Coming to King’s Cross for a day out with the kids? Here is our pick for family-friendly restaurants that you’ll love too! Happy Face Pizza, Dishoom & many more.
Happy Face Pizza
Could Happy Face Pizza be the parenting holy grail? A restaurant that pleases the kids and somewhere you’d actually want to visit yourself? The wood-fired pizzas are delicious, mercifully quick to arrive, and at £6 for three courses, easy on the pocket…tick, tick, tick. As for the setting, the stylish, retro-feel pizzeria – from the team behind the hip Spiritland down the road – should keep mum and dad happy too. Happy Faces all round.
While adults can enjoy pizzas starting at £7, the bambino menu has a doughball starter, a 6-inch pizza topped with margherita, ham, or pepperoni, and gelato to finish for £6.
If you have some die-hard ice cream lovers on your hands, head straight to the Ruby Violet parlour, just around the corner from Waitrose. The ice cream here is all handmade in small batches and packed with organic, locally sourced ingredients. On the menu, there are all the classics like mint choc chip and vanilla, but for the truly adventurous, there are some wacky flavours to try. The lineup changes all the time, but you could find a scoop of liquorice ice cream, apricot and sour cream, or even horseradish!
If you’re looking for a cheap and cheerful option, Waitrose makes things easy. A proper supermarket (albeit far more elegant than the average food store), Waitrose stocks all the family favourites, with a wide selection of fruit, vegetables and other healthy options available. The in-store bakery sells a delicious selection of pastries, soups and toasted sandwiches to take away or to eat at the store’s cafe. There’s also a juice bar where you can treat yourself to a smoothy or freshly squeezed juice, and kids will love the ‘create your own frozen yoghurt’ option.
Nothing tops off a fun day out like a sweet afternoon treat, and if you’re looking for a sugary snack less ordinary, you can’t do much better than Longboys. This doughnut shop in Coal Drops Yard was created by two top pastry chefs who’ve poured their expertise into making some extraordinary doughnuts. All made by hand from a fluffy brioche dough, the fresh fillings, toppings and glazes in fun flavour combinations make it hard to pick a favourite. There’s lemon meringue pie, raspberry rose lychee, triple chocolate brownie, and more.
With its pretty pastel interiors and aesthetically pleasing plates, Lina Stores is the perfect antidote to a grey day in London – step inside and you’ll immediately feel like you’re living a more glamorous life. There’s a full restaurant menu of mouthwatering Italian dishes and a deli section, so if you fancy a fancy lunch and the kids would rather run around in the square you can grab some salumi, cheese, antipasti and pasta to go. Alongside all the delicious food made on the premises, there’s a good selection of child-pleasing Italian biscuits and snacks too.
Morty and Bob’s
Morty and Bob’s is an all-day diner with the humble grilled cheese sandwich at the heart of its menu. But this is no ordinary toastie – think artisan sourdough layered with a blend of tasty cheeses and paired with pickles, pastrami, truffles… simple enough to keep picky eaters happy, good enough to please the grownups too. Alongside the toastie menu, there’s a good selection of diner classics and some healthier options too.
Beer + Burger Store
Beer + Burger Store does what it says – but does it really, really well. The menu is variations on the simple burger and fries theme, with plenty of vegan options and the full gamut of tasty sides, plus a great selection of interesting craft beers. The kids’ option is fussy kid perfection – burgers, cheeseburgers or vegan burgers with fries for £7.50.
Leon Pancras Square
For a quick and easy meal with kids in tow, it’s hard to beat Leon.
The Little Leon menu has some exciting kids meals on offer, with two options for breakfast, and three for lunch. Here you can choose from halloumi fingers, gluten-free chicken nuggets or chargrilled chicken on brown rice.
Plus, as it’s Leon, you know that lots of care has gone into making sure food is carefully sourced and nutritionally balanced – tomatos and peas come with each meal as standard, chips are baked not fried, and ingredients are reassuringly organic/free-range/sustainable where possible.
In India, mealtimes are very much a family affair, with dishes heaped into the centre on the table to share, and children eating more or less what the grown-ups eat. At Dishoom, younger guests are welcome to do the same, with the lovely staff on hand to steer you towards the milder dishes.
If you’d prefer to play it very safe, there is a short-but-sweet children’s menu that’s light on spice but big on flavour. Served with Bombay potatoes, Dishoom slaw, and a glass of fruit juice, kids have a choice of either Murgh Malai (grilled chicken thigh) or Paneer Tikka (cheese and peppers) for £8.30.
Pizza might be the most family-friendly food out there, beloved by parents and kids alike, especially when it’s this good – wood-fired, made with handmade dough proofed for at least 24 hours and topped with ingredients carefully sourced from a selection of fine producers. Alongside all the classics, Fatto offers monthly vegan and non-vegan specials, plus a kids’ pizza and gelato menu for £5 per head. For the grownups, there’s a great selection of craft beers sourced from small independent breweries in the UK and Italy, too.
Take the little ones on a European adventure at the German Gymnasium. Housed in a beautiful historic building, the space was originally England’s first-ever purpose-built gym, funded by London’s German community in 1865.
Pleasingly, the children’s menu doesn’t shy away from its German roots with currywurst, schnitzel, and a variety of dumplings all on offer. There’s a decent choice of sides – heritage tomato, wilted spinach, and salads alongside the inevitable chips – plus dessert for £8.
This weekly market, which runs Friday to Saturday has a whole array of options, to suit appetites big and small. The stalls serving delicious food and fresh produce allow for everyone to take their pick, keeping the whole family happy. There are also a number of craft drinks on offer for the adults.
Grab a table and enjoy some alfresco dining. The market is conveniently covered to keep you sheltered from the British weather when needed. With music and a great atmosphere, Canopy Market is the perfect place to sit, relax or run wild.
The kids menu at The Lighterman has a great selection, with dishes to suit adventurous eaters alongside fail-safe favourites. The menu changes regularly, but you can expect dishes like baked fish, Margherita flatbread, mini chicken and tarragon pie, fish goujons, broccoli mac and cheese, mini cheeseburgers, and Cumberland sausages with mash.
The menu comes with the universal colouring-in pages, but also a clever crossword and London-themed quiz, a lovely touch for older kiddos.
Drake & Morgan
Trendy Drake & Morgan in Pancras Square is a firm favourite with local families, and it’s not hard to see why.
The Little Drakes & Morganers menu is a solid offering, from a full brekky and pancakes on the breakfast menu, right through to generous portions of cheeseburgers, fish and chips and pasta for dinner. What really makes D&M a true delight for little eaters, however, are all the thoughtful kid-friendly extras. They can build their own sundaes, choosing from a delicious selection of toppings, and there is a big counter of sweet jars, where kids are invited to help themselves and fill a bag for the journey home.
Pricewise, the children’s menu is £10.95 for 2 courses and a soft drink.