Rest of the Best 2014: Houston's Top 10 Family-Friendly Restaurants

Categories: Best of Houston

Photo courtesy Downtown Aquarium
You can do better food-wise, but the view can't be beat.
There are still a few weeks left before school starts for most of Houston on August 25, and in that interum, parents will be getting in as much time as possible with their little bundles of joy--assuming they aren't already itching to hand them off to teachers the first moment they can.

While soaking up the last several weeks of summer vacation, why not head out and have a fun family meal with the whole gang in tow? Though Houston made national news last year for La Fisheria's announcement that children would be banned after 7 p.m., local restaurants are mostly very family friendly.

And if you want to eat out without fear of a screaming child ruining your lovely evening? Well, consider this a guide to where NOT to go.

10. Pizaro's Pizza Napoletana
Because it's a family-run place, Pizaro's is welcoming to folks of all ages. You'll often find owner Bill Hutchinson or one of his sons manning the wood-burning oven at the front of the restaurant, and kids will love to watch the pizza dough being rolled, tossed and then fired. If they're lucky, one of the pizza-makers might even through a ball of dough their way. And what kid doesn't like a fresh, crisp pizza?

Photo by Troy Fields
Cottonwood's large patio and bar games make for a great spot to hang with the dogs and kids.
9. Cottonwood
Though it's first and foremost a bar, Cottonwood before dark is a veritable playground for children and canines alike. With giant Jenga and bocce ball, kids can stay entertained on the large outdoor patio, while mom and dad drink a bucket of beer enjoy some of Houston's best burgers and fries. Wee ones will enjoy chowing down on the "plain Jane burger" and chicken fried steak bites, while adults come for the craft beer selection and laid-back, relaxed vibe.

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Location Info

Pizaro's Pizza Napoletana

14028 Memorial Drive, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant


3422 N. Shepherd Drive, Houston, TX

Category: Music

Landry's Downtown Aquarium

410 Bagby, Houston, TX

Category: General


2520 Amherst, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Mission Burrito

2245 W. Alabama, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Niko Niko's Market Square

301 Milam St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Jenni's Noodle House

3111 S. Shepherd, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Bernie's Burger Bus

5407 Bellaire Blvd, Bellaire, TX

Category: Restaurant

Amazon Grill

5114 Kirby Drive, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Natachee's Supper 'n Punch

3622 Main St., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

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On your suggestion, I visited Prego on the way to Children's Museum.  While the pasta was fabulous, I HAVE NEVER SPENT $40 ON A MEAL WITH MY TWO KIDS LIKE I HAD TO AT PREGO.  Great for kids with rich parents, maybe.  Kids meal $8 + probably $3 each for lemonade my son said was lousy.

Natachees was fabulous when they had a huge outdoor sandbox.  Now that has disappeared, so we do not expect to visit again.


for shame, the aquarium is an abomination.

johnnybench topcommenter

I'd add any Mexican restaurant like Pico's that has fountains and mariachis. 


Last Concert Cafe is pretty good for kids before dark.


Thanks, good list, mostly not the usual corn-dog type places that serve blase tidbits and try to capture parents and kids together

gossamersixteen topcommenter

The aquarium? Yeah if you're a tourist, totally a one and done there; as is typical of lousy fertita land crap. And Jenni's again? I guess kids do like bland, so that gets a pass..


How could you omit the fact that the metro train goes right by Natachee's this alone could keep your kids interested.


THANK YOU for not just posting the Usual Suspects list of condescending and insulting chain restaurants that most folks do when suggesting "family-friendly" restaurants. The majority of these are ones a foodie parent would actually enjoy, while having options to expand the palates of foodie-in-training offspring. Well done!

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