35 Best Places to Eat in Orlando for Families (2023)

Are you searching for the best family restaurants in Orlando that offer good food and a great atmosphere?

In this article, we’ll explore some of the top dining destinations for families visiting the city on vacation. These restaurants not only serve delicious food but also provide a fantastic dining experience for both parents and kids.

Top 3 Places To Eat In Orlando For Families

Not got the time to look through the entire list of best restaurants? No problem. Here are my three favourite restaurants in Orlando for families.

BEST THEMED RESTAURANT

American Girl Bistro

Situated inside the Florida Mall, the American Girl Bistro is a themed restaurant where you can dine with your American Girl doll.

If you don’t have an American Girl doll don’t worry as the store will let you borrow one during your dining experience.

BEST RESTAURANT AT DISNEY SPRINGS

T-Rex Café

The T-Rex Café is a must-visit restaurant for kids who love dinosaurs. This restaurant is located in Disney Springs at the Walt Disney World Resort.

BEST RESTAURANT AT UNIVERSAL CITYWALK

Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savoury Feast Kitchen

Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savoury Feast Kitchen is a fun steampunk-themed restaurant serving delicious savoury meals and out-of-this-world desserts.

Best Places To Eat In Orlando For Families

Not convinced by my top three picks? Well having visited Orlando more than ten times in the past decade, I know all of the cool places to eat in Orlando for families.

This comprehensive list features a whopping list of great restaurants from across the city of Orlando, ensuring you’ll find somewhere that’s right for you.

1. American Girl Bistro

📍 Location: Florida Mall
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: American Girl

Situated inside the American Girl store at the Florida Mall you’ll find the American Girl Bistro. This is one of the best-themed restaurants in Orlando and provides children with an opportunity to dine with their doll(s).

Meals served at the American Girl Bistro include afternoon tea, build-your-own burgers, family-sized pizzas and milkshakes.

Obviously, you can bring your own American Girl doll to dine here with you. However, if your child doesn’t have one, then the restaurant has several dolls that you can borrow to dine alongside during your visit.

2. T-Rex Café

📍 Location: Disney Springs
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Dinosaurs

T-Rex Café is one of the best kid-friendly restaurants in all of Orlando. Situated inside the Disney Springs entertainment district at the Walt Disney World Resort, this restaurant features animatronic dinosaurs, woolly mammoths and even a simulated meteor shower.

Serving American cuisine, guests dining at the T-Rex Cafe can choose from dishes including the Megasaurus Burger, Meteor Meatloaf, grilled chicken fingers, corn dogs and coconut shrimp.

As you wait for the food to arrive, kids can have fun digging around for precious stones and hidden bones in the Paleo zone or even Build-A-Dino.

3. The Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Kitchen

📍 Location: Universal CityWalk
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Steampunk

The Toothsome Chocolate Emporium & Savory Feast Kitchen is without a doubt the best place to eat at Universal CityWalk and one of the most popular restaurants in all of Orlando.

Don’t let the name put you off visiting this incredible steampunk-inspired restaurant, as its menu is filled with delicious savoury dishes which include salads, flatbreads, sandwiches, hamburgers and more.

However, do be sure to save room for dessert, as its over-the-top milkshakes and sharable sweet feasts are what this restaurant is best known for.

4. Sugar Factory

📍 Location: ICON Park
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Sweets

The Sugar Factory is the best kid-friendly restaurant in Orlando and was originally made famous through celebrity visits including the likes of Kylie Jenner, Drake, Logan Paul, Adam Sandler and more.

Perhaps best known for its over-the-top desserts and colourful cocktails, the restaurant has locations across the US including at the popular ICON Park just off International Drive in Orlando.

While the name ‘The Sugar Factory’ may relate directly to desserts, this popular restaurant actually has an extensive menu of savoury food as well as sweet, which includes; burgers, sandwiches, salads and pasta.

5. Rainforest Café

📍 Location: Disney Springs
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Jungle

Rainforest Cafe is one of the most popular restaurants in Orlando with locations in both Disney Springs and just outside of the Animal Kingdom theme park, both of which are at the Walt Disney World Resort.

