13 London Restaurants Perfect For The Pickiest Eater In The Family

When it comes to picky eaters, preferences and opinions can be wide-ranging, leaving "non-picky" diners with a series of never-ending questions on what exactly said eater is being picky about. Is it a level of heat? Do they find certain textures to be challenging or are there too many ingredients? Do they steer away from vegetables, or is it meat they'd prefer to avoid? Are there allergies or food intolerances to consider? Finding a restaurant that can cater to self-declared "picky" and "non-picky" eaters alike can be quite difficult.

Thankfully diners in London are spoilt for choice when it comes to great food served in establishments that can cater to a myriad of requirements, including a huge selection of food markets for those looking for something less formal.

While this list of sit-down restaurants won't guarantee that everything on your picky eater's list of requirements will be met, it is filled with restaurants that offer choice, pared back options, and a more straightforward approach to the type of cuisine they serve, not to mention delicious food. These establishments excel at what they do, making them the perfect inclusive choice for a family full of individual tastes and preferences. If only picking a movie everyone liked could be as easy! In case it matters, most of the places listed will serve fries (aka chips) or a deep-fried cuisine equivalent if the going really does get tough.

Honey & Co.

Owners Sarit and Itamar and the team behind Honey & Co have created a menu and an atmosphere that has something for everyone, including their original restaurant, a barbecue-forward second location, Honey & Smoke, and Honey & Spice, a convenient grab-and-go deli, grocery, and bakery. We triple dog dare you to find someone who can't find something they like, given the wide variety of genuinely delicious options.

Menus at all three locations are mouthwatering-yet-approachable. Knowledgeable staff are always happy to talk customers through unfamiliar ingredients. While more adventurous eaters will enjoy the wide variety of spices and flavor combinations, those with a slightly more particular palate will take pleasure from dishes where simplicity reigns supreme, showcasing a few select flavors like their expertly made hummus or chicken shawarma at Honey & Smoke, a pomegranate braised chicken, sweet potato dips or breakfast classics like scrambled eggs with roasted tomatoes or pancakes at Honey & Co. Want to win someone over? Give them a plate of Honey & Co's feta and honey cheesecake (which isn't really cake), guaranteed to warm the coldest hearts and the fussiest palates.

Whatever you do, do not forget to pick up a babka or two from the bakery at Honey & Spice. The secret to happiness might just be baked in between the slices.

Panzer's Deli

Having opened its doors in 1944 and founded by its namesake Mr. Panzer, an Austrian refugee, Panzer's deli is known for many things, including its curated selection of the finest products, a tribute to what Eastern European delicatessens were once known for. Panzer's has been made famous for its award-winning hand-cut lox, in-house-made cream cheese, and freshly baked bagels. Set in the affluent area of St. John's Wood, surrounded by an active Jewish community, this place is for those looking for a simple-yet-exceptional brunch. You'd also be remiss not to browse the boutique grocer's aisles before or after you dine, including the vibrant produce section, artisan bakery, and deli offering meats, cheeses, expertly smoked salmon, and more.

Indeed even the fussiest eater would find a dish to win over their affection. The menu is filled with classics like salt beef (known as corned beef state-side) on rye, Caesar salad, challah French toast, or their homemade granola with poached seasonal fruit and Greek yogurt. Simple, straightforward dishes are made from carefully chosen ingredients and executed to perfection.

Quo Vadis

Chef Jeremy Lee has been known to win over hearts and minds with his exceptional display of great British cooking. Booking a seat at one of Quo Vadis' tables is a must for those looking to experience some of the best dishes the cuisine has to offer.

While Lee's iconic and much-talked-about smoked eel sandwich might be a bit much for those lacking a sense of adventure when it comes to food, the daily pie specials, baked pork shoulder, and butter and caper skate wing are almost guaranteed to satisfy any palate. That said, we'd happily order a bowl or two of their buttery mashed potatoes and one of everything on their dessert menu and call it a day.

The menu changes month by month, with only a few dishes, like the smoked eel, sticking around. Quo Vadis has recently been given the No. 2 spot in Time Out London's top 50 restaurants in London (a list some of our other recommendations have also made it onto), so best to book well in advance to avoid disappointment.


Small plates, like tapas, are an excellent solution to dining with someone with particular needs or opinions about what makes a good meal. Barrafina offers some of the best tapas in London, with several locations to choose from with a menu filled with a range of dishes across Spain, from Mallorca to Catalan.

