The 10 Best Disney Movie Meals of All Time
I have a confession: I’m still a Disney kid. That’s because Disney magic isn’t about the toys, parks, or even the movies (though I’ve watched almost every single one). It’s about finding courage, kindness, and compassion within yourself to rise to whatever challenges that face you. As Cinderella says, “They can’t keep me from dreaming!”
Now that I’m older, these movies can wrap me up in a comfortable blanket of night-in nostalgia. I make an evening of it, often pairing homemade dishes with Disney movies — think souvlaki while watching Hercules or tagine while watching Aladdin — singing along to my favorite songs. (And hey, now that Disney+ is here it’s even EASIER to do this on the reg). Disney movies have no shortage of gorgeously animated food scenes to inspire my home cooking. Here’s 10 of my absolute favorites.
10. The Dinner Scene from Brave
What makes this scene great is how relatable it is. Whether it’s medieval Scotland or today, family dinner remains the same — one parent telling long, drawn-out stories, another trying to hold it together, and kids causing trouble. With a loaded table of venison, sausages, haggis, potatoes, and meats and cheeses, it looks like a feast fit for, well, a king and his family. Plus, who wouldn’t steal those sweet Scottish buns from the kitchen — they’re like cinnamon rolls, but better.
9. Shawarma Stinger from The Avengers
The Avengers, the first team-up Marvel film, came out in 2012. “Stingers,” small scenes at the middle or end of the credits, hadn’t become a “thing” yet — so imagine my complete surprise when the payoff for watching a two and a half hour movie was this stupidly funny (and completely silent) shawarma restaurant scene. Personally, I can’t think of a better meal to cram into my face after a harrowing battle against aliens threatening to destroy all of New York — try making your own version here.
8. Mike and Celia’s Sushi Date from Monsters Inc.
Mike books a romantic birthday dinner for two at Monstropolis’ exclusive sushi spot Harryhausen. While the food itself seems more fit for monsters than for humans — eyeball sushi, anyone? — the scene quickly turns chaotic when Sully barges in with three-year-old Boo in a duffel bag. All hell breaks loose — and lots of laughs of course — in the resulting “kid-tastrophe!”
7. Almost There from The Princess and the Frog
Tiana, like all good Disney princesses, has a dream: To open up her own restaurant, Tiana’s Place. “Almost There” takes us to her dream come true as the dilapidated old mill she’s standing in disappears in favor of a Jazz-Age-themed glitzy restaurant, complete with all kinds of cakes, pies, and of course, gumbo.
It’s not until the end of the movie that we see this vision realized, but it’s one heck of an Art Deco-animated sequence, and a catchy song, too.
6. A Merry Unbirthday Party from Alice in Wonderland
This kooky scene is one of my favorites from this Disney classic. Alice stumbles into a “very curious” tea party with the Mad Hatter and the March Hare.
With a 10-seat table covered in teapots that sing and dance, it’s a curious party indeed. While we learn what an unbirthday even is (why, it’s so unfair there is only one birthday allowed each year!) Alice is treated to a giant pink-iced un-birthday cake that turns into fireworks — quite a spectacular un-birthday if you ask me!
5. Breakfast with Mushu in Mulan
Mulan is undeniably one of the most badass princesses on the Disney roster, but there’s one other thing she’s known for — being late! This blink-and-you’ll-miss-it scene has Eddie Murphy’s Mushu giving Mulan a wake-up call and morning pep-talk, complete with breakfast: Porridge! (“And it’s happy to see you!”)
While Mushu refers to breakfast as porridge for American viewers, it’s more likely a delicious congee — a silky, savory breakfast topped with eggs, scallions, and ginger. If you’ve never tried it for breakfast, don’t wait for a dragon to wake you up in the middle of a military camp.
4. The Diner Scene in The Emperor’s New Groove
The Emperor’s New Groove is still one of the funniest movies in the Disney library, and this scene is one of the best in the movie. Our two heroes duck into Mudka’s Meat Hut (home of the mug of meat) to hide from the villains — who of course stop there to get a meal. A hilarious back-and-forth ensues as Kuzco and Yzma shout different menu items at Kronk, who’s taken over from the chef. The slapstick comedy and ridiculousness of their escalating requests make this one of the funniest food scenes on this list.
3. Ratatouille from Ratatouille
One of the great joys of eating is not the simple act of it; it’s how it reminds us of times past, of moments of joy, comfort, and love. This scene from Ratatouille shows us why cooking matters.
In the world of French fine dining, a traditionally peasant dish like ratatouille rarely lands on the menu. When Remy chooses it for tough-as-nails food critic Anton Ego, he transports him back to the past with his mother in his childhood kitchen. This magic moment is one we can all relate to — and shows how “anyone can cook!”
2. Be Our Guest from Beauty and the Beast
Ooh and aah at the singing and dancing flatware, beer baritones, and more in this culinary cabaret. This scene showcases a wide variety of French food with a dizzying array of music and dancing that makes it one of the best. Try the grey stuff, it’s delicious!
1.Bella Notte from Lady and the Tramp
This iconic scene takes the #1 spot in this list, and for good reason. There’s not much better than old-fashioned Italian spaghetti and meatballs — served of course with breadsticks! With the (puppy) couple serenaded by Tony and Joe, it’s a truly romantic moment, sealed with Lady and Tramp’s famous spaghetti-assisted kiss.
What’s your favorite food scene in a Disney movie?