10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families

Traveling The Florida Keys with your family and wondering where to stop for meals? I got you. These 10 restaurants are our family favorites. It’s hard to find a place that makes the parents and the kids happy – but we’ve done it. From casual to upscale…from Italian to Cuban…from cheap eats to unapologetic splurges, here are the best Florida Keys restaurants for families.

Just need the highlights? Here are the top contenders.

  • Italian Food Co – Get the Cacio e Pepe for the adults and a pizza for the kids. It’s real Italian.
  • Hungry Tarpon – Go for breakfast and get a table by the water, and be sure to feed the tarpon.
  • Butterfly Cafe – This is your splurge. It’s worth it. Ask for a patio table, and walk to the beach after dinner.

On the Map

Mrs. Mac’s Kitchen – Key Largo

10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families
Courtesy of Mrs Mac’s Kitchen

Mrs. Mac’s Kitchen is low key and super casual, but you’ll be so glad you stopped in. The staff is super sweet and the vibe is a real “locals” feel.

The kids will love the funky decor, with license plates along the bar and covering the lamps. It feels a lot like “Old Florida.” There’s also outdoor seating, but we like it inside.

Be aware that the parking lot is small and there is often a wait. If you can visit on a weekday or off-hours (like a late lunch) then it’ll be easier. Even if you have to wait, it’s worth it. Especially for breakfast. I recommend an omelet. The kids loved the French toast. 

Also, let’s talk about the key lime pie. Reports around the web say this is the best key lime pie in The Keys… I have to argue that Butterfly Cafe’s is better – but that’s a more formal restaurant. So…best “come in your flip flops” key lime pie? I’ll give them that!

Italian Food Co – Islamorada

I know. You’re probably thinking that this list should be filled with conch fritters and raw oysters. We’ll get there. But don’t dismiss this option because it’s fun AND it’s incredibly delicious!

Like many of the best restaurants in The Keys, Italian Food Co is pretty unassuming from the outside, and casual (and super kid-friendly) on the inside.

They say here that, “Everyone is treated like family,” and it could not be more true. The Italian roots of this restaurant showed in the large plates, delicious eats and in the way they doted on our kids.

Our family sampled A LOT of food here, but let me tell you our favorite – hands down. It’s the Cacio e Pepe!

Our server rolled a cart to our table with a HUGE Parmigiano cheese on it… brought in some warm pasta and TOSSED IT inside the cheese wheel with a little pepper. I’ve seen this on TV before but this was the first time I’ve seen it in real life! 

And OMG it was divine! Even my picky little eaters gobbled it up!

You really can’t go wrong with any selection here, but the Cacio e Pepe is such a treat! And if you like pizza…my boys each ate an entire pizza on their own because they liked it so much!

And if all that wasn’t enough…let me tell you about dessert. The Pear and Ricotta Tart was probably the best dessert I’ve ever had in my whole life. Rich ricotta cream with pieces of sweet pear in a hazelnut crust. Just insanely delicious.

Hungry Tarpon – Islamorada

10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families

One of the most well-known, well-loved, and fun restaurants in The Keys has to be Hungry Tarpon at Robbie’s.

Robbie’s is most well known for the HUGE tarpon that congregate here. We bought a bucket of fish to feed them – just be careful of the birds. There are signs everywhere that say not to feed the pelicans, but they are bullies and will almost fight you for the food!

There’s also an open-air market, fishing charters, and plenty of water activities you can sign up for.

But – let’s talk about the food! 

Hungry Tarpon is an outdoor dining restaurant right on the water. It’s very casual, very laid back.. And the walls (what walls there are) are covered with dollar bills!

They are open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. We went for breakfast, which I recommend. It wasn’t overly hot and we were able to get a table right on the water. We even saw a few manatees swim right by us as we were waiting for our food.

Hubs and I settled on eggs, bacon and hashbrowns, and it was super delish! The boys opted for the French toast. But listen, the bread of the French toast was a glazed donut!

Yes, I had a bite. It was crazy good! 

And don’t miss the Trailer Trash Bloody Mary, made with cucumber vodka. It’s a meal in and of itself!

If you come for dinner, grab the conch fritters… and the blackened mahi mahi reuben. It’s one of my faves.

Angler & Ale – Duck Key

10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families

In addition to a great menu, Angler & Ale offers panoramic views, indoor and outdoor seating, and lounge areas with two fire pits. We also love that guests can leverage their “Hook N Cook” option: bring in your fresh catch and have a chef cook it up.

You can pick from sandwiches, ribs, burgers, salads and more. Hubs and I both went with the catch of the day with zero regrets. The chef takes the freshest fish available and adds his own spin!

