Welcome to our newest blogger Emily Woesthoff! Emily is the General Manager of BabyCakes NYC in Downtown Disney and has been vegan for most of her adult life. She is going to be rating and reviewing restaurants around Walt Disney World and recommending some top picks for vegan and vegetarian readers.
Sanaa, located in the Kidani Village section of Animal Kingdom Lodge is probably one of, if not the, best location for vegan dining on property. It’s not just because the food is tasty, and the atmosphere is pretty, it’s also because Sanaa makes it easy to eat vegan. Sanaa has its own vegan menu; that’s right, an entire menu rather than just one option! It may not sound like much to an omnivore, but for a vegan in Walt Disney World, more than one option is quite a luxury.
Just about everything that Sanaa churns out of its kitchen is delicious. To start off, the Potato and Pea Samosas which come with mango or tamarind chutney (I always say, go mango or go home) are a great option. There are two of them, so it’s a sharable appetizer. Something on the lighter side? Try the Salad Sampler! It’s actually really filling, since you are able to choose three salads, and a better value for your money than the Samosas. Do me a favor and please try the Bhel Puri as one of your salad choices. It’s so good, and incorporates noodles along with a bunch of cold vegetables, you will not be disappointed. The tomato soup is also good, but it’s tomato soup and you can get that anywhere, so live a little!
The Indian-Style Bread Service for Two is also an excellent way to start off a meal at Sanaa. The vegan Bread Service option does not include naan, only the pappadum bread, which is similar to a cracker and has a bit of kick to it. Of the three accompaniments, the best choices are: the Mango Chutney (again, go mango or go home), the Roasted Red Bell Pepper Hummus, and the Coriander Chutney. If you prefer to add a little spice, go for the Red Chile Sambal.
For the main course, the Stewed Lentils are a must have. The Vegetables and Chickpeas with Green Curry Sauce is a heartier, almost creamy option; and the Spicy Peas, Chickpeas, and Potatoes also get two thumbs up. After trying just about all of them, the only option that didn’t blow me away was the Vindaloo-style Vegetables. If you’re dining with someone else also ordering off of the vegan menu, be sure to get four different things and split them! Another tip? Use the long, rectangular plate under the three serving bowls as a plate to share your options.
There are also actually three different options for vegan desserts here, too! No one is dusting off an old package of cookies for you at Sanaa! Skip the Tofutti Ice Cream, as you’re sure to get it for dessert elsewhere on property. Instead, go for the Mango Sorbet which is served alongside raspberries, strawberries, and blueberries. It also helps to cure any leftover spiciness you may be experiencing. Do yourself a favor and get the Kenyan coffee pot as well, you won’t be sorry.
If you’re vegan and you have not yet ventured to Sanaa, make an Advance Dining Reservation now and plan your next trip to Walt Disney World around that reservation. Seriously though, this restaurant is a nice change of pace for those who are used to asking a million questions and over-explaining their diet before they can so much as order dinner. Be sure to thank your host and server for the awesome vegan options their restaurant provides!
Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 Bunches of Kale