Before having my daughter, my husband and I both enjoyed dining out. Having a child quickly changed our list of favorite restaurants. Over the past few years we have slowly added to our favorite places to eat with our daughter and other friends with children. As part of a Social Fabric Community blog hop, I’m sharing our favorite kid friendly restaurants in the Phoenix area.
Arizona has extremely hot summers but beyond May to August, our weather is perfect for outdoor dining. We enjoy eating at Joe’s Farm Grill in Gilbert because it feels like a big family picnic. The menu is full of common picnic foods like burgers, salads, and a few barbecue items. The grassy dining area has large wooden picnic tables with shade from big trees. The kids menu is fantastic with many different options. My daughter usually eats chicken strips or pizza. My favorite meal here is a burger and sweet potato fries. The grassy dining area has plenty of room for kids to play. We sit in a spot where we have clear visibility of the open area for my daughter to run and play while we eat. If you stop in on your birthday you get a free meal.
Joe’s Farm Grill, 2011
Right next door to Joe’s Farm Grill is The Coffee Shop. Having their cupcakes featured on The Cupcake Wars definitely brought some attention to the restaurant but long before that, locals were enjoying breakfast there daily. I regularly scheduled play dates there when my daughter was a toddler because the menu is great and the open grassy area is perfect for the kids to run and play. My daughter enjoys going there for special occasions to pick out a yummy cupcake and I am a big fan of their coffee. In addition to cupcakes and coffee, their menu offers great breakfast, lunch, and dinner items. The outdoor patio has cute tables with umbrellas and a pretty garden. Before we are off to run and play in the grass, we sit outside and watch the birds and butterflies. Birthdays are always a reason for us to stop by and pick out cupcakes!
The Coffee Shop, 2013
If we are in the mood for pizza, Oregano’s is one of our favorite places to eat. The Chicago style pizza and wings are tasty and my daughter has so much fun when we are there for dinner. Children are given a big dough ball and plate to play with while they wait for their meal. My daughter spends hours playing with her dough ball before, during, and after our meal! With locations throughout Arizona, Oregano’s is always a family favorite!
Oregano’s Pizza Bistro, 2012
Another favorite for pizza is Barro’s. I tend to go here more often for play dates with other friends than for family dinners. The lunch specials are incredibly low priced and the indoor play area is great entertainment for children. The seating around the play area offers parents the opportunity to enjoy a meal with friends while watching your children build with blocks, cook in the play kitchen, and eat pizza at a table just their size. Barro’s Pizza is located through out the Phoenix area.
If you are visiting Arizona and want an authentic western meal full of entertainment, the Rustler’s Roost is a great restaurant! The legendary steakhouse has a slide for guests to go from the top floor to the dining area below. The restaurant is located atop a butte in the South Mountains and offers amazing views of the city. In addition to their tasty steakhouse menu, you can try some Arizona favorites like rattlesnake! The indoor playground, waterfall, and full windows is sure to keep your family entertained for a fun dining experience!
We have our favorite local restaurants, but we also have a few chains that are not only specific to Arizona that we love.
With endless peanuts to crack open and share from the second you arrive, Texas Roadhouse is always a fun family dining experience. We love everything from the low prices on the menu to the loud music in this restaurant. The menu has plenty of options from country fried steak to caesar salads. Our family enjoys going here for birthdays because you get to sit on a saddle while the staff sings.
Texas Roadhouse, 2011
If you let my daughter choose where we should go for dinner, her choice 100% of the time is Red Lobster. It’s not the food she loves, it’s the experience. Every time we have eaten there, she has convinced the host or hostess to pull a live lobster out of the tank for her to see. The excitement of seeing a live lobster before dinner always keeps her entertained and we get to enjoy dinner while she draws pictures of her new favorite friend. She is completely unaware the lobsters in the tank later turn into dinner!
With the promise of a balloon and milkshake, Red Robin is one of our favorite places to eat. My daughter enjoys going there because her daddy always orders a milk shake for them to share. The menu has burgers, sandwiches, wraps, and salads with many different options on the kids menu.
Red Robin, 2011
It’s not always easy finding a kid friendly restaurant where my husband and I can enjoy sushi. Kona Grill is one of our favorite restaurants because of the great food and kids menu. The Surfer’s Sushi Sampler is a fun kids meal for my daughter and she loves watching the tropical fish in the large aquariums while we finish our meal.
These restaurants are a few of our family favorites because of our own preferences and needs. Dining with children can be challenging and it’s always a good idea to take a look at the menu online or call ahead with questions before your experience. We also pack plenty of activities just in case our wait is longer than expected. Paper, coloring pages, and crayons are always in my purse on the way to a restaurant with my daughter. When she was younger we would also bring along our portable DVD player with a few movie options.
Where are your favorite places to eat with children in the Phoenix area?