Finally, don’t leave without dessert. We were going to skip it, but the waiter brought us the Chocolate Overload Cheesecake and wow! A must!

Butterfly Cafe – Marathon

10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families

Tucked inside the Tranquility Bay Resort in Marathon is a sensational restaurant called Butterfly Cafe. Don’t let the name fool you – it’s so much more than a cafe. And don’t let the location fool you – everyone is welcome, even if you’re not staying on the property. And this…this is not standard “hotel food.”

You can absolutely sit inside with the soaring ceilings and white tablecloths…but I recommend the wraparound patio for families. It overlooks the lagoon pool, offers a breeze with the overhead fans, and feels more comfortable with kids who are always unpredictable.

Dan had the mahi mahi and I had the snapper – both incredibly fresh seafood selections. The mahi came with a tropical coulis and roasted red pepper brandy cream sauce that really gave it a Caribbean vibe. There is also a kid’s menu – my boys picked the pizza!

I mentioned above that my favorite key lime pie in all of The Keys is here. It’s not traditional – but it’s a must have. The crust is a chocolate crumble, and it’s topped with a white chocolate mousse. So delicate. So rich. So delicious.

My tip is to make a dinner reservation about an hour before sunset, and then after dessert you can walk out to the beach to see the sun go down.

Sunset Grill & Raw Bar – Marathon

10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families
Courtesy of Sunset Grill

It’s not a trip to The Keys without a stop for tuna nachos at Sunset Grill. The kids can grab a burger and then take a dip in the pool. 

That’s right. There is a POOL at this fantastic restaurant, with amazing views of the sunset and the 7-Mile Bridge.

If you don’t mind the crowd, happy hour is when to show up. The deals are fantastic…and you can stake out a spot to watch the sunset. 

Like I said, the tuna nachos are my favorite. I get them every time. The boys love the sushi and potstickers…and hubs loves the burgers.

The Bent Prop Bar and Grill – Cudjoe Key

10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families

The Bent Prop is in a neighborhood area right before you get to Sugarloaf Key. It’s off the beaten path, but it is very much worth the effort.

We started lunch on the patio because of the great views of the water and a super cool bar that opened to the inside and the outside.

The staff here is so friendly, and it was obvious that almost everyone in there was a local. The vibe is casual…but upscale without being stuffy.

Time to talk about the food. We started with the meatball appy, and it was then that we knew it was going to be good. They were so amazing and huge, with burrata on top.

Between the four of us we had the Cuban (sensational!), the buttermilk chicken sandwich (so tender), the burger (perfect!) and the flatbread. Everything was so delicious!

They also have big screen TVs so we were able to catch the football game (we visited on a Saturday afternoon). 

Half Shell Raw Bar – Key West

10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families

The Half Shell building was originally a shrimp warehouse, then turned into a restaurant before I was even born (and I’m pretty old)! Point is, Half Shell is a Key West original – a staple. And that means it’s a must-eat restaurant in Key West!

Yes, they have burgers, chicken and steak – but you really have to go here for the seafood. Especially the oysters. We ordered a dozen as a starter and I could have eaten a dozen more.

The restaurant also serves as a fish market, and our server said that is what makes the place great. She suggested always ordering the fish of the day – so that’s what I did. It was a Red Snapper…add red potatoes and corn on the side – and it was perfect!

And yes – you can get Key Lime Pie here… but we opted for the bread pudding with bourbon sauce and I am sure it was the right decision. 

Half Shell is super casual. You’ll dine on a wooden picnic table with a view of the marina as you eat. I recommend taking a stroll along that area when you finish dinner. 

Kermit’s Key West Key Lime Shoppe – Key West

10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families

Kermit’s is the place to pick up a slice of Key Lime Pie to enjoy at Mallory Square as you wait for the sunset. But our kids also love all the other key lime flavored treats.

The cookies, the chocolate-dipped frozen pie bars, the key lime candies… it’s a smorgasbord of key lime goodness. 

Cuban Coffee Queen – Key West

10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families

Last, but not at all least, Cuban Coffee Queen is indeed queen to me! 

It was the perfect place to grab smoothies or breakfast for the kiddos… or a quick lunch before jumping on a snorkel adventure. The food is fast, but it is delicious.

“But Lesli…I can pick up a snack for the kids in any number of places!”

Yes you can friend, but when you do it here, you can pair that snack with Cuban coffee. REAL Cuban coffee. Coffee so rich and strong that your eyes burst open.

If I could package this up and bring it with me, I would. (Yes, they sell the roasted beans there… but there is something special about how they make it that just can’t be replicated.)

Make me a Cortadito like this one, and you’re a friend for life.



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10 Florida Keys Restaurants Perfect for Families