Anyone who does the Disney College Program understands that it is the most magical experience of your life. You spend around six months working and living at “the happiest place on earth” (any of the many Disney parks and resorts). And during this semester-long internship, you can learn a lot about yourself—one of which may be that it is not a great idea to eat five cornets before walking into Disney World’s wild ride that is Mission to Mars.
Disney has so many options when it comes to places to eat for the many, many meals that one enjoys during the program.
Here are 12 that I insist you absolutely, positively cannot miss out on at Disney World and Resort in Floria.
1. The Grey Stuff
Try the Grey Stuff, it’s delicious. Don’t believe me? Ask the dishes. Straight from the mouth of Lumière (how long has it been since you’ve seen Beauty and the Beast?), the Grey Stuff is a must-have at Be Our Guest located in Disney World’s Magic Kingdom. The Grey Stuff is a cookies and cream mousse complete with edible pears that make any evening a special one.
Be sure to make your dinner reservation far in advance because it fills up quickly. Fun fact: this is also the only place where you can actually meet Beast himself.
2. Cinnamon Rolls from Gaston’s Tavern
During my Disney College Program, there was nothing better than sitting in Fantasyland with one of these cinnamon rolls watching the Wishes nighttime fireworks spectacular. The oversized cinnamon rolls melt in your mouth for a life-changing flavor experience. They are easily the food that I miss most from the Magic Kingdom.
3. The Kitchen Sink
Coming at you from Beaches and Cream at Disney’s Beach Club Resort, the Kitchen Sink is not something that you want to take on alone. It is a legendary dessert, notorious for overflowing with deliciousness. It includes vanilla ice-cream, strawberry ice-cream, chocolate ice-cream, mint chocolate chip ice-cream, coffee ice cream, and just about every ice cream sundae topping the you can think of.
4. Pizza in Italy
Via Napoli in Epcot is perfect for lunch. You can get a pizza big enough to share with about four other people. I also highly recommend trying Arancini—fried risotto balls filled with mozzarella and meat ragù—as an appetizer.
We always stayed in our comfort zones and stuck with a simple pepperoni and cheese pizza, but I’ve never heard a negative word about any of their specialty pizzas.
5. Tusker House Breakfast
If you only do one character-themed breakfast, I suggest this one. There is nothing better than eating Mickey shaped waffles while Mickey Mouse himself comes to your table to say hello.
Their specialty Jungle Juice is a mix of passion fruit, orange, and guava juices. It is the perfect combination of sweet and tart, and it is the perfect way to begin your day in the Animal Kingdom.
The buffet is complete with scrambled eggs, cornbread, coffeecake, chocolate croissants, warm cinnamon rolls, donut holes, orange bread, and lemon-poppyseed bread (another life changing experience), just to name a few of the delicious treats you’ll encounter.
6. Dole Whip
Back in the Magic Kingdom, is it really a trip to Disney World without one of their famous Dole Whips? This treat can also be found at Pineapple Lanai in the Polynesian Resort.
Dole Whips can be vanilla, pineapple, or swirled flavors. These treats can come in floats with pineapple juice or you can just grab a fresh slice of pineapple to go along with it.
7. Croissant Donut
Croissants. Donuts. Cronuts. What could possibly be better? This can be found in the Refreshment Port in Epcot, just before Canada in the World Showcase. The hot, fried, flaky sensation is topped with cinnamon and sugar and will take your taste buds on a journey that you never could have expected.
8. Grilled Strip Steak
Back at Be Our Guest in the Magic Kingdom, this was my go-to dinner order.
Flavored to perfection with a garlic-herb butter and served with green beans and pommes frites (french fries for us Americans), nothing could go wrong with this entrée.
10. Mickey Bar
Mickey bars are something that no trip to Disney World, or the Disney College Program, can be complete without. You can go with the traditional, plain chocolate bar or a specialty variety. Thank goodness they can be found at different carts all over the four different parks.
11. Whipped Strawberry Cheesecake with Oreo Crust
An unforgettable experience is waiting for you at Tony’s on Main Street, U.S.A in the Magic Kingdom. If you’re looking for strawberry, chocolatey goodness, you can find it here.
12. Mountain Melt
Orlando’s Ale House is off Disney property right next to IHOP. It’s also your new after work hangout. Since CP actually stands for “closing person,” you’ll be short on options of what’s open after you close, especially if you work in the Magic Kingdom. Trust me, the Mountain Melt is exactly what you’ll be craving after a long shift. The only bummer is they close at 2 am.
You’ll make thousands of new memories during your College Program and the food will only take up hundreds of them. I hope this gets you off on the right foot.
Have fun making magic.