A Picky Eater’s Guide to Dining on Carnival’s Mardi Gras

cucina del capitano mardi gras

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Picky eaters. There’s one in every family. Whether the picky eater is your child, your spouse, your friend, or maybe it’s you — there’s plenty of dining options available on the new Mardi Gras sailing from Port Canaveral.

From chicken fingers and fries to pizza and panini-pressed sandwiches, you won’t go hungry on this ship. For the non-adventurous eaters, here’s the scoop on where and what to eat on Carnival’s newest ship, Mardi Gras.

Big Chicken

mardi gras trip report big chicken

Located on Deck 16 Aft, Shaq’s Big Chicken restaurant is a picky eater’s dream come true. Here, you can enjoy chicken strips, juicy chicken sandwiches, and plenty of French fries! The M.D.E. sandwich (Most Dominant Ever) comes with Shaq sauce and pickles.

Don’t be afraid to ask for it plain; they’ll take care of you. In addition to steak fries, other sides include potato salad, housemade sweet and spicy pickles, and jalapeño slaw – you’ll find those on the toppings bar if you want to leave them for more adventurous eaters.

Carnival happy staff
Carnival Staff (CARRIE MCLAREN)

If you are a sauce person, don’t miss trying the Shaq sauce — a combination of smoky barbecue and buttermilk ranch. Delicious! Other sauces include honey mustard, buttermilk ranch, barbecue, and buffalo hot sauce. As the restaurant sign says — “we encourage sauciness.” 

Don’t miss breakfast at Big Chicken, where you can choose from a chicken biscuit with a chili honey glaze syrup (or without!), a three-cheese omelet, or a biscuit and egg with sausage or bacon. And don’t worry if you aren’t an early riser, breakfast at Big Chicken is served until 3 p.m. daily.

Street Eats – Time Fries

time fries mardi gras street eats

Street Eats is a new concept for Carnival Cruise Line. Located on Lido Deck 16, Street Eats is a nod to food trucks and street eateries with three stations – Steam Dream, Mad Sizzle, and Time Fries.

delicious street eats

With a menu that changes daily, the first two stations feature international cuisines while Time Fries features French Fries prepared in new, exciting ways.

Philly Cheesesteak fries are a big hit with grilled onions, melted cheese, and sliced steak on top. Stop by each day to try the new dishes as it is open daily from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Pizzeria Del Capitano

mardi gras trip report pizza
Pizzeria Del Capitano (CARRIE MCLAREN)

Picky eaters can rejoice knowing that pizza is available on the Mardi Gras 24/7. Pizzeria del Capitano is located in the La Piazza neighborhood of the ship, Middeck 8, and offers various pizzas, including a Margherita pie, a Pepperoni pizza, and a Prosciutto, and even a Quattro Formaggi featuring four different kinds of cheese.

If you’re looking to go the healthier route, they offer Caesar salads too!

MORE: Review: Riding BOLT, the First Roller Coaster on a Cruise Ship

Piazza Panini

piazza panini mardi gras dining
Piazza Panini (CARRIE MCLAREN)

Located next to the Pizzeria Del Capitano, you’ll find the new counter-service sandwich shop Piazza Panini. Here, you’ll find deli classics like hot dogs with all the fixings (or no fixings for the extra picky eaters), grilled ham and cheese, and meatball subs all offered on a variety of breads.

For an Italian spin on paninis, choose from a Caprese panini, a Carne panini with pepper roast beef, and other favorites.

Open 24 hours a day, this hotspot also features desserts after 8 pm – panini style! Choose from toppings like Nutella, bananas, honey, chocolate chips, and other treats.

Main Dining Room

mardi gras palm restaurant main dining room
Main Dining Room (CARRIE MCLAREN)

Picky eaters, you are in luck when it comes to eating in the Main Dining Room. While the menu changes daily, you can always count on the “From the Grill” section, where you’ll always find a simple version of chicken breast, a pork chop, a flat iron steak, and salmon.

