15 Places Kids Under 3 Can Eat Free (Including Disney World)

NEWS & TRENDING - TRAVEL NEWS
Stretch your dining budget further with these 15 free meal options for your toddler.
Updated May 8, 2024
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No matter how well-behaved your kids are at a restaurant, there’s always one big question mark looming — will they actually eat the meal you ordered and paid for?

Kids can be fickle, and it’s frustrating to shell out your hard-earned cash on a chicken quesadilla only for them to realize they’d rather have the free chips and salsa.

Luckily, at these 15 places, kids under three can eat for free, so you can keep more cash in your wallet instead of spending it on uneaten pasta or untouched fries.

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Disney World

russell102/Adobe cinderella castle with 50th medallion

This one is a double whammy because not only do kids under three eat for free at buffet-style restaurants at Disney World, but it’s also free to visit for children under three. 

They may not remember it, but that’s a good reason to plan a trip to see Mickey as soon as they’re walking.

IHOP

Tada Images/Adobe beaverton ihop restaurant from outside

In the mood for breakfast for dinner? Kids under 12 can eat for free at IHOP every day of the week from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., making it the ideal place to grab pancakes and waffles after a busy school day.

Ruby Tuesday

JHVEPhoto/Adobe ruby tuesday sign in niagara falls

It’s no surprise Tuesdays are the day to take advantage of a deal at Ruby Tuesday. All day long on Tuesdays, kids under 12 eat for free with the purchase of an adult entree. Is there a better way to treat the family to a midweek night out?

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Cici’s Pizza

Brett/Adobe cicis restaurant in humble, texas

Two words: pizza buffet. It’s one of the tastiest ways to get an affordable meal while indulging in everything from a classic red sauce pizza to dessert pizza to cheesy bread. But the best part is that kids under three eat for free at most locations (some charge $1).

Golden Corral

Brett/Adobe houston golden corral from outside

For every adult who purchases a buffet at Golden Corral, up to two children under three can get a free kids’ buffet. Meatloaf and carved turkey might be on the menu for this budget-friendly meal out.

Mr. Gatti’s

Macus/Adobe pepperoni pizza on wooden board

Craving an afternoon of pizza and arcade games? Head over to Mr. Gatti’s, where you can fill up on pizza at the buffet before testing your competitive streak. And, while you’re at it, all the kids under three in your group will eat for free.

Bob Evans

jetcityimage/Adobe bob evans restaurant

Don’t want to cook on a Tuesday night? Bob Evans has you covered. Just download the Bob Evans app, and kids will eat for free with a purchase of $15. Choose from any of the available kids’ meals.

Holiday Inn

Cerib/Adobe exterior of the holiday inn

When you’re traveling, finding a reasonable place to eat on top of everything else you’re spending can be an intimidating prospect. Luckily, at Holiday Inn, up to two kids per adult eat for free at the hotel’s restaurant. Unfortunately, though, room service is not included.

Denny’s

Tracy King/Adobe dennys restaurant sign

When you’re in the mood for a Sizzlin’ Skillet, bring the kids along with you! Kids 12 and under eat for free at Denny’s every Tuesday and Thursday from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.

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Smashburger

jetcityimage/Adobe smashburger fast casual restaurant

When you’re in the mood for a juicy hamburger but you don’t want to wonder if the kids are going to eat, head over to Smashburger on a Wednesday. Kids under 12 can get a full cheeseburger, hamburger, or chicken strip meal for free.

IKEA

ManuPadilla/Adobe worlds largest furniture retailer

Knock out your shopping and knock out a meal at IKEA. A meal at IKEA is always budget-friendly, but it’s even better on Wednesdays when you can register for a free IKEA family account and get two kids’ meals free with the purchase of one adult entrée.

Famous Dave’s

wolterke/Adobe famous dave's restaurant exterior

Enjoy a delicious barbecue meal for yourself and your child under 12 will get a Lil’ Wilbur meal for free on Tuesday nights. The options are sure to please — kids pick from chicken strips, a rib dinner, or mac and cheese.

Moe’s Southwest Grill

jetcityimage/Adobe moe's southwest grill restaurant

Finding a free kids’ meal on a weekend takes a little bit more hunting, but Moe’s Southwest Grill offers a free kids’ meal with any adult entrée on Sundays. It’s a great way to end the weekend without having to cook at home.

Fricker’s

Joshua Resnick/Adobe sauced buffalo chicken wings

Fricker’s makes it easy to feed a family. Kids eat free every day of the week and there’s no time constraint. Come in anytime. You just have to buy one adult meal and a kids’ beverage.

Huddle House

wolterke/Adobe huddle house restaurant exterior

Huddle House has the lowest barrier to entry with their kids-eat-free deal. You only have to spend $6 on an adult entrée to get a free kids’ meal. It’s a cheap way to get comfort food any day of the week.

Bottom line

Oksana Kuzmina/Adobe girl eating healthy food

The best time to get free kids’ meals is during the week, particularly during slower days like Tuesdays and Wednesdays. If you plan it out strategically, however, you can get free meals nearly every night of the week.

If you ever needed an excuse to save money on groceries or work on your kids’ restaurant skills, this is it — no wasted chicken nuggets needed.

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Earn 25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening - that can be a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases

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Author Details

Heather Bien Heather Bien is a writer covering personal finance and budgeting and how those relate to life, travel, entertaining, and more. With bylines that include The Spruce, Apartment Therapy, and mindbodygreen, she's covered everything from tax tips for freelancers to budgeting hacks to how to get the highest ROI out of your home renovations.

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