Inside: The 10 things you MUST eat at Disneyland and California Adventure Parks.
The Best Food at Disneyland
This Spring I made finally made it out to Disneyland for the first time in my life. (Yes, it really took my 33 years to get there…but I did it!!)
Lucky for me, my travel companion was my blogging buddy and Disney aficionado Jennifer (we co-own In The Kids Kitchen food blog together), so I knew that we would get to see and try ALL the good stuff. Not only has Jennifer made many, many trips to Disney World and Disneyland combined, but she always does her research.
Just as I expected, Jennifer had an entire “food tour” mapped out for our two-day visit. Some things she’d already eaten before, others were recommendations from fellow Disney bloggers.
The following is a top-ten list of the best things to eat at Disneyland – all of which we’ve tried and tasted and of course, photographed for you to see!
Related: Believe it or not, I was also 6 months pregnant on the trip! Click here to read my secrets to not only survive, but LOVE Disney while pregnant.
10 Things You MUST Eat at Disneyland
In no particular order, because these 10 Disneyland foods were ALL amazing!
1. Fried Chicken Plate at The Plaza Inn
Where to find it: Main Street, U.S.A., Disneyland Park (essentially the “main drag” at Disneyland)
While everything at the Plaza Inn looked tasty (especially the desserts), save your appetite and head straight for the “Chicken” station!
Our first meal upon arriving at Disneyland, Jennifer and I actually split the Fried Chicken Platter and there was more than the two of us could finish. (Though we gave it our best effort because it was so darn delicious!)
Here’s the breakdown:
- Three BIG pieces of chicken (1 breast, 2 pieces dark meat)
- Mashed potatoes (with or without onion gravy)
- Green beans
My husband is the fried chicken fan in our family, but I’ll admit that I thoroughly enjoy this generous platter of crispy chicken goodness and would absolutely go out of the way to get it on my next visit.
2. Pommes Frites at Cafe Orleans
Where to find them: New Orleans Square, Disneyland Park
Quite possibly the best french fries I’ve ever tasted. Seriously!
This is a HUGE basket of perfectly crispy skinny fries dusted with parmesan cheese, garlic, and parsley. And then there’s the dipping sauce. Oh, the sauce.
Accompanied by two ramekins of Cajun Spice Remoulade (because one is NOT enough), the combination of flavorful fries and tangy sauce is magical….and addictive! Oh, and they’re less than ten bucks- one of the best food bargains in the entire park!
This was supposed to be a quick stop on our food tour, but I could not leave until I’d finished them all (or nearly all of them!) And gotten my fill of the cool Mint Juleps…
3. Bottomless Mint Julep at Cafe Orleans
Where to find it: New Orleans Square, Disneyland Park
While you’re enjoying the patio at Cafe Orleans, go ahead and treat yourself to a refreshing bottomless Mint Julep! (Don’t worry, they’re non-alcoholic so the whole family can enjoy).
More like a minty-lemonade, it’s beautifully garnished and they really do walk around and refill your glass as many times as you want! I definitely took full advantage of this!
PS- You can also grab one at the Mint Julep Bar at the French Market.
4. Lobster Roll at Harbour Galley
Where to find it: Critterland, Disneyland Park
I can’t even talk about this lobster roll without missing it!
We have a few places here in Houston that are famous for their lobster rolls, but the lobster roll at Harbour Galley adds it’s own special touch to the classic recipe.
It all starts with crispy bread, cut like a hot dog bun, then generously buttered (with garlic butter) and toasted.
Next, it’s piled high with creamy lobster salad – a heavenly mix of lobster chunks, mayo, spices, and herbs.
Though Jennifer and I shared most things we tried on our Disneyland food tour, this was one dish I insisted we each get out own. I think I finished mine in mere minutes…and I still craved more!
SO worth the price tag! I mean, it IS lobster y’all!
5. Mickey-Shaped Macarons at Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe
Where to find them: Main Street, U.S.A., Disneyland Park
At least three times the size of a traditional macaron and shaped like Mickey mouse, with ears and all — this was my very first taste of Disney!
My friend Jennifer met me at our hotel with the Raspberry Roe flavored version (there is usually a second seasonal flavor available as well). AH-mazing!!
Not only is there smooth raspberry rose cream between the two layers of cookie, but there are fresh raspberries in there too!
