90s, but a visit to family-friendly pizza and burger spot the StopAlong will help fill in that vital knowledge gap. Key references include the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, along with tons of classic toys and arcade games. Check out the wide selection of New York-style pizzas and boozy beverages for grown-ups.

12. Lola’s Coney Island

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2858 W Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60622
(773) 687-9459
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This charming Detroit-style hot dog stand is truly a family affair, as owner and Motor City native Jesse Fakhoury named it after his own daughter, Lola. The iconic chili-smothered Coney Dog naturally gets top billing, but the menu also highlights other regional varieties like Chicago dogs (dragged through the garden) and New York-style dogs (sauerkraut or onions or both, spicy brown mustard). Other hits include burgers, malts, and floats.

13. Greek Islands

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200 S Halsted St
Chicago, IL 60661
(312) 782-9855
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A trip to Greek Islands is an adventure in itself, especially for young diners who long for more than chicken nuggets. The restaurant is Mediterranean royalty in Chicago, and an ideal venue for novices to learn about the wonders of flaming saganaki, mini pork and chicken kebabs, and pan-fried calamari.

14. Lou Mitchell's

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565 W Jackson Blvd
Chicago, IL 60661
(312) 939-3111
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This longtime classic diner in West Loop serves breakfast and lunch with Milk Dud pancakes, chicken fingers, and buttered noodles for children. Adults can eat like a kid too, with thick French toast smothered in syrup and fruit for a sweet start to the day.

15. Roots Handmade Pizza - South Loop

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744 S Dearborn St
Chicago, IL 60605
(773) 645-4909
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While pizza might be one of the most essential elements of a kid’s diet, the kids menu at this family-friendly pizzeria in South Loop/Printer’s Row location (they have a retractable roof) also lets little patrons choose from fried shrimp, mini corn dogs, and plenty of pastas in different shapes. There’s also locations in Lincoln Square, West Town, and Old Town.

A bowl of green pasta
Big Elbow Alfredo (spinach macaroni, peas, spinach, basil, alfredo sauce)
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

16. Eleven City Diner

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1112 S Wabash Ave
Chicago, IL 60605
(312) 212-1112
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Make kids happy at this classic Jewish deli and ice cream fountain in South Loop. An array of sweet treats including shakes, sundaes, house-made sodas and candy. Mammoth sandwiches, fluffy pancakes, and fried staples all add up to a food paradise for most minors.

17. Joy Yee

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2139 S China Pl
Chicago, IL 60616
(312) 328-0001
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This popular pan-Asian spot is best known for its fun and colorful bubble tea and smoothies, and kids can pick out their own fruits and toppings to make an extra-special drink just for them. The food menu features oodles of noodles, as well as protein and rice dishes, soups, and dumplings. Additional outposts are located in University Village and suburban Evanston.

18. Ascione Bistro

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1500 E 55th St
Chicago, IL 60615
(773) 363-8161
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Diners of all ages get excited about this comfortable yet stylish Italian restaurant in Hyde Park. Thoughtful menu options range from handmade pastas (also available gluten-free) and juicy meatballs to salmon coated in lemon butter. There’s a covered and heated patio plus indoor dining.

19. 5 Loaves Eatery

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405 E 75th St
Chicago, IL 60619
(773) 891-2889
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A South Side destination famed for its Southern staples, 5 Loaves Eatery serves up crowd-pleasers for breakfast and lunch. The restaurant is known for its excellent fried chicken — an easy sell for meat-eating kids — but that’s far from the only draw. Options like buttermilk biscuits and cheesy grits are among its many hits, along with lunch entrees like catfish nuggets and shrimp po’boys. The restaurant is open for delivery and carryout.

20. Mikkey's Retro Grill Stony Island

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8126 S Stony Island Ave
Chicago, IL 60617
(773) 902-2800
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Parents needn’t resort to plying offspring with pedestrian burgers and fries when they can go to Mikkey’s for top-notch fast food. Young customers have plenty to choose from, but a kids meal with options like chicken tenders, wings, and mozzarella sticks along with a cheeseburger and fries will likely be an easy win. Mikkey’s is also open in Hyde Park.

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1. Old Irving Brewing Co.

