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The 14 Best Kid-Friendly Diners for Families in Manhattan

The 14 Best Kid-Friendly Diners for Families in Manhattan

Eat at one of these New York City diners with your kids!

We found the top 14 family-friendly diners in New York City; when it comes to eating out at a restaurant rather than ordering take out on Seamless again, a diner will keep the whole family happy. They’re low-key and have wipe-clean furniture, kid-friendly vibes, and exhaustive menus with a variety of food items, from chicken tenders and grilled cheese to pasta dishes, salads, and traditional hot entrees. We’ve rounded up our favorite Manhattan diners for families below, from upper Manhattan (including family-friendly diners in Morningside Heights, Upper East Side, Upper West Side, and Manhattan Valley) to midtwon Manhattan (including kid-friendly diners in Hell’s Kitchen, Chelsea, and Union Square) and down to family-friendly diners in lower Manhattan (including diners in Little Italy, Tribeca, West Village, Lower East Side, East Village, and the Financial District). With this list, you’re sure to find a place to eat with kids, whether nearby or a subway ride away.

Happy dining!

Family-Friendly Diners in Upper Manhattan

Tom’s Restaurant
2880 Broadway, Morningside Heights; 212-864-6137
Hours: Friday-Monday, 24 hours; Tuesday-Thursday, 7am-1am
Why we like it: This famous diner was featured in Seinfeld as well as being the inspiration for Suzanne Vega’s 1980s song, “Tom’s Diner.” We love the retro interior and Seinfeld fans will love the memorabilia.

Metro Diner
2641 Broadway, Manhattan Valley, 212-866-0800
Hours: Daily, 11am-12:45am
Why we like it: This diner may have only opened in 1996, but it’s gleaming chrome and red décor is a diner-lover’s delight. The large space offers lots of seating and it’s a great option if you’re taking the family to Symphony Space, just seven blocks away.

Big Daddy’s
2454 Broadway, Upper West Side; 212-677-2004 
HoursSunday-Thursday, 8am-11pm; Friday-Saturday, 8-12am
Why we like it: This is a colorful, fun tribute to an ’80s style diner, complete with great music and pictures of 90210 on the walls. My kids loved the cartoons and games machines, and if you’re a tater tot fan, this is the place for you. The diner also has kids face painting and music classes at the UWS outpost, contact them for details.

EJ’s Luncheonette
1271 3rd Ave., Upper East Side; 212-472-0600 
Hours: Daily, 6am-6pm
Why we like it: Very popular with families and Upper East Siders who come for the award-winning food, blue plate specials, and egg creams. It was designed by renowned restaurant architect, Peter Niemitz, in tribute to the classic diner, and opened in 1990.

Kid-Friendly Diners in Midtown Manhattan

Westway Diner
614 Ninth Ave., Hell’s Kitchen; 212-582-7661
Hours: Daily, 6-1am
Why we like it: This huge diner is always packed with locals, and it’s a great location if you are visiting Times Square or Rockefeller Center.

Good Stuff Diner
109 W. 14th St., Chelsea; 212-929-2555
Hours: Open 24 hours, 7 days a week
Why we like it: Popular with office workers and locals, this colorful diner has lots of seats and a full bar. The interior is a refreshing change from the ugly block it resides on. It’s a great choice if you’re visiting the Rubin Museum or Union Square nearby.

Joe Junior Restaurant
167 Third Ave., Union square; 212-473-5150
Hours: Daily, 6am-11:30pm
Why we like it: This diner is small but famous for its burgers, which regularly appear on New York’s best lists.

Big Daddy’s
239 Park Ave. S., Gramercy; 212-477-1500 
HoursMonday-Thursday, 8-12am; Friday-Saturday, 8-5am; Sunday, 8am-11pm
Why we like it: The second outpost of this colorful, fun tribute to an ’80s style diner is also complete with great music and pictures of 90210 on the walls. If you’re a tater tot fan, this is the place for you. 

Family-Friendly Diners in Lower Manhattan

Landmark Coffee Shop
158 Grand St., Little Italy; 212-334-0040
Hours: Daily, 6am-6pm
Why we like it: This small diner opened in 1962 and has been serving locals and tourists ever since. A great spot to visit after a trip to the nearby Museum of Chinese in America or the Italian American Museum.

Remedy Diner
245 E. Houston, Lower East Side; 212-677-5110
Hours: Open 24 hours, 7 days a week
Why we like it:
The beautiful chrome sign and retro interior ticks all the aesthetic boxes, despite only being open since 2007. One of the few places we visited to have huge, round booths, perfect for bigger groups. A great choice if you don’t want to line up for one of the many hyped restaurants nearby like Russ and Daughters, Katz’s Deli, and Clinton Street Baking Company.

119 Avenue AEast Village; 212-253-1482
Hours: Open 24 hours, 7 days a week
Why we like it: This New York favorite has a huge, kitschy interior, and its vast menu includes lots of Eastern European favorites. It’s located opposite Tompkins Square Park with its fun kid’s playgrounds, so the kids can burn off all those pierogis and kielbasa afterward.

Square Diner
33 Leonard St., Tribeca; 212-925-7188
Hours: Monday-Friday, 6am-9pm; Saturday-Sunday, 7:30am-4pm
Why we like it: Located in an original train car diner, the classic interior has been featured in many TV shows and photo shoots. It’s a small restaurant, with great food and cash-only service, so come early.

La Bonbonniere
28 Eighth Ave., West Village; 212-741-9266
Hours: Saturday-Sunday, 7am-4pm; Monday, 7am-1pm; Tuesday, 9am-1pm; Wednesday, 9am-12pm; Thursday, 8am-1pm; Friday, 7am-8pm
Why we like it: Hugely popular with West Village locals, this small and low-key spot offers a great contrast from the usual fancy village brunch option. Cash only.

Waverly Restaurant
385 Sixth Ave., West Village; 212-675-3181 
Hours: Open 24 hours, 7 days a week
Why we like it: This Landmarked Greek diner, with its famous sign, has been serving food in the West Village for more than 30 years. The interior was recently renovated but in a way that maintained the original look and feel.

Pearl Street Diner
212 Pearl St., Financial District; 212-344-6620
Hours: Monday-Friday, 7am-9pm; Saturday-Sunday, 8am-2:45pm
Why we like it: This downtown spot has been serving for more than 50 years. You won’t be able to resist taking a photo of the neon diner sign dwarfed against the skyscrapers. Plus, it’s just around the corner from the South Street Seaport for a great lunch option if you’re in the area.

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Emma Steven

Author: Emma Steven is a British freelance writer living in Manhattan with her husband, two small kids, and two cats. Previously the Manhattan calendar editor for, she writes about parenting and New York City. She has written dozens of parenting articles for NYMetroParents, and has also been published on and When asked about what she most misses about the UK she’s most likely to say British humor and least likely to say British weather. See More

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