Restaurants in the ‘Burbs with Playgrounds

It’s no secret that we go out to eat pretty often. For us, going out to eat is like a little mini-date when a real date isn’t an option (aka most of the time). Even if we’re going somewhere super simple, getting out of the house and changing up the routine is always exciting. Exciting… and sometimes stressful (#becausekids). We’ve taken to finding spots where the adults can have a nice dinner, chat, and relax while the kids can run wild, yell, and not be confined to a seat the entire time. Down in Austin, these places seem to be everywhere you look (yay for Austin!), but up here in the ‘burbs, they’re a little harder to come by. Lucky for you, I’ve compiled a few of our favorite spots for both adults and littles.

The criteria:

  • Delicious food (I mean, DUH. If I wanted just anywhere with a playground I could go to McDonald’s)
  • Relaxed vibe
  • Has playscape/playground
  • Serves booze

Our favorites, in no particular order:

Santa Catarina

What a hidden gem this is! Fully-fenced playground area is separate from the dining tables, but they’re back to back, so you can keep an eye on the kiddos. Great spot for those who are a little bit more independent and can handle being on their own to play. The tacos cochinita were PHENOMENAL (pulled pork for all my Ohio friends) and the margaritas are pretty darn delicious. Definitely headed back here soon.

Any of the Hat Creek Burger Locations

We looooove Hat Creek! I mean, so much so that I wrote a whole review for Austin Mom’s Blog (check it out here). With three locations near us that all have unique playscapes, it’s always a hit. Burgers, chicken, shakes, and booze. Winner! The Georgetown location has a ton of space to explore and climb and the Round Rock location has great little man-made turf hills for the kids to run up and down. Check out all three! Our current favorite location is the newest one, the Rock Rose Domain location. Maybe that’s just because I love to do a little shopping while I digest, but that’s beside the point. The vintage-inspired airstream turned play place is adorable and fun. Check out all three locations!

Phil’s Ice House/Amy’s Ice Cream on 183

On a burger kick here, but this one includes ice cream, so it’s different 😉 An ice cream shop that’s CONNECTED to a burger joint that has a PLAYGROUND?! Yup. That’s the real deal. Phil’s has tons of indoor seating, but also outdoor seating that’s right up close to the playscape. That’s ideal for kiddos like mine who need a constant eye on them. I’m a sucker for fresh bread (the buns are something special, y’all), crunchy chicken tenders, and a mean sweet potato fry. Phil’s checks all of those boxes. Current menu fav: the 78704 burger (Monterey jack cheese, jalapenos, grilled onions, avocado, and chipotle mayo on a jalapeno cheese bun).


Salt Lick Round Rock

So if you’re in the market for BBQ, look no further than Salt Lick’s Round Rock location. Same great BBQ, but waaayyyy less of a drive! If you haven’t heard of Salt Lick (seriously… if you live here and haven’t heard of Salt Lick all I can say is “WHAT???!”, but anyway), you really need to head down to Driftwood and eat at the original location. Seriously gorgeous land and Hill Country views with indoor and outdoor dining space. While the Round Rock location isn’t BYOB (lame), there IS a playscape outside to entertain the littles, so we cut them some slack. They also take credit cards, while the Driftwood location is cash only, so pros and cons, people.

Lone Star Grille

Full disclosure, we haven’t actually been here yet, BUT it’s on my list of places to try. I’ve heard great things about the Lone Star Grille in Cedar Park. The menu looks phenomenal, touting “home style cooking” in a sports bar atmosphere. They have a giant playground space (two playscapes) with an outdoor stage and amphitheater for live music, which sounds right up our alley. The photos look shaded and woody, which sounds great for hot summer days. Have you been? I’d love to hear some reviews!

lonestar grille

What’s your go-to spot for pleasing the whole family? 

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