Reviewed, ranked, and highly recommended. If you're a Disney neophyte, here's your can’t-miss checklist.

By Deanne Revel
Updated April 17, 2020

Editor's Note: Disney World is set to reopen on July 9. Read our story, Here’s Everything You Need to Know About Dining at Disney When the Parks Reopen, to learn more.

Credit: Courtesy of Disneyland

Courtesy of Disneyland

If you haven’t been to Disney World since you were a kid, you might be surprised to learn how big a deal the food there has become. Food and Disney are HUGE (churros, anyone?), and it can be challenging to keep up with the latest culinary items rolling out from the parks and resorts. Do yourself a favor and tuck this must-try list of the top five Disney World foods into your virtual suitcase. And do not—repeat, do NOT—leave Orlando until you’ve tried them all.

1. Dole Whip

If you come to Disney World and only eat one thing, it has to be Dole Whip. The frozen treat has earned a following so big that Disney Parks created a line of apparel and accessories inspired by the dessert. It’s not fancy. In fact, it’s just frozen pineapple squeezed into a soft serve spiral. But its simplicity is part of its appeal. Park guests, especially vegans, are often surprised that it’s not actually ice cream. The texture isn’t like sorbet at all. As if by magic, it’s just as creamy as dairy soft serve. Love pineapple? Up the ante and make it a float with pure pineapple juice. You can find the Dole Whip at Aloha Isle in the Magic Kingdom or over at Pineapple Lanai at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort.

2. Bread service at Sanaa

One of the best things about Disney is how easily you can find food inspired by cuisine from around the world, from celebrity chef Masaharu Morimoto’s Pan Asian menu at Disney Springs’s Morimoto Asia to authentic Neapolitan pizza at the Italy pavilion in EPCOT. And one of the best places for appreciative eaters is Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. The resort’s Sanaa restaurant is inspired by African and Indian flavors, and no meal is complete without the signature bread service. The Indian-style starter comes with a choice of five different breads, from naan to kulcha to paneer. And the bread is served with nine accompaniments: cucumber raita, roasted red pepper hummus, mango chutney, tomato-date jam, tamarind chutney, coriander chutney, garlic pickle spread, red chile sambal, and spicy jalapeño-lime pickle spread.

3. Tonga Toast

It might sound sacrilegious to suggest you eat anything other than a Mickey Mouse waffle for breakfast, but there really is something better. Over at the Kona Cafe at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort you’ll find the infamous Tonga Toast. But it’s not really fair to call this toast, as each “slice” is actually like a personal loaf of bread. These massive cinnamon-sugar blocks are then fried, stuffed with bananas, and topped with coconut flakes and whipped cream. Even if you’re not a morning person, you’ll want to get up for this.

4. Ronto Wrap

Disney World’s new land—Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge—has whipped up an appropriately out-of-this-world array of bites, from purple popcorn that tastes like spicy Fruity Pebbles to a cookie with a Bantha horn made of icing. But the most popular item is the Ronto Wrap at the quick service station Ronto Roasters. Featuring a pork-slaw combo drizzled with a spicy peppercorn sauce and wrapped in warm pita, the wrap earned immediate praise on social media when the land opened. Pair it with the Meiloorun Juice mocktail for a truly galactic experience.

5. Gideon’s Bakehouse Chocolate Chip Cookie

If you’re surprised to see a chocolate chip cookie on this list, understand one thing: There is nothing basic about this cookie. For starters, it’s half a pound! Secondly, you can snag it at Disney World without theme park admission. Over at Disney Springs (Disney World’s outdoor shopping center), the Polite Pig serves up some of the best barbecue in the South, but they also sell cookies from Gideon’s Bakehouse. If you can’t make it out to the Orlando bakery, you can at least try their classic, giant chocolate chip cookie at Disney. And if you’re #TeamChewy when it comes to cookies, this one’s definitiely for you. There’s also no such thing as scrimping on chocolate morsels with these because the cookie-to-chip ratio is an even 50/50.