This restaurant is a fantastic dining experience for the entire family thanks to the Amazon Rainforest theme and the delicious American-style fare which includes the likes of the Rainforest Burger, Blue Mountain Chicken Sandwich, Gorilla Grilled Cheese Delight and Python Pasta.

While Rainforest Cafe is great for the kids, Disney Springs is also home to some of the best things to do in Orlando for adults including live music, high-end stores and unique entertainment.

6. Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament

📍 Location: International Drive
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Medieval

Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament is a two-hour dinner show set in Medieval Spain. As such, the performance features jousting, swordsmanship, combat, horsemanship and falconry that is sure to keep kids and adults alike entertained.

Throughout the performance, guests will be treated to a delicious feast that includes garlic bread, tomato bisque soup, roasted chicken, sweet buttered corn, herb-basted potatoes, dessert of the Castle, coffee and two rounds of selected non-alcoholic beverages.

7. Kobe Steakhouse

📍 Location: International Drive, Lake Buena Vista & ICON Park
🍴 Cuisine: Japanese
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Teppanyaki

Kobe Steakhouse has four locations in Orlando, however, the three that are most popular with tourists visiting the city are; ICON Park, International Drive and Lake Buena Vista.

All three establishments offer the same incredible teppanyaki dining experience, which includes fantastic and fun chef entertainment alongside incredible dishes such as; sirloin steak, tuna tataki and Japanese wagyu.

8. Hot Dog Hall of Fame

📍 Location: Universal CityWalk
🍴 Cuisine: Hot Dogs
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Baseball

It’s no secret that Universal Studios food prices can be expensive. However, The Hot Dog Hall of Fame looks to counteract that with affordable, family-friendly meals.

Situated in Universal CityWalk just outside of the Universal theme parks, this fantastic establishment serves up delicious hot dogs inspired by America’s most iconic ballparks.

However, it’s not just the food that makes this casual diner great – it’s also the atmosphere. The walls are adorned with baseball memorabilia, and there are plenty of televisions showing classic games too.

Consider bringing your own snacks to the Universal Orlando Resort to save even more money on food and drink during your trip to the theme parks.

9. Chef Mickey’s

📍 Location: Disney’s Contemporary Resort
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Mickey Mouse

Chef Mickey’s combines a character meet-and-greet experience with an all-you-can-eat buffet, making it perfect for picky eaters, and those with little kids (especially those under 3 who dine for free) who may not want to spend hours waiting in line to meet the incredible Mickey Mouse.

This restaurant serves both breakfast and dinner, with breakfast being the cheaper option and dinner being more expensive. However, given its popularity, it’s highly recommended that you book at least 30 days (but ideally 60 days) in advance.

While this restaurant is situated inside one of Orlando’s most family-friendly resorts, the Disney’s Contemporary which is located just across from Magic Kingdom, you don’t need a Walt Disney World theme park ticket to dine here.

10. Ford’s Garage

📍 Location: Orlando Vineland Premium Outlets
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Ford Cars

Situated at the Orlando Vineland Premium Outlets, is one of the best Orlando restaurants for families, Ford’s Garage.

This restaurant’s theme was inspired by Henry Ford’s passion for cars and features vintage car decor and memorabilia that creates a fun atmosphere for car-loving adults and kids alike.

However, it’s not just the incredible atmosphere that makes Ford’s Garage a great place to eat in Orlando, it’s also the food which is labelled as ‘American fare with a modern twist’ and includes burgers, salads, pasta dishes and more.

11. Tibby’s New Orleans Kitchen

📍 Location: Winter Park & Altamonte Springs
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: New Orleans

There are two Tibby’s New Orleans Kitchens in Orlando, one in Winter Park and one in Altamonte Springs. Both, however, serve delicious French Quarter recipes, including; muffuletta spring rolls, fried green tomatoes & crawfish, gumbo and jambalaya.

