Cruise Food: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

by Melissa on September 27, 2011

We are finally back from a 10 day vacation! We spent the first part of it in Orlando, and the second part on a 7 day cruise to the Western Caribbean.

Carnival Cruise Lines aren’t exactly known for their food, they are known to be the “Fun Ships.” And that they are, with daily schedules jam packed with activities throughout the day. It really is a great cruise line for families with children. Or young couples who are cheap poor frugal like us.

I would like to think that I’m more interested in the dive excursions rather than the food, but the food blogger in me wouldn’t let you down. So, here is a quick recap of the food aboard our cruise ship: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.

The Good.

Here we are with our wonderful wait staff. Having a great wait staff is my favorite part of cruise food, there’s just something great about seeing and chatting with the same servers every day.

I was also thrilled when our wait staff found out that I am a food blogger & photographer and humored me when I snapped away with my camera.

This was one of Paul’s favorite soups: Chilled Mango Soup with Ginger, garnished with Basil.

And below: Strawberry Bisque.

I was especially fond of the appetizers at dinner. There would always be one item that was more unique that they almost dare you to try, including frogs legs, alligator, oysters and for the less adventurous – sushi.

Another great thing about dinner on cruises (or at least on Carnival) is that you can order as many appetizers, entrees and desserts as your stomach can handle.

Paul ordered four crab cakes one evening – Four. This was in addition to his other appetizer, entree and two desserts.

The left photo was a nicely plated crab cake that our server brought out for me to photograph, on the right is Paul with the four crab cakes piled on one plate.

The dinner entrees were – okay. Especially the vegetarian entrees, they were okay. I did appreciate that there was at least two vegetarian entree options every night, but let’s just say that the meat eaters on the boat had a much better selection of food than the vegetarians.

Below on the left is Paul with his filet mignon, and on the right is the vegetarian selection for the evening: Squash, Pumpkin, Cheddar Pie.

The Bad:

The desserts, especially the diet desserts, like the diet pumpkin pie below on the left. According to Paul (I didn’t even want to try a taste), the whipped cream and the strawberry sunset on the side of the plate was much tastier than the pie itself.

The Ugly:

I’m going to spare you photos from this category – ha!

But, I will leave you with a few parting words:
1. Chocolate covered pineapple
2. Chocolate covered melon (cantaloupe, honeydew, watermelon)
3. Food poisoning: For Paul, not me. Let’s just say that you may not want to order the smoked salmon bagel on the last day of the cruise.

So, there you go, The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of the food on our cruise. If you’re still hungry for a few more cruise ship food photos, read about our Caribbean cruise that we took last year. But for me, I am glad to be home and looking forward to cooking again, even if I’m kind of dreading the whole cleaning up part afterwards.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lisa Hitzeman September 27, 2011 at 9:17 am

I love going on cruises. I agree that it’s great having the same wait staff every night. That definitely makes up for any “just ok” food.


2 Melissa September 28, 2011 at 11:13 am

I love cruises too! I just think it’s great to be able to travel from port to port while eating decent food, enjoying entertainment and sleeping in a comfy bed.

Seeing our wait staff was the main thing that continued to persuade us to eat in the dining room every evening :) – they really did make “ok” food that much better.


3 Angela@veggievinyasa September 28, 2011 at 6:09 pm

The strawberry bisque looks yummy… like a smoothie in a bowl.


4 Melissa September 29, 2011 at 11:11 am

Haha that strawberry bisque really was like a smoothie in a bowl. And so delicious!


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