There are so many great kid-friendly DC restaurants that I began compiling a list for my visiting friends and their families. Chain restaurants are everywhere (Starbucks, Panera, etc.) so I am focusing on DC-specific restaurants and areas in the list below. Links are to the restaurant locations and to the Yelp sites so you can see pics of food and read reviews.
TABLE OF CONTENTS:
- Outdoor Dining with Kids
- Breakfast (Casual, bakeries, etc.)
- Brunch (Sit-down)
- Lunch and Dinner
- Food Halls
- Visiting DC with Kids
8 Kid-Friendly DC Restaurants With Outdoor Dining
A lot of the locations in the Breakfast, Lunch/Dinner, and Food Hall categories are great for takeout out but I wanted to highlight some great restaurants for socially distanced dining with kids in DC. Some of these will be providing patio heaters and fire pits, while others will be cut off more from the wind. Hope you find someplace fun to try out and please comment below with any additions/comments!
- Hi-Lawn – We had an incredible dinner here outside on the roof of Union Market. The menu is “seasonal fare, creative cocktails, picnics.” It was very kid-friendly with tons of space.
- A couple of notes: It is only open Thursday through Sunday for your own reserved picnic tables or picnic circles on the lawn.
- It was our first experience eating out during the pandemic and we felt very safe! Temp checks before you go up to the roof, Menu and ordering from your phone, Masks required when walking to your table. Picnic tables and picnic circles spread out more than 10 feet.
- Tons of free parking in front of Union Market. Wheelchair and stroller accessible with an elevator to the roof.
- Grazie Grazie – Fresh Sandwiches (hoagies!) and Salads at the DC Wharf. Also has pizza and a great patio for eating outdoors.
- Immigrant Food – “Fast-Casual Turned Cause-Casual” Delicious fusion bowls and sandwiches inspired by traditional immigrant recipes. Located Downtown and set up for colder weather on their patio with heaters, rugs and blankets.
- Maketto – Taiwanese and Cambodian café with a great outdoor courtyard in NE. (Our kids still ask to go back after months…scallion pancakes!!) Reservations recommended.
- Pinstripes – Bistro, Bowling, and Bocce! Located in Georgetown with a large outdoor dining patio complete with a fire pit and patio heaters.
2 Kid-Friendly DC Fast Casual Chains
And cheating a little with 2 fast-casual chain restaurants. But they were both born in DC and great for kids, so I am claiming them here!
- &Pizza – Super customizable pizza (including GF dough) and tons of options. Not all &Pizza locations have outdoor seating, but I called around in November 2020 and these are the ones that currently have outdoor seating:
- Dupont – 1215 Connecticut Ave. NW
- Georgetown – 1335 Wisconsin Ave. NW
- Brookland – 666 Monroe St. NE
- CAVA – Fast casual chain Mediterranean food great for a takeout picnic. Not all CAVA locations have outdoor seating, but I called around in November 2020 and these are the ones that currently have outdoor seating:
- Dupont Circle – 1222 Connecticut Ave. NW
- H Street – 523 H Street NE
- Navy Yard – 52 M St. SE
Breakfast Kid Friendly DC Restaurants (Casual, Bakeries)
District Doughnut is a Kid Friendly DC Restaurant that’s sure to please! Photo from District Doughnut.
- District Doughnuts 4 locations in DC: Barracks Row (Eastern Market, Georgetown (Cady’s Alley), the Wharf, and Union Market.
- Hours: Check the website for different hours, generally 7 AM or 8 AM open and 4 PM or 8 PM closing.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Fancy famous doughnuts, check out the pics on Yelp!
- Bullfrog Bagels 3 locations in DC: Eastern Market, H Street, and Tastemakers
- Hours: Open 7 AM to 1 PM.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Delicious hand-rolled and boiled the old-fashioned way with plain sandwiches!
- Call Your Mother Deli 8 locations in the DC Area from Georgetown, Bethesda, Capitol Hill, and Logan Circle. They are known for their delicious egg bagels! Yelp for all locations here.
- Hours: See locations for specific but generally 7:30 AM to 2 PM.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Longer lines at the Georgetown location so check out the other 2 spots if kids are hungry/hangry!
Kid-Friendly DC Brunch Restaurants
Wonderful place to eat with kids! Photo from Open City’s website
- Open City Woodley Park
- Hours: Open 7 AM to 12 midnight.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Great diner with traditional American brunch plus some fun additions near the National Zoo.
- Opaline at the Sofitel Hotel - Near the White House
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Opaline is a French-inspired Bar and Brasserie just 2 blocks from the White House. We had a wonderful brunch with my parents on Opaline's lovely patio! The food was delicious and my kids loved it as much as us! My son's favorite was the hanger steak (and my mom's!) and my favorite was the deviled eggs. My daughter's favorite was the Brisket Benedict. It is definitely a fancier option but not stuffy and the staff could not have been kinder to the kids!
- Breakfast - Monday - Friday 7:00 AM - 11:00 AM, Saturday 8:00 AM - 11:00 AM, Sunday 8:00 AM - 12 PM
- Lunch - Tuesday-Saturday 11:30 AM - 2:00 PM,
- Dinner - Sunday - Friday 2:00 PM - 10:00 PM, Saturday 2:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Opaline at the Sofitel DC
- Commissary Logan Circle (Downtown)
- Hours: Opens 8 AM to 11 PM.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Popular new American Breakfast & Brunch (also open for lunch and dinner) in downtown. (Huevos Rancheros is highly recommended!)
