Tips to Eat Healthy in Disneyland
While Disneyland is best known for its Dole Whips, Churros, and Mickey-shaped treats, Disney’s family friendly parks offer a surprising number of options for guests with special dietary needs.
Whether your family member is gluten free, dairy free, or you’re just trying to eat a little healthier yourself, we’ve got some quick tips to help make your stay both healthy and magical.
Special Diets and Allergies
Although allergens are not labeled on park menus, Disneyland chefs can often accommodate guests by modifying dishes to meet their dietary needs.
Guests in need of gluten free, soy free, dairy free, nut free, egg free, shellfish free, or fish free meals are able to speak with a restaurant cast member or a chef trained in special dietary needs upon arriving at the restaurant.
For more information on Disney dining protocol for special diets and allergens, visit https://disneyland.disney.go.com/guest-services/special-dietary-requests/
Healthy Dining for Adults
Luckily, most Disneyland restaurants offer balanced menus.
While you will find a fair share of heavier dishes on park menus, most restaurants do a great job of having healthy options available.
However, if healthy dining is a priority for your family, it’s important to keep in mind that certain restaurants offer more options than others.
Luckily, the Disneyland website provides current menus for each venue so that you can plan ahead, favoring restaurants that provide guests with a larger number of healthy options. You can also book reservations ahead of time to avoid a lengthy wait for a table.
Remember also that- in many cases- table service restaurants offer a greater number of healthy options than walk up stands and quick service restaurants.
However, there are a number of quick service restaurants (such as the Bengal Barbecue and Rancho Del Zocalo) that offer healthy options without the need for a prior reservation or a long wait for a table.
Quick Picks, Counter Service:
- Bengal Barbecue: Chieftain Chicken Skewer, Outback Vegetable Skewer
- French Market Restaurant: Royal Street Chicken Caesar Salad
- Rancho Del Zocalo: Tostada Salad with Chicken
Quick Picks, Table Service:
- Cafe Orleans: Nicoise Salad
- Carnation Cafe: Spinach Salad with Grilled Chicken
- River Belle Terrace: Half BBQ Chicken
To browse menus ahead of time, visit https://disneyland.disney.go.com/dining/
Healthy Dining for Kids
Parents and children alike are able to access healthy, balanced meals at Disneyland Resort.
While standard kids menu fare is available at most restaurants, many also offer Mickey Check meals. Mickey Check Meals are subject to a more rigorous set of nutrition standards, and contain less sugar, fat, Calories, and sodium than the standard kids menu options.
At the popular Cafe Orleans, for example, the standard kids menu offers Shrimp and Grits or Macaroni and Cheese. Mickey Check Meal options, on the other hand, offer Sustainable Fresh Fish or a Chicken or Beef Special, all of which are served with rice, vegetables, and fruit.
For more on Mickey Check Meals, visit https://disneyland.disney.go.com/faq/dining/disney-check/
Looking for a snack that’s a little healthier than popcorn or a Mickey soft pretzel?
In addition to standard park-themed snacks, you can find fresh Fruit Carts throughout Disneyland, offering beverages, whole fruit, giant pickles, and other fresh snacking options.
You will find a Fruit Cart in each of Disney’s “lands”, each with an appropriate theme. Try Tropical Imports in Adventureland or the Ship to Shore Marketplace in Frontierland!
To locate Disneyland’s various Fruit Carts, visit https://disneyland.disney.go.com/dining/fruit/
About the Author:
Morgan Medeiros is a Master’s Credentialed Clinical Nutritionist and Obesity Specialist practicing in Puyallup, WA. She is an avid Disneyland fan and enjoys classic rides like Indiana Jones and Big Thunder Railroad, as well as new additions like the Incredicoaster and Radiator Springs Racers. Her favorite character sightings are Chip and Dale, and her favorite Disney treat is an ice cream cone from the Gibson Girl ice cream parlor after the fireworks spectacular. Connect with Morgan here: https://www.facebook.com/mmnutr