How to Survive Dining Out With a Tot

A lot of people are very intimidated to take their child into a sit down place, I really am not going to compromise my occasional diner coffee or outback salad because I have a child. I am also a new parent so I remember what it’s like to be in a restaurant and trying to have a nice conversation over a screaming child and thinking “can’t they TAKE CARE OF it already?”. As a new parent I also know how embarrassing and stressful it can be when your kid (acting totally normal) raises his voice or throws something in a public eatery. Here are some tips I’ve come to know and utilize for smooth dining experiences.

1. Bring all of the wee ones’ things required for him to have a comfortable meal. This is what I pack in a BYO cooler – 
      -A paper plate for sharing, and for leaving behind with baby’s leftovers
      -Kiddie Utensils
      – A travel cup already filled with his fav beverage
      -Several food items, the meal staple (avocados travel well and are packed with nutrients) and a finger food to toil with (cheerios, annie bunnies, yogurt drops etc) 
2. Pick places that have fast service or you know what you want when you go in and order when you place your drink order!  
     – We love Surf Taco, Outback, Jersey Mikes, Diners, etc
3. Ask for a “To Go” box and for the check as soon as the food arrives! Also avoid group checks so you can settle up and leave when the melting happens.
4. Space out the kid’s food. Don’t use all your tricks at once! If he gets sick of one thing, slowly break out the next trick. Distraction is so key, once he’s sick of one thing break out the next! Keep a few of his favorite toys in your bag of tricks too! 

Hey I’m new at this but I’m one thrifty gal. Do not be caught unprepared if you want to have an ENJOYABLE meal out with your little one! Hope this helps some mama out there DYING for a cup of diner coffee like I am from time to time.  


  1. We order early for Ellie also. It’s a meal saver for sure 🙂 So are straws and plastic spoons. I didn’t like cleaning up Cheerios when I was a server, really hated it, so I didn’t bring those out with us lol. Those things were a bitch to get out of the carpet (when wet, spit out of mouths.)

  2. You are definitely starting off great B!! With H, I hated taking her to restaurants, even if the were several adults with us. She hated sitting there, no matter what we did. Ry and Ellie have always been great. H is still kind of restless when we go out, but that’s just her.

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