Top 10 Disneyland Fast Food Joints

Most of the time when I visit Disney, I indulge in a mix of meals. I may book a table service advance dining reservation for one part of the day, and leave the rest to chance — looking to discover new things at the parks’ kiosks and counter service spots.

Top 10 Disneyland Fast Food Restaurants

Today, I’m counting down my favorite places in Disneyland Resort to grab a quick meal!

Disneyland is second to none (yep — even compared to Disney World) at putting together truly outstanding counter service, quick service, and fast food meals. And the one consistent theme that you’ll find in Disneyland counter service spots — a lot of the time, the food and venues feel like table service quality (right down to real plates!)

Let’s get started!

Plaza Inn

The Plaza Inn is legendary for its beautiful atmosphere. Located where Main Street and Tomorrowland intersect, this charming spot has been open forever — and it’s been pleasing guests in search of a good meal all the while.

Even Walt was a fan!

Walt Disney enjoying a cup of coffee at Plaza Inn in 1966

Walt Disney enjoying a cup of coffee at Plaza Inn in 1966

A character meal table service location for breakfast, it morphs into a counter service buffet (sans characters) for lunch and dinnertime.

The Roast Beef and Pasta dishes here are both good choices. But ask most Disneyland food fans what the must-have dish here is, and you’ll get a resounding response: the Fried Chicken! The huge — and I mean HUGE — platter comes with three pieces of Fried Chicken, Mashed Potatoes, a Vegetable, and a Biscuit. I shared this with a friend the last time I got it, and we still couldn’t finish!

Plaza Inn Fried Chicken

Plaza Inn Fried Chicken

Incidentally, you should try and save room for dessert, too. (I know…I know.) When strawberries are in season, I’d definitely recommend the luscious Strawberry Shortcake!

Strawberry Shortcake at Plaza Inn in Disneyland

Strawberry Shortcake

But the Carrot Cake is pretty awesome, too.

Flo’s V-8 Cafe

Dining at Flo’s V-8 Cafe within Cars Land at Disney California Adventure is an immersive experience. As with the rest of the spots in this newest Disneyland Resort section, you feel like you’ve wandered right into the animation!

But step inside the enormous restaurant, and you see all kinds of kitschy fun, inspired by the roadside diners that once peppered legendary Route 66.

Flo's V-8 Cafe

Flo’s V-8 Cafe

The name of the game at Flo’s is the kind of comfort food that you’d expect to find in such spots, with spit-fired meats dominating the dinner menu. There’s also an inventive vegetarian option here — the Veggie Tater Bake!

But it’s Flo’s breakfast that we love love LOVE the most!

For a super sweet start to your day, you’ve gotta try the Brioche French Toast with Salted Caramel Sauce and Bananas. (Dessert for breakfast? you ask? Well, yeah; pretty much! But…bananas!!!)

Brioche French Toast with  Salted Caramel Sauce and Bananas

Brioche French Toast with Salted Caramel Sauce and Bananas

Or, try the option that serves up a delicious Mexican food-inspired twist — the Chicken Tamale Breakfast with Scrambled Eggs and Salsa Verde.

Chicken Tamale Breakfast with Scrambled Eggs and Salsa Verde

Chicken Tamale Breakfast with Scrambled Eggs and Salsa Verde

And be sure to stop back by later in the day for dessert — Flo’s Signature Apple-Cheddar Pie-O-Rama is spectacular!

Apple Pie at Flo's

Pie at Flo’s

Rancho del Zocalo

The beautifully themed Rancho del Zocalo, located in Disneyland Park’s Frontierland, is a feast for the eyes as well as the stomach!

Gorgeous murals and lighting fixtures dominate the walls inside, while a beautiful patio covered with gauzy awnings wins our vote for best place to sit here.

Outdoor seating at Rancho del Zocalo

Outdoor seating at Rancho del Zocalo

Following the pattern of many Disneyland counter service spots, Rancho del Zocalo is counter service with the feel of a cafeteria. Guests order their main entree, and then visit stations to pick up extra courses, like salads and desserts.

The Mexican influenced menu is small, but the ingredients and preparation are always high quality, and a cut above what we think of as fast food. One of my favorite options here is the Soft Tacos Monterrey with Fajita Chicken. (You can also get them with beef.)

Soft Tacos Monterrey with Fajita Chicken

Soft Tacos Monterrey with Fajita Chicken

The addition of Peppers as well as Sour Cream and Guacamole on the side makes this a winner for me. I look forward to having it whenever I have a chance to visit Rancho del Zocalo!

Hungry Bear Restaurant

If you like eating in a treehouse, then I have just the Disneyland spot for you! Hungry Bear Restaurant in Disneyland’s Critter Country recently underwent some renovations and [Read more…]

Disney’s Best Grilled Cheese

It’s been grilled cheese weather for us out there, and I’m pretty sure it has been for many of you as well! So it’s time to put together our list of the Best Grilled Cheese in Disney Restaurants…and I can’t wait to hear your additions!

Best Grilled Cheese at Disney

Grilled Cheese — perfect for dipping!

You know we love cheese around here, and Disney has found lots of different ways to be creative with this particular recipe for success.

