Pack your own lunch ideas for Disney

Discussion in 'Budget Board' started by Run_DMC1991, Jun 18, 2017.

  1. Run_DMC1991

    Run_DMC1991 Earning My Ears

    Jun 18, 2017
    We are currently planning a budget friendly trip to Disney for next year. Driving down, staying off site, bringing our own food. The most expensive part of the trip with be the tickets for Disney.

    My kids will be 8, 6, and 2.5. I'm struggling with ideas of lunch to pack that will not need refrigerated or heated up that are kid friendly. I plan on freezing water bottles to use as ice packs, so things can stay somewhat cold, but would still need to be non-perishable.

    Any ideas would be helpful. :)
  2. earfulofmagic

    earfulofmagic cranking out magic and assembly line whimsy

    May 16, 2017
    Technically this is semi-perishable, but if you store these with your ice bottle packs (my mom always did that too! :) ) they'll be fine at least until lunchtime, and can go without refrigeration for a while -- hummus w/veggie wraps. Get your favorite tortilla, pita, lavash etc. to wrap, spread hummus on them, and chop/slice cucumbers, carrots, tomatoes, feta, olives, whatever to go inside. I make variations of these when we go for day hikes, or for the first day of camping.
    We've liked and used these wraps a lot, lately:

    Paired with some clementines or apples, they're pretty delicious and portable meals!

    How do your youngins feel about canned tuna and crackers? :duck:

    Picky eaters can survive on PB&J (or almond butter and raspberry jam, so many varieties!) for a few years :laughing: along with carrot sticks, apples, bananas, nuts, etc.

    You can also bring string cheese, which will do fine with the ice bottles, or on their own for a while after the ice is gone.
    grumpy28 likes this.
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  4. kymom99

    kymom99 DIS Veteran

    May 24, 2008
    Whatever kinds of fruit they like in a plastic food storage container, cubes of cheese, crackers, pepperoni, etc. Applesauce cups or those pouches they make now, beef sticks, bagels with peanut butter. If you have them stored with an ice pack they wont spoil.
  5. Disney_traveler

    Disney_traveler DIS Veteran

    Jul 31, 2016
    I've seen people do some kind of quinoa/couscous in individual sandwich ziplocks.
  6. danielocha30

    danielocha30 DIS Veteran

    Jul 10, 2014
    you can pack all sorts of crackers, fruits, and veggies and complement by buying one or two hot entrees to share, remember you don need to order that burger/sandwich with a side of french fries, many disney restaurants have very nice size/priced side items like soups or salads, sharing and knowing what to order together with anything you will bring is a effective way to do Disney in a budget
  7. twoolle

    twoolle DIS Veteran

    Mar 10, 2014
    Frozen gogurts are fun!
  8. dreiwhit

    dreiwhit DIS Veteran

    Mar 12, 2016
    We've packed our own lunches before. What we do is to make them in the mornings, just before we leave to go to the parks. Mostly cold lunch meat and cheese sandwiches, chips and cookies. For the 4-5 hours between when we make them and when we eat them, refrigeration isn't necessary. In fact, it reminds me of eating a sandwich for lunch when I was in high school.

    One of the off-site condos we stay at is next door to Subway. Occasionally, we'll stop by on our way to the parks and get a sub sandwich for everyone.
  9. krysenchips

    krysenchips Mouseketeer

    Apr 28, 2013
    We have always frozen Uncrustable sandwiches and put them in lunches. They freeze really well and are usually defrosted to a perfect temp and consistency by early afternoon.
  10. pigletto

    pigletto DIS Veteran

    Oct 27, 2007
    I've seen some recommendations for a cooler backpack. I've never seen one, but I think I will look for one for our August trip. I'd love to have it for snacks and frozen water bottles. I can't stand the tap water from the parks and I'd like to have a few healthier and less pricey options for when we get the munchies, and save our food money for actual meals. I'd likely bring things like fruit and nuts .. maybe some hummus and cut up veggies, raisins , a few granola bars. Just enough to hold us over to an ADR or until we got back to the condo.
  11. Madhead22

