Isn't it funny how our opinions of Disney characters, themes, and music change as we get older? There was a time you used to relate to Disney's Ariel, but now she seems so petulant. And while The Lion King's soundtrack was chart-topping, you're not sure you can listen to your headstrong toddler belting out "I Just Can't Wait To Be King" one more time. Disney songs come in all shapes and sizes. From silly snowman songs to anthemic pop songs that seem to unite the whole world for a brief moment, the best Disney songs for kids cross all genres and all cultures. There's something out there for everyone. Just ask any shy little girl who belted out "Let It Go" at the talent show a few short years ago!
While Disney songs are great because you can always count on them to be "safe" and "clean," that doesn't mean you want to add every single one to your Spotify playlist. Fortunately, though, there are plenty of Disney songs worth listening to all day, every day — which is vital since any song your kid likes will end up on repeat until the end of time. And that's OK! Especially if it's a song that you love, too.
So, in the spirit of making long car rides and your kid's endless "Alexa, play ..." requests more tolerable, feast your eyes on this list of the best Disney songs for kids (and the parents who have to listen along).
The Best Disney Songs for Kids
1. “In Summer” (Frozen)
"Let It Go" gets all the Frozen fanfare, but this bop deserves way more love! It's so much fun. The kiddos giggle through the silliness — which, if we're really being honest, is much better than hearing them try to hit those Broadway notes. No? (#SorryNotSorry)
2. “Part Of Your World” (The Little Mermaid)
Listen, Ariel is petulant AF. Buuuut... “Thingamabobs? I’ve got plenty!” It never gets old.
3. “How Far I’ll Go” (Moana)
Quick! Which is better? Auli'i Cravalho's voice or Lin Manuel Miranda's lyrics? JK! You don't have to decide. Just love the song for what it is: pure beauty.
4. “Surface Pressure” (Encanto)
We don't talk... enough about Luisa and "Surface Pressure." Not only is this another fantastic example of Miranda's lyricism, but it's also a totally relatable song with some big feelings attached. Mamas certainly feel the weight of this song, but you might be surprised to see the emotion in your kiddos' eyes as they sing about life's expectations, too. Oof. So cathartic.
5. “Belle” (Beauty and the Beast)
Admit it: The live-action version of this song, which features Emma Watson’s voice, is just so much easier to sing along to than the animated original.
6. “Gaston” (Beauty and the Beast)
The original and the version with Olaf (aka Josh Gad) are excellent. Plus, there are a ton of big words you can help your kids learn to spell and define. Specimen? Expectorating?? Case closed.
7. “Under the Sea” (The Little Mermaid)
Speaking of big words, "Under the Sea" literally features words like "beguine" and "crustacean." It's a veritable lesson in marine biology! Plus, you know, it's sassy and fun.
8. “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” (Encanto)
C'mon, this one's a no-brainer. Obviously, right? It's the new "Let It Go," only less Broadway and even more impossible to resist singing.
9. “Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride” (Lilo & Stitch)
You have two options here. Learn Hawaiian so you can sing along correctly, or simply choose to “hula” during the parts you don’t know. Either option is solid. This song is perfect when you’re snowed in and dealing with the winter blues.
10. “I’ll Make a Man Out of You” (Mulan)
Sure, this song will require a bit of explaining to make sure your kids understand all the sexist undertones (if they've seen the movie, they'll know you don't need to be a man to be strong). There's just no way around how often "Let's get down to business..." gets stuck in every millennial's head. It must be included so that your kids stop looking at your like you have three heads when you start singing this song.
11. “Wait for It” (Hamilton)
If it’s on Disney+, it’s a Disney song. End of story. This song teaches your kiddo that it’s OK to not be in first place, take your time, and plan out your path. And when Leslie Odom Jr. draws tears from your eyes, you can talk about why this song, this musical, this cast in particular, always makes you so happy and emotional.
12. “Almost There” (The Princess and the Frog)
Another song about an underdog, hard work, and coming out on top? Yes, please! And FWIW, this entire soundtrack is fire.
The Best of the Rest
- “Nobody Like U” (Turning Red)
- “Immortals” (Big Hero 6)
- “I’ve Got A Dream” (Tangled)
- “Remember Me” (Coco)
- “A Whole New World” (Aladdin)
- “Carried Me With You” (Onward)
- “Lead the Way” (Raya and the Last Dragon)
- “Colors of the Wind” (Pocahontas)
- “Kiss The Girl” (The Little Mermaid)
- “You’re Welcome” (Moana)
- “If I Didn’t Have You” (Monster’s Inc.)
- “Try Everything” (Zootopia)
- “You’ve Got a Friend in Me” (Toy Story)
- “I Won’t Say I’m in Love” (Hercules)
- “Touch The Sky” (Brave)
- “Friend Like Me” (Aladdin)
- “Oo De Lally” (Robin Hood)
- “Hakuna Matata” (The Lion King)
- “We Know the Way” (Moana)
- “Once Upon a Dream” (Sleeping Beauty)
- “Love Is an Open Door” (Frozen)
- “The Bare Necessities” (The Jungle Book)
- “When Will My Life Begin?” (Tangled)
- “One Jump Ahead” (Aladdin)
- “Reflection” (Mulan)
- “I2I” (A Goofy Movie)
- “Why Should I Worry” (Oliver & Company)
- “Circle of Life” (The Lion King)
- “Shiny” (Moana)
- “Un Poco Loco” (Coco)
- “Into the Unknown” (Frozen 2)
- “Be Our Guest” (Beauty and the Beast)
- “Zero to Hero” (Hercules)
- “Everybody Wants to Be a Cat” (The Aristocats)
- “Just Around the Riverbend” (Pocahontas)
- “When You Wish Upon a Star” (Pinocchio)
- “Cruella De Vil” (One Hundred and One Dalmations)
- “Fixer Upper” (Frozen)