Friday Feast: The Hunt for Healthy Snacks

I set out with the goal of writing this post about healthy snacks in Walt Disney World. I began to scour all of the menus I could find online (a favorite past time of mine) and started to get discouraged. There really aren’t many options out there. Yes, I must admit that when I take a trip to WDW I have a weakness for crisp rice treats, croissants and cupcakes, but now that I’m trying to focus on better nutrition I’m looking for something healthier.

The majority of healthy snacks I found were fruit and trail mix, which can be found at numerous locations throughout the parks and resorts. But really, how boring is that?! Plus, I’m allergic to melons so fruit salads are generally not an option for me. I found a few good options, but they were limited. A surprising find was over at the KRNR Station by Rock’n’Roller Coaster you can get fruit smoothies made with non-fat yogurt in four different flavors. I definitely need to check this out on my next trip!  At Tangerine Cafe in Morocco, they offer side dishes of Tabouleh (bulgar wheat mixed with parsley, tomatoes and scallions), Lentil Salad, and a Tangerine Couscous Salad.  Check out a great review over at Eating WDW.

Lentil Salad at Tangerine Cafe
Tangerine Couscous at Tangerine Cafe

So this was about the extend of my healthy snack finds. This disappointment led to a fun brainstorming session with my friend Estelle on what kind of healthy snacks we would like to see at WDW. Take notice Disney, these are some winners!

An easy fix would be to have unsweetened iced tea at all quick service restaurants and snack stands. Sugary drinks run rampant in WDW.  Soda and sugary fruit drinks are everywhere.  What about an option for those of use who dislike these drinks and would like something more flavorful than water.  There are a few places around the parks to find an unsweetened iced tea, namely the Royal Anandapur Tea Company found in Asia at the Animal Kingdom, and you can also find iced tea machines in most quick service locations at the resorts, which is a plus, but I’d like to grab one to go while touring the parks.

I'd like to walk around the parks with this...

Taking a hint from the KRNR Station in Disney’s Hollywood Studios, why not set up more fruit smoothie stations throughout WDW?  Smoothies are filing and nutritious if done right.  A base of non-fat yogurt or fresh fruit juice make a healthful base and then guests can make their own concoctions.  How about blueberry-banana or kiwi-pear…YUM!  This is a great snack or even dessert option.  Going one step further, include a juice bar with fresh vegetables and fruits.  You know you want that extra energy from a wheatgrass shot to keep you going! 🙂

Fro-Yo!

Fro-Yo.  Plain and simple.  Add this to the various ice cream places around WDW and you have the perfect healthy, warm weather snack.  Then you can add toppings like fresh fruit and even chocolate chips without guilt.  I like the sound of that!  With places like Pinkberry popping up all over the country, frozen yogurt is increasing in popularity for those looking to remain healthy while still feeling like they are indulging.  What a smart way to beat the heat!

All of these things are easy fixes to add in to various areas of all four parks, but a whole entire area I would LOVE to see revamped is the left side of Sunset Boulevard at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.  This is where Anaheim Produce and Fairfax Fair are along with a wonderful outdoor seating area.  Currently the only produce available at Anaheim Produce  is fruit and some carrot and celery sticks.  Disney could support local farms by bringing in fresh, seasonal, local produce to this area.   A great way to give back to the community while providing their guests with healthy snacks.  For Fairfax Fair, get rid of those insanely fatty, high caloric hot dogs topped with mac n’ cheese and turn it into a taco stand.  Fresh corn tortillas, simply roasted meats, a little cilantro and onions, some limes…can it get any better?!  It fits in perfectly with the California theme and provides a great handheld snack.  It would also feed my taco obsession, so that’s a bonus.  Something along these lines…

So those were a few of our ideas.  I’m sure I’m missing some healthy snacks that are currently available in WDW and I’d love to hear from you what they are.  Also, let me know what snacks you would love to see in the World…I can’t wait to hear your ideas!

Happy Snacking!

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5 Comments

  • Have you tried the tacos at La Cantina de San Angel in Mexico at Epcot? The chicken ones are quite tasty. But you’re so right about healthy snacks in the parks. Apart from Fresh A-Peel and the smoothie bar at DTD, I’m having a brain cramp trying to think of one! Some stands at the Studios sell Stacy’s Pita Chips, but no hummus. Oh! Sunshine Seasons at Epcot used to sell Tabouleh rolls – I think they still do! They were wraps sliced like sushi. Of course, you can also get Tabouleh without the wrap at Tangierine Cafe as a side. Soooo… Epcot has some options! 😀

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