Cozy Up and Play at These Kid-Friendly Twin Cities Coffee Shops/Cafes

Girl eating cupcake at a coffee shop: "Kid-Friendly Coffee Shops"

My preschooler and I spent a string of chilly gray days visiting Twin Cities coffee shops and soaking in the ambiance of coffee drinks and espresso aromas. To give you an idea of the best coffee shops where you might bring your little one(s) for both a cozy indoor play space and a decent cup of joe, we’ve rounded up some of our favorites. If you know of a similar place where kids can spread out in an area dedicated to them, please drop us a line.

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    While we have lost some small shops during the last few years, we have verified that the remaining shops on this list are open as of  winter 2023. However, we recommend calling ahead to verify play spaces are open. Many of these coffee roasters are small and are limiting the number of people in the shop.

    Our Favorite Kid-friendly Coffee Shops in Minneapolis & St Paul

    Carma Coffee | Minneapolis

    520 NE Lowry Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55418
    Call Ahead: (612) 208-1253
    Not as play-friendly as some of these other shops, it is still a relaxed atmosphere with a cool car theme where parents can get a good cup of coffee and kids can have cocoa with whipped topping.

    Kid-Friendly Menu Options: Pastries, cookies, smoothies.

    Boy drinking cocoa at Carma Coffee in Minneapolis Minnesota
    Hot cocoa for a cold day at Carma Coffee

    Corner Coffee Camden | Minneapolis

    4155 N Thomas Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55412
    Phone: (612) 404-4348

    Thank you to our reader, Joy, for this suggestion. She tells us the café has a back room for families with seats for parents to sit and work while kids play. Corner Coffee also has an Uptown, Northeast Minneapolis and Downtown location. 

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    Dunn Brothers Coffee | Linden Hills, Minneapolis

    2814 W 43rd St., Minneapolis, MN 55410
    Call Ahead: (612) 925-5669

    Kids can enjoy a small space with a chalkboard and a shelf of toys while parents might manage to get their daily caffeine intake at a very nearby table. In my experience with Dunn Brothers, I think many of the franchise locations carve out a spot for kids; this particular locale is my favorite because it’s located in lovely Linden Hills. There’s so much within walking distance of this Twin Cities coffee shop for kids to enjoy (see our 5 Spots to Stop in Linden Hills, Minneapolis post) that it’s easy to make an afternoon of it, once properly caffeinated, of course.

    Kid-Friendly Menu Options: Kids can get steamers or hot chocolate, milk and chocolate milk as well as a variety of teas and soft drink options. The bakery offers bagels, muffins, biscuits, pastries and cookies.

    Ginkgo Coffeehouse | St Paul

    721 N. Snelling Ave, St. Paul, MN 55104
    Call Ahead: (651) 645-2647

    Ginkgo’s little space for children is tucked away between some shelving and is fairly no-frills. There’s a shaggy patch of carpet to sit on and blackboard along the wall to scribble on with a few stubs of chalk. A few toys, puzzles board games and books at this Twin Cities coffee shop will entertain preschoolers for a short while – maybe long enough for mom to nosh on a grilled panini or some of Gingko’s special veggie lasagna? In the summer, take advantage of the shop’s two outdoor patios. Also look for kid-friendly concerts on select Saturday mornings.

    Kid-Friendly Menu Options: A kid-sized scoop of ice cream is an inexpensive treat.

    FIKA | American Swedish Institute, Minneapolis

    2600 Park Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55407
    Call Ahead: (612) 871-4907

    While FIKA itself is not particularly kid-friendly, it is a wide open space with lots of light and delicious pastries. Because its located at the entrance to ASI, it can be combined with a visit to the family gallery to become a kid-friendly outing. The best time to visit is on Kids At The Castle days.

    Kid-Friendly Menu Options: Kids will LOVE the cinnamon rolls and other sweet pastries.

    Milkweed | Minneapolis

    3822 E. Lake Street Minneapolis, MN 55406
    Call Ahead: (612) 353-4752

    A cozy shop for adults with a small supply of blocks and toys to keep younger kids entertained.

    Mocha Momma’s Coffee | Minneapolis

    300 Nicollet Mall, Minneapolis, MN 55401
    Call Ahead: (612) 474-5400

    Located inside Minneapolis Central Library in downtown Minneapolis, Mocha Momma’s is a perfect stop to cozy up and read together when you are done checking out your books. Need some play time, the children’s section of the library is right across the hall.

