DISNEYLAND: GLUTEN AND DAIRY FREE OPTIONS

We recently went on a short trip to Disneyland and California Adventure Park. On our last day of the trip we realized that California Adventure had much more options for food than Disneyland did. Especially with a gluten and dairy free diet. We had the park-hopper pass but didn’t get to use this to our advantage when it came to food since we didn’t fully recognize our options until the end of our trip.

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Upon entering Disneyland, you can easily find this Refreshment Corner store. They have hot-dogs, Mickey Mouse pretzels, souvenir cups, all the quick and easy snacks. But buyer beware! Prices are high, especially if you can’t eat everything on the menu. We purchased a hot dog meal for around $10. This came with a hot-dog, chips, and a drink. We asked for no buns since we are gluten-free and the cashier seemed appalled, as did most of the employees on our trip. I’ve found that if you ask for something out of the ordinary, most people will think you’re odd. With such a large company as Disney, you would think that these things wouldn’t shock the employees because they see so many people daily. But alas, 1 out of 3 workers were confused if we made certain requests.

The cost of the hot-dog remains the same, whether you get a bun or not. This is not a budget friendly option and I wouldn’t recommend unless you were starving, fresh off the airplane, like we were.

  • My rating: 3 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: Outdoor, patio has umbrella’s
  • Price: Hot Dog is $6.99
  • Location: Disneyland, Main Street

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Most restaurants at Disneyland get busy during certain times. During those times, they only accept reservations. We weren’t there long enough to recognize the times so we made sure to reserve lunch and dinner at places that were available. With the Disneyland app we had a lot of trouble getting the reservations in order. Sometimes a spot would quickly be taken if our app took too long to load. You also have to login in to the app every time you open it and that became a hassle.

Keep in mind if you make a reservation, you have 24 hours to cancel. If you have to cancel it, most Disney restaurants will charge you $10 per person in your party.  This is another reason why eating at California Adventure is a much better option. They have several fast food selections near the pier with lots of shaded seating areas.

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Carnation Cafe was one of the restaurants we made reservations for. Somehow we made reservations two days in a row, which was a bummer because there weren’t really any options for our food sensitive diet. You can get a turkey sandwich with a gluten free bun and all dairy removed. It comes with pickled onions, lettuce, tomato and a side of fruit. This restaurant took about 1 hour for our food to come each time we went. I believe this was because of the gluten-free, dairy-free requests. Our waiters weren’t exactly helpful and one of our meals was delayed several times. If you’re in a hurry, this isn’t the place to be.

  • My Rating: I give the meal 4 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: Indoor or Outdoor
  • Price: $$
  • Location: Carnation Cafe

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Specialty Burger from Tomorrowland. This place took forever! I think we had our longest wait for food here and our order was wrong in the end. Everyone else had their meals within 10 minutes, so it was frustrating to wait so long. We also had toddlers that were starving by then.

This burger is pricey, especially when you can’t get all that comes with it. The gluten and dairy free version is an angus beef patty, GF bun, sliced pickles, tomato, apple-wood smoked bacon, grilled onions, and comes with french fries. Beverages are not included in this price.

  • My rating: 3 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: Outside near Space Mountain
  • Price: $12.49
  • Location: Disneyland, Tomorrowland

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Up next, Lucky Fortune Cookery in California Adventure Park! This fast food place caught my eye because they had Thai Coconut Curry. But beware! It had dairy.

I ended up getting a Beef Teriyaki Bowl because the sauce was the only GF and DF sauce they had available. This meal came with veggies and rice but the portion seemed a little small for what I paid and again, beverages are not included.

I also got a children’s meal with this because one of my daughter’s can’t have soy and I assume the teriyaki has soy. The kids meal was a chicken and brown rice box that was so teeny tiny! It came with applesauce, an orange and a small Dasani water bottle. The price was $6.99.

My daughter didn’t really end up eating her meal. I tried to eat what she had left and the rice felt like hay. It was sharp and not soft at all. Then I found a piece of plastic and a piece of wood inside as well. I’m thankful my daughter didn’t eat it!

  • My rating:  2 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: Outside near the pier
  • Price: $13.49 without a beverage
  • Location: Lucky Fortune Cookery, California Adventure Park

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Still in California Adventure, the Wine Country Trattoria. We made a reservation here and I’m glad we did. This restaurant didn’t have the same feel as the other Disney locations (in a good way!) because of the waitresses and waiters. All of them were much more focused on their job and seemed to do well with it. They had an allergy-friendly menu and even gluten free buns to enjoy before the meal!

I ordered gluten and dairy free Spaghetti Aglio Olio. This came with chile flakes and boy did I feel it. I was crying and sweating throughout the whole meal. It was just too hot.

Our meal did take a while to arrive but one of my toddlers was asleep and the other was coloring on a children’s paper menu so it wasn’t all that bad of a wait.

  • My rating: 4 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: Indoor or Outdoor. Outdoor also has heat lamps
  • Price: $17.99
  • Location: California Adventure, Wine Country

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We stayed at the Grand Californian Hotel & Spa and got room service Breakfast on our last day. I was able to get gluten free, vegan pancakes and orange juice.