Opened in 2007 and now with four locations and a Michelin star behind its name, there is something for just about everyone here. That said, those looking for a hearty meal rather than a series of delightful snacks might consider another choice on the list or come prepared to spend a significant amount. Lovely as it is, a gut-busting meal at a Michelin-starred London establishment comes with a price tag. We don't make the rules.

Diners with a discerning palate of all ages can keep it simple with pan con tomate, ham croquetas, or a classic tortilla filled with egg and potato. Those who wish to venture further into the deep end of flavor can do so at a lower buy-in with small plates, making it slightly more tempting for all as there's less risk that the whole meal will be upended by one unsuccessful dish.

Cafe Cecilia

Cafe Cecilia is one of those places that we suspect will remain in fashion for years to come, timeless and understated as a Chanel suit. Such is the pedigree training of its chef-proprietor Max Rocha at equally classic and revered London institutions like The River Cafe, St John's Bread & Wine, and Spring; each known for its simple-yet-elegant menus.

Word on the street is no matter what your palate's preferences, you won't want to miss Rocha's Guinness bread or cake, so best to ensure you save room for both. Consider this your built-in excuse to order dessert no matter what time of day you visit. 

Breakfast offerings are simple and hearty and include some of life's greatest pleasures, namely breakfast sandwiches. Cafe Cecilia offers a simple breakfast menu with bacon, egg, cheese, or sausage sandwiches or a combination thereof. We think even the most finicky of eaters must like at least one of these options.

Lunches and dinners are simple, seasonal, and executed with precision rather than pretension and a range of British produce. Named after Rocha's grandmother, inspired by his mother's cooking while growing up in Dublin, dishes are designed to serve and satisfy loved ones, making them an approachable choice for even the most hesitant eaters. Notably, dinner is only served a few nights a week to ensure staff gets time to eat with their own families, making it a very in-demand seating that requires booking well in advance.

Harwood Arms

If your family's fussy eater is a self-declared "meat and potatoes" person, look no further than a classic British pub to answer the call. And, when it comes to British pubs, the Harwood Arms is one of the best London has to offer. Even the folks at the Michelin guide think so. The Harwood Arms was the first and only pub in London to receive such an accolade and has retained its Michelin-awarded star since 2014. The kitchen, now run by Jake Leach, has a history of excellent chefs at the helm, including predecessor Sally Abe who maintained the pub's star status until 2021.

If you're interested in bringing the family along to experience a quintessential British Sunday roast, this is the place to be. Roast lunch orders are enough for two and include Yorkshire puddings, roast potatoes, baked carrots, cauliflower cheese, and greens, not to mention your choice of tender short rib, venison, monkfish, or pork loin.

Do not miss the opportunity to try their Scotch eggs and save room for dessert if you can. You will be rewarded for your efforts with flan, trifle, or pannacotta.

Cafe Murano

Nationally acclaimed Michelin-starred chef Angela Hartnett's Italian offerings at Cafe Murano, an offshoot of her fine dining restaurant Murano, are a must to appease or even delight the pickiest eater. Hartnett says it all right at the top of her website: "For me it's all about really good simple tasty food." The restaurant menus live up to the quote, peppered with classic crowd-pleasers from a rich and satisfying rigatoni with a spicy (but not too spicy!) sausage ragu to a thinly pounded tender-meets-crispy chicken Milanese.

With three centrally-located restaurants in Covent Garden, Bermondsey, and a third in St. James, anyone out and about in the city isn't more than a short tube ride away from a satisfying meal. Even their children's menu appeals, with a choice of chicken Milanese or a selection from three differently shaped pasta, topped with a choice between four delicious-but-simple sauces including said spicy (but not too spicy) sausage ragu, pomodoro, olive oil and Parmesan, or a hazelnut and basil pesto.


Chicken fans, this one is for you. According to Eating Better, since 2017, chicken has taken over as the most widely consumed meat in the United Kingdom and accounts for over half the total of meat consumed in this region of the world. All the more reason to ensure the chicken you're eating is of the highest quality. This is where Pique-Nique comes in, located in Tanner Street Park.

The kid's menu is just one item long and consists of chicken, potatoes, and ice cream. Sounds pretty perfect to us. For the young at heart, the cozy French kitchen has a selection of seasonal starters to eat individually, followed by sharing main platters, all of which sound like the perfect thing to gather around, pouring drinks and passing plates of food. Our eyes are on the lamb shoulder, and the roast chicken served with fries, salad, and herb jus. What's not to like?

Finish the meal with a bowlful of chocolate mousse, crumble, homemade vanilla ice cream, and a cheese plate to share, and you've got yourself the makings of a "last meal on earth."


