Going to Walt Disney World isn’t just about rides, characters, and fireworks. It’s also about the food! Frequent Disney visitors know that the World is full of amazing treats – from hand-pressed ice cream sandwiches, to soft hot pretzels (Mickey-Mouse-shaped, of course). Here, in no particular order (because who could choose?) are our top ten favorite treats at Walt Disney World. (Feature Photo: Mickey Premium Ice Cream Bar, by Harshlight/Flickr)
- Caramel Corn: This old-school favorite comes from – where else? – Storybook Circus in the Magic Kingdom. The entire circus tent fills with the buttery scent of caramel when they’re pouring fresh batches, and you can step up for a paper bag full of warm goodness made fresh right in front of you. Heading to Epcot? Karamell Kuche, in the Germany pavilion, smothers their kernels in Werther’s caramel for extra decadence.
- Citrus Swirl: Like a retro relic of Florida’s citrus-stand past, the citrus swirl is a returning champion in the crowded Disney snack arena. A blend of creamy vanilla soft-serve and tart frozen orange juice, found only at Adventureland’s Sunshine Tree Terrace, it’s perfect for a hot summer afternoon. Pro-tip: for the ultimate experience, balance the vanilla and citrus flavors equally on your spoon.
- Pineapple Dole Whip: We can’t mention the citrus swirl without immediately acknowledging the Pineapple Dole Whip, which has been inspiring lifelong fans for years. Once only available in the Magic Kingdom, at Disneyland Park, and in Hawaii at Dole’s own plantation, the pineapple-juice flavored soft serve has achieved cult status with Disney fans. It’s so popular, in fact, that you can now get it at the Magic Kingdom (at Adventureland’s Aloha Isle Refreshments), at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort (at the purpose-built Pineapple Lanai), and at Disney’s Animal Kingdom (with or without rum, at Tamu Tamu Refreshments in the Africa section of the park). Our favorite? Blended with vanilla and served in a float, with pineapple juice, from the Pineapple Lanai. It’s a delicious sweet-tart flavor you’ll never forget.
- Croissant Donut: If you’ve heard of “cronuts” but they haven’t come to your town, Epcot is here for you. Stop into the Refreshment Port, located between Canada and the bridge to Future World, for a sugary-sweet, buttery-flakey pastry with a crunch to it.
- Croque Glace: Stick to Epcot for this one and head to the France pavilion for Les Artisans des Glaces. Their seriously smooth house-made ice creams are a delight on their own, but the shop takes them to the next level, first dolloping a scoop with either chocolate or raspberry sauce, then placing the ice cream inside a fresh-baked brioche roll and… wait for it… placing the roll in a hot press. The heat seals the brioche’s edges, and you have the most decadent, fresh ice cream sandwich of your life waiting for you.
- Beaches and Cream sundaes: While we’re talking ice cream, let’s stroll over to Disney’s Beach Club Resort, just outside Epcot, for a sundae from the window at Beaches and Cream. This full-service restaurant happens to make amazing, massive sundaes. The Kitchen Sink, which starts with 8 scoops of ice cream, every topping imaginable, and comes served in an actual sink, tends to get all the attention. But we like the “regular” sundaes, like the No Way Jose, which is a chocolate/peanut-butter dream come true. Hey, this is where dreams come true, right?
- Mickey Pretzels: All this ice cream is making us wish for something salty. Your wish can come true with a Mickey-shaped soft pretzel. Why is something so simple so delicious? Served hot and fresh from kiosks throughout all four theme parks, the Mickey pretzel is equally delicious plain, with mustard, or dipped into a little tub of soft cheese.
- Fresh Fruit Waffle with Chocolate Hazelnut Spread: A fresh-made waffle slathered in what we can only assume is Nutella, then showered with sliced strawberries, bananas, and blueberries: this is way beyond your typical theme park food. Get this half-healthy, half-decadent marvel at Sleepy Hollow, in the Magic Kingdom’s Liberty Square.
- Specialty Apples: You can get a fresh, sticky-wonderful caramel apple (with or without nuts). Or you can go wild and get a “specialty” apple, which might be decorated to look like Mickey Mouse, Dumbo, or even Maleficent. These apples go way beyond “candied” or “caramel,” with marshmallows, chocolate chips, sugar crystals, and anything else sweet candy-makers can think to sculpt with! You might want to share.
- Eggrolls: Let’s go back to Adventureland for a savory treat from the eggroll cart. Perfect for a light afternoon snack, these crispy little eggrolls also have one of the friendliest price-tags at Walt Disney World, at under $3. Choose from pork, vegetable, or maybe a special like cheeseburger (filled with melted cheese and ground beef!).
- Mickey Premium Bars: This was supposed to be a top ten list, but Mickey Premium Bars are the Grand Champion of all Disney snacks and deserve special mention. A basic blend of creamy vanilla ice cream coated with a chocolate shell, they’ve been melting all over happy faces and fingers for decades. It doesn’t matter how fast you eat your Mickey bar, you’re going to lose some chocolate to the pavement. Lean over for maximum enjoyment while avoiding a stain on your shirt, and let things get messy – and delicious. Mickey bars are sold from kiosks at all four theme parks.
When it comes to snacking Walt Disney World, we’ve barely begun to list off all the possibilities. A few things we’ve missed: churros, mac-and-cheese bowls, corn dog nuggets, and even the seemingly endless line-up of specialty cupcakes. Watch our blog for a future installment of favorite treats from Walt Disney World!
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