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Photograph: Evan Sung Shake Shack

Kid-friendly restaurants in Chicago

Planning a night out for the family? Make sure dine at these kid-friendly restaurants in Chicago.

By Morgan Olsen and Elizabeth Atkinson

Move over, chicken fingers and hot dogs. These kid-friendly Chicago restaurants have amped up their offerings with curated menus for your little gourmands, making it easier to dine out with the youngsters in tow. Moreover, the spots on this list won't make you feel bad for canceling on the babysitter: They've got everything from stroller valets to coloring books to cozy booths for the whole family. As an added bonus, we tossed in a few spots where kids eat free—because everyone could use a break. Pack up the diaper bag and check out one of these kid-friendly restaurants in Chicago.

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Kid-friendly restaurants in Chicago

Honey Butter Fried Chicken

1. Honey Butter Fried Chicken

Restaurants American Avondale
Fact: Kids love fried chicken and mac and cheese. The nice thing about this beloved Avondale haunt is that the chicken is boneless, so parents don't have to keep a watchful eye on their youngsters while they eat. The kids menu here features a budget-friendly meal deal that includes chicken strips, pimento mac and cheese, a corn muffin and, of course, honey butter—all for $7. They've even got a kids-size soft serve for dessert.
Photograph: Jaclyn Rivas

2. The Warbler

Restaurants Lincoln Square

On weeknights from 4:30 to 6pm, families are invited to check out the Warbler's Supper Club special, which goes for $25 per person (kids under 9 eat for free) and includes six family-style dishes of your choice. The plates are portioned just right to ensure everyone leaves full and happy.

Photograph: Erica Gannett

3. Crosby's Kitchen

Restaurants American Lake View
This ultra kid-friendly restaurant in the Southport Corridor caters to parents in every way possible with wide doors that fit your stroller, a stroller valet and step stools in the bathroom. Your little ones will undoubtedly want the ice cream-topped skillet cookie for dessert—so be a sport and help them indulge. 

4. Old Irving Brewing

Bars Breweries Portage Park

While you're munching on shishito peppers and charcuterie, the kids will be tucking into crispy chicken tenders, a cheeseburger or buttered noodles at this Irving Park brewery. All kids' meals are just $8 and include a drink and your choice of fries or fresh fruit. 

Photograph: Evan Sung

5. Shake Shack

Restaurants Hamburgers River North

It's easy to please everyone and Shake Shack, especially now that the burger empire has three locations in Chicago. Kids can choose from hamburgers, a crispy chicken sandwich and flat-top dogs, all of which are crafted with premium ingredients. It's a fast and easy option for moms and dads on the go.

6. Chop Shop

Restaurants American Wicker Park

This butcher shop-restaurant-performance venue isn't just for hip concerts and events—it's fun for the whole family, too. Little ones eat free Monday through Friday from 4 to 6pm from the kids menu. Parents, you're in luck, too; choose from a bone marrow-crusted filet mignon, eggplant parmesant and spicy elotes.


7. R.J. Grunts

Restaurants American Lincoln Park

Located across from the Lincoln Park Zoo, this Lettuce Entertain You original is almost too convenient. Park your stroller near the front of the restaurant and sit the kids down with crayons and animal crackers. Meals are even served on old-school cafeteria trays, so they'll feel right at home.

2017 Galdones Photography LLC
Courtesy Eugene Galdones

8. The Kennison

Restaurants Contemporary American Lincoln Park

Bring the kids along for date night at this swanky Lincoln Park restaurant, where kids eat for free on Monday nights. Chef Rob Shaner uses seasonal ingredients from Green City Market and nearby farms, so you can rest assured that your little ones are getting an excellent meal.

Photograph: Martha Williams

9. Roots Handmade Pizza

Restaurants Pizza East Village
There's no need for a kids' menu when the little ones can eat just like Mom and Dad. Housemade mozzarella sticks are a favorite with the littles, and they can watch as the chefs prepare their pizza through a special viewing window. They'll also get a hunk of dough to play with at the table. Oh, and there's a kick-ass Midwestern beer menu for you. 

10. Spacca Napoli

Restaurants Pizza Uptown

This Ravenswood spot is wonderfully kid-friendly, and owner Jonathan Goldsmith goes out his way to make sure families have a stress-free dining experience. No need for a special menu, as your bambinos will love the tasty Neapolitan pizzas that this place is known for.

tied house, schubas
Photograph: John Stoffer

11. Tied House

Restaurants Lake View

Bet you didn't think that Schubas-adjacent Tied House catered to the kids. The beautiful Lakeview restaurant has a dedicated kids' menu that's packed with parent-approved meals like fish and chips, spaghetti three ways, a chicken breast with mashed potatos and mac and cheese with bacon. Finish the meal with a scoop (or two) of birthday cake ice cream.

12. Wildfire

Restaurants Steakhouse River North

Little ones will love the expansive kids' menu that offers everything from a mini-slab of ribs and grilled cheese to chicken fingers and a hot fudge sundae. Servers go out of their way to accommodate the kiddos so that parents can relax and enjoy a martini.


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