I love Disneyland! It is truly my happy place. The smells, energy, and environment truly are full of so much fun and excitement. One of the best parts is that being gluten free in Disneyland is EASY! Of course, the first thing that comes to mind is, what is gluten free in Disneyland? Lucky for us, there is plenty!
The last time we visited we only had to deal with a gluten allergy. I didn’t have an issue with dairy at the time and my daughter was still on formula, so we did not have to feed her. The options were plentiful and we ate well at the park.
This time I knew I wanted to have a kitchen to be able to prep snacks and cook some of our meals. We stayed in a hotel for the first two nights and it was rough! I did not feel like myself. Once we checked into our rental home, the first thing I did was go grocery shopping. We had fresh fruit and some of our favorite snacks on hand. There is a Ralphs near by and they have plenty of gluten free options, as well as Ripple milk and Nutpods creamer. I was a happy girl! I am also incredibly sensitive to coffee and as of right now I only know of one brand that I do not react to. We brought our own coffee in our suitcase and I was able to drink that every morning before heading to the park.
We ate breakfast in our rental house every morning except for the morning we had breakfast with the characters at Goofy’s Kitchen. When baking in the rental house I lined the baking dishes with parchment paper. My husband BBQ’d on foil in order to avoid cross contamination. Normally I pack our pans and baking dishes, but since we flew I was unable to do so.
Renting a house was the same price as a hotel, but we had 3 bedrooms and a lovely backyard to enjoy. It was a 20 minute walk to downtown Disney from the house and we drove and took the shuttle the day before checking into our house- walking was faster and easier. We also split the day up because the kids needed a nap in the afternoon. We would often park in the downtown Disney lot, have dinner there and get our parking ticket validated.
My Grandma and Dad stayed in the house with us as well and getting 2 hotel rooms would have been expensive. This was a money saver and it was comfortable and convenient. You can head over to http://www.anaheimvacationhouse.com/ and use code LIVFRE25 for 25% off a house rental and LIVFRE10 for 10% off condos #20 & #24.
This time I knew that there would be more restrictions with dairy being an issue. I found that a lot of the bread in Disneyland contained milk. However, we did eat some bread without any issues and I do not know if there was milk in them or not. My husband ordered us hotdogs a few times at Award Wieners in California Adventure. I do not think he mentioned the lactose intolerance when ordering. My daughter however ate it without any issues, so if there is milk it must be a trace amount.
So, What is Gluten Free in Disneyland? Here are the places we ate at Disneyland…
Goofy’s Kitchen (Paradise Pier Hotel)- This is a buffet, so there is a ton of gluten everywhere, but the chef came out and explained everything that was gluten free and dairy free. He also made us allergen free waffles and pancakes. The kids gobbled them up. The waffles are amazing and shaped liked Mickey Mouse. We could also eat the eggs, bacon, sausage, fried potatoes, and fresh fruit. They had a yogurt bar too if you can have dairy. We left full and the kids loved the experience.
Award Weiner’s (California Adventure)- This dog stand always has a long line, but serves up some good hotdogs. I do not know if the buns are dairy free, but the French fries are fried in a shared fryer, so I did not have any.
Update: My son and I are allergic to gluten. After eating here at our last trip we both didn’t feel great. I would not eat here again.
Wine Country Trattoria (California Adventure)- This place was so delicious that we ate their twice. Everyone talked about how expensive it was, but honestly the prices were incredibly comparable to every other place we ate while at Disneyland. They served fresh gluten free bread and had several delicious dishes to choose from. I had pasta with Bolognese and a delicious salad. The wine selection is great and all the wine I tried was delicious. This is hands down my favorite of all the places we ate at.
Update: This is hands down my favorite restaurant in all of Disneyland.
Rainforest Café (Downtown Disney)- There are only a few selections for gluten free and dairy free, but the pasta I ordered was good. The kids got kids meals, one chicken and one steak. My husband got the ahi tuna fish tacos (not dairy free) and he loved them.
Update: Rain Forest Cafe is no longer open
Haggen Dazs (Downtown Disney)- We arrived just in time to enjoy the 2 dairy free flavors that Haggen Das rolled out. They both are gluten free as well and the kind worker went in the back to get clean scoopers. The chocolate one is AMAZING!
Update Haggen Dazs is now Salt & Straw. They have several gluten free vegan flavors and a gluten free cone, but I did not feel well after eating the cone.
Carnation Café (Disneyland)- Not much to choose from here if you are gluten free and dairy free. I basically got 2 eggs, some sausage, and a piece of fruit. They have allergen free waffles and pancakes. My husband got the gluten free eggs benedict, but its not dairy free. The food also takes a long time to make, but its really the only breakfast option in Disneyland.
Tortilla Joe’s (Downtown Disney)- Several options here. I recommend starting out with table-side guac. I ordered tacos and they were good. Always tell your waiter about your allergies and ask about the marinades!
Dole Whip (Disneyland)- These are found in Adventureland and there is always a line- for good reason! They have whips and floats now, I recommend getting one of each. They are gluten free and vegan and absolutely delicious!
Holly Jolly Café (Disneyland)- The bread is not dairy free here. If you are just gluten free there are plenty of sandwich options. I got fruit cups and that was it. They also have gluten free cookies and brownies, but again not dairy free.
We also ate at the In ‘N Out Burger not far from the park once. I didn’t feel great after eating it, so it could have been cross contamination, or just the traveling.
Gluten free chocolate bars- You can find allergen free chocolate bars made by Enjoy Life in the store across from Soaring in California Adventure and in the candy store in Downtown Disney! The also have the Wow brand of cookies, but those contain dairy.
Rancho Del Zocalo (Disneyland)– They had a menu with what was safe and we were able to eat tacos with rice and beans minus the cheese.
Lucky Fortune Cookery (California Adventure)– I had a rice bowl with curry and let them know my allergies. It was good.
Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen (Downtown Disney)- They had a gluten free menu and were kind and helpful. I had salmon, potatoes and veggies while the kids had fish, steak, noodles, and veggies. My son kept asking to go back.
Galactic Grill (Disneyland)- This was our lets grab a bite fast go-to. You can order ahead on the Disney app and order gluten free buns and tell them its an allergy. They had a dedicated fryer and the burgers were great.
Steakhouse 55 (Disneyland Hotel)- This was the best breakfast we had while at Disneyland. It’s fancy, but cheaper than character dining. They have excellent service and we really enjoyed our meal. I even had a mimosa.
Donald’s Seaside Grill (Paradise Pier Hotel)- This was another character dining with ok food. It’s pricey and the kids loved it. They have allergy free pancakes and waffles to order and we were able to get eggs, bacon, potatoes (I think) and fresh fruit from the buffet.
In conclusion, it is very easy to eat very well in Disneyland. You will want to plan ahead, make reservations, and pack snacks to avoid a hangry situation. There are two amazing apps that I recommend you download- The Disneyland app and the GF For Disney Dining app. These will save you soo much time and frustration.
The GF Dining app tells you basically everything you can eat at all of the Disney restaurants. Its incredibly useful.
The Disney app helps you to make reservations, see what is happening all day in the park, observe fast pass information, and order pictures that are taken. I was on the app a lot! It even tells you the wait times for all of the rides- AMAZING!
I hope this helps you on your next magical Disney adventure navigating the gluten free food in Disneyland. We are already counting down to the next trip. What are your favorite places to eat in Disney?