Do we get up early and eat granola bars? Do we buy/order groceries to have breakfast in the room? Do we eat at our resort? At the park? Do we do Quick Service (QS) or Table Service (TS)? These are all questions that are probably conversed as a couple, a family, and/or a group prepare for that magical vacation to Walt Disney World.
“Breakfast is the most important meal of the day…” Isn’t that what we all have been told and heard our whole lives? We, as a family, have used the Dining Plan, not used it, and gone for day trips to Walt Disney World so we feel that we have tried every breakfast option there is available. You have a few choices when it comes to breakfast and we are going to discuss them here so you can analyze and figure out what will work for your group or family. It should be made clear, as well, that your breakfast plan may be different each day of your trip, depending on what your plans are.
Eating in Your Room: There are plenty of grocery services available to those who do not have a car on property. We have never used one, however we have talked with many people who have used these services and they were all satisfied. We have always had a car on property and make sure that we visit the local Super Target to grab a few items (i.e. protein bars, pop tarts (a rare vacation treat our kids get), bananas, cereal, etc). This past trip I purchased a few things at Costco that the kids had sampled and loved, they ended up being excellent breakfast items as well as a late night treat with a cup of coffee. There is a refrigerator in each room now so keeping a small amount of juice and milk is easy.
Eating on the Go: Protein bars, granola bars, breakfast cookies, you name it, the grocery stores have it. Most are easily packed in a suitcase or easily purchased on/near property. You can grab them along with a juice, milk, water, or coffee and head to the parks. You can also count on each resort having a “Grab ‘N Go” section in the food court. The items available at the (on property) resorts include, but are not limited to, a variety of muffins, mini banana nut loaves (very yummy), croissants, turnovers, fruit cups, yogurt parfaits, juice bottles, granola/protein bars, bagels, and some resorts even have breakfast sandwiches. Of course if you have a refillable mug you can grab that wonderful, hot cup of coffee; there is milk, various juices, and soft drinks available at all times as well. Most Grab ‘N Go items are covered on the Dining Plan (DP) as a snack item. Other than waiting in line (depending on what time you get to the food court) this is a relatively quick breakfast choice.
Eating at the Resorts: Food Courts (QS): Each Disney resort has a food court, from the Grand Floridian to the All-Star Resorts and each serves hot and cold items. We have purchased the Bounty Platter (includes eggs, French toast/pancakes, potatoes, sausage, bacon, ham, and a biscuit) in the past and it is definitely plenty of food. There are many traditional breakfast items to choose from in the food courts such as eggs, omelets, pancakes, French toast, Mickey shaped waffles, and plenty of the Grab ‘N Go items mentioned above. Many resorts have their own “special” breakfast items that are limited to just that particular resort. It should be noted that once you get to your food court (depending on what time you rise) it will generally take 15-30 minutes to get your food (in our experience), then calculate the time to eat, clean up after yourself, and get to the bus or car that will transport you to your park. Hot breakfast items are covered on the DP and include the entrée and a drink. If you are on the DP make sure you grab a juice, milk, Gatorade, bottle of water, etc to take with you and fill up your mug with coffee, tea, hot chocolate, or soft drink.
Table Service (TS): Many resorts offer nicer, sit down options for breakfast; several with characters to join along the fun. This option is, obviously, going to take much longer than a Grab ‘N Go Breakfast or even eating in the food courts. We have only done a sit down breakfast a couple times, paying out of our own pocket each time. We do not feel that breakfast is an efficient way of using the DP considering it generally is the cheapest meal to purchase throughout the day. Most TS breakfasts require an Advanced Reservation (ADR) so some prior planning will be in order.
Eating at the Parks:QS/TS: There are several items available for early morning purchase at all the Disney parks. At the Magic Kingdom there is the newly opened Starbucks on Main Street and gigantic, delicious Cinnamon Rolls from Gaston’s Tavern. Both, I believe, are covered under the DP. Epcot, Hollywood Studios, and Animal Kingdom all have various pastries available for purchase first thing in the morning and several choices for TS/Character Breakfasts. ADRs will be required for the TS restaurants and time will be of essence when eating, even QS, meals at the parks. Your breakfast options can be limited in the parks so, if you choose this option, it is best to have a place in mind that you plan to visit prior to your arrival at the park.
Our Favorite Breakfast Items:
Lee: “I think the very best place for breakfast is ‘Ohana at the Polynesian Resort. The POG juice is unbelievable and the Hawaiian Sweet Bread is out of this world. If you have trouble getting an ADR then I suggest Kona Café located next door to ‘Ohana. I recommend either the Macadamia Nut Pancakes or the Tonga Toast, both are fantastic!”
Abbie: “I have a never-ending sweet tooth so my favorite place to eat breakfast is Kona Café at the Polynesian Resort. I have tried the ever-famous Tonga Toast and was highly impressed; however I absolutely love the Macadamia Nut Pancakes. I always ask for the Strawberry Sauce (generally served with the Tonga Toast) instead of syrup. I also love the Pineapple Sweet Bread served at the ‘Ohana Best Friends Breakfast with Lilo & Stitch (who doesn’t love ‘Ohana?), however the rest of the breakfast is just bacon, egg’s, and other traditional breakfast items. My other favorite breakfast item on property is the Crème Brulee French Toast served at the Pepper Market Food Court at Coronado Springs Resort, it is delicious as well.”
Ethan (13 yo):“My favorite breakfast item on property is the Big Kahuna at Kona Café. I like that is has a variety of items all on one plate. I do not get the macadamia nut pancakes with it though, I always ask to just have plain pancakes.”
Emalie (8 yo):“My favorite place to eat breakfast is Kona Café at the Polynesian, they have really good French Toast that is fluffy. I also like the big fruit plate you can get too.”
Lucas (5 yo): “I love the Mickey Mouse waffles and Disney World chocolate milk is the best.”
So apparently looking back it is safe to say our favorite place for breakfast is definitely Kona Café. Let us know your favorite things or places to have breakfast on property so we can try those out as well!
Until Next Time, Lee & Abbie
Lee & Abbie are originally from Greenwood, Indiana but are now located in sunny, warm, Tampa, Florida where they were relocated with Lee’s job last summer. They have three junior Mousejunkies: Ethan (13), Emalie (7), and Lucas (4) who love all things Disney as well. Abbie has always been a Disney Fanatic however Lee didn’t catch the bug until he and Abbie took their first family trip in 2011. They both thoroughly enjoy every aspect of Disney and all the magic it has to offer, especially the food. Lee has become more of a food critic since being married to Abbie who loves to cook and try new foods. Now they spend much of their free time finding new things around the Happiest Place on Earth to try and see.