    Madhead22 Earning My Ears

    May 2, 2017
    Yes ive done the crustables thing and it worked awesome, I also take a toaster and try and make breakfast as desirable as possible to get the kids to eat more in the morning. If you go shopping try the winndixie it's sorta hidden and seems like that older supermarket in your neighborhood that is hanging on vs gigantic corporate stores. I recall buying items from deli that were marked for quick sale.(picnic chicken,premade hogies, salads), I would take them to park and the food held up well. Chicken was the best we ended goin there quite a few times.
  12. Madhead22

    Madhead22 Earning My Ears

    May 2, 2017
    One thing I did this time and it worked awesome was instead of putting my cloths in suitcase I used normal sized cooler (thoroughly cleaned of course) . I still packed suitcases for kids and wife but my stuff went in cooler. When arriving on property rotate clothes to dresser or hang ,then buy whatever drinks your kids enjoy load it up with free ice, kids go in fridge less thus stays a little cooler. This is only when You drive as you would look like a nitwit getting on plane with large cooler. Haha, but it really worked great.
  13. LovesTimone

    LovesTimone DIS Veteran

    Apr 29, 2009
    With the heat and humidity I would caution you to really think it through on what you are bring for lunch. No-one wants tummy troubles on vacation.

    A soft side cooler works well, and can easily taken into the parks, if you have a large family I would suggest 2 small coolers just for the weight, and you will have a stroller with you for the little one. So this works to your benefit. I have these thin flexible gel ice packs that I used when I was working, and we use them on the boat in the cooler and they work great. You might want to bring along some plastic container to keep things in.

    I love single serve items when we travel, I start stocking up on them so that I have a big variety to put in the day bag. There is so much out there to choose from.

    I am just throwing this out there, if you are coming next year, you might think about staying in a value or moderate resort and visiting when free dinning is offered. You can research when free dinning is typically offered and work from there. One of the reason that I suggest looking into this is that some friends were going to stay off site, but her DH wasn't looking at all the extra's and adding in travel time. He really wasn't looking at the whole picture. Just that they could get a room for 189.00 plus tax a night at the Hilton, but did not take into account the parking daily at the hotel which was around 20 dollars a day self park or 25 valet, or/plus the resort fee daily which was I think was around 31.00.Then adding in the gas to and from the parks, and the time you spend going back and forth and waiting in traffic, and what if someone needs to rest, forgets something it not just a quick bus ride back to the resort, or it so hot out you want to cool off in the pool. So then they were at 240.00 plus tax... Then it did not seem like such a great deal, they ended up at CBR for around 229.00 plus they got free dinning. I am not trying to discourage you just make sure to add in the extras when doing the budget, and check and recheck all the time for the best deal.
    aliceindisneyland likes this.
  14. teller80

    teller80 DIS Veteran

    Apr 13, 2012
    I see you're new here - :welcome:.

    There is a thread that discusses Disney gift cards on the budget board and how to get them at a discount. It's long, but without much work I've saved an average of 20% on mine. Many people save more. Shockingly, it's called Disney Gift Card Deals haha. I recommend starting at the end and working backwards, since much of the first part of the thread is probably outdated.

    Another suggestion for lunch is cereal, you can bring the bag only and buy milk. Serve with fruit and a bagel. Will you be driving to the theme parks? If so, you could leave a cooler in your car and tailgate it. I don't know if it's possible at Disney, but at Cedar Point I would specifically look for a parking spot near some green space.

    Hope you enjoy your trip!
  15. kaytieeldr

    kaytieeldr Post hoc, ergo propter hoc

    Jun 11, 2005
    I'm confused. Don't Uncrustables start out frozen?
    Mm, if a room doesn't come with a toaster, it's probably safer (i.e. less of a fire hazard) to use what's available in the resort's food court, no? Less convenient, but safer.
  16. Kim Gillihan

    Kim Gillihan Kluvdisney

    Feb 8, 2017
    We did this last summer... I got a soft side cooler that was a back pack, or you can store in locker, or you can use a stroller to carry it! We made big hoagie sandwich and pre cut and wrapped in saran wrap, took chips, water etc.. worked great! You could do any sort of sandwich you want, of course pb and j is always awesome! Yummy cold sandwich is so refreshing instead of burgers etc.
  17. Disney Frenhines

    Disney Frenhines Mouseketeer

    Aug 28, 2013
    Take your own bread rolls into the park and treat yourselves to a turkey leg and fill the rolls with the meat, a good way of sharing that huge snack.
    tina.tina likes this.

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