We accepted the challenge to try to eat at all the SeaWorld Orlando restaurants included in the dining deal. Currently, there are 10 and we cut the list to 8 due to one only offering hot dogs and fries and another only offering fries.
I am about 98% vegan, which means this challenge is a bit different for me. You might be asking, how are you 98% vegan? Well, I eat vegan 98% of the time and about 2% of the time I allow a small amount of dairy to enter my diet, typically in the form of cheese on a pizza or something like that. It’s rare, but today was one of those days where the 2% was going to sneak in there.
Anyway, we received the dining deal for one day when we bought our annual passes, so we decided to see if we could do all the restaurants and review them for those considering buying this deal.
What is the SeaWorld Orlando Dining Deal?
The dining deal at SeaWorld Orlando offers you the change for nearly unlimited dining at the park. It’s $35 for adults and $20 for children. You get to dine every hour and you can choose an entree (usually includes a side), an additional side or dessert and a beverage. There are 10 restaurants currently included in the dining deal and you do get discounts at the restaurants not included.
For us, the dining deal was free when we signed up for our annual pass for Busch Gardens and SeaWorld Orlando. We thought about splitting it up and sharing one dining deal at one park and another at the other, but they don’t allow sharing and we didn’t want to risk it. Anyway, we got our money’s worth and you can see how the Dining Deal Challenge went for us below.
Which Restaurants are Included in the SeaWorld Dining Deal?
- Mama’s Pretzel Kitchen
- Mango Joe’s Cafe
- Expedition Cafe
- Seaport Pizza
- Voyager’s Smokehouse
- Seafire-Famous Fajitas
- Spice Mill
- Captain Pete’s Island Hot Dogs
- Flamecraft Bar
These are the nine they list, but there’s also a Panini Cafe that’s a part of the Dining Deal, too.
My Review of the Food
You can see my review of each of the seven restaurants we hit below. Overall, the food was comparable to cafeteria food, at best and there were not many good choices. It’s not high-quality food and the staff simply doesn’t care. The lines are super slow, they don’t have enough help and getting a smile from an employee is nearly impossible.
Maybe we have been spoiled by Disney, but SeaWorld should be taking a few cues from their competition. Better employee training and about another 20 or so employees on the clock each day would make the efficiency far better and the park a more enjoyable experience overall.
Mama’s Pretzel Kitchen
Maybe the best food we had all day because the pretzels are unique and seem to be homemade.
Me – $15.21 – Plain Pretzel, Fruit, and Bottled Water
Wifey – $14.37 – Cinnamon Pretzel Nuggets, Fruit, and Water
Mango Joe’s Cafe
The salads were pretty good here and seemed to be pretty fresh. I cannot really complain about this spot.
Me – $19.27 – Salad, Pickle, and Water
Wifey – $16.29 – Salad, Apple Sauce, and Coke
Asian Grill in the Expedition Cafe
This Asian food was about the same as what you would find in a mall food court. It wasn’t amazing, but it was decent and sadly, it was better than the meal we had in China at Epcot.
Me – $17.21 – Veggie Stir-fry, Lo Mein, Carrot Cake, water
Wifey – $17.21 – Orange Chicken, Fried Rice, Chocolate Cake, Coke Icee
Okay pizza, but main just dough. Not a ton of toppings or cheese.
Me – $17.54 – Garden Veggie Pizza, fruit and Water
Wifey – $17.54 – Cheese pizza, fruit, and coke
The salad was okay, but my wife thought the baked beans lacked any flavor and the ribs were not good. The BBQ sauce, which I tried on a few fries had very little flavor and should be replaced with something decent. Sadly, the star of the meal here was the fries.
Me – $17.98 – Greek Salad, Baked Beans, and Water
Wifey – $10.49 – Kid’s meal of Spare Ribs and Coke
Super thrilled they had a Chickpea burger for me to try and it was decent. The watermelon was fresh, but the bacon burger my wife got was pathetic. They put a slice of non-melted cheese on it and the bacon is the type of bacon bits you’d put on a salad. It’s a poor excuse for a burger and a waste of an animal’s life if you ask me.
Me – $17.98 – Chickpea Burger (no bun), Watermelon and water
Wifey – $17.98 – Bacon Burger, Sponge Cake dessert, and Coke
The fajitas had me excited all day as we went there first for breakfast (we were too late) and the food smelled good. However, the tofu was terrible and I shouldn’t have gotten it. The veggies were very overcooked and not so great and my wife wasn’t impressed with much here. She did say the cheesecake was pretty good.
Me – $18.03 – Veggie Rice bowl with tofu, Chips & Cheese (for wifey) and water
Wifey – $18.04 – Steak fajita, Blueberry cheesecake, and Coke
NOTE: I wasn’t able to catch individual totals at each place. When I could only get the grand total, I just split it in half between the two of us.
Me – $123.22
Wifey – $111.92
Grand Total – $235.14
Considering this was a free add-on with our annual pass, we just got a heck of a deal. However, I don’t know if it was worth it as we both felt rather sluggish the rest of the day. I don’t recommend trying to eat every hour, but even if you eat a couple meals, a couple snacks and get water and soda all day, it’s a pretty good deal.
My Opinion on the SeaWorld Orlando Dining Deal
While the deal for us was amazing as we got the dining deal free of charge, I will probably never do it again. The food isn’t very high in quality and I, personally, think most people would be better off taking a break from the park for lunch and leaving to hit a better restaurant. There really isn’t enough at SeaWorld to keep you entertained for an entire day without taking a break, so you might as well leave the park and get a better meal.
However, if you have a family with teenagers or you love to eat a ton of food, the dining deal is certainly for you. It only takes two meals with beverages and desserts to add up to the same cost as the dining deal; maybe not even that much. If you plan to spend the entire day at the park, the dining deal is a steal!
If I were to ever do the dining deal again, I wouldn’t do the challenge. Instead, I would show up in time to get breakfast, grab one bottle of water or soda every hour, make sure I get 2 to 4 snacks of fruit throughout the day and I would stop for lunch and dinner. I would choose the restaurants based on the quality and would probably hit the Asian Grill for Lunch and Mama’s Pretzel Kitchen for dinner.
This is just my opinion and I am about 98% Vegan, so I cannot speak to the quality of the meat. I can say, nothing including meat really impressed my wife and she is a bit of a picky eater, but usually not so picky about meat.
Overall, I give the dining deal at SeaWorld Orlando about 3 out of 5 stars. It’s a great value, but the quality of food is very low.