For many of us, there’s nothing better than planning a trip to Disney. I mean, sure…attractions and cool resorts and stuff. But best of all is the FOOD!
And that’s why I dedicate a lot of attention to making plans with picky eaters in the DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining. This is a great time to pick up your copy of this handy guide because it’s just been completely updated for your 2019 travel plans!!
Today, I want to share some of the tips that I’ve scattered through the book on how to deal with the pickiest eaters when you’re in Disney World. Need some help with this subject? Read on!
Picky Toddler? Head to the Buffet!
There are so many reasons why I recommend buffets when you have a picky eater in your party. For starters, nearly everyone is bound to find something he or she likes, due to sheer variety alone!
But buffets are especially great when you have a toddler in tow. Sure, an argument can be made for character meals where service is family style. But I love buffets when I have a hard-to-please preschooler along for the ride because they can share from my plate at no additional charge.
And this is especially awesome when you just know that your kiddo will either eat like a bird or be too distracted by characters or surroundings to actually consume much. Looking for something a bit different? Check out Cape May Cafe for breakfast or Tusker House for lunch. Both offer great spreads as well as character dining.
Unique Meal Suggestions for Kids
Maybe your picky eater isn’t picky because they don’t like a lot of stuff — but because they don’t like the common stuff. That’s where our suggestions for unique meals for kids can come in really handy.
For instance, Sanaa at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge offers delightful, out of the ordinary fare for everyone — even kids. Our little diner enjoyed the grilled chicken at a recent dinner. But the Peanut Butter Turtle, a kid’s dessert, was a hit with young and old alike!
And be sure to pencil in time in Epcot for…just about anything! You have your pick of interesting meals from around the world here. From Moroccan food at Tangierine Cafe to a variety of fantastic Japanese offerings and everything in between.
This park has everything.
Let Your Child Help with Planning
I don’t know about you, but my kid has major control issues (I have NO idea where he gets those…).Sometimes, the key to getting them to join in is empowerment. Let them help with the planning, and suddenly, they’re on board!
When planning — and encouraging a picky child to help with the plans — think about your group or family and the reason for your Disney World visit.
After all, eating in Disney World isn’t just fuel — it’s part of the party! How do you think you and your dining companions will most enjoy celebrating your vacation together? It’s a great question to get the ball rolling on your plans.
For older kids, we have lots of planning tools, like our Brainstorming Worksheet and our section on Making It Personal that will have them excited about the new adventures that lay before them! And don’t forget to check out our DFB Disney Restaurant Search Tool!
Order Sides or A La Carte Items to Make a Meal
Making meals from side dishes is a great way to customize a meal for a picky or small eater. Lots of times, items like Macaroni and Cheese are available as entrees — but they can also be available as a la carte side items as well. (And speaking of my favorite side dish — here’s a recipe for one of Disney’s Best — the Mac and Cheese at Jiko.)
Don’t see it on the menu? Ask your server. Disney restaurants are, for the most part, extremely accommodating. Chances are, if you see it someplace on the menu, you can get a serving of it.
We also like to take advantage of appetizers for meals. Again, this is especially great for guests who are lighter eaters.
When All Else Fails…Child Care!
You have sacrificed signature restaurants and upscale options to keep the peace for the whole trip. And now it’s time to splurge a little! Dolphin Club Reservations are recommendedat the Dolphin Hotel provides childcare in a fun kids’ club for ages 4-12 from 5PM to midnight. and begin at 180 days out.
Other options include independent in-room childcare, for which Disney recommends Kid’s Nite Out. But you can also source other options in the area!
Ready for All of Our Best Tips?
We’ve got TONS of Disney World Dining Tips — including LOTS of restaurant suggestions for your every need — in our big, bold 2019 DFB Guide to Walt Disney World® Dining!
With more than 600 over 20+ years of visits. We’ve done the research for you, so you’ll know just which spots will uniquely suit your family’s needs!
With sample dining itineraries, plus our “Disney Dining at a Glance” section, featuring “Where Can I Find?” options, you’ll have everything you need to plan your best vacation yet. Click here to get your copy of The DFB Guide to Walt Disney World® Dining E-book!
Now we want to hear from YOU! What are your best tips for dining with picky eaters in Walt Disney World? Leave a comment and share below!