While this restaurant isn’t as heavily themed as some other family favourites on this list, it’s still a fantastic choice if you’re looking for a unique experience and fantastic food.

12. NYPD Pizza

📍 Location: Metro West, Hunters Creek, Lake Cay
🍴 Cuisine: Pizza
🤹‍♀️ Theme: New York Pizza Department

If you’re looking for an authentic New York-style pizza while in Orlando, look no further than NYPD Pizza. Founded in 1996, there are three NYPD Pizza stores in Orlando. One in Metro West, one in Hunters Creek and one in Lake Cay.

While the majority of the menu is filled with pizzas made from fantastic fresh ingredients, there are other dishes served here including; garlic knots, boneless wings, meatballs and the incredible New York cannoli.

13. Antojitos Authentic Mexican Food

📍 Location: Universal CityWalk
🍴 Cuisine: Mexican
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Mexico

Antojitos authentic Mexican restaurant is one of the best places to eat at Universal CityWalk for kids. Situated across from the Hot Dog Hall of Fame, this restaurant only uses the finest ingredients and cooks all meals from scratch every single time.

While the theme of this restaurant isn’t as heavy as the American Girl Bistro or T-Rex Cafe for example, it’s still a fun restaurant to visit with a converted four-sided VW bus bar, an open kitchen and a traditional live Mariachi band.

14. Sanaa

📍 Location: Kidani Village, Animal Kingdom Lodge
🍴 Cuisine: Indian-African
🤹‍♀️ Theme: African

The Walt Disney World Resort offers a variety of different dining experiences. From a fun restaurant that’s heavily themed such as Chef Mickey’s to famous restaurants by celebrity chefs such as Guy Ferrari’s Chicken Guy!

However, there is no restaurant that we’ve visited more on our family trips to Orlando than Sanaa. Situated inside the Kidani Village at Animal Kingdom Lodge, this Indian-African restaurant serves some of the most incredible food in an amazing location.

Overlooking the exotic animals roaming the savanna of the Animal Kingdom theme park, this restaurant is unlike any other and well worth visiting on your trip to the Walt Disney World Resort.

This restaurant isn’t the cheapest (but is well worth the money), as such I recommend increasing your Walt Disney World spending money plan if you want to dine here.

15. Hunger Street Tacos

📍 Location: Plant Street Market, Winter Garden & Winter Park
🍴 Cuisine: Mexican
🤹‍♀️ Theme: None

If you’re looking for casual Mexican food then look no further than Hunger Street Tacos. This family-owned Taqueria has two establishments in Orlando, one in Winter Park and one inside Plant Street Market in Winter Garden.

If you can, then I’d recommend visiting Hunger Street Tacos at the Plant Street Market as you’ll have the opportunity to discover a variety of vendors serving a range of natural, organic food and handmade products all inside one building.

However, both Hunger Street Tacos locations have one thing in common and that’s delicious traditional tacos and quesadillas much like you’d find in the streets and markets of Mexico City.

16. Cuba Libre

📍 Location: International Drive
🍴 Cuisine: Cuban
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Cuban

If you’re looking to experience the tropical flavours of Cuba without leaving Orlando then look no further than Cuba Libre.

Situated on International Drive, this family-friendly restaurant will transport you straight to the heart of Havana with its rich Cuban décor, lively atmosphere and an extensive menu of Cuban dishes cooked in a traditional way.

Some of the most popular items on the Cuba Libre menu include Ropa Vieja and Arroz con Pollo. Meanwhile, the range of Cuban cocktails, especially the incredible mojitos are perfect for the adults in the family.

17. Taverna Opa!

📍 Location: International Drive
🍴 Cuisine: Greek
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Greek

Also situated on International Drive is the vibrant Greek restaurant, Taverna Opa!

This restaurant combines Greek entertainment such as napkin throwing, plate smashing, belly dancing and traditional live music with delicious classic Greek dishes such as Moussaka, Spanakopita, and an array of delectable mezze.

