Going out to eat with young kids can be challenging. You don’t want to spend a lot on the kids’ food because who knows if they’ll eat it? You also don’t want to spend all that much on your own meal because if they kids start falling apart, you could end up eating cold food at best, or leaving at worst.
Another factor to consider besides the meals themselves is the atmosphere. My kids do best when dining outside (which is basically everywhere right now), but also somewhere with busy surroundings and things to look at. This is true now at 4 and 6 years old, but it made a world of difference when they were 2 and under.
In this article, I’ve put together a list of our go-to places that are a great fit for families.
Disclaimer: The details about these restaurants, including pricing, is subject to change without notice.
Belmont Brewing Company
25 39th Pl
If you’ve never visited BBC, you might be thinking “Take my kids to a brewery”? But you won’t get any dark and dingy brewery vibes here. They have ample outdoor seating in the back with a view of the ocean. There is also shade overhead and plexiglass sides to block the wind. In the evening, there are heaters and a beautiful fire pit.
They have new outdoor seating to the side of the restaurant as well. We enjoy sitting in the back with the kids so they can watch the people on the beach and bike path, but we also enjoy the side area because when the kids are done, they can run around the planter area outside the gate. We are still close to them and they’re within our line of sight, but they can run freely without bothering other diners.
Another reason I chose BBC is because they have affordable kids meals that all kids love. There are some of the classic options like chicken tenders and fries, but my kids usually go with the scrambled eggs and fries. Not the pairing most adults would choose but it’s 2 foods my kids like, and they love getting both in the same meal. Their kids meals are around $6-7 so very affordable.
Adult entrees have a larger price range, but you can still easily stay within a reasonable budget. My boyfriend and I often split a flatbread pizza (around $13) when we go with the kids, and then splurge on the nicer entrees like the salmon when it’s date night. Don’t forget to try one of their famous beers that they brew onsite. Pitchers are reasonably priced if you can decide on one to share!
OHO Sushi Studio
4917 E Pacific Coast Highway
Sushi isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when most parents are deciding where to take their kids to dinner. But Sushi Studio kids’ meals are made with kids in mind. Kids can choose between chicken and beef teriyaki and the meal comes with miso soup, a house salad, rice, and a small cut roll. The variety is nice when you have a picky kid because there’s at least a couple things you know they’ll eat.
Sushi Studio has an outdoor space in the parking lot, but my kids enjoy dining in here as well. They love watching the sushi chefs and they get excited every time the staff greets a new diner in unison.
Their food is so good we’ve gotten takeout from here a few times, but we really like to eat there because the dine-in lunch specials and happy hour specials are amazing. This is one of those places that you really need to check out for yourself to get a feel for it. They do have a website, but it only includes the basic menu and doesn’t really give you the full effect of how great this place is.
5100 E 2nd Street
If you’ve never been to PJ’s but have walked by in the evening, you might think of it as more of a nightclub and less of a family place. This is why I’m putting together this list – to share about all the restaurants you didn’t know would be perfect for a family outing!
The first thing we love about PJ’s is their kids’ menus. I mean the actual menus. We’ll get to the food later. The paper kids’ menus have a variety of activities and coloring sections, and they come with crayons and also wikki stix (they’re little bendable wax sticks and they come with a piece of paper you can shape them to.) If this sounds like it’s cool but not earth shattering, I used to think the same thing. We bring several things to do every time we take the kids out to eat, but somehow…. the PJs menu with their crayons and wikki stix is the most exciting, every single time.
The actual kids’ meals at PJ’s include options like grilled cheese and chicken tenders. They also have a grilled chicken option as well if you’re looking for something healthier. We like to sit on the patio so the kids can people watch as we’re eating. PJ’s is in a pretty busy area on 2nd street so there’s a lot of watching to do.
For us adults, we’ve gotten a little of everything. They have classics like tacos, nachos, and burritos, but also salads, and we really love their brunch. They tend to have a long wait for brunch so plan on putting your name in and taking a walk before you get seated.
4020 Atlantic Ave
Take a trip to Germany with Rasselbock cuisine. I’m going to be honest and admit that we haven’t actually gotten kids’ meals here. We prefer to pick a few different fun appetizers and let everyone graze while Mom and Dad relax with a beer. A few of our favorites are the Bavarian pretzel ($6) and the mini potato pancakes ($8). However, they do have great kids’ meal options like hot dogs or sliders with fries for around $7.50.
Their adult foods are very affordable too – American classics like burgers are around $12, and they are seriously next level. Rasselbock also offers traditional German cuisine like Weiner Schnitzel and Bratwurst, which are slightly more expensive but worth the splurge. We haven’t had anything here that we’ve disliked.
One of our favorite things about Rasselbock is their outdoor space. The area is spaced out (even pre-covid) so there’s plenty of room if your kids like to get up during meal times like mine do. It’s also covered so you have shade on those hot days.
Saint and 2nd
4828 E 2nd Street
This is definitely one of the pricier places on the list, but I included it because their kids’ meals are epic and my kids love the roof deck.
Saturday and Sunday brunch options for kids include eggs and bacon or pancakes for around $6-7. Adult brunch options are slightly more at around $14 but everything is so upscale and delicious. If you’re looking for somewhere to get dressed up and do a special occasion brunch, this is a great place to do it. We’ve also gotten the Mac and shrooms for the kids to split during lunch time visits. It’s a huge portion and even after the kids have had their fill, I always get some leftovers for lunch the next day.
The roof deck is also a rare treat in Long Beach. Few restaurants have them, and even fewer on 2nd Street have them. My kids love being able to look out at the people below, and having so much to look at helps occupy them during meal times.
Saint and 2nd tends to get busy so reservations are recommended. Don’t forget to check out their social hour specials between 3-6pm, at the parklets only.