With the 2019 Kids’ Choice Awards around the corner, we’ve got the younger ones in mind this week, specifically when it comes to food. Whether you, as the parent and provider of sustenance, are at the stage where you need stroller space, are looking for a menu that’ll avoid tantrums, or are simply seeking a restaurant that’s not so precious you’ll feel badly leaving a couple (or, let’s be real, more than a couple) crumbs on the floor, these kid-friendly L.A. spots are winners in our book.
Santa Monica’s Huckleberry Cafe has everything a modern parent can ask for: tasty snacks and a casual dining environment that doesn’t feel anything like a Chuck E. Cheese. (No offense, Mr. Cheese.) For breakfast, kids will love their pancakes, which can be made with blueberries or, more decadently, chocolate chips. Huckleberry’s kid’s menu offers lunch items like grilled cheese on pan di mie bread and a pb&j on brioche. Make sure to hit the beach afterwards.
1014 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401
Designed sort of like a casual but elegant barn, your most voracious little animals will feel right at home here. HiHo Cheeseburger makes their patties with 100% grass-fed Wagyu, and two patties per burger are standard (read: you might have leftovers to take home.) For parents or tikes who don’t eat meat, there’s a damn good Vegetarian HiHo option, and if you want to make things low-carb, you can swap out the bread for a lettuce wrap. And don’t forget about the organic milkshakes. Only the best for the fam.
1320 2nd St Ste. B, Santa Monica, CA 90401
Kids’ menu, check. Roomy booths, check. Messhall Kitchen in Los Feliz is perfect for family meals on L.A.’s east side. Get there early for weekend brunch, when Messhall serves their house-made griddle cakes and coffee cake French toast. After everyone has stuffed themselves silly, head to Griffith Park for a walk or a hike, or visit the Observatory.
4500 Los Feliz Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90027
Ray’s and Stark Bar
If you’ve managed to convince your kid to spend a few hours strolling the halls of LACMA, reward them for their high-brow tendencies at Ray’s and Stark Bar, an indoor/outdoor space along Wilshire Boulevard. The kids’ menu features perennial crowd-pleasers like chicken tenders, macaroni and cheese, hamburgers, and pizza. For parents, there are plenty of grown-up dishes. Get the blistered shishito peppers to start, squid ink tagliarini for a main, and a dark chocolate semifreddo with huckleberry compote to finish. Your kid will be lucky if you’re kind enough to share.
5905 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Is there anything more enduring than a child’s wish to slam their hand on the controllers of a video game? Button Mash in Echo Park lets this age-old passion play out. The barcade features arcade games galore lining the walls and a dinner menu from Chinatown favorite Starry Kitchen. Let your kids go to town on Donkey Kong (or a bowl of delicious noodles) while you park it on one of the tables running down the center of the space. Just remember to hit Button Mash on the early side, as it transforms into a boozier, adults-only kind of joint later in the evening.
1391 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026
The Farm of Beverly Hills
Located right around the corner from SIXTY Beverly Hills, The Farm is a kind of easy-in, easy-out place that parents will appreciate. It’s a local go-to for breakfast and lunch, and there’s a kid’s menu (for midday meals, think mac ‘n’ cheese, French fries, and other usual suspects) that doubles as a coloring page in the event you left the iPad at home.
439 N Beverly Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Header photo courtesy of Button Mash