During our ten visits to Disney’s Aulani Resort & Spa, we’ve discovered the best places to grab a bite to eat! Aulani boasts a diverse selection of dining experiences, from whimsical character meals that delight the young and young at heart, to sophisticated fine dining options that offer a taste of local flavors and ingredients.
Whether you’re looking for a quick bite by the pool or an elegant dinner with ocean views, Aulani’s restaurants cater to every palate, ensuring that your time at the resort is as delicious as it is relaxing.
Disney Aulani Restaurants Guide
In this guide, we will go over every dining option, plus a few great options located across the road (a 5-minute walk) from the resort.
Ulu Cafe – Quick Poolside Dining
Ulu Cafe is our favorite place to grab lunch while at Aulani. Ulu Cafe is a quick-service Aulani restaurant with plenty to choose from. In the morning they have a wide variety of Quick Service options including items freshly made.
Our favorite items are the egg, bacon & avocado wrap, the fresh-made acai bowls, and the bountiful breakfast plate.
If you want something sweet for breakfast they have freshly made pastries including some amazing malasadas. You can also grab fresh fruit, coffee, juices, and more.
In the afternoon you can enjoy delicious Kalua Park sandwiches and pizza. They also have fresh salads, a poke bar (our favorite), yogurt parfaits, delicious pastries, Mickey ice cream bars, and popcorn.
(Snag the refillable bucket on your first visit and refills are only $1.50 thereafter)
If you have a refillable mug (I highly recommend purchasing) you can grab coffee as early as 6 am, and they have Coca Cola freestyle machines to enjoy your favorite drinks throughout the day.
***Money Saving Tip *** At night, Ulu cafe serves a whole pizza for $25 which is probably the most affordable meal you will find at the resort!
Makahiki Character Dining
Continuing our guide to Aulani’s dining options, it’s essential to highlight their character dining experience at the Makahiki Restaurant. While previously known for its buffet, the Aulani Character Breakfast has evolved into a delightful three-course meal, perfect for starting your day with Disney magic.
In the morning, indulge in a variety of expertly prepared dishes. Your breakfast begins with a basket of miniature bakery delights, accompanied by fresh island fruits. For the main course, you can choose from a selection of savory dishes including eggs cooked to your preference, various types of sausage, and omelets with options like the Kālua Pig Omelet or the Traditional Omelet. Hawaiian favorites like the Loco Moco add a local touch to the menu.
For those with a sweet tooth, the breakfast concludes with dessert options like the classic Mickey waffle or the indulgent Cinnamon Bun French Toast, a creative twist on a breakfast staple.
During your visit to the Aulani Character Breakfast at the Makahiki Restaurant, you’ll have the chance to interact with a host of beloved Disney characters. Expect to meet icons like Mickey Mouse, Minnie Mouse, Donald Duck, and Goofy, each ready to pose for photos and create unforgettable moments.
Additionally, the breakfast features live entertainment with Aunty engaging the kids in music and fun activities, including interactive parades and games.
The pricing for this magical experience is now $45 for adults and $28 for children (nine and under). The breakfast is available daily from 7:00 am to 11:00 am. I strongly recommend making reservations well in advance as this character breakfast is extremely popular. For a more detailed review of my experience at the Aulani Character Breakfast, you can check out the full article here.
We have spent a few Thanksgivings at the Makahiki restaurant. Once again, they have a bountiful buffet with a Prime Rib cutting station, delicious Mahi Mahi, sushi, salads, island favorites like Poi, plus a special menu for the little ones. My favorite dessert they serve is the bread pudding with warm vanilla sauce drizzled on top.
Makahiki does offer a character dinner as well which will have Stitch and friends come around and visit the tables.
Character dinners are available on Sunday, Monday, Wednesday & Thursday. Prices are $54 for adults and $27 for kids age 3-9. Non-character dinners are Tuesday, Friday & Saturday – Prices are $50 for adults and $23 for kids ages 3-9
**** Currently do to Hawaii State Regulations – a buffet is not available but instead a prix fixe menu. You can check it out here.
‘Ama ‘Ama (Aulani Premiere Dining Experience!)
When it comes to dining at Aulani, the crown jewel has to be the newly reimagined ‘AMA ‘AMA restaurant. Picture this: a dining experience that not only tantalizes your taste buds but also captures the essence of Hawaii in every bite. That’s ‘AMA ‘AMA for you! After its grand reopening in Fall 2022, this signature restaurant has transformed into a dinner-only haven, offering an exquisite four-course, prix fixe menu that’s a true homage to the spirit of Hawaii.
Imagine dining in an ambiance inspired by the ‘ama‘ama fish, surrounded by decor that echoes traditional Hawaiian fish baskets and a central light fixture that seems to bring the ocean right above you. It’s like a culinary journey through the islands! Each dish is a masterpiece of local flavors and ingredients, with sustainable seafood and produce taking center stage. And let’s not forget the decadent desserts – think macadamia nuts and Kona coffee, flavors that are quintessentially Hawaiian.