There may have been other allergy-friendly options but honestly, I like their pancakes.

  • My rating: 5 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: Breakfast in bed!
  • Price: $$
  • Location: Grand Californian Hotel & Spa

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I think everyone gets a little excited when their meal can be Mickey Mouse shaped, especially when you have food sensitivities!

For two mornings in a row we went to Story Tellers Cafe, with a reservation of course, and this was located inside the Grand Californian Hotel. Characters greet you for breakfast and there is a buffet with lots of options, but not too many for gluten and dairy free visitors.

The chef was able to make us gluten free and vegan waffles upon request along with pancakes!

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The strawberry sauce was from the buffet area and was a perfect addition!

The first morning we went, the waitress gave us plenty of waffles because they are fairly small. The problem with this is that you are not allowed to take any “home” with you because of the buffet style setting. After talking with our waitress, I assured her I only wanted to take the Mickey waffles because they were allergy-friendly so she gave me a small box. It was sweet of her to be so understanding!

  • My rating: 5 out of 5 stars
  • Seating:  Indoor
  • Price: $$
  • Location: Story Tellers Cafe, Grand Californian Hotel & Spa

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Ah, the famous Dole Whip! I’ve heard that the vanilla ice cream is not dairy free but upon asking the employees, they didn’t even use vanilla ice cream. This treat is completely vegan! and of course, gluten free.

There are two options for a Dole Whip. You can get it as is, or you can get it as a float. The floats are a little messy with kids because they can’t seem to comprehend how to eat it without spilling. Heck, I couldn’t even eat it without spilling!

I found that it was easier to drink some of the pineapple juice with a straw before anything else.

  • My rating:  5 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: There is no seating, take these on the go!
  • Price: I forgot the price on these, but I believe the float is somewhere near $5.00
  • Location: Tiki Room, Disneyland. There are two lines but they seem to be the same duration

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In almost a hidden corner at California Adventure you can find Clarabelle’s hand scooped ice cream. I purchased a sorbet bar that I believe was mixed berry.

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My youngest loved it! She didn’t want to let it go and paused everything to enjoy this little treat. It melted fast but was the perfect size.

  • My rating: 5 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: There is some seating outside, try to eat on the go!
  • Price: $5.69
  • Location: Clarabelle’s, California Adventure

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I was so excited to see a Sprinkles location because there isn’t one where I live. Upon reading the menu I realized that you could either get a Gluten Free cupcake OR a Vegan cupcake. Not both. I was rather disappointed but the recipe includes cane sugar, which I cannot tolerate. So I couldn’t try a cupcake at all! I did buy two for my daughters to try. One ate all of the frosting and none of the cake. The other ate some of the cake and none of the frosting. I guess it was a dud.

  • My Rating: 1 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: Eat on the go or save for later
  • Price: $
  • Location: Sprinkles, Downtown Disney

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My daughter wanted “ice cream” so we stopped at the Ghiradelli Soda Fountain & Chocolate Shop.  We purchased a small Raspberry Sorbet and my daughter loved it. It tasted similar to the Mixed Berry sorbet bar from Clarabelle’s.

  • My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: Some patio seating, or eat on the go
  • Price: $
  • Location: Ghiradelli Soda Fountain & Chocolate Shop, Downtown Disney

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If you stop into Starbucks, you can find these grab and go treats near the cashier station. They only have a couple of flavors.

  • My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: Some indoor, some outdoor. You can also stash these in your bag if the weather isn’t too hot!
  • Price: $2.95
  • Location: Starbucks, Downtown Disney

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A lot of the kettlecorn I find usually has cane sugar, so I was happy to see this! It’s also non GMO.

  • My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: On the go
  • Price: $5.99
  • Location: Marceline’s Confectionery, Downtown Disney

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I was so tempted by the caramel apples with all the different frills and designs! We were led to these non-dairy apples. Supposedly they only come around on Friday’s, so we grabbed one.  There was no way to cut these, but smacking it against something hard gets the job done. We didn’t bruise the apple but cracked off enough of the candy to try. I somehow missed that the flavoring was cinnamon. My toddler’s definitely couldn’t handle the heat and I barely could as well! After biting into the apple a few times, my teeth turned orange and red. Even after brushing, they were still stained for a few hours. I also managed to get some of the dye on the white blankets in our hotel room and my fingers were stained for a few days. It’s a bit of a mess.

  • My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: On the go
  • Price: $$
  • Location: Marceline’s Confectionery, Downtown Disney

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Last but not least, my newest favorite. The Pixar Pier Parfait. This parfait is a lemon dole whip layered with a blue raspberry slushie and a cherry on top. This was a great combination and the kids loved it as well. The line can get extremely long, especially towards the end of the day. So make this your first stop, if possible. The lemon dole whip is also available in a cup if you don’t want the slush.

  • My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
  • Seating: On the go
  • Price: $$
  • Location: Adorable Snowman Frosted Treats, California Adventure

Thanks for reading about my Gluten and Dairy Free Foods you can get in Disney! Comment below if you have any questions, comments, or concerns. Always be sure to read ingredient lists and ask questions! But above all, have fun and don’t stress!

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