Guest Review: Ten Tips for Disney Cruise Dining with a Toddler

Welcome to guest author Julia Mascardo with an informative review and GREAT TIPS for dining with a toddler aboard the Disney Fantasy Cruise Ship!

In any given week, toddlers may decide that they want to eat everything offered to them — or they may want to dine on goldfish crackers and string cheese for every meal.

When you are on land, it isn’t a major problem to make sure your toddler’s whims are met even if you are on vacation. But the idea of spending a week at the mercy of a cruise ship’s galley might make a parent reconsider the idea of cruising.

After spending a week aboard the Disney Fantasy, I found that with a little advance planning, toddler dining on a Disney cruise can be an enjoyable experience—for parents and children alike.

Even if your child doesn’t get desserts at home, you probably will want to allow a little indulgence when on board — like this decorate-your-own-cupcake dessert!

Here are my top 10 tips for making the most of Disney cruise dining with a toddler:

Tips for Disney Cruise Dining with a Toddler

1. Pick your battles

When adults are on vacation, they eat in ways that they wouldn’t eat at home. The same can be said for toddlers.

If you have certain rules that you want to enforce on ship, let your servers know. For instance, if your child must have three bites of vegetables before any macaroni and cheese, they can bring out a plate of vegetables for those required three bites and then bring out a “next course” of pasta.

Flexibility with rules can make life easier, however. If you are okay with treats like doughnuts for breakfast and French fries with every meal, that flexibility may make the experience more pleasant for everyone.

Buffets offer opportunities for your child to pick what he or she wants to eat— and for you to decide what you put on the plate.

2. If you don’t see it, ask

Our daughter drinks milk with every meal. But milk was not listed on the room service menu as a drink option for lunch or dinner, and was not visible at the buffet restaurant Cabanas for lunch.

Milk is available, but sometimes you need to ask where to find it.

One quick question to a cast member and I found that room service will not only will deliver milk, but you can set up for a daily scheduled delivery at a specific time if desired.

For lunch at Cabanas, milk is stored behind the manned salad bar station. All you have to do is ask a cast member, and he or she will [Read more…]

Disney Fantasy Rotational Dining Details

Kids Mac and Cheese at Animator's Palate

Disney Cruise Line has mastered the art of unique dining! Every passenger is offered the opportunity to dine at three different main restaurants. Rotational dining allows each guest to experience the menus and surroundings of the amazing dining rooms aboard the Disney Fantasy!

Whether you book main or late seating, your family will rotate to each of the main restaurants at least once during your voyage. Best of all, your servers rotate with you! Be sure to check out our sneak peek at the Disney Fantasy Menus!

Once aboard the Disney Fantasy, you’ll receive your dining schedule indicating the time and place for your evening meals. Plus there’s always the option to order room service, or dine at one of the adults-only venues (check out exclusive Disney Fantasy cocktails here!).

Animator’s Palate

The art of animation is showcased at Animator’s Palate with art-inspired tableware, artwork, and a special “Animator’s Magic” show. The special effects create a memorable meal. Oh, and then there’s some delicious food on the Disney Fantasy Animator’s Palate menu too!

Animator's Palate

On select evenings you’ll even be treated to Undersea Magic; favorite characters from Finding Nemo interact with guests! Here’s a video I made on the Disney Dream Cruise Ship of Crush interacting with some fellow diners!

Enchanted Garden

Escape to the gardens of Versailles at the Enchanted Garden, where Disney magic transforms [Read more…]

Disney Cruise Line: Backstage in the Kitchen!

Disney Food Blog Editor Kim L. reports on some of the behind-the-scenes magic you may never see on the Disney Cruise Line!

On one of my Disney voyages, I had the opportunity to tour the Kitchen Galley aboard the Disney Magic. During this behind-the-scenes sneak peek at culinary magic, I gained even more respect for the dining staff — they make it possible for passengers to dine (around the clock) on delicious cuisine.

Directory of Restaurants - click image for larger version

Disney Cruise Line Backstage Food FAQs

Let’s take a look at how food is prepared — in massive quantities — on the Disney Cruise Line’s Disney Magic Ship!

How do things work in the Galley?
This particular galley anchored between Lumiere’s and Parrot Cay restaurants has a serving team of 225 people.

Among this large staff, there are 7 Chefs de Cuisine, 120 Cooks, 50 Galley Stewards (they keep the prep areas clean), and a 6 person team in the Dish Cleaning area. Plus, a Fish Prep Room is downstairs. Three section heads oversee each area including Veggie, Fish, Meat, and Sauce Prep Stations. While guests are on Castaway Cay, there is a 10:30 a.m. inspection by the Captain.

And I feel [Read more…]

Reader Favorites: Disney Bed Time Snacks

We asked for your fave on-the-go breakfast options and received great suggestions. So we next wondered what snacks help you sleep after a fabulous vacation day!

DFB readers and Facebook Friends shared their Disney bedtime snacks via the Disney Food Blog Facebook page.

Gasparilla Bakery

Bedtime snacks that received the most shout-outs were Mickey Rice Krispie Treats, Popcorn and large bakery-style cookies. Honorable mentions go to Mickey Ice Cream Sandwiches and Mickey Ice Cream Bars.

Mickey Rice Krispie Treat

According to our readers, you won’t be the only vacationer grabbing one of these chewy, gooey [Read more…]

Review: Cabanas on the Disney Dream Cruise Ship

On the Disney Dream Cruise Ship, Disney Cruise Line’s newest vessel, Cabanas is the breezy buffet that’s accessible to guests all day long. Stop here for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or a snack no matter what schedule you’re on!


Guests enter the restaurant through a striped canvas bedecked foyer — just like you’re entering your very own cabana!


You might even see a few of your favorite friends from Finding Nemo here! Check out these gorgeous mosaic tile murals that decorate the space. And watch out for these guys…

Mine! Mine!

Cabanas availability offers a great opportunity for dining (especially if you happen to miss your set dinner time or would like an early breakfast), and offers some [Read more…]