Disney Food for Families columnist, Erin Foster, takes a look at baby food options in Disney parks and resorts. You can read about Erin and read her other columns on our Disney Food for Families page!
Many families make their first trips to Walt Disney World while at least one of their children is in the baby mush stage of eating. A question I often hear from these families is, “What do I do about baby food while on my Disney vacation?” This information may not be as exciting as news about the latest gonzo cupcake creation, but it can be of critical importance to those traveling with a toothless crew.
Where to Find Baby Food on Disney Property
Baby food is not a menu item at any of the Disney restaurants. However, you are welcome to serve your baby food purchased elsewhere while you dine. Disney stocks a limited selection of baby food products in the resort gift shops, always Gerber brand. The flavor assortment may vary slightly, but generally you can expect to find mashed bananas or applesauce, and one or two vegetable choices such as sweet potatoes or squash. I have only rarely seen meat-based baby food sold at Walt Disney World. The baby food is often positioned away from the regular gift shop foods and is instead sold near the health and beauty aids or in a general baby-care section.
As you can see, the choice is extremely limited. The baby care centers in the theme parks carry a similarly abbreviated Gerber product line. For stays longer than a day or two, the small selection really means that purchasing on-site is an emergency-only option.
Other Options for Feeding Baby
So what’s a parent to do? Here are some ideas:
- Bring your own. This is easy if you’re driving to the parks. For guests traveling by air with baggage weight limits and TSA regulations, this may be more difficult.
- Mail yourself a package of supplies. All the Disney resorts will accept guest packages. This is also great option for other bulky supplies such as diapers and wipes. Remember that plastic containers weigh less and are safer than glass containers.
- Shop in Orlando. If you have access to your own or a rental car, ask your resort bell services desk for directions to the nearest local supermarket. There are also Target and Walmart stores within an easy drive to Walt Disney World.
- Order a local food delivery. Goodings.com and gardengrocer.com are some options, though there may be significant delivery charges.
- Improvise using regular food. Think outside the jar for non-traditional pureed foods to serve your baby. Many of the WDW counter service venues have applesauce as an optional side dish. Yogurt is readily available at table service breakfasts and at the resort food courts. Oatmeal or grits are also breakfast options; thin them out with a bit of milk or water if you need to. Soups may work for your baby. Or scan the menu for regular items that are pureed. For example, Chef Mickey’s serves delicious Parmesan mashed potatoes and the Artist Point chicken comes with a root vegetable mash. Again, thin these out with a bit of milk or water if necessary.
Warming Bottles and Baby Food
An additional consideration when serving your baby is food temperature. Bear in mind that the restaurants at WDW generally will not, due to legal considerations, heat baby food or bottles for you. All of the resorts have either a food court or quick service restaurant equipped with microwave ovens for guest use. You are welcome to use these to warm food yourself. The baby care centers are your only in-park option for warming food.
As for the good news: children under the age of three eat free in many Disney table service situations, particularly the buffets. You can experiment a bit with new tastes and textures without the fear of running up large charges. Speak to your server about the rules at your particular restaurant.
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Do you have tips or suggestions for finding good baby food options in Disney parks and resorts? Let us know in the comments section below and help out fellow baby-owners!