It’s not just the food that’s had a makeover; the entire experience at ‘AMA ‘AMA now comes with that special Disney touch of service and attention to detail. Whether it’s a romantic dinner or a special family meal, this is the place at Aulani where fine dining meets island magic. So, get ready to indulge in a dining experience that’s as breathtaking as the oceanfront view from ‘AMA ‘AMA – truly a highlight of any Aulani adventure!
If you are looking for a great atmosphere to have some drinks and pupus (appetizers) Oleo room is a great spot. In the evening you will find half off select appetizers all while enjoying some great live music. Local artists are brought in to sing a mixture of Hawaiian tunes and some Disney favorites.
Off the Hook & Poolside Dining
Off the Hook is the Poolside restaurant/bar. There you can enjoy burgers, salads, some really good fish tacos, flatbread pizzas and more. This menu also accounts for if you are ordering from one of the poolside waiters.
The Kawa’a Luau
While technically not an Aulani Restaurant the Kawa’a luau has some of the best food Aulani has to offer.
This Disney Aulani luau put together an incredible spread of delicious salads, fresh island fruit, seasonally sourced vegetables, local seafood, ahi poke, braised imu-style pork, teriyaki chicken + carving stations with whole roasted Hawaii-raised suckling pig, and slow-roasted prime rib.
Of course, what else would you expect at Disney’s Aulani Resort, right? All of the food found at the resort is delicious!!
Of course, you have to pace yourself at the luau though because you won’t want to miss the decadent house-made desserts. These desserts include haupia-coconut and banana bread puddings (my personal favorites), macadamia nut brownies, guava cakes, tropical fruits & berries and more!
You can check out our full review of the Kawa’a Luau here
Mama’s Snack Stop
Mama’s Snack Stop is another one of the quick-service Aulani restaurants that serves up classic poolside quick-service dishes
You can grab chicken tenders and fries, fish and chips, but I recommend the ono sandwich or the coconut breaded shrimp. They also have kids meals which also include chicken strips and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.
Papalua Shave Ice
If you are coming to the islands, you have to enjoy some Shave Ice. In fact, it’s one of my 25 must things to do on Oahu. Aulani actually has some pretty incredible shave ice.
You can it in the classic hawaiian style with condensed milk drizzled on top and ice cream on the bottom or simply go with the shave ice.
Of course, you can add a little Disney Magic and add Mickey Ears to your snow cone for $1 more.
Little Opihi’s Beachside Snack Stop
If you are craving the oh so delicious dole whip served up at Disneyland and Disney World, then this is your stop. Little Opihi’s is located right at the bottom of the pool stairs alongside the beach and is the only place along the beach to grab a quick snack.
You can get Chips, Fresh Fruit, Ice Cream, and Sandwiches. They also serve pretzels, a quick little fun fact, they used to serve Mickey Pretzels but they no longer do because the ears kept falling off in the humidity.
Restaurants Across From the Aulani
Right across the street from Aulani (just a 5 minute walk) you will find an assortment of restaurants and markets if you want to save a little money and there are a couple of very nice places to dine as well.
This is a premier dining spot. The food is amazing, the atmosphere is great and the prices aren’t bad for the quality of food you receive.
They serve one of the best Mai Tai’s you will ever have plus a wide variety of dishes. You can read about Monkeypod more in my Wailea Dining Guide as they also have a location in Wailea, Maui.
If you are in the need of some groceries, a good sandwich or Hawaiian Mixed plate, then check out this stop. There are a ton of breakfast and lunch options plus all your basic needs like eggs, milk, soda, beer etc..
Pizza Corner has some pretty good pizza. Nothing to go crazy over but it is very affordable and has a ton of different options.
There you have it. Pretty much every dining option you can possibly enjoy at or near the Aulani resort and Spa. If you have any questions feel free to leave them in the comments!
If you need help planning and booking your magical Aulani vacation, contact our friends at Best Day Ever Vacations. They are truly Disney Experts, and not only are their services FREE, but they will save you both time and money.
Pin for Later: Aulani Restaurants Guide
Frequently Asked Questions about Aulani Restaurants
Can Non Guests Eat At Aulani
Yes, you can dine at Aulani without staying at the resort. You just can not enjoy the pools and other activities at the resort.
Where should I eat at Aulani
There are several offerings from fine dining to quick service. If you want a sit down restaurant go with Makahiki or Ama Ama. For some quick to eat, head over to Ulu Cafe.
How Much is the character Breakfast at Aulani
Character breakfast at Makahiki is currently $39 for adults and $20 for kids ages 3-9. Kids under 3 are free!
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