    Nicollet Mall Exterior of Central Library in Minneapolis Minnesota

    Ninth Street Soccer & Coffee | Minneapolis

    801 SE 9th St, Minneapolis, MN 55414
    Call Ahead: (612) 547-9799

    Got a really active kid? Look for Kids Open Play from 10am-Noon on Tuesdays & Fridays. Sign up for Free here.

    Rebe’s Play Café | Saint Paul

    2054 St Clair Ave, St Paul, MN 55105
    Call Ahead: (651) 440-9462
    Open in August 2023 – Weekends 8-4pm and weeknights 5-7pm. Beginning September 2, 2023, hours will be daily 7am-7pm.

    Sovereign Grounds | Minneapolis

    813 East 48th Street, Minneapolis, MN 55417
    Call Ahead: (612) 825-6157

    Kid-friendly Twin Cities coffee shops

    Owned by one of our charter school families, I was especially eager to get to this Twin Cities coffee shop. This is a place that takes children seriously; hence the full name Sovereign Grounds Indoor Playground & Coffeehouse. It tops our list of java joints to bring the kiddos because the space is large (an entire dedicated room), clean (don’t forget to remove your shoes to save the new carpeting), and stocked with quality playthings. Tables are a little squeezed, but their proximity to the toys means you can easily keep an eye on your kid while you sip great coffee and chat with a friend (should you be so lucky to do so). Prepare for a buzz of morning activity that eases up after the lunch hour. A bathroom is conveniently nearby and the coffeehouse menu includes fresh bakery items, interesting salads, and plenty of inexpensive child-pleasing snacks. Don’t miss this one — the biggest thumbs-up from my 3-year-old.

    Kid-Friendly Menu Options: Bakery items, snacks and kids’ juice and milk options.

    South Metro Kid-Friendly Coffee Shops

    Amy’s Cupcake Shoppe | Hopkins

    701 Mainstreet, Hopkins, Minnesota 55343
    Call Ahead: (
    952) 479-7516

    As a small shop, Amy’s Cupcake is encouraging curbside pick up and requiring in-store masking. It is still a great place to grab a treat together. If you love Amy’s coffee, you can get a 32oz bottle of the cold brew to take home.  Pair that with a dozen macarons and you can cozy up at home!

    FFTC was there — scarfing cupcakes, sipping coffee and with the kids happily occupied — when this sweet shoppe hosted its grand opening summer of 2016. Kids can get busy baking their own cupcake creations while you sit a spell nearby.

    Black Sheep Coffee Café | South St. Paul

    705 Southview Blvd South, Saint Paul, MN 55075
    Phone: (651) 554-0155

    “Black Sheep in South St Paul is very VERY kid and family friendly! Lots of toys, comfy armchairs (nursing friendly), As well as larger tables” Thank you to our reader, Allie, for this recommendation.

    The Little Village | Cottage Grove

    7750 Harkness Ave. S., Suite 101, Cottage Grove, MN 55016
    Phone: (651) 203-7993

    Another reader recommendation, the Little Village offers drop-in play, play passes and memberships. Children 9 and under pay a fee to play (includes play space, art supplies and rotating activities) while parents and teens are free. The café offers Dogwood Coffee, Sweet Science Ice Cream, as well as bakery items, fruits & veggies and charcuterie boards.

    Mugshots Coffee Co.| Bloomington

    3822 E. Lake Street Minneapolis, MN 55406
    Call Ahead: (612) 353-4752

    Plenty of seating, including couches and chairs arranged in quiet conversation areas with a small selection of books and games.

    Kid-Friendly Menu Options: Pastries, sandwiches (available in halves) and cocoa.

    North Metro Kid-Friendly Coffee Shops

    The Battle Ground Café | White Bear Lake

    2008 County Road E East, White Bear Lake, MN 55110
    Phone: (651) 756-1401

    This Game Store/Coffee shop serves Peace Coffee and vintage sodas. They have a supply of board games, card games and miniatures. Open from noon to 11pm, daytime hours are quiet.

    Kid-Friendly Menu Options: Heggies Pizzas and Pastries.

