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Guide to Best Family Restaurants in Southeast Michigan from A to Z

Family looking for some food on the fly? Check out 26 tasty kid friendly eateries in Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties for guaranteed good grub!

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Noble Fish

  • Address: 45 E. 14 Mile Road, Clawson
  • Phone: 248-585-2314

It makes perfect sense, when you think about. After all, shouldn't a fish market, whose business it is to sell fresh fish, serve some of the best sushi in the state?

Original Pancake House

  • Birmingham: 33703 S. Woodward Ave., 248-642-5775
  • Grosse Pointe Woods: 20273 Mack Ave., 313-884-4144
  • Southfield: 19355 W. 10 Mile Road, 248-357-3399

Jose Zamudio, Metro Parent's creative director and the prince of pancakes, deems these the sweetest stacks in southeast Michigan. Not too thin, not too thick and full of buttery flavor – they're just about perfect when paired with real maple syrup. The omelettes are awesome, too. And kids will get a kick out of the Dutch Baby (part popover/part pancake).

Polish Village Cafe

  • Address: 2990 Yemans St., Hamtramck
  • Phone: 313-874-5726

For real-deal golabki (stuffed cabbage) and pierogi – those irresistible dumplings stuffed with sauerkraut, potatoes, cheese and other delights – this way-vintage, tucked-in-a-basement nook is a regional lure. Once a cellar beer garden, this snug spot serves what some proclaim the best dill pickle soup, period. First-timers, try the "A Taste of Poland" platter. And bring cash!

QQ Cafe and Bakery

  • Address: 30941 Dequindre Read, Madison Heights
  • Phone: 248-588-9899

This spot is doubly qualified to be a Q contender. It didn't have stiff competition (as if we'd pick Quizno's), but still deserves its place. It's a nifty niche where you can get Asian delights – from sweet to savory. Just nab a tray and take your pick from among the steam buns, sesame balls and sponge cakes. It's a great chance to amp up your kids' adventurous eating.

Rex's House of Pancakes & Coney Grille

  • Address: 35111 W. Michigan Ave., Wayne
  • Phone: 734-728-2813

Full disclosure: Metro Parent associate editor Stacey Mourtos's family owns this restaurant, so we're a bit biased. But we'll have it known that it was also called-out by one of our Facebook fans in an impromptu poll. And for good reason. Big Rex and his boys (Stacey's brothers Johnny and Peter) make it their mission to serve a hearty mix of hot-off-the-grill food. You can't go wrong with anything here, but the "eggceptional skillets" won our hearts.

Seva Restaurant

  • Ann Arbor: 314 E. Liberty St., 734-662-1111
  • Detroit: 66 E. Forest St., 313-974-6661

We haven't forgotten about you, vegetarian/vegan families! We saved a pretty competitive letter for this mecca of meatless eating. The Ann Arbor spot has been beloved for years, and now Detroit is genuflecting at its particular genius – tangy General Tso's cauliflower, yam fries, all sorts of innovative sandwiches, a super Sunday brunch and quite the kids' menu.

TV's Deli and Diner

  • Address: 2441 Fort St., Trenton
  • Phone: 734-671-9005

Soup's on – and it's made from-scratch at this eatery that's named not for the tube, but rather, its owners: Tracy Wipp and Victor Stroia. Chef Victor dishes up innovative, award-winning soups, including a top-prize-earning Reuben version. TV's tricked-out gourmet apples are gotta-try treats, too. Did we mention kids eat free after 4 p.m. on Tuesdays?

Union Woodshop

  • Address: 18 S. Main St., Clarkston
  • Phone: 248-625-5660

No meal served on a metal tray ever tasted so fine. From the marvelous mac and cheese to the smoked chicken wings and ending with the sublime salted butterscotch pudding – the cuisine will rock your rug rat's world. But it's still got a casual, family-friendly vibe – similar to its sister restaurants, the nearby Clarkston Union and the newly opened Vinsetta Garage in Berkley.

Ventimiglia's Italian Foods

  • Address: 35197 Dodge Park, Sterling Heights
  • Phone: 586-979-0828

Let's be clear: This is no restaurant. There are no chairs, no tables, no place to eat. But what you will find is what many claim is the best Italian sub in Macomb County. Fresh meat and cheese piled on crusty rolls and topped with tangy Italian dressing. One bite and you'll swear off Subway six-inchers forever – or at least when you visit Sterling Heights.

Woodward Imperial

  • Address: 22828 Woodward Ave., Ferndale
  • Phone: 248-850-8060

This hip new haven serves up some of the finest "L.A. working-class," street-style tacos in town. With an open, airy vibe (the long picnic table-style seating is choice for families), Imperial's been luring foodies with its Mexi creations since May. Sample oodles of new flavors: These morsels are a mere $2.50 a pop. And parents: Don't skip their creative cocktail list.


  • Address: 3409 Bagley St., Detroit
  • Phone: 313-843-0179

Detroit has so much great dining that we decided to put it in its own class (see sidebar below), but we made this one exception for our list (hey, X isn't an easy letter to fill!). But good ol' Xochi's, as it's affectionately called, fit the bill. Some argue there are a lot better choices in Mexicantown, and they may be right, but it's still solid spot for salsa and chips for the fam.

YaYa's Flame Broiled Chicken

  • Address: 29110 Woodward Ave., Royal Oak
  • Phone: 248-336-8892

YaYa's singular southeast Michigan spot makes the cut for two key reasons. One is the chicken Caesar salad, topped with tender, flavorful chicken and to-die-for dressing. The other is the warm bread served with honey butter that you just know the kids will love.

Zingerman's Roadhouse

  • Address: 2501 Jackson Ave., Ann Arbor
  • Phone: 734-663-3663

The deli is certifiably great, but the sit-down roadhouse kicks the family fun feeding up a notch with mini corn dogs, fried green tomatoes and a platter of mini burgers for your mini me's.

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