I love dining out. My husband and I both work outside of the home and we have two young children so dinner time at home can be stressful. We cook at home most nights but usually dine out at least once a week Eating out with kids, however, can be challenging. My husband and I are very health conscious and we are trying to raise kids who eat healthfully. We have found that finding healthful options for kids while eating out can be difficult. Here are a few tips I’ve learned and also some area restaurants who offer healthful options.

One thing we frequently do is to share an entrée with the kids or order them a side dish or appetizer. A lot of restaurants offer more healthful options on the adult menu compared to the kid’s menus. An adult plate is usually big enough to share and side dishes are usually big enough for kids. Mexican restaurants are a great place to order side dishes. We frequently go to La Rosa and order a side of rice, black beans, and avocado for our son. Asian restaurants are great places to order appetizers as meals. Thai Thai offers veggie rolls and satay chicken as appetizers. Kanpai offers edamame, veggie tempura, and other choices that the kids may enjoy. As kids get older, they will frequently want their own meal off of the kid’s menu. Kids menus typically include the essential chicken fingers and mac and cheese, however, I’ve noticed that many restaurants are now offering many more healthful options.

Some kids menus even include adult style entrees with vegetable sides. Jackson’s Corner has a very healthful kids menu. One of my favorite items is a small portion of locally sourced beef or chicken with organic vegetables on the side. Deschutes Brewery offers a similar entrée with either grilled salmon or chicken with vegetables. Mio Sushi has kid friendly chopsticks and offers several entrees including salmon teriyaki and a California roll. Baldy’s Barbeque offers a kids portion of their ribs with choice of sides. Brother Jon’s offers a turkey or PB&J sandwich on whole wheat bread from a local bakery with a side of vegetables. With all of the many healthful dinner options around town, I can feel good about taking the kids out to eat. Thank you to the many restaurant owners of Central Oregon for helping us raise healthy kids!

JB Warton, DO is a pediatrician practicing at our BMC Westside location. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Warton, please call 541-550-4444.


One Response

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