A question that surfaces quite a bit in our Get Down to Disness Facebook Group is whether or not Walt Disney World is an allergy free environment for your family’s vacation. The answer to this a resounding YES! Absolutely! Disney’s superior level of customer really presents itself in the stories that we hear of guests that traveled once fearing how seriously their allergies would be treated and how difficult it would be to navigate on their vacation. We hear so many positive accounts of how Disney bent over backwards for guests with allergy concerns, but yet, we aren’t surprised. It IS Disney World we are talking about after all.
Our number one piece of advice when dining in Disney World is to share your concern with Cast Members and servers at any restaurant you are dining at whether it be a food cart, a quick service, table service or a Signature dining restaurant. Often times there are separate allergy friendly menus available (think Udi’s gluten free buns for your burgers or hot dogs) or at a table service/buffet restaurant a Chef will come to walk your family through the menu and/or buffet line and help you navigate through the food options. Special requests are never treated as a nuisance or inconvenience, the staff at Disney eateries truly want your dining experience to be safe, worry-free and delicious.
However, sometimes you just want to be able to wander the parks and not have to worry about anything, especially your allergy. When you are tired and ready to just rest with a delicious snack you just want to make it simple. We have complied a list of our TOP TEN favorite gluten-free snacks across all of Walt Disney World. These are no-brainers, and a great to refuel while you rest those feet and settle in for some prime people watching.
1-LeFou’s Brew at Gaston’s Tavern
Found in the (newish) Fantasyland at Magic Kingdom this family friendly, fun “brew” is so refreshing you may quickly regret the decision to share it with your beloved family. (I know I did!) It’s such an interesting blend of flavors, on paper it sounds weird, but it’s an amazing flavor combination. Take frozen apple juice, add a hint of marshmallow and top it with some passion fruit foam and you have THE funkiest drink you will have your entire trip.
2-The iconic Dole Whip at Magic Kingdom & Animal Kingdom
You would be hard pressed to find a Disney “best of” snack list anywhere that doesn’t contain the iconic Dole Whip. (Or my own preference, the Dole whip Float, add pineapple juice and cue the drool.) Located in the Adventureland section of Magic Kingdom at “Aloha Isle” the Dole Whip always draws a crowd. The Dole Whip is on nearly every vacationer’s trip bucket list. If pineapple isn’t your jam, there is a frozen, non-alcoholic Pina Colada also at the Aloha Isle that is amazing. (And now that drinks are allowed into the Tiki Tiki Room this is a must-have! Tropical feeling drink, singing birds AND air conditioning, lead the way!)
Popcorn and their adorable collectible buckets are big business at Walt Disney World Resorts. Popcorn carts can be found just about everywhere you turn at all of the parks. Popcorn is a great, satisfying and gluten free snack that is a quick, filling, portable treat that can be munched on while you try to beat the crowd to Space Mountain. Walt Disney World’s popcorn is also dairy-free and vegan!
4-Mickey Head Premium Ice Cream Bars
I dare you to take a trip to the parks and be able to pass up an opportunity to snag one of these delicious and gluten free snacks! Few things taste better and are more refreshing in the hot Florida sun than a Mickey Head Ice Cream bar. Although they may be gluten free they certainly aren’t mess-free. Grab loads of napkins and chow down fast, they can melt in record time! (Less time to share, chow down!)
5-Soft Serve Ice Cream at Auntie Gravity’s
Speaking of ice cream, the bars may not be everyone’s preference. I am a soft serve kind of gal and I can’t resist a cup of chocolate vanilla swirl soft serve at Auntie Gravity’s in Tomorrowland. By avoiding the cone I am able to remain gluten free and am less likely to end up wearing my yummy dessert.
6-“Snacks With Character”
You may or may not have noticed that throughout many retail locations there are LOADS of portable, packable snack bags that can satisfy whatever you are craving, sweet, salty or both packed in together! You can find “Snacks With Character” brand cookies, brownies, trail mixes, energy bars and they are gluten-free. We love to grab a few and stash them in our park bag for when the kids get “hangry” while waiting in the infamous “Peter Pan’s Flight” stand-by line.
7-Erin McKenna’s Bakery NYC’s goodies
Located in Disney Springs, Erin McKenna’s Bakery NYC is loaded with vegan and gluten-free baked cookies cupcakes and other pastries. Everything is SO amazing you’ll think that you fell off the gluten-free wagon for sure! They also have an area of vegan soft serve and gluten free toppings to smother that frozen goodness in! It’s worth the trip to Disney Springs for sure, and gives you a great excuse to do some shopping!
8-Goofy’s Candy Company Gummies
Gummies are hard to resist, even better they won’t melt into a hot mess in your park bag. These are great to munch on in line, poolside at your resort or a great gift for the folks back home. (And is truly just a snack credit, a souvenir that is a snack credit-sign me up!)
9-“Marshmallow Dream Bar” at Starbucks
I’m a sucker for a good, old fashioned rice crispy treat. I love the simplicity of it and something about being in Disney with a beloved treat from my childhood is just perfection. I’m instantly a knobby-kneed seven year old again. Many of the Starbucks locations around the Disney Parks (including Main Street USA) has the “Marshmallow Dream Bar” it’s a gluten free rice crispy snack that is every bit as delicious as the ones you remembering at every kiddie bake sale of your childhood.
10-Cricket Flour Chips
Oh yea, I REALLY have your attention now, don’t I. Okay, maybe this isn’t THE most delicious gluten-free snack you’ll find at Disney, but it’s certainly a conversation starter. And much like the famed “Beverly” soda at Epcot’s “Club Cool” it’s one of those Disney trip rites of passage, much like these Cricket chips at Animal Kingdom’s Terra Treats carts. (A great allergy friendly treat cart that even serves gluten free beer…you know, to wash your cricket chips down with.) Go ahead, we dare you.
What ae your favorite gluten-free or allergy-free treats at Walt Disney World? How do you plan ahead and make sure your trip is worry-free?