When visiting Jacksonville with your kids, picking a good family-friendly restaurant may give you a bit of a headache, especially if your kids are picky eaters. There are numerous restaurants in the city, each promising a unique dining experience. Finding a restaurant that has a menu that excites everyone can be daunting. Many fancy restaurants in Jax contain themes that may not be very appropriate for kids, especially at night. The restaurants we have sampled here are our top choices for parents seeking to have fun visiting Jacksonville with their kids.
- BENTO Asian Kitchen and Sushi
Location: 4860 Big Island Drive #1, Jacksonville, FL 32246
If you love exotic foods, Bento Asian Kitchen + Sushi at the St. Johns Town Center would be the perfect destination to sample great Chinese delicacies. This cafe opened its doors in 2002 and has been serving pan-Asian delicacies to the population within the city as well as students from the University of Florida. It has a great ambiance and friendly staff that serve great quality foods. Pop in for a noodle or rice base served with various entrees or try out their infamous Bento box dish.
- Jumping Jax House of Food
Location: 20 West Adams Street Jacksonville, FL 32202
Jumping Jax House of Food is a sensational fast-casual establishment in downtown Jacksonville. They specialize in serving pizzas, salads, burgers, wraps, and chicken sandwiches. They have a very extensive menu that can be downloaded from their website if you are looking to order food delivery.
- Southern Grounds
Location: 1671 Atlantic Blvd, Jacksonville, FL – 32207
The Southern Grounds restaurant in San Marco will get your coffee cravings fixed- and then some. The restaurant markets itself as a community hub, where people come to experience much more than great coffee. They have a great menu that gives ordinary delicacies an exotic twist and we had an amazing brunch here. Every Friday and Saturday you can catch a live band, as you sit on the open terraces enjoying your latte or sipping a glass of wine. The spacious, high ceiling design adds a classic taste to the décor. The employees are helpful and cheerful, ready to direct you on the options available when you are spoilt for choice (and you will, quite possibly). From this location, you can access other numerous attractions, including the ever-bubbly shopping scene in downtown Jax.
Location: 1735 N. Main Street Jacksonville, FL 32206
If you are craving great pizza, head over to Crispy’s in Springfield for an amazing dining experience. They have excellent – and wide – Pizza options that will leave you spoilt for choice. Although the menu focuses on Paninis, pizza, and salads, you will also get to experience other wonderful delicacies (Italian and Mediterranean cuisine) and a lovely cocktail selection in a casual, warm and cool atmosphere.
- 1748 Bakehouse
Location: 1748 Main St N Jacksonville, FL 32206
1748 Bakehouse is owned by a local couple (a baker and an award-winning chef) who have decades of collective experience in the hospitality and restaurant industry. They specialize in baking pies and cakes using unique ingredients and recipes that have been passed down through many generations in the family. Most of the ingredients used in their cakes, pies, and salads are sourced locally, from the family farm or other farms within the community, allowing for uniquely fresh and delicious products all the time.
- Burrito Gallery
Location: 21 E. Adams St., Jacksonville, FL 32202
As the name suggests, Burrito Gallery serves delicious burritos and tacos with flair. They pride themselves on using the best ingredients to make their burritos stand out whilst promoting the artistic scene in Jax. You have the choice of enchiladas, nachos, salsa, guacamole, queso, and other salads at your disposal. If you are looking for a gluten-free option, you can try the chicken or pork soft shell corn tacos, or the large steak and shrimp tacos. The restaurant has a casual, open-space (outdoor eating area) vibe that promises excitement, and the food never disappoints. You can also order online and have the meals delivered to your location within the city. The service is great and the staff is friendly and professional.
- 1 Foxy Lady Cafe and Catering
Location: 1837 North Pearl Street Jacksonville, Florida
Located in the heart of Springfield, 1 Foxy Lady Cafe is a cozy restaurant that offers a ‘homely’ dining experience. The restaurant was started by Shandon Fox and the meals prepared here were inspired by her mother and her grandmother. Her menu is more diverse than many restaurants we have sampled here. She specializes in salads, burgers, seafood pies, and chicken delicacies, all prepared using her secret recipe.
- V Pizza
Location: 1406 Hendricks Ave., Jacksonville, FL 32207
This restaurant was originally set up by three locals with the sole aim of introducing Neapolitan Pizza to the local dining scene. If you are looking to have an amazing and wholesome experience eating pizza, head over to the V Pizza restaurant to understand the unique way they prepare their products. Most of the ingredients used are sourced from Italy with a keen interest to create pizzas that are unique, delicious, and original. Neapolitan Pizza is made from natural ingredients and refined Italian flour with no additives. The method of preparing the pizza is also unique, as you will observe if you get the chance to dine in this location.
- The Bearded Pig BBQ
Location: 1224 Kings Ave, Jacksonville, FL 32207
The Bearded Pig BBQ restaurant is conveniently located on the Southbank of St.Johns River, offering your family a great front for enjoying amazing meals and panoramic views of the surroundings. The setting is simple, with indoor and outdoor space offering covered seating and a casual dining experience. This is a great destination for bbq lovers. The ambiance inside the restaurant is calm and hospitable and the staff is friendly and welcoming. Kids will enjoy eating here as they’re offered crayons for them to draw on the art wall, thus leaving their mark.
- Beach Road Fish House and Chicken Restaurant
Location: 4132 Atlantic Blvd Jacksonville, Florida
This is said to be the best chicken house in Jacksonville. The restaurant has been in operation for over 80 years, having opened its doors to the public in 1939. It has exchanged ownership three times with the current owner being keen on restoring the restaurant to its former glory. Beach Road restaurant has both indoor and outdoor settings with an incredible fish and chicken-oriented menu. The new owners have a wealth of experience in handling seafood. Because of its strategic location, chicken lovers and other revelers frequent this spot to enjoy the cool outdoor ambiance (especially at night) while sipping their favorite drinks and eating delicious seafood.
- Mellow Mushroom
Location: 9734 Deer Lake Ct Ste 1, Jacksonville, FL 32246
Mellow mushroom blends in artistic flair and an exquisite dining experience to make your visit memorable. They are well known for their great stone-baked pizza, prepared using fresh ingredients, some sourced both locally and others imported from all over the world. Their cocktails are also artistically inspired, and the menu contains ambitious foods, munchies, and salads. They also have a backyard bbq with mozzarella cheese, roasted pork, and pies.
- Third Street Diner
Location: 223 9th Ave S, Jacksonville Beach, FL 32250-6536
The Third Street Diner is a family-owned restaurant with a homely ambiance and hospitable folks who will make you feel right at home. This is the kind of restaurant that offers a traditional dining experience; the quality of food remains consistent all along. They make their food from scratch when you order, and although this may seem inconvenient if you are in a hurry, you can be assured that their pies and delicacies are fresh at all times. Perhaps you could sip some coffee as you wait for the dish to be prepared. If you are into Greek food (generous portions of gyros and tzatziki), you will be in for a treat here because the owner prides himself in cooking the best Greek dishes in town.
There are numerous restaurants in Jacksonville, and it would be impossible to sample them all in a single visit. The ones we have looked into here are family-friendly, with some even offering a children’s play area to keep the kids busy while you enjoy your visit. Other restaurants worth mentioning and visiting include Poes Tavern (we had an amazing burger there while visiting Atlantic Beach), the Mayday Handcrafted Ice Cream shop (which has some of the best handcrafted ice creams according to Madison), the M Shack, and Keke’s Breakfast Cafe. Most of these restaurants are conveniently located near different attractions in Jacksonville, making it possible to quickly recharge after spending a long day exploring these attractions.