Sitting down to a meal with the kiddos is a terrific bonding experience. However, it can be tricky to find a place to eat that touts an appetizing children’s menu and a welcoming atmosphere. There are plenty of restaurants beyond the drive-through that cater to Oklahoma City’s families. Add a bit of finesse to your family’s dining experience with any one of these local kid-friendly restaurants.

The Wedge Pizzeria

six hands reaching in to grab a piece of pizza on a red and white checkered tablecloth.

Image via Flickr by Dai Lygad

From toddlers to teens, it’s hard to find a kid that doesn’t love pizza. This culinary masterpiece is sure to please the pickiest eaters, and The Wedge sets the bar. This North Western Avenue location is the city’s first artisanal brick oven pizzeria. It offers year-round patio seating where kids can feel free to make a little noise without bothering the other guests.

The Wedge isn’t your typical stuffy Italian eatery, either. Here the kiddos are encouraged to play with their food. Each child gets a piece of fresh pizza dough to squeeze while their brick-oven pizza is baking. It really helps to keep the kids occupied while you wait for the pie to arrive.

If you’re looking for a way out of the pepperoni rut, The Wedge features a variety of unique toppings, plus fresh ingredients locally sourced from its own garden and nearby farms. Embrace a new flavor like cashew ricotta on the Furzanna and the Prosciutto e Formaggi’s sprinkling of dried figs.

Cafe Kacao

Family-owned Cafe Kacao is a breakfast hot spot on North Classen Boulevard. It features a distinctive menu of homestyle Guatemalan favorites and boasts a Latin cultural vibe. Its extensive menu starts with scrumptious options kids of all ages will love, like Nutella pancakes. For you parents, sample the Pacifico Azul. It’s a large fluffy omelet stuffed with fresh crab and queso chihuahua served with fruit and flour tortillas.

You’re invited to experience one of the Del Cid family’s secret recipes, such as the Guatemalan traditional favorite Desayuno Chapin. This dish offers hungry tummies a serving of scrambled eggs, refried black beans, fried plantains, and chorizo. Stick around for lunch and try the Frijolada. It starts with a bed of rice and black beans topped with chimichurri chicken and fresh diced vegetables. Cafe Kacao even offers coffee cocktails with your favorite adult beverages, such as rum, Irish whiskey, and Blanco tequila. For the kids, there’s Horchata with milk and sweet Jamaica tea.

Muu Shabu

Muu Shabu is a terrific spot for your next family outing. Located on East Second Street, it offers families a chance to experience unique “hot pot” Japanese cuisine. Your budding chefs in the family will love this restaurant’s cook-yourself-experience that’s best suited for kids 8 and older. Here you can cook your choice of ingredients in your table’s own pot of boiling water. Dinner at Muu Shabu is an exciting hands-on adventure, and best of all, its offerings are fresh and healthy, like Wagyu beef, shrimp, mushrooms, tofu, and udon noodles.

Waffle Champion

A crisp, fluffy waffle topped with whipped butter.

Image via Flickr by Grant Guarino

Waffle Champion on North Walker Avenue serves up delicious waffles any time. This Midtown food-truck turned counter-service-eatery features waffle sandwiches, local canned beer, freshly brewed coffee, and savory waffle fries. You can choose between a classic or Belgian waffle in dozens of tasty combinations. You’ll love its casual, airy digs and cozy outdoor seating when you’ve got the kids in tow. They’re going to devour the waffle bites with dipping sauces, fresh fruit, and thick-cut strips of crispy bacon. 

What kid could resist the pizza grilled cheese? It’s a gooey combination of their two favorite foods. It’s loaded with kid-friendly flavors like Soppressata salami and fresh mozzarella. Don’t think the Waffle Champion doesn’t serve healthy fare. If you’re eating light, get a green smoothie. It’s loaded with kale, banana, strawberry, orange, lemon, or kick your lunch up a notch with the buffalo chicken wrap. This waffle house even boasts a selection of Dear Mom label wines, and it offers curbside pickup orders when you’re running late to soccer practice, and you need to skip the line.

Cultivar Mexican Kitchen

When your brood is craving the bold flavors of Mexico, check out Cultivar Kitchen on North Broadway Avenue. If you’ve ever dined out with little ones, you know it’s hard to get them to try anything. Your finicky eaters will gobble up the grub at this non-traditional Mexican restaurant.

Cultivar Kitchen is a terrific place to get a fresh, organic salad filled with local greens or a classic Mexican street taco. You can even watch the cooks prepare the shells right before your eyes. The kids will enjoy both dinner — and a show. Finish off your meal with a plate of chocolate banana quesadillas. 

If you’re dining with boisterous preschoolers, ask your host for a booth in the family area. It’s a bit removed from the restaurant’s main seating area, or consider eating on the outdoor patio. Cultivar Mexican Kitchen is conveniently open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. 

Das Boot Camp

Located on East Main Street in nearby Norman, Das Boot Camp offers German classics plus American favorites all under one roof. This cozy restaurant is nestled in the heart of historic downtown and serves up made-from-scratch, traditional dishes like schnitzel, spaetzle, and bratwurst. One of the best parts about Das Boot Camp is that everything on the menu is less than $12. Have a seat at one of the large family-style tables and order a fun appetizer like the Oktoberfest Pretzel or a brew from its nice selection of handcrafted German beer by Royal Bavaria Brewery.

As a parent, you know some places don’t cater to the youngsters. That doesn’t mean you’re limited to eating fast food. Use this handy guide by Crème de la Crème of Oklahoma City and fill up on a real meal. What’s your family’s favorite restaurant? Let us know so we can add it to our list.