While this restaurant is one of several fun places to eat in Orlando for families, the combination of entertainment (constant distractions and a very loud environment) and dining may not be suitable for some younger children.

18. Hash House A Go Go

📍 Location: International Drive
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Midwest Farming

Located on International Drive, just across from Fun Spot America is one of Orlando’s most popular budget restaurants Hash House A Go Go which has been serving Midwest-inspired food for over two decades.

The menu here is extensive and includes a range of brunch and dinner-inspired meals such as; egg scrambles, flapjacks, waffles, shrimp scampi and more.

19. IHOP

📍 Location: International Drive & Windhover
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: American

I’m not really sure IHOP needs much of an introduction. This family-friendly pancake house has been serving Americans for almost 80 years and has three locations in Orlando, two on International Drive and one in Windhover, just a couple of miles north of Universal Orlando.

The best part of visiting IHOP is that you know exactly what to expect, which makes it perfect for fussy eaters. Meanwhile, the extensive menu of pancakes, French toast, waffles, griddles, sandwiches, burgers and steaks means that there really is something for everyone.

20. Mythos

📍 Location: Islands of Adventure, Universal Orlando Resort
🍴 Cuisine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Mythic

Mythos Restaurant is a multi-award-winning theme park restaurant that is without a doubt the best place to eat at Universal’s Islands of Adventure.

This is one of the very few full-service restaurants inside the theme park, making it perfect for those who want to spend some time relaxing over a meal rather than just eating and getting back to the rides.

The Mythos Restaurant dates back to May 1999, making it one of Islands of Adventure’s original restaurants and was built to resemble a cave that features cascading waterfalls, rock formations, and carvings of the mythical figures Zeus, Atlas and Narcissus.

When it comes to the food at Mythos, guests can choose from a range of Mediterranean, Asian, and American fare including Beef Loin Medallions, Pad Thai and even Souvlaki Couscous Bowls.

21. The Cheesecake Factory

📍 Location: Mall at Millenia & Vineland Pointe
🍴 Cusine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: American

If you’re looking for a familiar yet incredibly filling meal after a day at the Orlando theme parks then look no further than The Cheesecake Factory.

For a long time, The Cheesecake Factory was only at the Mall at Millenia in Orlando, however, they recently opened a new restaurant at Vineland Pointe, just next door to the Vineland Orlando Premium Outlets.

With an extensive menu, including; salads, flatbread pizzas, burgers, sandwiches, pasta, omelettes, desserts and more, there’s something for everyone here.

22. The Palm

📍 Location: Hard Rock Hotel, Universal Orlando Resort
🍴 Cusine: American Steakhouse
🤹‍♀️ Theme: American

The Palm is a fine-dining restaurant situated inside The Hard Rock Hotel and one of the best places to eat at the Universal Orlando Resort.

This is one of several hotels within walking distance of the Universal Orlando theme parks, and therefore a great option for those looking for a delicious meal after a day at the theme parks.

The menu at The Palm features an extensive variety of high-quality steaks, chops, and seafood dishes, all prepared with the freshest ingredients. Meanwhile, the kids’ menu features classic favourites such as chicken tenders and mac n cheese.

23. Olive Garden

📍 Location: International Drive, Vineland, Sky Lake & Millenia
🍴 Cusine: Italian
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Italian

Olive Garden is an Italian restaurant that needs no introduction. With several locations across Orlando, this is a fantastic place to dine on delicious, familiar foods.

The Italian food at Olive Garden is simply delicious, with menu items including; breadsticks, shrimp alfredo, ravioli carbonara and herb-grilled salmon. Meanwhile, children under the age of 12 have a kids’ menu with a choice of pizza, macaroni cheese and grilled chicken with rotini pasta marinara.

24. Bread Box

📍 Location: Universal CityWalk
🍴 Cusine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: None

If you’re looking to save money on food during your trip to Universal Orlando, then look no further than Bread Box at Universal CityWalk.

This casual quick-service restaurant features salads, soups and milkshakes, however, it’s the delicious gourmet sandwiches that make up the vast majority of the menu.

