Best Dining Options On Carnival Cruise

Best dining options on carnival cruise

Cruise Dining Times: Early Dinner vs. Late Dinner

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You’re going on a cruise for the food, right?! 😉

Not all of the food offerings and specialty restaurants are the same on every cruise ship.

Despite what many people think (and say), it is quite possible to eat healthy when you’re on a cruise.

But, there are certainly many temptations, which may not make you want to.

Best dining options on carnival cruise

😉 You’re on vacation after all with lots of food options that you don’t get back home!

And now, here are some of those temptations! Not all of them are healthy, but there are a couple of healthy cruise food options listed. Remember, everything in moderation.

Seafood Shack


Note that food options and menus do change, so not everything listed here may be available on your cruise.

Now these are a few places and/or foods to consider seeking out and trying when you’re on a Carnival cruise!

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DIY (kind of) soft tacos at BlueIguana Cantina

This is a burrito and taco place.

You get to decide what you want in your burrito as it gets made! (Think Mexican grill restaurants like Chipotle or Qdoba style.) This place is typically open for breakfast and lunch.

Here’s a different way of trying out some (stuffed!) tacos:

Head to the buffet line and grab a bowl.

Get a spoon too while you’re at it!

Get in line for the BlueIguana Cantina burritos.

Hand the burrito guy your bowl and tell him that you want to make an open burrito. They won’t have any bowls to give you since they wrap all the ingredients in the burritos, so that’s why you’ll want to take your own bowl.

Request what you want!

Recommended to add: Rice, black beans, corn, guacamole.

Why Pay More for Food?

(Lots of guacamole.)

Next, get in line for the BlueIguana Cantina tacos. (Burritos and tacos are separate lines.)

Ask for 3 soft tacos with chicken. If you prefer to go vegetarian, just ask for the taco shells.

The taco shells will be freshly made so will be nice and warm (and soft!).

Stop by the toppings bar to add some sliced onions, sour cream, and shredded cheese to your burrito bowl.

Now comes the fun part!

Take your seat!

Best dining options on carnival cruise

Preferably by the window so you can take in the ocean view or port view as you eat. 😉

In the burrito bowl, add in the chicken, and then mix together all the ingredients.

Place a portion of the mixed ingredients into each of the taco shells.

Then… ENJOY!

What’s the difference between eating it as a burrito and eating it as tacos?! Well, it just tastes better with the soft taco shells.

Best dining options on carnival cruise


Does this sound like too much work for you on vacation? 😉 Okay, or you could go with the traditional burrito or tacos, and that works too and it’s minimal work. You just stand in line, ask for what you want, and that’s that! That will also get you a delicious meal.

DIY (kind of) fresh mozzarella pesto sandwich at the lido buffet


Eating at the BlueIguana Cantina is a pretty healthy option on a Carnival cruise, as long as you don’t eat too much of it! The burritos are big, so it’s quite easy to eat a lot in one sitting!

Pictures of the BlueIguana Cantina here.

Side note!
If you'll be snorkeling on your next vacation, consider wearing these types of UV swim shirts, and also see some snorkeling essentials for Hawaii.

And for Oahu travel tips, see this 3 day itinerary, and then some more things to do on Oahu. And if you're headed to the Big Island, be sure to see the Big Island travel planning map and this 7 day itinerary with some black sand beaches, along with more things to do on the Big Island!
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Mention dietary needs before you embark (and after).

Also see types of sandals (like these for women and like these for men) perfect for walking around or hiking in hot weather.

DIY (kind of) fresh mozzarella pesto sandwich at the lido buffet

The great thing about cruising is all the different foods you can have that you don’t eat on an everyday basis back at home!

Fresh mozzarella cheese is so good, and you can get it on the cruise too!

Find it on sea day mornings or around lunch in the buffet dining areas on the lido deck alongside salads like the Greek salad and Mediterranean salad.

Make it into a sandwich by adding a few extra steps:

Head to the buffet line, grab a plate, and find the ciabatta bread, or similar type bread.

Head over to the salad area and find the fresh mozzarella.

The mozzarella is in a pesto mixture, and there are the fresh mozzarella slices and tomato slices lined up alternately.

Grab a bowl and get the mozzarella and tomato slices.

Find a seat!

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See if you can get a table outside on the open deck where you can enjoy views of the open water with the sea breeze!

Now you’ve got your bread and you’ve got what goes in between the bread slices, so make yourself a delicious fresh mozzarella pesto sandwich!

Try at least 2 mozzarella slices and 2 tomato slices per sandwich.

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Alternate the cheese and tomato like it was on display!


DIY (kind of) ice cream concoction

This is somewhat of a plain snack, but still, so good!

On sea day afternoons, you may be able to find ice cream available staffed with a server at the sea day dessert kiosk.

The way it’s typically served is by making the ice cream scoops into an animal with a few extra snacks on top.

If this sounds good to you, get the ice cream animal!