Let’s take a look at our favorites in Disney World and Disneyland!

Walt Disney World Grilled Cheese

Before we catch a flight to California, let’s see what’s happening, grilled-cheese-wise, at Walt Disney World!

Tomato Bisque and Grilled Cheese at Beaches and Cream

OK, I’ll admit that this sammich is currently my #1 at Walt Disney World! I tried it (belatedly) in October and couldn’t get enough!

When you’re down for the count and need some sustenance to get through your park touring, trust me and head over to Beaches and Cream at Disney’s Beach Club Resort for their take on a familiar favorite: Tomato Bisque and Grilled Cheese.

Six flavorful cheeses make up the blend on this amazing entry. And buddied up with sourdough bread and super creamy tomato bisque, this is comfort food perfection.

Tomato Bisque and Grilled Cheese Sandwich at Beaches and Cream

Grown-Up Grilled Cheese at Captain Cook’s

A cult favorite among Disney fans, Captain Cook’s at Disney’s Polynesian Resort has a must-try entry into the Grilled Cheese category: the Grown-Up Grilled Cheese.

What’s so adult about this one? Three cheeses — cheddar, Swiss, and Boursin (Boursin!) — melted together on a hearty sunflower bread give this one the perfect marriage of creamy and nutty. It’s lovely.

Grown-Up Grilled Cheese Sandwich at Captain Cook’s

Croque Monsieur at Be Our Guest Restaurant

Let’s head over to Disney World’s newest restaurant — Be Our Guest Restaurant in Magic Kingdom’s New Fantasyland — for our third contender!

Be Our Guest features a table service format for dinner, but during lunch hours you’ll find a more casual line up, including this delicious Croque Monsieur. I’ll have my own [Read more…]

Review: New Menu at Beaches and Cream in Disney’s Beach Club Resort

Recently, we told you about about a new menu at one of my very favorite spots in all of Disney World: Beaches and Cream at Disney’s Beach Club Resort.

With so many loyal fans, many of you expressed concern for the changes and wondered if the new options would measure up. I was right there with you! So does Beaches and Cream still rate as THE place to go for burgers and sundaes at Walt Disney World?

Time to find out! We headed over ASAP to try out the new menu…


Walk into Beaches and Cream, and you’ll feel that you just traveled back in time to that beach side soda fountain of family vacations gone by. From the tall and frosty Orange Sunshine to the flavored cokes, this place will definitely bring back memories.

Don’t you love the beach balls decorating the booths? They’re a completely awesome pop of color and immediately make me smile every time I see them.

Seating and Beach Balls!

Seating is comfortable (snag one of the three booths if you can!). And don’t forget to check out the ice cream cone-shaped lights…

Seating -- Up Close

Pastel musical notes and beach towels romp alongside some of the fun dishes served at the restaurant in this colorful mural.

Mirrored glass shelves host a collection of Coca Cola in glass bottles, as well as an impressive array of glassware. This is a great reminder that you can still get your “soda pop” as a fountain drink, or in a cool “nostalgia bottle.”

Murals and Vintage Coca Cola Bottles

It’s always fun to [Read more…]

Disney World To Serve Up New Kids’ Menu Items Starting February 15th

We’ve written before about dining with your adventurous child in Disney World — there’s lot of options out there for kids who’d rather have sushi than spaghetti!

But there’s even more great news from the Disney Parks Blog! For those of you who have kids who like to break out of the burger-pizza-fries mold once in a while, check out these new additions to Magic Kingdom table-service kids’ menus launching February 15th.

Liberty Tree Tavern BBQ Chicken Pizza with Pineapple (c) Disney

You’ll find a bbq chicken pizza/flatbread with pineapple (for your spice lovers!), or an oven-roasted turkey meal with mashed potatoes, veggies, and fruit at Liberty Tree Tavern. Tony’s Town Square will offer a “steak skewer spiedini” (basically a kebab) with roasted sweet potato [Read more…]

Dining in Disneyland: Grilled Cheese on a Stick, Sort Of…

Today I had quite possibly one of the best ideas I think I’ve ever had in my life.  I am a huge grilled cheese and tomato soup fan, and on this cold and rainy Southern California day, I found myself with a craving for it.

However, I had planned to take my boys to Disneyland after school for a fun rainy day trip.  SO… I came up with this amazing solution: Why not heat up some soup, stick it in a Thermos, bring it to Disney California Adventure, and combine it with a Cheddar Cheese Stick from the Corn Dog Castle?

Tomato Soup from Home!

I picked my boys up from school, and (knowing they’d say yes) I asked them if they wanted to go to Corn Dog Castle for lunch (early dismissal today!). So off we headed, me with my warm soup Thermos in my bag!  (I had no problem getting it through security, by the way.)

Cheddar Cheese Stick "Meal" with Apples from Corn Dog Castle

I ordered the cheese stick corn dog meal, which is basically just a stick of cheese, breaded with corn dog batter, and fried just like a regular corn dog. (Check out my review from the Corn Dog Castle here!)

Melty Cheddar Cheese, Prepare to be Dipped!

…and started dipping! [Read more…]