Manna at the Museum of the Bible
400 4th St., SW; 202-848-1527
Equinox chef Todd Gray takes inspiration from the Mediterranean and the Middle East, while still offering comfort classics for little ones. There are flatbreads topped with a trio of cheeses and roasted veggies, fried chicken accompanied by za’atar spiced curly fries, and sesame-rich falafel that can be dressed up with housemade sauces. Skip the sodas and opt for one of the freshly squeezed juices, such as pineapple-mango or green apple and cucumber lemonade.
Sweet Home Cafe at the National Museum of African American History and Culture
1400 Constitution Ave., NW; 844-750-3012
Executive chef Jerome Grant divides his menu into four regions: South, Creole coast, northern states, and western reaches. No matter where you visit, there are good options for the kids, including buttermilk fried chicken, a barbecue beef brisket sandwich, roast sweet potatoes with a tangy cranberry-walnut vinaigrette, and a catfish po’boy. Save stomach space for a generous wedge of sweet potato pie or praline bread pudding lavished with bourbon caramel sauce.
Dolcezza at the Hirshhorn
Independence Ave. and 7th St., SW; 202-633-1000
The latest outpost of DC’s beloved gelateria-coffeeshop is located in the newly renovated lobby designed by acclaimed Japanese artist Hiroshi Sugimoto. Kids can enjoy hot chocolate and hot apple cider, while hair-raisingly strong espressos and bracing cold brews await parents in need of a pick-me-up. Gelato push pops make a nice treat for family members of any age.
Mitsitam Café at the National Museum of the American Indian
4th St. and Independence Ave., SW; 202-633-1000
Explore Native American cuisine spanning the Western Hemisphere. Visit the various stations to put together a meal ranging from chicken burritos and fry bread tacos to chipotle-accented sweet potatoes and white bean soup. If you have an adventurous carnivore, we recommend he or she tries the bison burger or the buffalo chili.
Constitution Ave., NW & 7th St., NW; 202-216-9397
There’s a straightforward children’s menu—hot dog, grilled cheese, PB&J—and also plenty of options on the fuller, more sophisticated menu that junior guests might like. Consider the four-cheese flatbread, brie-apple-honey sandwich on cranberry-walnut bread, or penne tossed with creamy béchamel, spinach, and artichoke hearts. There are baked goods galore available for dessert, though a fresh fruit cup offers a more healthful finale.
Mezzanine Café at the National Museum of Women In the Arts
1250 New York Ave., NW; 202-783-5000
At the weekday-only eatery, it’s all about the sandwiches made by the ‘wich wizzes at Dirty South Deli. Good bets for diminutive diners include the Mr. Chips with chopped pork and a perky citrus mayo, and the Susan Orlean featuring Peruvian roast chicken, cheddar, and avocado. Bonus: they all come with soup, salad, mac and cheese, or German-style potato salad.