One of my favorite parts of experiencing the World Showcase is getting to eat the wonderful foods from around the world. Each Pavilion has foods, drinks and desserts that instantly transport you to another place. And Christmas is no different as Epcot celebrates the Holidays around the World.
Below I’ve listed some of the Christmas Treats from each of the 11 pavilions of the World Showcase. Now while I typically don’t eat sweets when I’m home, vacation time is fair game for all sorts of goodies. My Epcot snacking tip is this: take the treats that are easily packaged and save them for the hotel. It extends the enjoyment over a longer period of time, and it helps you save room for the rest of the goodies you’ll find around the lagoon.
When we head to Epcot Canada is usually the first stop on our trip. The reason is mostly motivated by the fact that Fish and Chips is our go to quick lunch followed with pastries and ice cream from France and Kakigori from Japan (we go to Morocco for dinner). During the holidays Canada becomes a snack stop in its own right for its Pecan Maple Bark. The saltiness of the Pecans blends perfectly with the sweetness of Canadian Maple sugar (if you’ve never had Maple syrup in its sugar/candied form you have missed out).
The holidays ate the Great Britain pavilion aren’t marked with many foods, but they do have a fantastic Hot Applejack Cider available at the Rose and Crown beer stand. The drink is a hot apple cider mixed with whisky and spices and perfect on a cold evening walking around World Showcase Lagoon.
When you’re done head over to Twinnings Tea for some classic British cookies…er…biscuits and candy. Most of these can’t be found in an American store but they are worth a taste!
France has two incredible Christmas food stops: L’Artisan des Glaces and Les Halles Boulangerie and Pattiserie.
L’Artisan des Glaces
This little Ice Cream shop sits where the original Boulangerie et Pattiserie sat, the later being moved to a much larger spot to accommodate guests and provide more choices. When visiting this ice cream shop I usually get the Caramel fleur de sel, which is a Caramel flavored ice cream seasoned with the first salt crystals to form when sea salt is harvested. Its absolutely delicious. But during the Holiday season the Ice Cream Shop has a couple of extra treats. The first is the Gingerbread Ice Cream which is absolutely perfect. It’s creamy and sweet with just a hint of spice. This year the shop also added Peppermint Macaroon sandwiches. If you are having trouble imagining this treat, think of an ice cream sandwich and a French macaroon put together, add in that peppermint flavor and voila…perfect Holiday treat. Can’t decide which one to eat? Why not try both?
Les Halles Boulangerie and Patterserie
This pastry shop can be found up the street from L’Artisan des Glaces in the back room of the gift shop. The space features two identical lines filled with French pasties and Christmas treats both sweet and savory. My focus for tonight are the tiny bouch du noel’s or traditional Christmas Log cakes. A part of the Holiday’s Around the World Celebration, these typically Yule-log shaped cakes are an integral part of French Christmas tradition. While usually large enough for the whole family to enjoy the tiny Epcot versions are enough for one or two people to share. Or if your family is like mine you’ll get multiple menu items and share them all. Either way this is a Christmas must-do from the France Pavilion.
While most of the food options in Morocco stay the same through out this season, you will find that the Juice bar will serve up Walnut Honey Baklava during this time. For the rest of the year you can find this treat as a dessert in Marrakesh.
Japan doesn’t add a sweet treat to the menu during the holidays, but it does add a savory option. Teriyaki Chicken Karaage can be found at the Kabuki Café (Where I usually get my Kakigori, or Japanese Shaved Ice). I haven’t had this treat yet, but the recipe calls for ginger so I’d suggest sticking around and ordering a Ginger Ice Cream for when your finished!
The Sugar and Spice café can be found to the right of the American Adventure. There you can buy Gingerbread, sugar or chocolate chip cookies, and hot cocoa before you go to meet Santa Clause himself. Or you can even stock up on goodies before catching a showing of the Candle Light Processional. And the closer you get to Christmas the chillier the parks tend to be at night, so make sure you have that cocoa on hand. (And if that doesn’t warm you up there’s a sweatshirt shop right there as well, I bought my favorite jacket just before a show last year.)
This is also the place to find the peppermint bark. Its layers of dark and white chocolate with pieces of candy canes sprinkled into the mix. You can buy this seasonal treat by the bagful.
An Italian Christmas wouldn’t be complete without sharing a Panettone around the table. These bread-like cakes originated in Milan and aren’t overly sweet. You can buy a slice at the Gelato Stand in the Italy Pavilion. But if that isn’t enough for you then head into the shops where you’ll find full Panettone cakes for sale!
In Germany you’ll find the traditional Fruit Cake, but don’t be put off by the American connotation. While our Fruitcakes tend to be full of candied fruits in colors no food should every come in the real fruitcakes are much better. They are dense cakes filled with dates, nuts, raisins and dried fruits. They can stay on the shelves for a while, but they are fantastic served fresh.
If that doesn’t interest you then head over to the Worthers store, and yes I do mean the candies. This is a permanent shop and is close to both the Teddy bear shop and the annual Christmas shop. Really, Germany doesn’t do very much for Christmas because the pavilion celebrates Christmas all year long.
The Joy of Tea has a special treat for the holiday season: Kaikouxiao, which latterly translates to Mouth Open Laughing, or Happy Face which is why they are called Happy Face Cakes. They are made flour, peanut oil, sugar, salt baking powder and rolled in sesame seeds. Pair them with a cup of tea (or a cold beverage if the weather permits) and enjoy!
The Norway pavilion has a wonderful little sweet shop near the entrance. It serves a variety of desserts from the Scandinavian country all year long but a constant favorite is the Rice Pudding. Its served in individual cups with the creamy pudding topped with red berries. It tastes as good as it looks and it’s a must-eat no matter what the season is!
Mexico serves up sweet Tamales during the Christmas season. These Sweet Corn Cakes are served at the Cantina San Angel and are perfect for the Christmas Season.
Its not a pavilion, and it isn’t really from anywhere around the world. But you can find the seasonal treats of sweet and savory turkey waffles here. The waffles are like small parts of Thanksgiving served up in a whole new way. The Savory waffle is made out of stuffing and filled with turkey and cranberries. The Sweet waffle is made out of sweet potatoes. Get both and you’ll have a full holiday meal on hand!
These are just some of the tasty treats to be found in Epcot during Christmas time. Is anyone else hungry?