You re-learned elementary school math. Then you managed to track down a f*cking white board to teach it on. So once “school” is over, you’re letting your kids have approximately 19 hours of screen time. But it turns out you also have to feed them (who knew?). So when you’re looking for a way to kill time with your kids - and maybe (sort of) teach them something about cooking - order takeout or delivery from one of these 12 spots with kid-friendly DIY meals.
High-end omakase is probably not the first thing that comes to mind when you think “kid-friendly,” but The Brothers Sushi in Woodland Hills is doing something a little different during quarantine. They’re offering DIY hand roll kits that include everything you (and your kids) need. For $50, they give you nori, sushi rice, and seven kinds of fish (including toro, bluefin, and yellowtail), so you can keep all the toro for yourself. There’s also a vegan option. Quantities are limited each day, so be sure you order early.
Weho’s upscale vegan spot Crossroads has a huge selection of DIY options. These range from a sausage pizza kit and ricotta-stuffed shells to a grilling kit for four and cookie dough for at-home baking. All come with simple instructions for an easy, fun, plant-based meal at home.
It’s probably fair to say that cooking a whole fish will freak some kids out. But show them how excellent whole-cooked fish can be by ordering from Dudley Market, where the menu is fresh-caught every morning. As such, their selection changes daily, but they’ve usually got sand dabs, whitefish, and mackerel, and will include the whole meal kit (like fixings for ceviche or a roast) for another $5.
LA’s superb Oaxacan restaurant Guelaguetza is offering make-your-own tlayuda kits. For $45, you’ll get 8 tortillas and all the toppings - house-made aciento, black bean paste, Oaxacan cheese, and your choice of protein. All your family needs to do is pile the ingredients on the tortilla, and toss it on the grill. They’ve also got a few other family meal options if you have no idea what a tlayuda is, and if you’re experiencing mole withdrawal, Guelaguetza is selling theirs by the quart, ready for whatever protein you choose to mix it with.
If there’s one way to keep your kids quiet, it’s the DIY kit from Insomnia cookies. This Boystown spot is offering a $32 make-your-own Cookie’wich, including 12 cookies, a quart of ice cream, and any of their many toppings. It’s a good chance to get creative, and, possibly, net a bunch of extra Cookie’wich when you inevitably eat all the remaining halves of your kids’ creations.
Nothing can turn the day around like some great dumplings. So we’re glad Kang Kang Food Court, the Alhambra dumpling specialist, is offering most of their selection by the bag. Your kids will be excited to toss frozen dumplings into boiling-hot oil (with some adult supervision), and you will be excited to eat Kang Kang’s excellent options like pork with Napa cabbage or leek.
Another great vegetarian spot, Highland Park’s Kitchen Mouse is offering their tremendous gluten-free pancake mix to-go. All your kids have to do is add oil, mix it up, and pour them on the griddle. Kitchen Mouse also has groceries available, if you want to pick up some fruit (or more likely, chocolate chips) to go in those pancakes.
Chances are, if you’re a parent on the Westside, you’ve spent a few nights at the kid-friendly Italian spot Milo + Olive. Right now, they’ve got a ton of different DIY options, so you and your kids can have a contest to see who makes the best garlic knot (spoiler alert: none of them will be as good as the real thing). They’ve also got pizza and pasta sets to make at home. Whatever you pick, it’ll be infinitely more fun than whatever Disney+ show you were planning to throw on the TV tonight.
Roberta’s, the Culver City (via Brooklyn) pizza shop, is offering DIY versions of three of their best pizzas: a margherita, the Bee Sting, and the Famous Original. Each comes with a dough and all the fixings, plus instructions for how to cook it just right. And don’t worry - even if you screw it up, these ingredients are good enough that it won’t matter if your 12-year-old’s pizza is burnt on the outside and soupy in the middle.
Another of LA’s best Italian restaurants, Rossoblu doesn’t just have prepped pasta for takeout - they’ve also got incredibly detailed instructions on how to cook it just right. It’s a great chance for your kids - and probably you - to learn how it all goes down in a restaurant kitchen. Those prepped pastas include tagliatelle with ragu Bolognese, tortellini with tomato sugo and brown butter sage, and braised pork meatballs.
After closing for a bit, DTLA’s fantastic Mexican spot Sonoratown is back - and they’ve brought some great meal kits with them. Their $30 platter comes with a pound of meat (we recommend doing half-chorizo and half-asada), plus salsas, cabbage, limes, and 12 of their perfect, house-made flour tortillas. There may not be a whole lot of actual cooking involved for your kids here, but learning to perfectly proportion your tacos is an important life skill, too.
It’s really annoying when a poke spot loads up your bowl with much more than just fish, rice, and seaweed. But when you’re making the bowls at home, you don’t have to worry about that. So you’ll be glad to know that Sweetfin, the poke shop with locations across the city, has converted into a fish market, selling all you need for poke bowls. They’re selling 6 oz. portions of mahi mahi, yellowtail, halibut, salmon, and more, along with their house sauces, so you can build-your-own bowl, and keep your kids off their iPad for another 20 minutes.