4419 W Montrose Ave, Chicago, IL 60641

Brewpubs are surprisingly some of the best places to bring kids due to their laid-back atmospheres, daytime hours, and menus full of sandwiches, burgers, and fried finger foods — not to mention all beer for adults. Old Irving Brewing has all that and more in a neighborhood full of families, plus a kids menu with mac and cheese, chicken tenders, and ice cream made on-site.

4419 W Montrose Ave
Chicago, IL 60641

2. Smoque BBQ

3800 N Pulaski Rd, Chicago, IL 60641

Barbecue is messy and hands-on, which are helpful tools to get kids excited about a meal at one of Chicago’s best barbecue spots. A special kids menu features tiny brisket and pulled pork sandwiches, along with macaroni and cheese. Indoor seating hasn’t yet resumed but staff have opened a covered outdoor patio that’s also BYOB.

3800 N Pulaski Rd
Chicago, IL 60641

3. Crosby's Kitchen

3455 N Southport Ave, Chicago, IL 60657

Crosby’s Kitchen is one of the most popular restaurant for kids in the stroller-saturated Southport Corridor. With a children’s menu stacked with grilled cheese, chicken fingers, and PB&J, management pulls out all the stops to make a meal for the whole family. Finish it all off with a skillet cookie topped with ice cream.

3455 N Southport Ave
Chicago, IL 60657

4. Parachute

3500 N Elston Ave, Chicago, IL 60618

Finding a kids menu at a Michelin-starred restaurant is nearly impossible, but Parachute pays special attention to parents. Chefs, spouses, and co-owners Beverly Kim and Johnny Clark have gone the extra mile for very small diners with Lil P Baby Food, infant-friendly purees in flavors like spiced pumpkin pie and sweet potato (coconut, makrut lime leaf). Kim last year founded the Abundance Setting, a nonprofit that provide resources and support for mothers working in the hospitality industry.

3500 N Elston Ave
Chicago, IL 60618

5. lowcountry

3343 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60657

Seafood may not be the first thing people think of when many think “kid-friendly,” but what better way to introduce the kids to a good crustacean than by (literally) cracking them open on the table and getting their hands dirty with bags of seafood dressed however they’d like. There’s also a South Loop location of this popular Wrigleyville/Lakeview spot.

3343 N Clark St
Chicago, IL 60657

6. Honey Butter Fried Chicken

3361 N Elston Ave, Chicago, IL 60618

Fried chicken and mac and cheese are shoo-ins with most kids, but Honey Butter Fried Chicken goes even further with a kids meal that includes chicken tenders, mac and cheese, and a sticker sheet for a little entertainment. The restaurant is currently open exclusively for carryout and delivery.

3361 N Elston Ave
Chicago, IL 60618

7. Cheesie's Pub & Grub

958 W Belmont Ave, Chicago, IL 60657

This restaurant in Lakeview gets busy at night, but during the day the grilled cheese restaurant is an ideal destination for kids. The meal for pint-sized diners features halved grilled cheese sandwiches, along with beer for the adults, and locations in Lakeview, Wicker Park, and Evanston.

958 W Belmont Ave
Chicago, IL 60657

8. mini mott

3057 W Logan Blvd, Chicago, IL 60647

Mini Mott, the Logan Square spinoff dedicated to chef Edward Kim’s mega-hit Mott Burger, also features tons of different fries, “katsu kruncher” panko-crusted chicken tenders. doughnuts, ice cream, and other well-crafted treats for every diner, regardless of age.

3057 W Logan Blvd
Chicago, IL 60647

9. Lula Cafe

2537 N Kedzie Blvd, Chicago, IL 60647

Chef Jason Hammel’s acclaimed neighborhood restaurant takes care of hungry little ones with an unfussy kids’ menu of baked mac and cheese or chicken tenders, a vegetable side, and a cookie for dessert. Lula is currently open for takeout.

2537 N Kedzie Blvd
Chicago, IL 60647

10. Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits

2051 N California Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

The young and the young at heart have long beaten a path to Bang Bang for some of the best sweet and savory pies in town, along with flaky biscuit sandwiches, buttery grits, and quiche. The restaurant is open for takeout and patio service on Fridays and Saturdays in Logan Square.

2051 N California Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

11. The StopAlong

1812 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Kids these days may not know much about the pop-culture glory of the ‘80s and ‘90s, but a visit to family-friendly pizza and burger spot the StopAlong will help fill in that vital knowledge gap. Key references include the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, along with tons of classic toys and arcade games. Check out the wide selection of New York-style pizzas and boozy beverages for grown-ups.

