Is It A Snack or Is It A Meal – The Disney Turkey Leg

Since its introduction to Walt Disney World around 20 years, the Disney Turkey Leg has become a must have a food item for many guests.  From a stand in Frontierland, turkey legs are available in every Walt Disney World park (including both water parks) and Disneyland.  Over 1.6 million of these legs are downed by guests each year.  My question, today, is the turkey leg considered a snack or is it considered a meal all by itself.

photo courtesy of magical recipes
photo courtesy of magical recipes

The Walt Disney World turkey leg comes in at around 700 calories making it either a very unhealthy snack or a healthy meal.  It costs around $10 which makes it an expensive snack or a very cheap meal (perhaps it has a use in a $40/day in a park game).  On the flip side, it is easily share-able which makes an even more healthy meal since one person isn’t consuming all 700 calories.  However, sharing a turkey leg with another person quickly moves the needle back into the snack category.

Urban legend says that the turkey leg is either emu or ostrich since they are so big.  That is false.  It is a turkey leg.  It comes male turkeys which normally weigh over 50 pounds.  Each turkey leg, at Disney, weighs roughly 1.5 pounds which continues to tip the scale toward the meal side of the scale.

photo courtesy of disney food blog
photo courtesy of disney food blog

I’m going to say that depending on the meal that a Disney Turkey Leg can be both a snack and meal.  If eaten by only one person, then it is definitely a meal.  700 calories….1.5 pound turkey leg (though some of that is bone)….that’s a meal.  But if it is eaten among a group of people, it becomes a snack.  Not a lot of food especially if it a large group….low calorie count….that’s a snack.

Where I can purchase this turkey leg when I am at Walt Disney World?  Disneyland?

  • Turkey Leg Cart – Magic Kingdom (Frontierland)
  • Toluca Legs Turkey Company – Hollywood Studios (Sunset Boulevard)
  • Flame Tree BBQ – Animal Kingdom (Discovery Island)
  • Fife and Drum Tavern – EPCOT (American Experience)
  • Avalunch – Blizzard Beach
  • Surf Doggies – Typhoon Lagoon
  • Edelweiss Snacks – Disneyland (Fantasyland)

A Disney Turkey Leg is not available on the Disney Dining Plan for either a snack or meal credit which further muddies its status as either a snack or a meal.  It is a cash or charge back to room only transaction.

Can I make this home?  Is there an official Disney recipe?

In my research, I have not found an official Disney Turkey Leg recipe released by Disney.  However, there are some “replica” recipes out there.

Magical Recipes

In talking with friends of mine, who have a lot more experience behind a grill than I do, the turkey will have a tendency to come a too dry because it is being cooked for so long.  Not the “hot and juicy” as advertised on Disney t-shirts.

photo courtesy of the disney blog
photo courtesy of the disney blog

Disney IRL Recipe

An oven-roasted turkey leg recipe.  In general, I try to avoid any recipes that involve “liquid smoke” but your tastes may differ.

Kosher Eye Recipe

Another recipe that uses “liquid smoke.”

What do you classify the Disney Turkey Leg as?  Is it a snack or is it a meal?  Let us know.

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