Most of us assume that the kids’ menu is the best choice for children when eating out—it’s cheaper, the portions are smaller, and the meals are tailored to young tastes, right? However, there might be more to consider before letting your child order from it. From limited food options to surprisingly unhealthy dishes masked as child-friendly, the downsides are real and worth a second look.

A woman and a young girl dining together in a restaurant, smiling and talking over plates of food with beverages.
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Teaches Table Manners

A little girl is eating sushi at a restaurant.
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Eating the same meals as adults helps children learn table manners and dining etiquette firsthand. It’s a practical, everyday opportunity for kids to observe and mimic the polite eating habits of the grown-ups around them, turning mealtime into an educational experience which is hard to do with a plate full of chicken fingers.

Save Your Money

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Kids’ menus often feature staple dishes marked up to double their home-cooking cost, exploiting the convenience factor for parents seeking to appease their young ones. This creates a dilemma between ensuring a joyful mealtime for the kids and maintaining a budget-friendly outing. Opting to share from the adult menu not only introduces a variety of flavors to the young palate but also keeps the expenditure in check, striking a balance between happy tummies and healthier finances.

Everyone Can Enjoy The Meal Together

A family enjoying a meal at a restaurant.
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Ever notice how kids’ meals zoom out of the kitchen way before the grown-up dishes, throwing the whole mealtime vibe off? Suddenly, the kids are halfway through their chicken nuggets while the adults haven’t even seen a bread basket. Skipping the kids’ menu means we all get to dig in at the same time, making dinner feel more like a team sport and less like a relay race.

Discourages Picky Eating

A child eats cereal with a spoon in front of his face.
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When kids eat from the same menu as adults, they’re exposed to a wider variety of foods, which can help discourage picky eating habits. This exposure broadens their palate and encourages them to be more adventurous with their food choices, making mealtimes easier and more enjoyable for everyone.

Encourages Experimentation

A little girl eating a plate of pasta and broccoli.
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Avoiding the kids’ menu removes the safety net of familiar foods, pushing children (and perhaps some adults) to experiment with new flavors and cuisines. This adventurous approach to dining can foster a lifelong appreciation for diversity in food and a willingness to try new things.

Higher Quality Food

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Main menus typically offer higher quality, more nutrient-dense options compared to the kids’ menu which is almost always heavily fried. By choosing to share these meals, you’re ensuring that everyone at the table, especially the kids, enjoys a more nutritious and flavorful meal.

Saves Food

A table full of plates with food on them.
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Ordering family-style from the main menu often means you can tailor portion sizes more effectively to your family’s appetite, reducing waste. Leftovers can easily be taken home, ensuring that nothing goes to waste and you get the most out of your dining experience.

How 15 Once-Hated Foods Became Our Favorites

A child appears displeased while looking at a plate full of leafy greens.
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Ever look back at your childhood meals and wonder how you went from wrinkling your nose to eagerly filling your plate with those same foods? It’s a peculiar journey from food aversion to affection, and we’ve all been there. We’re exploring the 15 foods that made the leap from our “no way” list to our “can’t get enough” list. Ready to see which ones made the cut?

Read it Here: How 15 Once-Hated Foods Became Our Favorites

The Top 12 Foods That Defined the 90s for Millennials

Young person in retro attire holding a boombox and making an "ok" hand gesture.
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Ah, the 90s — a time when fashion was questionable, but the snacks? Unforgettable. For those of us who grew up in this rad era, certain foods are like time machines, instantly zapping us back to our childhood kitchens or school cafeterias. We’re taking a look back into the top 12 foods that every millennial will remember (and probably miss). Get a little nostalgic and see which of these classics you were obsessed with.

Read it Here: The Top 12 Foods That Defined the 90s for Millennials

Why Buy When You Can DIY? 15 Foods You Should Be Making Yourself

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Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

Have you noticed the prices at the grocery store lately? It feels like every trip ends with a little sticker shock. But here’s a silver lining: many of the items you’re used to tossing into your cart can actually be made at home, often for a fraction of the cost. This list of foods you’re better off making yourself is both a fun way to get creative in the kitchen and a smart strategy for keeping your budget in check.

Read it Here: Why Buy When You Can DIY? 15 Foods You Should Be Making Yourself

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Founder and Writer at Running to the Kitchen | About

Gina Matsoukas is an AP syndicated writer. She is the founder, photographer and recipe developer of Running to the Kitchen — a food website focused on providing healthy, wholesome recipes using fresh and seasonal ingredients. Her work has been featured in numerous media outlets both digital and print, including MSN, Huffington post, Buzzfeed, Women’s Health and Food Network.

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