    Community Grounds | Columbia Heights

    560 40th Ave NE, Columbia Heights, MN 55421
    Phone: (763) 762-7968

    Thank you to Chris for this suggestion. With its mission to be a welcoming gathering space, Community Grounds has a large play space for children. They are currently only open on Fridays and Saturdays, 9am-12pm.

    Minisota Play Café | Maple Grove

    12055 Elm Creek Blvd., Maple Grove, MN 55369
    Phone: (763) 432-0428

    Thanks to reader, Cassie, for reminding us to add the Minisota Play Café. Note that, unlike the rest of these options, there is a cover charge for children and a one-drink minimum for accompanying adults. However, also unlike the other spaces, this café is more of a “play space with a café” as opposed to a “café with a play space”.

    Peekabooboo’s Play Café | Albertville

    5985 Large Ave NE, Albertville, MN 55301
    Phone: (320) 260-2697
    Offers a sensory room and indoor playground for small children and a small arcade for older kids. Snacks and coffee bar available for purchase. $11.50/child ages 6 months+; one free baby and one free adult with paid child.

    Silverwood Park Café | Saint Anthony

    2500 County Road E., St. Anthony, MN 55421
    Call Ahead: (763) 694-7707

    The Visitor Center at Silverwood Park is a great way to sneak in coffee, art and nature all in one. Bonus that they keep a kid-friendly cart of books, crayons and activities and, as part of the Three Rivers Park District, there are often family-friendly programs – particularly on Sunday afternoons. The downside, you do need to watch them near the art, but the upside is you can explore the park a little before heading home.

    Kid-Friendly Menu Options: Kids and parents can enjoy soups, sandwiches and a variety of beverages, including espresso and lattes.

    Girl participating in cloud project at Silverwood Park in St. Anthony, Minnesota
    Crafting at Silverwood Park

    Most donut shops carry a full coffee menu. Our annual list of Donut Shops we share for National Doughnut Day has more ideas for parents who need a caffeine fix with kids in tow.

    donuts with sprinkles
    Find a new favorite donut shop here.

    Share Your Favorites

    Got a Favorite Kid-Friendly Coffee Shop? Share with the community.

    I hope these suggestions for Twin Cities coffee shops can help make a dent in your winter. My little sidekick and I thoroughly enjoyed our research and would love to hear about where YOU meet up for coffee, conversation and a little playtime.

    Note: The featured image shows A Cupcake Social, which permanently closed in 2020.

    What We Are Watching

    Peak Café | Edina

    Edinborough Park, 7700 York Ave. S., EdinaMN 55424

    Peak Café is currently closed, but if it reopens, it is a great place to grab a coffee and let the kids play. Adventure Peak is an indoor PlayPark within Edinborough Park. It is currently $9/child. We recommend checking prices before heading out.

    15 thoughts on “Cozy Up and Play at These Kid-Friendly Twin Cities Coffee Shops/Cafes”

      1. Thanks Alyssa. We haven’t had a chance to check it out, but we do have it on the list. If you get there, let us know how you like it.

      1. Hi Ashley.

        We have a few kid-friendly restaurant-type articles:

        1) We have our Kids Eat Free List. This is a good starting point because any restaurant that offers a weekly family-friendly deal is invested in families.
        2) We share a list of restaurants our readers feel most comfortable dining with babies. These tend to also be kid-friendly.
        3) We’ve also recently added a list of our favorite family-style take out. Again, restaurants that offer family meals often cater to families.

        We had started working with local breweries to create a list of kid-friendly options in early 2020, but put off finishing it for obvious reasons. I guess it is time to pull that article off the backburner. I’ll link here when its completed.

    1. Corner Coffee Camden has a back room for families as well! We love close by and go there weekly! Seats for parents to sit and work while kids play.

    2. FIG AND FARRO vegan restaurant has an amazing kid area with a loft, lots of books and toys. They also have a great kids menu . We went there last night and were so impressed!

      1. Oooh! Thank you, Jenna. I just went and checked it out online and that DOES look like an amazing kids space. I’m adding your suggestion now!

    3. A Cupcake Social looks like such a great little nook for kids and grandkids! Children love to imitate what they see so seeing the grown ups enjoy a cup of coffee and a donut will inspire them to want to bake and make pretend coffee… Which I would love to see! I definitely think this would be one shop I’ll be willing to check out!

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