As Seen On TV: Famous Family-Friendly Houston Restaurants
Houston is a melting pot with cuisines from all over the world. Many of the city's restaurants are well known, and they have been featured on television shows like Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives, Eat Street, Unique Eats, Man vs. Food, Cupcake Wars, Bizarre Foods, and Food Paradise. If you and your family enjoy trying different foods, you have to check out these Houston-area restaurants featured on the Travel Channel, Food Network, and Cooking Channel. Some of these incredible places offer kids menus and outdoor spaces for children to play while parents enjoy conversing over incredible eats.
And for more ideas on where to eat around the city, visit our Houston Restaurant Guide for families.
The Original Ninfa's - Houston
2704 Navigation Blvd.
Ninfa's initially opened in Houston in 1973. Since then, the popular Tex-Mex spot was on several TV shows. It was most recently featured on Man vs. Food in 2017. In 2016, the Houston favorite was showcased by Top 5 Restaurants on the Food Network for the delicious dishes they serve, and in 2011 the Queso Flameado was featured on the Food Network show The Best Thing I Ever Ate. The fajitas have been on several shows, and they are perfect for sharing with your family.
T-Bone Tom's - Kemah
707 Highway 146
There is plenty of space under the covered patio at T-Bone Tom's for families with kids to enjoy this spot. Plus, there is a kid's menu with delicious, affordable options. Kids also enjoy dancing to live music on the weekend during the summer. The burgers and BBQ were featured on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives in 2009, and families have been enjoying the excellent food for decades.
Pi Pizza - The Heights
181 Heights Blvd.
Pi Pizza recently earned a spot on the Food Network show The Best Pizzas In America's Biggest Cities thanks to their unique toppings and top-notch ingredients. When visiting Pi Pizza, you can choose from an extensive list of specialty handcrafted pizzas. Or, you and your family can pick and choose from the list of ingredients to create your very own pizza. The build your personal pizza option is a great way to make everyone in the family happy.
Lankford Grocery - Montrose
88 Dennis Street
Lankford Grocery has been in the Houston area since 1939 when it started as a grocery store. In Lankford's began serving sandwiches and burgers. Since then, it has become a local favorite. A few years back, Guy Fieri featured the little spot on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives. He had the Firehouse Burger, which is a favorite of locals, and he loved it. There is no kids menu, but the portions are large enough to share, and you will not be disappointed with anything you order.
Whether you love Greek food or want to try something new, Niko Niko's is a great choice. The menu features enough options to make everyone happy. If you are new to this type of food, try a gyro. Guy Fieri featured the tasty wraps on Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives in 2009. If you want to let the kiddos play while you eat try the Market Square location, it features a large outdoor area where kids can run around. Bonus: Niko Niko's partners with the Children's Museum of Houston and patrons can get 10 percent off of their bill by bringing in a Children's Museum of Houston membership card or a receipt from a museum visit.
In 2009, Unique Eats on the Cooking Channel featured Hubcap Grill and their burgers. The menu features an array of out-of-the-box burger toppings like crunchy peanut butter or cheese puffs that kids love to try. The signature Hubcap sauce is also heavenly on a burger or fries. Plus, the Kemah and Heights locations offer outdoor seating and a laid-back vibe, making this a kid-friendly option.
Families can enjoy ample outdoor space at Hubcap Grill in the Heights/ Photo courtesy Hubcap Grill
Killen's Barbeque - Pearland
3613 East Broadway
In 2015, Food Network named Killen's Barbeque number two on the list of their top five barbeque restaurants. The Food Network honor is one of many accolades this barbeque joint has earned from news and print media outlets. Killen's Barbeque is well-known for brisket and smoked meats, but the sides and desserts rival any fine dining establishment. They also have a huge covered outdoor area that is perfect for kids to run around, and portions offered on the kid's menu are generous. The line is out the door at lunchtime, but it's worth the wait. At dinner time, if you want to skip the wait, you can make a reservation for dinner service and an elevated menu.
Drew's Pastry Palace - Houston
An appearance inspired the trademarked cannoli cupcake offered by Drew's Pastry Palace on TLC's Bakery Boss, and it is fantastic. In addition to the popular cupcake, this place offers breakfast and lunch items. The menu has something everyone will enjoy, and kids will love completing their meal with a famous cake or pastry.
Bombay Pizza Company - Houston
914 Main Street, Suite 105
Bombay Pizza Company is an Indian-Italian fusion pizzeria that mixes tastes from the Middle East with Italian cooking techniques to create one-of-a-kind eats. In 2011, the Food Network show, The Best Thing I Ever Ate, featured the restaurant's unique pizzas. While the pizza is famous, the restaurant also offers soups, salads, burgers, and daily house-made curry that is worth trying.
Saint Arnold Brewing Company - Houston
2000 Lyons Avenue
Saint Arnold Brewing Company is the oldest brewery in Texas, and it was featured on Drinking Made Easy. However, this spot is not just a great place to grab a beer. They offer excellent pub food fit for the entire family, and they have plenty of room for you to spread out. The menu is diverse with pizza, sandwiches, appetizers, and even fancy dishes like grilled ribeye, red snapper, and risotto. While we have featured this on our list of kid-friendly breweries, the addition of food makes it a new family favorite you must try.
8038 Fallbrook Dr.
Hickory Hollow opened in 1977, and it has been serving up fantastic BBQ since then. Throughout the years, it has received many awards, and the Food Network featured the Rancher Chicken Fried Steak on the Food Network's Outrageous Food show. It is big enough for the whole family to eat, but they also offer a menu for kids.
Bernie's Burger Bus
The Cooking Channel featured Bernie's Burger Bus on the Eat Street show because they offer incredible made-from-scratch condiments, locally-baked buns, and choice cut meats. In addition to their delicious burgers, they serve mouth-watering fried foods. Kids love to eat in Bernie's school-themed restaurant because it is fun and different.
Kenny and Ziggy's
Kenny and Ziggy's has been a staple in Houston for decades, and in 2009, the Food Network featured it on an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives. The family-owned restaurant offers huge deli sandwiches that are perfect for sharing with a child. Plus, the menu offers out of the ordinary items like Matzo Ball Soup for your family to try.
Top Photo courtesy Drew's Pastry Palace