Best Family Friendly Restaurants in Washington

Find Family-Friendly Fun At These Top District Restaurants

Washington, D.C. has an amazing restaurant scene filled with up and coming talent and world-renowned chefs. While many adults may drool over the latest culinary master to open up a local venue, kids don't care. At. All.

So how does a family go about choosing a restaurant that will make both kids and parents happy? Leave it to 10Best because we have found the top family-friendly restaurants in the nation's capital.

Instead of busting out the iPhones and iPads for entertainment, head to Pinstrips where the family can eat at their Italian/American bistro and get in some rounds of bocce and bowling. Do you prefer a game that moves a little faster? Go to Comet Ping Pong where pizza and fun are always on the menu. Play a game of ping pong either before or after your meal.

Want a more relaxed setting? Try Ted's Bulletin which has breakfast available all day long and offers house made pop tarts.

If your child is a foodie, Clyde's offers more than a dozen items on the kids menu alone including standard favorites and unique dishes to try out.

Once the cries of 'I'm hungry' begin, most parents only have a short time before children melt down so be sure to check out these family friendly venues in the nation's capital.






With a focus on quality and natural ingredients, this restaurant, which has several locations throughout the Metro area, prepares dishes with sustainably farmed, grown and harvested American foods. Vegan and vegetarian dishes are available for those with dietary needs. For those who come to lunch or dinner, a bevy of classic cocktails are available plus a plentiful wine selection. Make sure to try one of their made from scratch sodas including the delicious New York egg cream featuring chocolate syrup, milk and soda. If you still have room, the dessert menu offers blue ribbon apple pie, red velvet cake and house churned fresh ice cream. METRO: Farragut West

Recommended for Family Friendly because: A great place to show kids how fresh, local food can help make a meal even better.

Gina's expert tip: Menus differ by location so be sure to check online before you go to see if your favorite dish is available.

Read more about Founding Farmers →

One of the last original and authentic American diners left, this restaurant has been serving the Metro area since 1935. There are three locations to chose from in Maryland: Silver Spring, Bethesda and Laurel. Crack open a menu and you will find classic Americana offerings like fried chicken, pancakes and eggs. Breakfast is served 24 hours a day so don't feel bad about ordering an omelet, hot cakes or country fried steak. Kids may chose from a number of different choices including wacky waffles, mighty mini burgers and ready spaghetti. Note to grandparents who take their grandchildren out for a meal – the venue offers a senior menu for 55 and older and early bird senior specials.

Recommended for Family Friendly because: Diners have been welcoming families for years so why not check out one of the last original ones?

Gina's expert tip: Hunger can creep up at any time and thankfully Tastee's is open 24/7 except on Christmas.

Read more about Tastee Diner →

Hard Rock Cafe
Photo courtesy of Hard Rock Cafe

We have lots of embassies here in the district yet this is the only one called 'The Embassy of Rock n' Roll.' Sure, you can find this restaurant chain in major cities throughout the world but the cool part is that each one has different memorabilia in it. If you have a child or even an adult that is really into music, this is the spot to take them. The kids menu has cute names for each entry including the 'Ain't Nothin' But A Hot Dog' and 'The Mac-Daddy Mac & Cheese.' METRO: Gallery Place, Metro Center, or Archives/Navy Memorial.

Recommended for Family Friendly because: Have a child that is into music? Bring them here to eat along side cool music memorabilia.

Gina's expert tip: Located right beside Ford's Theatre, you can take in more history before or after your meal.

Read more about Hard Rock Cafe →


Looking for a classic slice of Americana that you and the kids can enjoy? Head to Johnny Rockets where you will be transported back to the 1950s. Kids can chose from several different meals including hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken tenders and grilled cheese. (Even the pickiest of eaters will be satisfied.) Parents may want to try a hamburger, Philly cheese steak or such fan favorites as the hot and chili dog. No matter if you are tall or small, don't leave without trying one of their thick, creamy milkshakes made in either vanilla, strawberry or chocolate.

Recommended for Family Friendly because: For those looking for a place of nostalgia, look no further than this Americana chain.

Gina's expert tip: The price of movie tickets continues to escalate but the Johnny Rockets' Georgetown location offers discounted movie tickets.

Read more about Johnny Rockets →

You know how some restaurant kid menus only have a few items? That's not the case here. Kids have more than a dozen entrees to chose from and the list is great for foodies or pick eaters. Care for some salmon teriyaki? How about grass-fed cheeseburger sliders or a cheese pizza? Adults also get a bountiful selection as well including salads, burgers, sandwiches pasta, and seafood. Check out their daily afternoon delights menu which gives patrons of the bar deals on meals. Don't leave without sampling the créme brulee off the dessert menu! METRO: Gallery Place-Chinatown or Archives-Navy Memorial-Penn Quarter.

