Dining with a food allergy can be very tricky and a source of stress when you are traveling. However Walt Disney World has quite a number of options available to those with a food allergy, dietary restriction, or lifestyle choice for their diet. I wanted to share a few of the things that you can do ahead of time to help you in your planning if you do have a food allergy or sensitivity to make your dining plans easier (and safer).
Dining with a Food Allergy at Walt Disney World
With Walt Disney World being one of the most visited destinations in the world, they see millions of guests annually. Accordingly, they have started to recognize that many of us have food allergies and/or dietary sensitivities and restrictions.
The process starts when you are making reservations or going to a dining location, because you will always want to make the cast members aware of your allergies or dietary restrictions so they can accommodate your needs in the best way possible.
If you are calling Disney Dining to make a reservation, let them know you have an allergy so that when you check-in the host or hostess can easily mark your table as having a special dining request. Or if you book a dining reservation online, simply check that boxes that best fit your dietary needs. But don’t worry if you forget to do either of those, because you can always let them know when you arrive at the restaurant. You can also contact the Special Dietary Requests Line for further assistance at 407-824-5967.
If your allergy isn’t listed in the most common ones online or on the My Disney Experience app, there is an “other” box that can be selected and you can explain the specifics to the server when you arrive.
In the last few years Walt Disney World’s restaurants, both table service and counter service locations, have started to provide guests with what they call Allergy Menus. These menus address the most common food allergies, which include: milk (dairy), corn, egg, wheat (gluten), peanut, soy, shellfish, fish, and tree nuts.
Here is an example of the allergy menu I received on our last visit to Narcoosee’s.
Another option at the restaurants of Walt Disney World is to speak with a chef if you don’t see any choices that meet your needs on the Allergy Menu.
When the chef comes to your table, they will ask you more about your food allergies or sensitivities to better discuss all the options you have at their dining location.
If you are dining at a buffet, the chef can walk you through the line and tell you exactly what you can and can’t have. At a table service restaurant if you see something on the regular menu that you’d like, but has something you can’t have in it you can ask your chef, and more often than not, they can tweak it for you. The chefs are great and like to be creative and will even sometimes make completely off the menu custom dishes if you don’t see something to your liking on the Allergy Menu.
It never hurts to ask! Always make sure you let them know what you like, too. My friends and I have been amazed with some of the dishes the chefs have come up with when we let them run wild with a little freedom.
I recommend looking at menus online before you make your reservations to get an idea of what the restaurant offers to make sure they have something you may be able to eat, keeping in mind that items are subject to change. Some of Allergy Menus will be more extensive depending on the restaurant.
When you are On the Go, there are tons of great snacks being added to the parks and resorts for guests with allergies all the time.
Throughout the resort you will find snacks ranging from fresh fruit to other vegan and gluten free items readily available in the Snacks with Character line that was recently introduced.
If you have a sweet tooth AND food allergies or dietary restrictions, a visit to Erin McKenna’s Bakery NYC at Disney Springs should be in your plans. All of the treats in this special bakery are nut free, vegan, Kosher, and gluten free. I’m allergic to pistachios and am gluten free, and I am usually restricted in what I can have…but not here. It is amazing!
The bottom line is don’t be afraid to eat at Disney restaurant because of a food allergy or if you’re vegan or have a food sensitivity. I promise that whatever dietary sensitivity you may have, in the 45 plus years Walt Disney World has been operating there’s a 99.99% chance that they’ve handled it successfully multiple times over.
Doing a little homework before you arrive never hurts, but Walt Disney World will always do their best since your safety is their number one priority during your visit.Follow us for more updates: