Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Big Question: Eating Kosher at Disneyland

Last Sunday Aba and I took the girls to Disneyland in the afternoon so that we could see the Electrical Parade before it leaves for Walt Disney World. Other than being a bit busy and cool it was lovely. We didn't get to ride a couple rides because the lines were too long so Aba has said he will go mid-week once more before his pass expires.

I've been asked quite a bit recently what we eat in Disneyland. While Disneyland's official policy is no outside food, the security guards tend to look the other way for reasonable amounts of food. We eat a large and hearty meal before we leave (oatmeal, fish and rice) and bring a light meal with some snacks with us. I bring sandwiches for everyone (pb&j or cream cheese and vegetable).Some combination of grapes, bananas, apples, quartered oranges, cucumbers and grape tomatoes go with us. I also bring water for everyone, a juice box for each of the girls, yogurt tubes and string cheese.

I also try to bring one treat item. I've brought bags of chips, cookies, Mickey-shaped Rice Krispy treats and kettle corn. The kettle corn is the most popular treat, but is also the messiest so I don't bring it often. My logic is to not flaunt the brought-in food.

As for what you can buy in the park, there are a number of choices. Many of the sit-down resturaunts have kosher meal choices that you can order off-menu. These are airline-type meals that are sealed up and microwaved for you. The girls and I had these when we went to Ariel's Grotto for a princess lunch. The girls had pizza which they ate with gusto. (I tried a bit and it tasted like a microwaved pizza.) I had a spinach lasagne which I figured would be okay microwaved, but it was awful. A couple of the fast-food stands also have the kosher options. The only one I know off the top of my head is Tomorrowland Terrace.

Most of the ice creams sold are kosher. The one I know for certain isn't is the frozen banana. The Mickey ice cream sandwich, ice cream bar and Dibs are kosher. A number of the candy sold in the candy store is also kosher. There are a number of places around the park with fresh fruit available. Also, in Adventureland they sell Dole pineapple juice which is kosher.

The Dole Whips sold there are one of those things you need to ask about. This is made with Dole pineapple juice and a mix that is frozen. The company that sells the mix claims it is kosher but I cannot get a reply to inquiries as to who does the certification. Without that information my Rabbi has said no. Churros are also a mixed bag. Some people say that if you ask to see the packaging of the frozen churros and it shows certification, they are fine. Many of the ice cream parlors serve Nestle Ice Cream. COR certifies a lot of flavors and some food service options so that might work for you, too.

The Blue Ribbon Bakery on Main Street has coffee and Monin syrups which are kosher. Many places throughout the park sell Coke, Vitamin Water, single servings of milk and Nestle's chocolate milk as well as Lays chips.

As you can see it isn't necessarily easy, but it is possible to eat well at Disneyland while keeping kosher.