- Tony’s Breakfast H Street
- Hours: Open 5:30 AM – 9 PM.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Casual brunch place in a row house with pancakes and egg sandwiches.
- The Salt Line Navy Yard - Great spot for weekend brunch with room for kids and a children's menu.
- Hours: Opens at 11 AM on the weekends
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Open space directly next to the patio seating for kids to scoot around while waiting for food. Oysters and lots of seafood. Just a note, the pancakes were a little to 'fancy' for my son with banana pudding and ricotta. I thought they were delicious but not traditional!
- Busboys and Poets & Primrose in the Lunch and Dinner section below are also good for brunch!
- Silver Diner in VA and MD 14 locations, check here.
- Hours: Check each store but generally open 6:30 AM to midnight or 2 AM on the weekends.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Really delicious, fresh traditional American diner is extremely family-friendly (kids menus, crayons, balloons, etc.)
Other DC Brunch Restaurants for Kids recommended by Instagram parents:
- La Collina near Eastern Market has an outdoor patio and great kid-friendly pasta options. (Listen suggested)
- The Duck and the Peach has a great patio and is filled with families for brunch when warm. The Roost is another market to add. Smaller than some of the others but I had one of many strollers in there.
- Clyde’s in Friendship Heights (Chevy Chase) is very kid-friendly and has awesome transportation decor
Lunch & Dinner Restaurants With Kids In DC
- District Taco – Fresh and delicious Mexican (Yucatan style!) food at 12 locations in the area. DC locations include Dupont, Metro Center, and Eastern Market.
- Hours: Check locations but usually 10 AM to 10 PM.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: My kids love to try different sauces at the sauce station. But beware some can be hot!!
- Busboys and Poets – A DC icon that has both delicious food and a social change mission. I love the ambiance of a coffee shop but with a full menu!
- Hours: There are 7 locations including 14th and V, Brookland, Takoma, Anacostia, Hyattsville, and Shirlington. Most hours are 9 AM to 10/11 PM but please check for your location.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: The name comes from poet Langston Hughes who was once a busboy at a DC hotel.
- Dukem Ethiopian Restaurant – Located on U Street NW. Great Ethiopian Food!
- Hours: 5 PM to 11 PM
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Visiting DC is a great opportunity to try Ethiopian cuisine! Lots of nonspicy menu options and kids can try eating without utensils.
- 2 Amys Neapolitan Pizzeria – Located off Wisconsin Ave. in Cathedral Heights.
- Hours: Monday through Friday 4 PM to 9 PM and 12 PM to 9 PM on Weekends.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Simply the best pizza on this side of Italy in my humble opinion! Wood-fired, pricy but delicious!
- Founding Farmers – Located on Pennsylvania Ave, a great new American restaurant majority-owned by a farmers association. Probably the “nicest” on this list but still very kid-friendly!
- Hours: 8 AM to 9 PM.
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Be sure to make reservations! They also have another restaurant called Farmers Fishers Bakers on K Street.
- Reren – Delicious Ramen, Lamen, and Chinese food. 2 locations, one in Chinatown on 7th St. NW and one in Georgetown.
- Hours: Check locations but usually 11 AM to 9:30 PM
- Kid-Friendly Notes: Make sure to try the soup dumplings!
Food Halls and Markets Great For Kids
I would be remiss to not mention the wonderful food halls and markets in DC! These are great, casual places to check out with kids for a snack, dessert or even a whole meal!
- Eastern Market – Located in Southeast DC, its the oldest market in DC. There is an indoor market open 9 AM to 5 PM Tuesday through Sunday and a much larger outdoor Farmers market on the Weekends from 9 AM to 3 PM and Tuesdays from 12 Pm to 4 PM.
Eastern Market in Southeast DC. Photo by Eastern Market.
- Union Market – Home to 40+ local restaurants and pop-up shops. Check out the list here.
- Hours: Monday thru Saturday 8 AM to 9 PM (closes at 6 PM on Sundays)
- The Wharf – “Where DC Meets Water” is a wonderful place to eat and explore with your kids. With restaurants like Shake Shack, Chopsmith, and Falafel Inc, there are tons of Kid-Friendly options. (also Blue Bottle Coffee for a parent pick-me-up!) Check out the full restaurant list (from fancy to casual) here.
The Wharf DC has tons of Kid Friendly DC Restaurants (and a water taxi to boot!) Photo from WharfDC.com
Union Station – Last but not least, don’t forget to check out the 35 restaurants at the beautiful Union Station (along with all the trains!) There are many great fast-casual options on the main level from &Pizza, Chipotle, and Chop’t. There are tons more on the lower level food court including Chick-Fil-A, Bojangles, and Einstein Bros. Bagels. Full list is here.
Beautiful indoor hall at Union Station, DC. Photo by Wikipedia.
Visiting DC with Kids
Below are more blog posts that I wrote to help you plan and if you have any specific questions, feel free to reach out on Instagram!
- Best Family Hotels in Washington DC for all Budgets
- 4-Day Itinerary in Washington DC (with morning, afternoon, and evening schedules matched with great restaurants!)
- 30 Kid Friendly Restaurants in DC for Breakfast, Brunch, Lunch, and Dinner
Full 4-day Itinerary in Washington DC with morning, afternoon, and evening schedules matched with great restaurants!
And check out my DC with Kids Database for 500+ Kid Friendly Spots in DC, VA and Maryland including 60+ playgrounds which are below too!