Kind of like how they make animals out of towels (towel animals), they also make animals out of ice cream (so we’ll call them ice cream animals).

Another delicious option is vanilla ice cream with chocolate syrup!

Once again, it requires a few extra steps.


There may be chocolate syrup served in the buffet line to go along with cake or some other dessert.

But we’re not going to use the chocolate syrup for cake, we’re going to use it for ice cream!

You can scoop the chocolate syrup with a ladle so you can add lots of it to your ice cream!

Grab a bowl from the buffet line.

The ice cream scooper uses a plate to serve the ice cream animal, which is why you’ll want to grab a bowl from elsewhere.

Head to the ice cream scooper and ask for a couple scoops of vanilla ice cream only in your bowl.

Then head to the buffet line to where the chocolate syrup is and pour (lots of) chocolate syrup onto your ice cream.

Then… ENJOY!

There is soft serve ice cream available 24/7.

But the scooped ice cream is a luxury item compared to the machine ice cream, especially when it comes with the chocolate syrup.

Best dining options on carnival cruise


If you can’t find the scooped ice cream around, get some vanilla ice cream from the self-serve machine instead, so you can get in on that chocolate syrup action!

Note that there is frozen yogurt and there is ice cream available at the machines, and there is a difference in taste!

Ice cream tastes better.

Carnival Cruise Line Food & Restaurant Tour Including Seuss; Buffets; Guy's Burgers, Tea; Steakhouse


More cruise dining options: Non-DIY food places

Okay, so that is the end of the suggestions for the food that require extra work.

Next, here are some places to stand in line, tell them what you want, and out comes your freshly made food within minutes! 😉

Check here to see if your Carnival cruise ship offers any particular dining option.

Mongolian Wok

You’ll get in line, grab a bowl, and then add the vegetables you want to your bowl.

You then will get to the spot where you hand your bowl to the wok guys.

It’s at this point where you’ll tell them what type of meat or seafood you would like to add to your dish, as well as what type of sauce you want to add.

There will be a list of what’s available once you get to this point.

There is oil added to this meal, but generally speaking, this is a pretty healthy option for cruise food.

Although it’s also easy to eat a ton here too!

Pictures of the Mongolian Wok here.

Guy’s Burgers

If you want to make your heart happy, you really should avoid eating here every day. A burger at Guy’s Burger Joint can make your heart hurt… really.

Early Dinner Pros


But of course, you need to try it at least once to see what all the buzz is about.

And it is a good burger. There are a few different ways you can order the burger, from plain to loaded up with toppings.

There is also a separate toppings bar so you can add a few extras too.

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Your burger will come with fries if you want some fries with it.

Pictures of Guy’s Burgers here.

Pizza 24/7

You’ll find pizza on all Carnival cruises.

This is worth a mention just because some first-time cruisers aren’t aware of it.

There have been people standing in line at the pizza place after a few days of the cruise have passed who say they had no idea the pizza place existed and was open all the time.

Talk about crazy!


There really aren’t very many late-night food options on a Carnival cruise ship, but pizza is one of them!

Pictures of the pizza place here.

Ice cream 24/7

As mentioned earlier, ice cream is the other option that you can get any time, although you may have to walk a little to find a working soft serve machine.

When it’s not busy around the cruise ship, like when most people have retired for the night, some machines get shut down.

Even more dining options and food to eat on a Carnival cruise

To explore all the dining options a Carnival cruise as to offer, see here!

Things to maybe pack for your cruise!

Now, here are some things that you just may want to add to your cruise packing list!


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More cruise tips:

– What to wear for cruise formal night
– Do you need a passport for a cruise?
– Do you need cruise travel insurance?
– What NOT to bring on a cruise
– How to prevent cruise luggage from getting lost on the cruise ship
– How to prevent seasickness
– Cruise port things to do: Nassau near port / San Juan near port / Cozumel excursions

Cruise tips on Pinterest: Follow the Cruise Travel board!

Best shoes for your active vacation

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- Walking: These types of hiking sandals.

For walking in hot weather, they are more breathable than shoes, while still giving you necessary traction on the trails.

Also see more about the best shoes for hiking in Hawaii.
- Beach: These types of beach shoes. For beach walking, wading in the water, and rocky shorelines, they can prevent cuts from hidden rocks or when bumping into coral reef.

Swimwear for snorkeling and beach

- These UV protection shirts are a hit so you don't have to keep re-applying sunscreen and don't have to worry as much about getting sunburn!

Best dining options on carnival cruise

see more:
- What to wear hiking
- Snorkeling essentials for Hawaii
- What to wear on a cruise formal night

more Hawaii travel tips:
-- Oahu travel planning map
-- 3 day Oahu itinerary
-- 2 week Oahu itinerary
-- Best short hikes on Oahu with amazing views
-- Big Island travel planning map
-- 7 day Big Island itinerary
-- Best beach hikes on the Big Island with amazing views