Lots of us are looking to make savings. And eating out with kids can be a bit of an adventure at the best of times, so a well-priced children’s menu is always a bonus. Here’s a round up of the best places to eat out with children – and where kids can eat free in Derby and Derbyshire this Easter holiday.
The aim of Lovely Local Indie is always to support independent and small businesses so the independents are getting prime billing. However, I’ve been more flexible and have included some chains this time. Times are tough – and eating out with kids can be challenging enough.
However, times are also tough for small businesses – and if you’re looking for a great value day out there are plenty of lovely independents who offer good value eating out (if not the dirt cheap deals that the big chains can afford to do), so do keep reading for those.
Terms and conditions apply to all of these. All details were correct published but if in any doubt please check with individual restaurant.
Lovely, Local, Independents where Kids Eat Free
Kids Eat Free at The Wheatsheaf, Bakewell
Kids eat free all day every day at The Wheatsheaf in Bakewell. It’s an ongoing offer that applies to children under 10 years old. One free child’s main meal with an adult main meal ordered, which start at £15, so it’s not necessarily the cheapest way to eat out – but you’re getting chef prepared fresh food, most of which has been locally sourced in a family friendly, nice pub environment.
Kids Eat Free at The Robin Hood, Baslow
Owned by the same people who own The Wheatsheaf in Bakewell, it’s a pretty similar deal and ambiance at The Robin Hood in Baslow. Food is freshly prepared by chefs using locally-sourced produce where possible.
The Robin Hood in Baslow is a family-friendly pub. The children’s menu is packed with freshly prepared options. Children under eight years old eat free. One free child’s main course is available per adult main course ordered. Most of the adult main courses are priced at £15.
Café 24, Belper
For the Easter holidays, Café 24 in Belper are offering a free child’s meal for each adult meal purchased. Offer is valid Monday to Friday, 9am to 2.30pm for children up to the age of 12. Free meal is from their special holiday menu.
Kids Eat Free at Chain Restaurants
Kids Eat Free at Pausa Café at Dunelm
Get a free mini main and two snacks and a drink when an adult spends just £4 or more. Offer runs 1st to 24th April 2022.
Kids Eat Free at M&S Café
During the Easter school holiday you can get a free kids meal consisting of a main, drink, fruit and snack when you spend £5 or more.
Kids Eat Free After School Club at Yo Sushi
Kids under 10 years old eat free at Yo Sushi from 3.30pm-5.30pm, Monday to Thursday, between the 28th February and 26th May. One child eats free for every £10 spent on food by the accompanying adult, with a maximum of three children per table free. Offer includes one main, one side and one drink from the Kids Meal Deal menu and a dessert from this menu can be added for £1.50.
Sadly, from their website, it seems that this offer is NOT running at the Yo Sushi in Meadowhall. However, it is running at the Leicester Highcross branch. Read full details here.
Kids Eat Free at Morrisons supermarket café
This is an ongoing offer, applies every day but only after 3pm (until the café closes). Kids meals are free when you buy any one adult meal with a value of £4.50 or over. Kids meal includes piece of fruit and Tropicana Kids Orange or Apple drink or bottle of water. Cannot be used with any other offer except Teatime Meal Deal.
If you ever dine at Pizza Express sign up for their loyalty programme. After 11 visits (or you can also collect rewards by scanning their supermarket products) you get free kids meal on every visit Mon-Thurs.
Kids Eat for £1 at Bella Italia
Burton upon Trent, Mansfield, Leicester, Sheffield and nationwide
Kids meals for £1. This offer is just for the Easter holidays (running 1st April – 24th April 2022). Little ones can get 3 courses and a Cawston Pressed juice, for just £1 when an adult main is purchased. You need to get a code from their website by entering your email address.
Independents that offer Great Value Family Dining
The Carnavon, Teversal
This is technically in Nottinghamshire but it’s about a twenty minute drive from Chesterfield. I’ve eaten here quite a bit since my parents moved not so far away.
It’s not somewhere I would go for a romantic meal or a special occasion – but on those days when you just can’t be bothered cooking I think it offers really great value family dining. There’s a ‘Young Diner’s Menu’ which is predominantly aimed at kids, but also for those with smaller appetites where main courses start at £4.50. My daughter always has the pizza twist which is a really quite generous size for a young child, and comes with chips and either peas or beans.
They also run a good value early bird menu for adults which is £9.95 for one course, £13.95 for two or £17.95 for three. This runs from 12 to 5pm every day except Sunday. I think the choices on the starters and desserts are a bit limited but there’s a good range of main courses. I’ve had the Cajun chicken a few times and it’s really lovely. There also very accommodating about swapping things – eg if you fancy chips instead of a jacket potato. (On their website the early bird menu is on the reverse of the main menu.)
It’s also worth noting that on their a la carte menu (the regular menu) all the main courses are served with very generous servings of chips and vegetables. And they’ll ask you if you want complimentary salad and new potatoes too! I think they’ll even refill these if asked. Main courses start at £11.25.
You can also get a free pudding by signing up to their newsletter/email mailing list (see their website).
A similar menu and offers also runs at The Risley Park in Risley which is not far from Junction 25 of the M1, and The Plough Inn in Normanton on Soar near Loughborough.
Café bar at QUAD Derby
Most of the kids meals are priced at £4.95 but it’s a really welcoming, inclusive place – and really easy access with pushchairs etc. The art exhibitions are also free to explore! Read my previous review here. And there are plenty of free things to explore in Derby city centre – read more here.
QUAD also offer places on workshops (including activities and lunch) for people who access free school meals. Get in touch with QUAD for more information.
Dunston Hall Bistro
I can’t find a children’s menu online but Dunston Hall is a good option with kids because the play area is so nice. Read more here.
Teashop at Lea Gardens
Get there early on a sunny day and there is nowhere finer in Derbyshire to eat al fresco. You do need to pay for entry to the gardens but the season tickets are really great value. Read my previous blog post.
Church Farm Anslow
Just into the Staffordshire border, Church Farm is a children’s farm and lovely tearooms. I think it’s a great value day out. Read more here.
Please let me know if you see any other places where kids eat free or other great deals or fabulous independents that are great with kids and I’ll try to keep this post updated.
You might also be interested in this great travel hack to get FREE hotel stays.