Cruise ships are known for a lot of things, but one of the best has to be the amazing food served from sunrise until well past midnight. There’s more to dining aboard a ship than room service and the buffet — though these are also excellent! Carnival offers an array of truly surprising and utterly delicious foods you can sample at sea. You may be hard-pressed to find these items back in your hometown, so make the most of your vacation by tasting these 12 unique dishes.
1. Rum-Spiked Milkshakes
Need an excuse to step out of the afternoon sun? The Shake Spot offers cool, creamy drinks guaranteed to refresh your spirits. And speaking of spirits, why not add some to your milkshake? You can get a float or a shake with a shot of rum for a little island-style relaxation. We won’t tell anyone.
2. Fruity Rings French Toast
Indulge your inner child with this sweet treat for brunch. Thick French toast served with crunchy breakfast cereal is just the thing when you can’t decide what to have for breakfast. If fruity rings aren’t your favorite, try this dish with frosted corn flakes instead. Both are available at the fabulous Seaday Brunch.
Why go to France to experience this treat when you can get an incredible meal during your cruise at the Steakhouse? This is your chance to taste delectable small snails in herb butter. If you’re nervous, choose a great vintage from the incredible wine list to go along with them — just don’t be surprised if you have a new favorite appetizer!
4. Green Eggs and Ham
For some family fun, don’t miss the Dr. Seuss-inspired Green Eggs and Ham Breakfast. Your children will love the green eggs, red pancakes and bright, fresh fruit. Picky eaters? Don’t worry. There are plenty of traditional breakfast items too. Onboard dining has never been this colorful.
5. Thai Barbecue Mussels
Choose your own lunch adventure at the Mongolian Wok. Chefs cook your Asian meal right in front of you. All you have to do is select the ingredients you prefer for a one-of-a-kind dish. Mussels in Thai barbecue sauce is just one of a seemingly endless number of flavor combinations you can try — and it’s a good one!
6. Habanero Salsa
No cruise to Mexico would be complete without a trip to the salsa bar at the BlueIguana Cantina. Ultra-spicy habanero salsa gets a four-chile rating for spiciness, so only the most daring may spoon this one over their burritos and tacos. If a four-alarm fire isn’t your thing, try sweet watermelon-jicama or a classic pico de gallo instead.
7. Magic Tiramisu
This creamy, layered Italian delight is always the perfect choice to end a traditional Italian meal, so it’s no surprise that you can get yours at Cucina del Capitano. What is surprising is that it will be the best tiramisu you’ve ever had, thanks to the thoughtful addition of coffee-flavored and orange-flavored liqueur.
8. New England Lobster Roll
Get your lobster tail served in a handy carrying case — a butter roll that’s the perfect lunchtime treat. Seafood Shack will satisfy your craving for lobster, shrimp and more. There’s no need to wait until dinner time in the cruise dining room when you know you’ve been dreaming about it all day!
9. Yuzu Custard
While bite-sized slices of fish are the main draw at Bonsai Sushi, you don’t want to miss the yuzu custard for dessert. This creamy treat is made with juice from the yuzu fruit, which is popular in Japan but probably hard to find at your local grocery store. It’s a delightfully sweet and citrusy flavor that’s perfectly matched by a sesame biscuit.
10. Pig Patties
Leave it to celebrity chef Guy Fieri to find a way to take bacon to the next level. His flavor-packed pig patty is a burger topped with gooey melted cheese and a second patty made entirely of crispy bacon. Complete your meal with hand-cut French fries at Guy’s Burger Joint.
11. French Macarons
These colorful little cookies are the hottest trend in desserts right now, and they come in all sorts of flavors. Never tried one before? You’ll love the combination of crispy cookies and sweet, creamy centers. Get yours at the Sweet Spot, the daily dessert buffet that will leave your sweet tooth satisfied.
12. Caribbean Coffee
Need a little pick-me-up so you can power through an afternoon of swimming and fun in the sun? JavaBlue Cafe is the coffee shop you need. For an extra-special treat, try the spiked Caribbean Coffee. It’s got both Jamaican coffee liqueur and rum, and it’s topped with a sprinkle of nutmeg. Yum!
No matter what your taste, you’re sure to find something delicious to eat at every meal of the day on a Carnival cruise. From Asian and Indian cuisine to down-home American favorites, you can eat your way around the world as you sail off into the sunset to exotic places like Hawaii and The Bahamas. Bon appétit!