Move over, chicken fingers and hot dogs. These family-friendly Chicago restaurants around town have amped up their offerings with "fancy" kids' menus and features that make it just a little less stressful to dine out with the the little ones in tow. From menus that make it possible to play with your food to stroller valets, these kid-friendly restaurants may convince you to leave your house during meal time, after all. Bonus: Kids eat free at some of these spots.
Kid-friendly restaurants in Chicago
Chicago finally has its own Shake Shacks, which means that you don't have to leave town to sample the griddle-cooked burgers, crinkle cut fries and rich frozen custard that your friends in New York have always bragged about. With chicken, burger and shake options, there's something for your kids to enjoy while you check out some special Chicago-only menu options, like shakes made with some help from Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits.
This butcher shop-restaurant-performance venue isn't just for hip concerts and events, it's fun for the whole family too. Kids eat free every Monday–Friday from 4–6 pm from the kids menu. Drag them over to the butcher shop next door and they may pick out something they'll actually let you cook them for dinner another day.
Here's a place where it's encouraged to eat with your hands. What's a better way to introduce seafood to your kids? Pick your favorite seafood selection (we like the shrimp, you still get to peel them and the flavor is good), then order the rest of the bag by adding potatoes and corn and all your flavorings. When the food comes out, it's in a big steaming bag for your kid to pick through and see what they want to try the most. Plus, there's beer for you.
Sure, plenty of the draw at Animale is the offal, but there's a special kids menu too to make the kids feel like they're getting to eat something interesting too. Pick from simple options like pappardelle with butter and parmesan or tomato sauce-covered gnocchi. For the super picky eaters, stick to a grilled cheese or a hamburger. Healthy side options like raspberries are available as well.