Family-run Obon has two south-of-the-river locations in London; one in Kingston upon Thames and the other in Teddington. Each is a popular neighborhood restaurant, often filled with young families during the earlier dinner seatings and couples as the evening wears on.

Obon is the perfect setting for diners looking for simple Japanese dishes executed with care and precision in a cozy atmosphere. Tempura prawns, ordered individually, are a favorite alongside donburi — sushi-seasoned rice bowls topped with a choice of fish.

Diners in Obon's Teddington location can delight in an array of simple marinated skewers, including a seared scallop or yakitori chicken that even the fussiest five-year-old has been known to devour with gusto. Meanwhile, guests at the restaurant's Kingston location will be slurping their way to noodle heaven with a choice of udon or soba noodles and soup or a cold dipping broth known as zaru.

Obon's traditional Japanese dishes come with just the right number of ingredients, eschewing even the hint of style over substance to ensure even the most discerning diners won't feel overwhelmed with superfluous garnish or unnecessary sauces. And, speaking of dishes to delight children's palates, the Japanese pancake, filled with custard, is an excellent recommendation for dessert and the perfect amount of sweetness to close out the meal.

Bake Street

Bake Street is a neighborhood bakery-meets-family restaurant in the middle of Stoke Newington's residential area. The cafe serves exceptional coffee and baked goods open for breakfast and lunch, including indulgent brownies, tangy, mouth-puckering lemon bars, and rich and oaty chocolate chip cookies. The cafe's legendary creme brûlée cookie, complete with a blowtorched encrusted top, is served only on the weekends and is worth the hype.

Here you'll find the perfect fried chicken sandwich, grilled burrito, smash burger, veggie-stuffed samosa, or pulled pork taco, depending on the ever-changing menu. With spring around the corner, the plan is to add back in customer favorites like skewers and other grilled specialties. Bake Street has also developed a cult following for its original soft serve and ice cream flavors, which will be hitting the palates one Londoners shortly as the city begins to thaw from a long winter. Flavors include soy sauce, horchata, and more, with sorbet flavors like pineapple and blackcurrant.

The kitchen sits at the intersection of home cooking and inspiration, bringing residents bright flavors and well-baked treats alongside comforting dishes to satisfy cravings. All food is served in an alcohol-free and family-friendly environment. Notably, only outdoor dining is available, making it an excellent option for summer, alongside a generous helping of soft-serve ice cream.


To decide whether to visit Trullo or Padella, both owned by the same proprietor Jordan Freida, you must first ask yourself this first question: do I want just pasta or more than pasta? Consider, too, a follow-up question: how much time do I have?

Trullo, opened first in 2010, is the kind of establishment you come to dine with a capital "D." You languish over the meal, taking your time to savor every bite. Pickier diners will hopefully find delight at the bottom of a bowl of pork ragu topped pappardelle, cacao e pepe, a starter of bruschetta with whipped ricotta, or a perfectly cooked T-bone steak with crispy polenta.

For dinners looking to fill themselves to the gills with homemade pasta and nothing else, Padella is your first port of call. Do be aware, however, there is often a lunchtime queue due to the small size and no reservations policy, so best to get there at the beginning of service. You'll then be rewarded with handmade plates of pasta from across Italy, topped with a variety of sauces to suit all tastes and preferences, from an eight-hour beef shin ragu to a classic ricotta-filled ravioli with tomato sauce.


Anyone who likes udon noodles, even just a little bit, should make their way to Koya because it has perfected them. Opened in 2010 for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, this noodle bar has something to soothe even the most delicate palates and simplest of tastes. Come for the textures; stay for the flavors. Noodles are made fresh daily, boiled for 15 minutes, and then dunked into an ice bath to preserve their texture. Critical advice would be to consider something crunchy, like tempura, to balance out the chewy, bouncy noodles to achieve complete palate satisfaction.

Even the least adventurous eater in the family would be hard-pressed not to enjoy "Kama Tama," a Japanese breakfast bowl with udon noodles, egg yolk (think carbonara), soy sauce, and topped with scallions. Too much? Pair it back with a bowl of noodles, broth, and a delightfully crispy tempura prawn to create an exciting mix of textures without adding too many whistles and bells. Still too much? Koya can fix that with a steaming bowl of their classic Kake — just the noodles, clear, beautiful broth, and scallions.

Plenty of dishes are on offer, from zaru to donburi to tempura, to delight those with a curious palate while equally comforting those who prefer a more paired-back offering. The real star of the show here is, of course, the udon noodles, no matter how you order them.