Last updated on June 19th, 2019 at 01:53 pm
My very first Disneyland experience was eating dinner at Goofy’s Kitchen at the Disneyland Hotel on the night we arrived.
We went with friends and I was 5 months pregnant with my youngest. The magic hit me hard when the first character I met was Chef Goofy himself! You can read all about our experience here.
May contain affiliate links.So, things came full circle when I decided to do the Goofy’s Kitchen character breakfast as our last stop on our most recent trip to Disneyland with my almost 5 year old and freshly-turned 2 year old!
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Goofy’s Kitchen is located in the back corner of the iconic Disneyland Hotel.
If you are driving to the hotel, you’ll want to park and then go through the main lobby and walk outside through the courtyard. You’ll see the sign for Goofy’s Kitchen character breakfast outside the doors to the restaurant.
Then, head to the check-in desk. It’s kind of tucked behind the escalator.
We got to check in about 10 minutes prior for our reservation. I’m glad we did this because there was quite a line to check in.
We used this time to let the boys play in the car in the lobby!
Once you get to the check in desk, you’ll pre-pay for your meal. This includes tax and gratuity. While this isn’t standard for all character meals, this is how they do it at Goofy’s Kitchen.
Character Photo with Chef Goofy
Like most Disney character meals, you will have an opportunity to do a meet & greet with Goofy in his kitchen before your meal.
The photo op area is located right next to the check-in desk. This is also where you’ll see photos of each character who is appearing at your meal.
After you check in, you’ll line up for your turn to take photos with Goofy. I’d suggest having your kids go first (if they are comfortable) to get photos of them meeting Goofy, and then do a group shot.
There is a PhotoPass photographer there who will take your official photo. But, like all Disneyland PhotoPass photographers, they are also happy to take photos on your camera/phone.
Our family didn’t feel rushed to do photos and Goofy was kind enough to spend some extra time with our toddler who was “in a mood.”
If you are eating at Goofy’s Kitchen on a park day, the most cost-effective way to pay for your photos is by using a MaxPass.
The MaxPass is $10/day and gives you unlimited digital copies of all your PhotoPass photos inside the Parks and at character meals.
Only one person in your party needs to have the MaxPass. You must have a Park ticket for the day you wish to purchase a MaxPass.
Insider tip: If you think your child might be nervous to meet Goofy, walk to the left of the photo area so they can watch Goofy interact with other families. And if your child is still nervous, hold them away from Goofy for your photo.
The Food at Goofy’s Kitchen
Another reason we decided to come back to Goofy’s Kitchen character breakfast is that the food was really tasty!
Normally, I’m not big on buffet meals because I can’t eat a lot in one sitting. But, because of the way this character meal is designed, there’s lots of opportunity to go back for a few more items throughout breakfast.
I love that they offer traditional breakfast items like bacon, sausage, scrambled eggs, eggs Benedict, fresh fruit, frittata, pastries, etc.
But, Goofy’s Kitchen also has dessert pizzas (including a PB & J pizza!) I mean, doesn’t that sound like the best kind of pizza for breakfast?
And of course, they featured the iconic Mickey Mouse pancakes and waffles!
However, they also have non-breakfast items like chicken, fresh vegetables, rice pilaf, macaroni and cheese, which is perfect if you are doing a late breakfast or don’t enjoy traditional breakfast food!
With 5 food stations, there’s really something for everyone!
Every 30 minutes or so during breakfast, we’d hear an announcement that it was time to twirl napkins in the air in anticipation for the Character Parade throughout Goofy’s Kitchen. Scroll down to see the parade in my video!
Then, Zip-a-dee-doo-dah would play and Chef Goofy would lead the characters around his restaurants.
The characters would split up and dance in various spots in the restaurant for the last half of the song. That’s where they would kick off their meet and greets.
Goofy’s Kitchen Characters
While the characters at Disney character meals are known to vary, we saw Chef Goofy, Minnie Mouse, Pluto, Chip and Dale both times we’ve eaten here.
Sitting in the circular area, Minnie Mouse always ended the parade near us and made her rounds in our section.
Then, 5-10 minutes later another character would make there way to us until we’d seen each one.
You do not need to follow the characters around to do photos or autographs (in fact, DON’T do this) and instead wait at your table. They will come to you!
What I liked about the character meet and greet at Goofy’s Kitchen is that we never felt rushed with any of them.
Each character spent quite a few minutes playing with our kids and posing for photos. This was the case even when some of the characters came back to our table for a second time!
When we checked in, a cast member asked if we were celebrating anything special. I let them know that my youngest had just had his birthday the week prior and this was a celebration breakfast.
It was so cool because our server kept coming over and wishing my son Happy Birthday throughout breakfast!
