10 Best Things to Eat at Disneyland and California Adventure

If you arrive at Disneyland and California Adventure via the main entrance, as most people do, you might notice, tucked away to the left of the tram stop, a semi-hidden collection of tables behind a sign that says "Picnic Area." There is no one in the picnic area. There never is.

Nothing is cheap at Disney, including the food. But the company, whose entire lifeblood is making people happy, has landed on an irresistible mix of treats at the two Anaheim parks. Some are better than others, of course, so here they are: the ten best foods at Disneyland and California Adventure.

10 Best Things to Eat at Disneyland and California AdventureEXPAND
Jakob Layman

Corn Dog
Disney's corn dog creates a lot of excitement. Fair enough, as it truly might be the best corn dog in all of existence. There's nothing particularly special about the hot dog itself, but the breading is exceptional. Where most gas station corn dogs (are there really other kinds?) are covered in a soft, squishy and often thin batter, here the batter is flavorful — it actually tastes like real cornbread — and thick. You won't even get to the meat until your second bite. It's also crunchy on the outside, which adds a nice textural element. It's worth trying even if you think you don't like corn dogs. (Says the person who doesn't really like corn dogs.)

Found at: Corn Dog Castle in California Adventure

10 Best Things to Eat at Disneyland and California AdventureEXPAND
Jakob Layman

Churros
Many people's first experience with churros is at Disney. If you eat your first churro and meet Mickey Mouse at the same time, you're going to have a wonderful memory of these deep-fried, cinnamon-and-sugar-coated sticks of dough. Disney's are good, but the secret is to get them fresh out of the fryer. If that means loitering by the stand for a bit until a new batch is made, go for it. You probably need a rest anyway.

Found at: Stands in both parks

10 Best Things to Eat at Disneyland and California AdventureEXPAND
Jakob Layman

Queso Fundido
Often, upscale takes on down-home comfort food are complete failures. Not so with this queso fundido, an item on the lounge menu at Carthay Circle, where true delight can be found watching grown adults wearing Mickey ears decide between cab sauv or pinot noir. The queso is a riff on the classic Velveeta and Rotell (a brand of canned tomatoes and chilies), but made with real cheese (Monterey Jack of course; this park is an homage to California) and fresh vegetables. Since it's devoid of preservatives, you'll have to eat it quickly. Which won't be a problem.

Found at: Carthay Circle in California Adventure

10 Best Things to Eat at Disneyland and California AdventureEXPAND
Jakob Layman

Dole Whip
Dole Whip is just pineapple-flavored froyo, but it's legendary pineapple-flavored froyo. A product of the Disney-Dole partnership, Dole Whip for a long time it was only available at Disneyland. That's no longer the case, but there is still a cult of Disney Dole Whip. Some folks even bring a packet of Tajin seasoning powder from home to sprinkle on their frozen yogurt, but that's a pretty expert-level move. The treat is also available as a float, with pineapple juice. Either way, it's a delightful sweet treat.

Found at: Adventureland in Disneyland

10 Best Things to Eat at Disneyland and California AdventureEXPAND
Jakob Layman

Fried Chicken Dinner
It shouldn't be a surprise to anyone that the food, just like everything else Disney, is pretty expensive. So if you think about it, the fried chicken dinner at the Plaza Inn might be the best bang for your buck: it's not cheap, but it is a huge amount of food. And genuinely enjoyable, to boot! The green beans and mashed potatoes are pretty basic, but the biscuit is quite good, and the three (three!) pieces of fried chicken are crispy outside, juicy inside. And if you snag a patio table near the front, you're in for a pretty decent view of the fireworks.

Found at: Plaza Inn at Disneyland



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