Dining in Disneyland: Seasonal Eats at Hungry Bear Restaurant

The Hungry Bear Restaurant in Critter Country is what I’d consider a hidden gem of Disneyland.  The counter service restaurant is nestled way in the back of the park along the Rivers of America.  The lines are never too terrible, there’s plenty of seating, and more importantly the food is quite wonderful!

Hungry Bear Restaurant

Hungry Bear Restaurant


Immediately upon walking up to the order kiosk, I noticed that they had the coveted Poison Apple Mug.  These things were a HOT commodity this season and I’m sorry to say that as I type this post, they are already sold out resort-wide.  I’m told that they will not be returning until next Halloween. What a bummer!

Poison Apple Mug and Seasonal Cups

Poison Apple Mug and Seasonal Cups

They also offer the Chernabog “made with magic” sippers.  These sippers react with glowing color at Fantasmic, World of Color and Paint the Night.  These are not sold out, but they will set you back around $25.

Chernabog Sipper

Chernabog Sipper

Ordering at Hungry Bear is simple because the menu is pretty basic.  Menu staples include burgers, salads, and sandwiches and currently they are offering a few seasonal eats and treats too!  Let’s start with the Pulled Pork Hot Dog.

Pulled Pork Hot Dog Signage

Pulled Pork Hot Dog Signage

A Seared Hot Dog in a Toasted Roll topped with BBQ Pulled Pork and Citrus Slaw finished with Fried Jalapenos and Fresh Cilantro; otherwise known as messy and delicious!

Pulled Pork Hot Dog

Pulled Pork Hot Dog & Sweet Potato Fries

I really wasn’t sure what to expect with this, but I enjoyed it thoroughly.  The pulled pork was sweet and tender, and mixed with the slaw and spice of the fried jalapenos it was really a great flavor combination.

The hot dog had a perfect snap to each bite, and the bun was fresh and toasted to perfection.  On a side note, my husband tried this hot dog a week later and said his bun tasted sort of stale. So hopefully that isn’t a common problem. Although extremely messy, I ended up eating it with a fork and knife (highly recommend going this route) and I thoroughly enjoyed this meal!

Pulled Pork Hot Dog Guts!

Pulled Pork Hot Dog Guts!

We ordered our Pulled Pork Hot Dog with both Sweet Potato Fries (shown above) and Onion Rings. I preferred the onion rings, but you can’t go wrong with either option.

Onion Rings

Onion Rings

We also figured we’d try the Picnic Salad – you know to “Healthy Up” our meal… .  The salad is described as Smoked Turkey Breast, Strawberries, Feta Cheese, Cranberries, Roasted Almonds, Jicama, on top of Mixed Greens with Strawberry Vinaigrette.

The ingredients of the salad itself were actually great; very fresh and a nice combination of  flavors.  However none of us enjoyed the dressing.  I’m not even sure what it was — I think maybe it seemed too sweet and creamy for a vinaigrette dressing.  I think a balsamic vinaigrette would have been perfect for it.

Picnic Salad

Picnic Salad

And just for kicks, here’s a Plain Hamburger with French Fries…  It’s what my 11 year old prefers, and honestly it’s good sized and cooked to perfection. Boring, I know, but as long as everyone is happy with their meal, I don’t care. We’ve long outgrown the kids menu, so it’s nice to know there are “adult” sized portions for big kids with picky palates.

Hungry Bear Plain Hamburger with Fries

Hungry Bear Plain Hamburger with Fries

To wash all this down, we ordered a Honey Bee Frozen Lemonade!

Honey Bee Frozen Lemonade Signage

Honey Bee Frozen Lemonade Signage

On a hot day, the Honey Bee Frozen Lemonade is the perfect Disneyland drink.  The Fruity Frozen Lemonade comes topped with Whipped Cream and a Honey Flavored Icicle.   The lemonade is tart and delicious, but the sweetness of that “icicle” evens it out.  It’s like a honey flavored candy stick and oh so yummy!  The icicle looks like a straw, but it’s not, so don’t forget to grab one!

Honey Bee Frozen Lemonade

Honey Bee Frozen Lemonade

Also seasonal to the Hungry Bear for Halloween Time is the Apple Pie Funnel Cake.  This treat is not to be missed and trust me when I say it’s worth a walk to the Hungry Bear!

Apple Pie Funnel Cake

Apple Pie Funnel Cake

This gorgeous thing of beauty comes topped with Apple Pie Filling, Streusel Crumbs, Mickey in Whipped Cream form and some Caramel Drizzle.  It’s got a touch of cinnamon and is served up piping hot.  Even if you don’t eat a meal at the Hungry Bear, go get yourself an Apple Pie Funnel Cake.

Apple Pie Funnel Cake Close Up

Apple Pie Funnel Cake Close Up

Now, on a sad note, the popular Fried Green Tomato Sandwich has been removed from the menu.  I asked if this was a permanent decision and was told that it may be back because guests are continuously asking for it.  Hopefully we’ll see a return because I know this was a very popular vegetarian option.

Overall

Overall, I say get yourself to the Hungry Bear Restaurant.  Great waterside views, great food and great prices.  Another perk? Plenty of seating and clean restrooms!

Have you visited Hungry Bear lately?  Have you tried the seasonal items? Let us know in the comments below!

Heather Sievers is the Disney Food Blog’s Dining in Disneyland columnist. See more of her columns here!

Comments

  1. foodandwinegirl says

    A few weeks ago the cashier said that the Fired Green Tomato Sandwich was going to be added to the Café Orleans Menu, but I haven’t seen it there yet.

  2. Heather Sievers says

    ran6110 – Yes! I love that beaver!!! It’s really a great spot to eat.

    foodwinegirl – Interesting! I haven’t heard that, I know it’s really popular, so hopefully it ends up somewhere!

    Darcy – It’s a Halloween Time treat, so my guess is that it will be there through November 1st which is when Halloween is technically over at the resort. They always have funnel cake at Hungry Bear but the topping changes seasonally.

  3. Gina says

    When I visit there, I get the funnel cake 1/2 and 1/2. Half strawberry and half brownie. You can order the funnel cakes there with any other type they serve.

  4. Essie says

    I love hot dogs, but not with all that stuff on them. Just plain is fine or maybe a chili cheese dog for a gourmet mood! The salad looks delish; it’s a shame that you were disappointed in the dressing. Again, I would like the funnel cake without all of those toppings, although the caramel sauce sure looks wonderful. I hope I get to see the DLR someday, but in the meantime, I really enjoy all of your reports from there.

  5. Essie says

    I love hot dogs, but not with all that stuff on them. Just plain is fine or maybe a chili cheese dog for a gourmet mood! The salad looks delish; it’s a shame that you were disappointed in the dressing. Again, I would like the funnel cake without all of those toppings, although the caramel sauce sure looks wonderful. I hope I get to see the DLR someday, but in the meantime, I really enjoy all of your reports from there. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Hannah says

    The Hotdog looks amazing. Always love onion rings. Not a fan of funnel cakes but I would for sure try the apple pie one. Also salad looks good. Thanks for the report.

  7. Heather Sievers says

    Gina – That’s a great idea!

    Esssie – I agree! Hot dogs and funnel cake are great plain too!

    Hannah – The onion rings at Hungry Bear are especially yummy!

  8. says

    Very disppointed that the fried green tomato sandwich has gone, that was my item of choice being vegetarian, though I wasn’t 100% if it was actually a vegetarian dressing. I did read that it may have contained anchovy in the dressing but never confirmed it.

    The vegetarian options at the DL resort are way more extensive and interesting than at WDW IMO.

  9. Heather Sievers says

    Paula – There is a rumor that it may return. I heard either back to Hungry Bear or possibly to Cafe Orleans. But I’m not sure if that is true or not.

  10. Richard says

    Paula, Heather…

    I’ve heard the same rumor from different CM’s. One said they have gotten a lot of heat for removing it and plan to put it back.

  11. Cindy says

    I’ve had the churro funnel cake as I love churros! Unfortunately, it seems like they had pre-made it (it was available immediately at the window) and it was not nearly as good. For something so greasy, you cannot pre-make it and then let it sit in its grease. But I will definately try it again. I’ve always loved the 2nd floor of Hungry Bear!

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