My main worry was that the rose flavor would overpower the entire dessert (as often happens with rose-flavored things), but may worries were unfounded. It was tangy, juicy, creamy, sweet, a little sour, with just a hint of floral, and plenty of the almond flavor you expect from macarons. (And I’m a sucker for anything with almond extract!)
One word of caution, this is a bright red dessert, so it will turn your mouth bright red too. A small price to pay for one of the best desserts in the entire park!
6. Dole Whip at Tiki Juice Bar
Where to find them: Next to Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room in Adventureland, Disneyland Park
While there are other pineapple-centric treats served here…let’s be real…it’s ALL about the Dole Whip!
This might just be the most famous food item in the entire park, and people line up to get it. Fortunately, the wait was only about 5-10 minutes when we arrived.
What is a Dole Whip?
A Dole Whip is a pineapple soft-serve concoction that’s dairy-free and low-calorie – yay! You can also order it as a float, swimming in sweet pineapple juice.
It sounds so simple, but there is something about a Dole Whip that has allowed it to achieve mythical status. Even after trying one, I can’t quite explain it!
If you order a Dole Whip, then you’ve got to head over to Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room to enjoy it. The Enchanted Tiki Room is a cool (read: air-conditioned) respite where you can rest your feet while enjoying a 15-minute show. It’s stuck in time, impossibly kitschy, and a must-see!
7. Brioche French Toast at Flo’s Diner
Where to find it: Carsland, California Adventure Park
Honestly, this “French toast” tastes more like a dessert….but is that really a bad thing?
Picture this: a large square of warm, baked French toast (almost like a bread pudding) drizzled liberally with salted caramel sauce and topped with candied bananas. Just typing that got my mouth watering!
Definitely a splurge-worthy vacation breakfast treat!
8. Red’s Apple Freeze at the Cozy Cone Motel
Where to find it: Carsland, California Adventure Park
When Jennifer described this drink, I’ll admit I was skeptical at first. Frozen apple juice, marshmallow flavor, and passionfruit foam — it sounds weird… but WOW!!
Somehow it all just works and you find yourself drinking the whole thing. What a perfect way to cool off when the day starts to heat up!
If I had to describe the taste, I’d say apple cider with a hint of butterscotch. It’s super smooth and surprisingly refreshing. You gotta trust me on this one!
BTW: Even though it looks like a frothy beer, this is a totally kid-friendly beverage!
9. Coffee at Starbucks
Where to find it: Main Street, U.S.A., Disneyland Park
I know, I know – you can get Starbucks anywhere right?
But…you can’t get the special Disneyland Starbucks cups anywhere! And for some reason, that just added to the magic of the entire Disneyland experience.
10. Tigger Tail at Pooh’s Corner
Where to find it: Critterland, Disneyland Park
This delightful candy shop is filled with so many goodies that it was hard to pick one favorite!
The Tigger Tail is a honey-dipped skewer of marshmallows, decorated with orange sanding sugar and milk chocolate to look like Tigger’s tail. It’s super sweet, so I recommend sharing!
Bonus: While you browse and buy, watch artisans making more cute confections behind the scenes of a glass wall between the bakery and shop!
Things you can skip…
While overall Disneyland hands-down has the best food of any amusement park I’ve ever visited, not every single item was a winner. Here are a few to pass on (so you can save room for the good stuff!)
Onion rings at Hungry Bear Restaurant – These were highly recommended, but didn’t live up to the hype. They tasted like any old onion rings you can get at a carnival or ballpark. Nothing to write home about and not worth the price tag. Save your calories!
Lobster Chips at Harbour Galley – The lobster roll here was so, so good. The lobster chips were…meh. The sauce was an odd texture and kind of bland. Skip the chips and double up on the sandwiches instead!
Lobster Salad at Cafe Orleans – It sounded so amazing! But the dressing just didn’t live up to expectations. For a $20 salad, you deserve perfection. Not to worry, everything else we tasted at Cafe Orleans was fabulous!
Tamales at Flo’s Diner – My husband’s family is Mexican, so we have tamales at every holiday. Everything else at Flo’s Diner was wonderful, but these are not tamales!
More of our favorite family travel posts:
- How to Enjoy Disney While Pregnant
- How to Visit Disneyland with a Baby (even a newborn!)
- 2018 Disneyland HalloweenTime Food Tour
- 10 Brilliantly Simple Packing Hacks for Travel with Kids
- Velcro Road Trip Bingo Game
- The Best Disney World Snacks (on Sugar Spice & Glitter)
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Last updated on October 9th, 2018 at 07:41 pm