And then, she brought out a cute cupcake on a plate with a Celebration button with his name on it! Several cast members also sang him a little birthday song to top off the morning!
Get a Disney Experience Outside the Park
So, if the thought of taking your kids to Disneyland sounds overwhelming or cost prohibitive, one option is to just do a character meal at Goofy’s Kitchen.
The cool thing is that you don’t need Park tickets and you don’t need to stay at the Disneyland Hotel (or any hotel) to dine at Goofy’s Kitchen.
And what better way to do a Disneyland character meet and greet without waiting in line?
Your family will still get to meet several classic Disney characters while sitting comfortably at your table.
This way, you get an authentic Disneyland experience for a fraction of the cost.
Goofy’s Kitchen character meals are definitely pricier than other restaurants ($39 adult/$23 child for breakfast and $43 adult/$25 child for dinner,) but I think they are worth it to meet the characters!
That being said, there are a few ways to make sure you maximize your experience:
MAKE A RESERVATION
Character meals tend to get booked in advance, so make sure to have a reservation before you go. You don’t want to get turned away at the door because they are sold out.
Get Away Today has discounts on character meals, so it’s a good place to start when looking for Disneyland character meal deals.
Goofy’s Kitchen Hours
Goofy’s Kitchen is open for breakfast and dinner everyday.
BREAKFAST MONDAY-FRIDAY: 7:00 AM – 11:30 AM
DINNER MONDAY-FRIDAY: 5:00 PM – 8:45 PM
WEEKEND BREAKFAST: 7:00 AM – 1:30 PM
WEEKEND DINNER: 4:00 PM – 8:45 PM
Otherwise, you can make your Goofy’s Kitchen reservation directly through Disney up to 60 days before your trip here.
Insider tip: Ask to sit in the circular part of the restaurant if you plan to take photos/video. The lighting is much better there!
DON’T DO IT ON A PARK DAY
Since Goofy’s Kitchen is located at the Disneyland Hotel, you don’t need a Park ticket to dine here.
Take advantage of that and enjoy a leisurely meal without rushing to get to the Parks. Our family spent a full 2 hours enjoying breakfast and meeting characters a couple of times.
It’s a great way to get the Disney experience for less than the price of a Park ticket.
PERFECT FOR FIRST DINNER OR LAST BREAKFAST
Instead, make a reservation for dinner on the day you arrive. That way, you can check into your hotel, relax a bit, and then kick off your trip with a Disneyland character dinner.
As of October 2018, this is the only character dinner available at Disneyland.
Or, make a reservation for breakfast on the day you leave. What better way to get one more touch of Disney than with a Disneyland character breakfast?
GOOFY’S KITCHEN PARKING
If you are eating at Goofy’s Kitchen, you also get 3 hours of FREE validated valet parking or self parking at the Disneyland Hotel.
Just be sure to bring your parking ticket and get it validated at Goofy’s Kitchen!
We found that was the perfect amount of time to check in a few minutes early for breakfast, enjoy all the character breakfast festivities, and still have time to leisurely look through the gift shop at the Disneyland Hotel.
BRING AN AUTOGRAPH BOOK + PEN
All the characters at Goofy’s Kitchen are able to sign autographs. And when they come around to the tables, there is plenty of time for them to sign your book.
And Chef Goofy himself is available to sign autographs when you do your photo with him before your meal!
Insider tip: Bring different colored Sharpies for each character to make your autograph book really stand out!
KIDS UNDER 3 EAT FREE
If you have babies and toddlers, you’ll save some cash at this Disneyland character meal! Kids ages 3 and under eat for free.
Just be sure to include them in your reservation so they will have a seat! Highchairs are available.
Because of the way the character meals are organized, you’ll probably be there 90 minutes to 2 hours in order to meet all the characters and get your photos.
This is a buffet and you might as well get your money’s worth! You can even do a late breakfast (and skip lunch) if you plan it right!
WEAR YOUR DISNEY GEAR
Whether or not you’ll be heading to the Parks that day, remember to show off your Disney style! Trust me, it looks so much better in photos!
It’s a great opportunity to wear customized Mickey ears or those fun Minnie headbands.
KNOW WHAT TO EXPECT
Doing a Disney character meal can be overwhelming for little ones if this is their first time meeting a character.
If you are planning on spending a few days at Disneyland and want to eat at Goofy’s Kitchen, the most convenient place to stay is the Disneyland Hotel.
Located just steps from Downtown Disney, the hotel is a quick walk to both Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park.
They have 2 huge water slides, a water play area, pools, whirlpools, cabanas and more.
Plus each room has special Disney touches that will keep you in the Disney spirit!
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