These mouthwatering handcrafted sandwiches can be combined with either french fries or tater tots and a drink to create a combo meal which is fantastic value for money.

25. Reyes Mezcaleria

📍 Location: Downtown Orlando
🍴 Cuisine: Mexican
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Mexican

Situated in the vibrant North Quarter District of Downtown Orlando is the popular Reyes Mezcaleria.

The mission of this restaurant is “to honour the cuisine, spirits and culture of Mexico by offering thoughtfully prepared cuisine using the best ingredients possible.” and that’s exactly what’s achieved with each and every item on the menu.

26. Wine Bar George

📍 Location: Disney Springs
🍴 Cusine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: American

Despite its name, Wine Bar George is a very family-friendly restaurant and offers a range of dining experiences to suit every taste.

Situated at Disney Springs, the Walt Disney World outdoor entertainment district, this fine dining restaurant offers a variety of delicious sharing-style plates and individual dishes.

Unsurprisingly, Wine Bar George has over 140 wines for guests to choose from which can be purchased by the glass, bottle or ounce. Alternatively, each meal can also be paired with a glass of wine recommended by the restaurant’s sommeliers.

Disney Springs also boasts several of Orlando’s most popular indoor attractions that are sure to keep the kids entertained on a rainy day.

27. Café Tu Tu Tango

📍 Location: International Drive
🍴 Cusine: Tapas
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Spanish

Just a short drive from the Universal Orlando Resort is the Spanish restaurant, Cafe Tu Tu Tango which has been offering Orlando tourists an incredible dining experience for more than 30 years.

Alongside a delicious menu of small tapas-style plates, brick oven pizzas, tacos and sliders, guests visiting Cafe Tu Tu can enjoy local artists working and live entertainment.

28. JAM Hot Chicken

📍 Location: Winter Park
🍴 Cusine: Chicken
🤹‍♀️ Theme: None

If you’re looking for great food in the Winter Park area, then be sure to check out JAM Hot Chicken. This independently owned restaurant started serving at pop-ups across the city and quickly found fame.

Today, JAM Hot Chicken is a chicken shack in Winter Park that serves hormone and antibiotic-free chicken fried in 100% peanut oil.

Each item on the menu can be customised based on your heat preference, from plain through to JAM – which comes with a warning. Meanwhile, dishes can be made into a combo meal with french fries, pickles and drinks.

29. Earl of Sandwich

📍 Location: Disney Springs
🍴 Cusine: Sandwiches
🤹‍♀️ Theme: None

Situated in the Walt Disney World entertainment district, Disney Springs is the world-famous Earl of Sandwich.

This casual restaurant needs no introduction to your taste buds, serving a range of high-quality ingredient combos on perfectly baked artisan bread that is sure to impress adults and kids alike.

Better still, the value for money here is fantastic, making it one of the best places to eat in all of Disney Springs.

30. Mrs. Potato Restaurant

📍 Location: Kirkman Oaks Shopping Center
🍴 Cusine: Brazilian
🤹‍♀️ Theme: None

Guy Fieri calls the Mrs Potato Restaurant, The Potato Institute and I couldn’t agree more.

Situated inside Kirkman Oaks Shopping Center just a short drive from Universal Studios Florida, this restaurant serves an extensive range of American, Latin and Brazilian-inspired cuisine suitable for the whole family.

Popular menu items include Tapioca Cheese Bites, Crusted Brie and Potato Gnocchi to name just a few.

31. Dixie Belle’s Cafe

📍 Location: Pine Castle
🍴 Cusine: American & Mexican
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Diner

Dixie Belle’s Cafe is one of the best family restaurants in Orlando. Independently owned this restaurant features proper family homestyle cooking, American fare and arguably the best sausage gravy in all of Florida.

However, unlike other restaurants on this list, Dixie Belle’s Cafe is only open from 6:00am until 1.30pm and therefore only serves breakfast which includes popular dishes such as egg scrambles, omelettes, waffles and pancakes.