READ: Ultimate Guide to Carnival’s Main Dining Room

Plus, here’s a bonus tip for picky eaters: You can order from the kids’ menu, including desserts!

While it may be a smaller portion of food, you’ll find spaghetti and meatballs, hot dogs, pizza, chicken nuggets, French fries, and for dessert – banana splits and brownies!

24-Hour Room Service

mardi gras suite
Mardi Gras Suite (CARRIE MCLAREN)

Don’t feel like leaving the room to eat? No worries! Pick up the phone and dial-up room service where you can choose from favorites like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, potato chips, turkey sandwiches, and even chocolate cake.

Specialty items like French fries, chicken wings, pan pizzas, and chicken quesadillas come with a fee, but are still worth the extra cost.

Carnival chicken quesadillas
Chicken Quesadillas (CARRIE MCLAREN)

The late-night menu begins at 10 p.m. and also includes additional charges for items like Philly cheesesteaks, chicken tenders, turkey wraps, and more.

Breakfast items can also be delivered right to your door each morning with a menu featuring pastries, an assortment of cereals, fresh fruits, and bagels.

Cucina Del Capitano

cucina del capitano mardi gras
Cucina Del Capitano (CARRIE MCLAREN)

Italian eats are the focus at Cucina Del Capitano on the Mardi Gras. For those that might be scared by the entrée menu, have no fear – spaghetti with an enormous meatball and chicken parmesan are both on the menu.

If you’re hoping to dine on a certain day or time, make sure you book a reservation using the HUB app or stop by the restaurant in advance.

Bonus: At lunchtime, you’ll find a complimentary pasta bar at Cucina del Capitano known as The Captain’s Pasta Bar. Choose your type of pasta, choose your sauce, and decide if you want any toppings included in your dish and before you know it, you’ve got a delicious meal.

Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse

art at your table fahrenheit 555 mardi gras
Art at Your Table (CARRIE MCLAREN)

At Fahrenheit 555 Steakhouse, diners can enjoy a superb experience with a menu featuring steaks, lamb chops, lobster, and fantastic service. For sides, you’ll find macaroni and cheese, baked potatoes, and even onion rings to complement your entrée.

Don’t miss the steakhouse’s signature dessert called ‘Art At Your Table,’ where your server creates a table-side masterpiece of art – all made of food.

You can pick your way around the table to sample chocolates, fruits, and more. If you aren’t feeling adventurous (or maybe you’re just too full!), fresh fruit is also on the dessert menu with a variety of melons and berries.

If you are interested in dining at the steakhouse, be sure to get a reservation – they tend to book up quickly!

Guy’s Burger Joint

guy's burger joint mardi gras
Guy’s Burger Joint (CARRIE MCLAREN)

The popular Guy’s Burger Joint has a larger, dedicated space onboard the Mardi Gras, and fans can experience these great burgers midship on Lido Deck 16.

For the picky eaters, you’ll probably want to order the Plain Jane with or without cheese. If you want bacon, go with the ‘Pig Patty.’ If you want an onion ring on top, they can do that too!

From there, make your way over to Guy’s toppings bar and load up on customizing your burger. And don’t forget the hand-cut fries!

Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse | Brewhouse

guy's pig and anchor barbecue smokehouse brewhouse mardi gras
Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse (CARRIE MCLAREN)

Speaking of Guy Fieri, barbecue fans will be excited to learn that dining at Guy’s Pig & Anchor Smokehouse | Brewhouse is now included – there’s currently no additional fee onboard Mardi Gras.

Carnival mardi gras food

Try popular items like the Championship Pulled Pork or the Blue Ribbon Chicken, pair it with mac and cheese, and top off your meal with some apple cobbler or a slice of banana cream pie.

Carnival mardi gras food
Apple Cobbler (CARRIE MCLAREN)

So, whether you decide to step outside of your culinary box and try new foods or stick with what you know when it comes to dining, you’ll stay full and always have plenty of food options on Mardi Gras.

What are you excited to eat onboard Carnival’s newest ship?

READ NEXT: Mardi Gras Dining Guide: Which Restaurants Are Complimentary?

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