Recommended for Family Friendly because: With a large kids menu, Clyde's will make both children and adults happy with their offerings.

Gina's expert tip: Try the finger food platter for a number of yummy choices including pita bread and carrots.

Read more about Clyde's of Gallery Place →

To be considered a Neapolitan pizza, strict requirements must be followed. You must only use soft grain flour, fresh yeast, water and sea salt to make the dough. Forget extra toppings because only Italian plum tomatoes, mozzarella di bufala, extra virgin olive oil and fresh basil or dried oregano are allowed. Once your pie is complete, it must be cooked in a wood-burning oven. Who knew? Thankfully 2 Amy's dedication to these rules is well worth it when you sample their marinara or margherita pies. If you crave other ingredients, the shop offers other pizza selections and toppings that are also not to be missed. METRO: Cleveland Park

Recommended for Family Friendly because: Outstanding wood-fired pies, a "we love kids" attitude *and* a wine bar? 2 Amys is the kind of place parents dream about.

Gina's expert tip: Save room for the homemade ice cream and sorbets. Flavors change daily.

Read more about 2 Amys Neapolitan Pizzeria →

With affordable prices and mouth watering dishes, this U Street favorite has been serving celebrities, politicians and every day folks since 1958. Ben's famous all meat chili dog, chili con carne and jumbo beef dog are menu specialties. Healthier, yet still tasty, options include a tuna sandwich, veggie burger and rice bowl. While your trainer might get mad, you won't want to miss side orders of chili-cheese fries and homemade cole saw. Make sure to wash it all down with one of Ben's famous thick creamy 16 oz. milkshakes. METRO: U Street.

Recommended for Family Friendly because: In business for more than 50 years, folks young and old still line up for this district favorite.

Gina's expert tip: The counter, booth and stools are all original to the 1958 opening.

Read more about Ben's Chili Bowl →

Photo courtesy of Pinstripes

Want your kids to burn some energy before they sit down to eat? Head to this 40,000-square-foot entertainment venue where you and your family may bowl and play bocce. Once you've finished your game, head to the bistro where you will find Italian/American cuisine. Kids have their own menu featuring pizza, pasta, sandwich and dessert offerings. Adults may look over the lunch and dinner menus which offer a number of starters, pizzas, salads and chef specialties. For those who need gluten-free offerings, they have a whole menu of choices to peruse. Wine, cocktail and local craft beer menus are also available.

Recommended for Family Friendly because: Bowling and bocce mixed with great food will have you and your little ones leaving happy.

Gina's expert tip: Go to their website and check the promotions tab for lots of cool events and deals on food, beverages and games.

Read more about Pinstripes →

This classic American diner with a 1920s/1930s vibe offers patrons multiple comfort food dishes to chose from all day long. Buttermilk chicken fried steak, the walk of shame breakfast burrito, the Ty Cobb salad and Ted's famous grilled cheese and tomato soup are among the favorites. They even make their own pop tarts! You will want to save room for their milkshake offerings including standard favorites (vanilla, chocolate) and more daring choices (PBJ or s'mores anyone?). They also have an adult milkshake menu featuring white Russian and key lime pie. METRO: Eastern Market or U Street.

Recommended for Family Friendly because: Their famous grilled cheese and house made poptarts are sure to be a kid favorite.

Gina's expert tip: Online ordering is now available so you may want to place your order before you come inside.

Read more about Ted's Bulletin →


Sitting and eating in a restaurant can be boring. Thankfully, the district has Comet Ping Pong – an eatery dedicated to making sure kids and adults have great food and an amazing time as well. This laid back restaurant may remind you of your college days. Play a game of ping pong while you wait for your pie to be done. Grab a drink at the bar or watch a live music show. You can make your own pizza or chose from one of their favorite pizzas including The Yalie featuring clams and Stanley showcasing house-made Italian fennel sausage. METRO: Cleveland Park.

Recommended for Family Friendly because: Pizza plus ping pong. What kid or adult could resist?

Gina's expert tip: Hit the tables while you are waiting for your meal or after you've finished.

Read more about Comet Ping Pong →


Meet Gina Gallucci White

Gina Gallucci White is an award winning freelance writer with articles appearing in such regional publications as Frederick Magazine, The Daily Record, Montgomery Magazine and The Gazette. She...  More About Gina