By Jessica Wasik

File photo (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Getty Images)

It’s a well-known parenting fact that kids can be finicky eaters. If you’ve got one on your hands, you understand how those picky palettes can quickly put a wrench in your dining plans. Fast food restaurants simply won’t cut it for dinner every night; neither will overly refined upscale restaurants. Finding a restaurant that caters to both adults and children can be tricky, but it doesn’t have to be when you make your dinner plans at one of these five restaurants that promise the best kid-tested and approved menus in the city.

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20111 Route 19
Cranberry Township, PA 16066
(724) 776-8080

Finding a Mexican-inspired menu to please all family members is a breeze at Emiliano’s. Your children can get exactly what they want — and avoid what they don’t want — with a menu that allows them to craft their dinner or lunch in three easy steps. Kids pick their sides, their main entree and drink from south of the border classics like rice, beans, tacos, quesadillas and mini taco salad. Emiliano’s has four locations throughout the Pittsburgh area, including its popular Cranberry Township restaurant located along Route 19.

Photo Credit: Square Cafe/Facebook

Square Cafe
1137 South Braddock Ave.
Pittsburgh, PA 15218
(412) 244.8002

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a kid who doesn’t love breakfast, which is why Square Cafe is a guaranteed crowd pleaser with kids of all ages. At just $6.50 per meal, your little ones can start off their day with a variety of favorite breakfast sides, like bacon, sausage or applesauce, that pair great with its popular kids’ breakfast entree, babycakes or french toast. You’ll approve of the more sophisticated adult menu that offers a diverse selection of crepes, omelets, pancakes, and sides, including fresh fruit, croissants, and sweet potato fries. Gluten-free options are also available for those with specific dietary restrictions. Kick off the most important meal of the day at Square Cafe, located on South Braddock Avenue in Pittsburgh.

3810 Butler St.
Pittsburgh, PA 15201
(412) 586-7224

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Hot dogs are a go-to for almost any kid. If yours loves this cookout favorite, they’ll love Franktuary. While its kids’ menu isn’t extensive, kids will have a blast building their own hot dog from the create-your-own-franks menu that allows them to keep theirs as simple as they wish — or go all out with a variety of toppings, meats, and buns. Franktuary is located in Pittsburgh’s Lawrenceville neighborhood on Butler Street.

Related: Guide to Kid-Friendly Restaurants Around Pittsburgh

Vesuvio’s Italian Restaurant
88 Wagner Road
Monaca, PA 15061
(724) 728-9210

Italian is always a crowd-pleaser no matter the age of your dinner guests. Even your littlest, pickiest ones will approve of the awesome kids’ menu that awaits at Vesuvio’s Italian Restaurant in Monaca. Its plentiful portions are sized down to pint-sized plates of personal pizzas, penne and kid-favorites like ravioli, chicken fingers with fries and meatball sandwiches. Vesuvio’s also caters to gluten-free patrons with its delicious gluten-free pizzas, pasta and even hoagies. Visit Vesuvio’s near the Beaver Valley Mall in Monaca.

Photo Credit: Facebook/Center Diner & Grille

Central Diner & Grille
6408 Steubenville Pk.
Pittsburgh, PA 15205
(412) 275-3243

Central Diner & Grille offers a fantastic children’s menu, especially for older children. From classic chicken fingers and kid-approved hamburgers to its signature roast beef and fried filet of sole, the portions are plentiful and come with your child’s choice of milk, soda or juice. A dessert of ice cream, jello or chocolate pudding completes their dinner. Skip cooking this evening and let the incredible chefs at Central Diner & Grille serve you at its Steubenville Pike location, situated minutes from I-79, I-279 and The Mall at Robinson.

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Related: Ask A Pittsburgh Expert: Easy Breakfast Meals For Kids