Food carts, patios, sidewalk cafes, and more
From casual to extravagant, restaurants across the city embraced outdoor patio dining options—and families are here for it. Where else can you enjoy a meal in the fresh air, with space for your kids to explore and get the wiggles out? And with the summer weather holding strong, now is the perfect time to enjoy dining al fresco around town. Here’s our list of Portland restaurants with patios that are not only family-friendly but offer excellent bites to boot!
Mississippi Pizza Pub
This pizza bastion of kid-friendliness on Mississippi expanded during the pandemic to include outdoor seating both in the back (borrowing from their neighbors) and in front (using the parking plazas). There are regular shows and events held here, including family-friendly music performances, trivia nights, and special events for kids. Plus, the pizzeria has vegan and gluten-free pie options.
3552 N. Mississippi Ave.
A favorite for breakfast in Portland since 1989, this first-come, first-serve American-style diner offers outside dining on its backyard patio. You might miss out on seeing the still-drivable 1961 pink Cadillac convertible on display inside, but you won’t even miss it with the lush patio and yummy food. And while you can get lunch and dinner, too, we’re really here for the all-day breakfast, especially the French Custard Toast and the Smoked Salmon Benedict.
1801 NE Broadway St.
The founders of this brewery, situated on an impressive 2-acre property, are parents themselves, and their family-friendly outdoor seating area proves it. Grab a burger, tacos, or falafel from the food carts, and then (for the adults) choose from a selection of beer brewed onsite. While there is a tasting room inside, we were truly impressed by the greenhouse beer garden that boasts plenty of outdoor space, games, and even a hop field and a dog run. There’s a rotating menu of food trucks—check the website to see what’s there on which days.
5211 NE 148th Ave.
Tamale Boy Dekum
The Northeast branch of this food truck-turned-restaurant boasts a reasonably priced kids’ menu and delicious authentic food from Oaxaca and Northern Mexico. Bonus? They have an awesome outdoor patio. Go for brunch on the weekend and enjoy breakfast burritos and chilaquiles—although the tamales are really where it’s at.
1764 NE Dekum St.
¿Por Qué No? Taqueria
Who doesn’t love tacos? One of our favorite spots for the best tacos in town is this cool restaurant with two locations on Hawthorn and Mississippi that both offer patio dining. The Hawthorn location offers both covered (clutch for impromptu rain) and uncovered seating options. The kids will love the tacos and parents can indulge in incredible ceviche and spectacular margaritas. Keep an eye out on their Instagram page for the various fundraisers they often host!
3524 North Mississippi Ave.
4635 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
Two locations, one in St. Johns and one on Mississippi, have patio dining options that include covered and heated seating, complete with cozy fire pits, so even on the colder evenings your crew will stay comfortable. You’ll find a traditional tap room menu of great burgers, sandwiches, fish ’n chips, and chicken tenders. Not to mention, their award-winning beer. If you book ahead, you can also try your hand at axe throwing. Sessions are for ages 9 and up, but the under-9s can spectate.
832 N. Beech St. and 8409 N Lombard St.
This sweet neighborhood cafe serves up great Italian food with a friendly staff. Along with excellent service, you can expect outdoor heated seating set apart from the street with wide planter boxes. Kids will enjoy their own menu with pasta and veggie choices, and parents will enjoy the affordability—and the wine!
40 NE 28th Ave.
Jam on Hawthorne
Get your breakfast fix at Jam, where the portions are huge and hearty. The kids’ menu features some very reasonable prices and fun options like scrambled eggs, lemon ricotta pancakes, and even vegan and gluten-free options for the kiddos. If you’re choosing from the adult menu, you’ll have staple breakfast fare like eggs and pancakes as well, plus wraps, comfort food, and tons of vegetarian and vegan options—and some stellar cocktail options. Enjoy your meal at the picnic tables covered in cute sun umbrellas, but make sure you step inside as well, as the restaurant is proud to be the largest non-gallery art space in the city. Art from local artists hangs on display, and it’s all available for purchase (100% of the price goes directly to the artist!).
2239 SE Hawthorne Blvd.
This one might be cheating—the seating is technically indoors but the entire wall opens up, so you’re safe from the elements but still breathing fresh outside air. We just had to include it for the fun build-your-own pancake experience! Slappy Cakes encourages visitors to play with their food, and is a must-visit if you have kids, or if you just want to feel like a kid for a bit. Take a seat, make your order… then have fun making your own pancakes right on your table’s built-in griddle. Plus, every bit of their all-day breakfast fare is made from scratch with fresh, unprocessed ingredients. While you’re here, check out the handcrafted cocktails and kid-friendly drinks. Come by at different times of the year to enjoy each season’s special flavors!
4246 SE Belmont St.
Pioneer Courthouse Square
This urban park is sometimes called the city’s “living room,” providing a gathering space for Portland’s residents, and a beautiful place to hang out for a lunch out. The park is jam-packed with beautiful art and flowering plants (often merging the two in beautiful ways) and provides plenty of space to explore or sit and relax. Food trucks line the park, offering up a mix of Mexican food, veggie rice bowls, sushi burrito, and more. Plus, there are accessible bathrooms and internet access at the square, and lively events are frequently held here. Bring the whole fam and have a cozy day out!
715 SW Morrison St.
Tin Shed Garden Cafe
Both kid- and pet-friendly, this charming garden cafe is the perfect place to enjoy an al-fresco meal with the whole family—fur-children, included. The cafe boasts an impressive kids’ menu, including fun options that the littles won’t get anywhere else, like tofu and grits, and a Babycino, a cup of steamed milk served with a shot of vanilla, almond, or hazelnut syrup so they can feel just like the grownups. The full menu is a treat, too, with locally sourced ingredients and only sustainably farmed and humanely raised meats on the menu—and the staff are able to accommodate dietary restrictions (nearly every menu item can be made for you gluten-free). Enjoy your meal on the picnic benches in the covered setup out front!
1438 NE Alberta St.
This sweet eatery serves up authentic Lao cuisine, which means everything might be spicy to the uninitiated. But if you and the kids are no strangers to a bit of spice, it’s a must-visit on a warm day. Make sure to snag a picnic table outside and don’t miss the gorgeous photo-op of the vibrant wings mural. The Nam Khao rice plate—a crispy pork rice and lettuce wrap—comes highly recommended by visitors!
4579 NE Cully Blvd.
Additional reporting by Annette Benedetti