32. Shake Shack

📍 Location: International Drive, Florida Mall & Mall at Millenia
🍴 Cusine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: None

Shake Shack is another popular American fast-food restaurant that needs no introduction.

With locations on I-Drive, the Florida Mall and the Mall at Millenia, there are plenty of places to enjoy a delicious handmade Shake Shack cheeseburger while in the Orlando area.

The burgers, fries and of course the milkshakes here are second to none and the ingredients are all-natural with no antibiotics and zero hormones.

33. Dave & Busters

📍 Location: International Drive
🍴 Cusine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Video Games / Arcade

Dave & Buster’s is one of the best places to visit in Orlando with teens. This fun-filled entertainment destination combines dining and gaming for a unique and thrilling experience.

With a wide selection of video games, simulators, and interactive experiences, visitors of all ages can enjoy the excitement and fun.

However, not only does Dave & Buster’s offers thrilling gaming options, but it also features a full-service restaurant and bar where you’ll have the opportunity to indulge in a delicious menu that includes appetizers, burgers, pizzas, and more.

Dave & Buster’s also offers amazing kids’ birthday party options, making it a great place to visit if you’re planning a birthday in Orlando.

34. Leaky Cauldron

📍 Location: Universal Studios Florida, Universal Orlando Resort
🍴 Cusine: British
🤹‍♀️ Theme: Harry Potter

The Leaky Cauldron is situated inside Diagon Alley, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter at the Universal Studios Florida theme park.

This Harry Potter themed restaurant serves a range of British cuisine including Bangers and Mash and Fish and Chips as well as Harry Potter themed foody delights such as Butterbeer.

With indoor and outdoor seating, this is one of the best budget-friendly places to eat at Universal Studios Florida and somewhere I’d highly recommend dining with Harry Potter fans on a trip to the theme park.

35. Hot Krust Panini Kitchen

📍 Location: Turkey Lake Road, Orlando, FL
🍴 Cusine: American
🤹‍♀️ Theme: None

Freshly made-to-order wraps, salads, wings and paninis are available at the incredible Hot Krust Panini Kitchen on Turkey Lake Road.

Open every day from 11am to 8pm, you can dine in, enjoy the outside seating or order ahead via the app.

There is something for everyone and every dietary requirement is catered for including; halal, vegan and gluten-free.

Orlando Travel Planning Guide

🏥 Should I Buy Travel Insurance for a Trip to Orlando?

If you’re travelling to Orlando for vacation, then travel insurance is recommended. Basic travel insurance coverage with Safety Wing averages between $5 – $10 per day and offers peace of mind.

However, if a trip to Orlando isn’t part of a vacation. For example, you live locally. Then travel insurance isn’t likely to be necessary.

🚘 Do I Need to Rent a Car for a Trip to Orlando?

You don’t need to rent a car for a trip to Orlando (you can use rideshare services instead). However, a hire car will make your trip to Orlando significantly more convenient.

I personally use Discover Cars to find the best car rental deals when visiting Orlando. Discover Cars allows you to compare different companies and cars to find the best prices.

🏨 Where to Stay in Orlando?

Deciding where to stay in Orlando can be incredibly overwhelming. Having visited Orlando several times over the past decade, I’m going to try and make it as simple as possible.

When booking accommodation in Orlando, I use either Booking.com or Hotels.com. However, for large families and groups, VRBO is my number one choice.

🎟️ Where To Buy Orlando Theme Park Tickets?

If you are visiting a theme park in Orlando, then you’ll need to purchase theme park tickets. If you’re based in the US or Canada, I recommend Klook for your Orlando theme park tickets.

Klook consistently has the most competitive prices. There’s also a range of different ticket options to suit all budgets and requirements.

Meanwhile, if you’re based in the United Kingdom. Then I recommend buying your Orlando theme park tickets from AttractionTix.

I personally use AttractionTix when purchasing theme park tickets. That’s because AttractionTix has the most competitive prices and incredible customer service.

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