1812 N Milwaukee Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

12. Lola’s Coney Island

2858 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60622

This charming Detroit-style hot dog stand is truly a family affair, as owner and Motor City native Jesse Fakhoury named it after his own daughter, Lola. The iconic chili-smothered Coney Dog naturally gets top billing, but the menu also highlights other regional varieties like Chicago dogs (dragged through the garden) and New York-style dogs (sauerkraut or onions or both, spicy brown mustard). Other hits include burgers, malts, and floats.

2858 W Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60622

13. Greek Islands

200 S Halsted St, Chicago, IL 60661

A trip to Greek Islands is an adventure in itself, especially for young diners who long for more than chicken nuggets. The restaurant is Mediterranean royalty in Chicago, and an ideal venue for novices to learn about the wonders of flaming saganaki, mini pork and chicken kebabs, and pan-fried calamari.

200 S Halsted St
Chicago, IL 60661

14. Lou Mitchell's

565 W Jackson Blvd, Chicago, IL 60661

This longtime classic diner in West Loop serves breakfast and lunch with Milk Dud pancakes, chicken fingers, and buttered noodles for children. Adults can eat like a kid too, with thick French toast smothered in syrup and fruit for a sweet start to the day.

565 W Jackson Blvd
Chicago, IL 60661

15. Roots Handmade Pizza - South Loop

744 S Dearborn St, Chicago, IL 60605
A bowl of green pasta
Big Elbow Alfredo (spinach macaroni, peas, spinach, basil, alfredo sauce)
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago

While pizza might be one of the most essential elements of a kid’s diet, the kids menu at this family-friendly pizzeria in South Loop/Printer’s Row location (they have a retractable roof) also lets little patrons choose from fried shrimp, mini corn dogs, and plenty of pastas in different shapes. There’s also locations in Lincoln Square, West Town, and Old Town.

744 S Dearborn St
Chicago, IL 60605

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16. Eleven City Diner

1112 S Wabash Ave, Chicago, IL 60605

Make kids happy at this classic Jewish deli and ice cream fountain in South Loop. An array of sweet treats including shakes, sundaes, house-made sodas and candy. Mammoth sandwiches, fluffy pancakes, and fried staples all add up to a food paradise for most minors.

1112 S Wabash Ave
Chicago, IL 60605

17. Joy Yee

2139 S China Pl, Chicago, IL 60616

This popular pan-Asian spot is best known for its fun and colorful bubble tea and smoothies, and kids can pick out their own fruits and toppings to make an extra-special drink just for them. The food menu features oodles of noodles, as well as protein and rice dishes, soups, and dumplings. Additional outposts are located in University Village and suburban Evanston.

2139 S China Pl
Chicago, IL 60616

18. Ascione Bistro

1500 E 55th St, Chicago, IL 60615

Diners of all ages get excited about this comfortable yet stylish Italian restaurant in Hyde Park. Thoughtful menu options range from handmade pastas (also available gluten-free) and juicy meatballs to salmon coated in lemon butter. There’s a covered and heated patio plus indoor dining.

1500 E 55th St
Chicago, IL 60615

19. 5 Loaves Eatery

405 E 75th St, Chicago, IL 60619

A South Side destination famed for its Southern staples, 5 Loaves Eatery serves up crowd-pleasers for breakfast and lunch. The restaurant is known for its excellent fried chicken — an easy sell for meat-eating kids — but that’s far from the only draw. Options like buttermilk biscuits and cheesy grits are among its many hits, along with lunch entrees like catfish nuggets and shrimp po’boys. The restaurant is open for delivery and carryout.

405 E 75th St
Chicago, IL 60619

20. Mikkey's Retro Grill Stony Island

8126 S Stony Island Ave, Chicago, IL 60617

Parents needn’t resort to plying offspring with pedestrian burgers and fries when they can go to Mikkey’s for top-notch fast food. Young customers have plenty to choose from, but a kids meal with options like chicken tenders, wings, and mozzarella sticks along with a cheeseburger and fries will likely be an easy win. Mikkey’s is also open in Hyde Park.

8126 S Stony Island Ave
Chicago, IL 60617

Related Maps