My Favorite Dining Spots Around Walt Disney World

My Favorite Dining Spots Around Walt Disney World

January 2022

My Favorite Dining Spots Around Walt Disney World

One of our favorite things about visiting Walt Disney World is the endless amazing food options. Not only do we have our favorites, we still have so many that we have not tried! This keeps each trip unique and memorable. While spending time in the theme parks is certainly the main attraction of a Disney trip, do not overlook all the delicious dining options available both in the theme parks but also outside the theme parks. 

Here are my current recommendations for food options in Walt Disney World! 

Favorite Food Options at Magic Kingdom

  • Sleepy Hallow Refreshments- This quick service spot to the left of the castle that serves up delicious waffle sandwiches both sweet and savory. Right over the bridge into Liberty Square, this location makes for some wonderful castle photos as well. There is also shaded seating which is certainly a premium!  
  • Columbia Harbor House – Another spot in Liberty Square right across from Haunted Mansion. This quick service stop showcases New England seafood which is a great alternative to the typically burgers and fries option. Go enjoy your meal upstairs where it is often more relaxed (and some fun hidden mickey’s).
  • Jungle Skipper Canteen – This is the best sit down restaurant in Magic Kingdom! The other sit down locations in the park – while extremely popular – are over priced and under delivers on the food. This restaurant is tucked away located in Adventureland and is definitely not as known. Food here is so creative and well done! Plus the staff are very fun, continuing the puns from the Jungle Cruise ride in this restaurant. 
  • Plaza Ice Cream Parlor – At the very end of Main Street USA on the right is an ice cream parlor that makes wonderful ice cream sundaes. We always get the “All American” which is ice cream of your choice with hot fudge and hot peanut butter and it is just delightful.

Favorite Food Options at EPCOT

  • EPCOT has endless food options! Not only are there tons of choices around the World Showcase but almost all year round there is a rotating seasonal festival with additional pop up booths exclusively for expanding food and beverage selections. There is something for everyone! 
  • Chefs de France – This is one of our favorite sit down spots in EPCOT. In fact the France pavilion in general has some fantastic food options – a bakery in the back, ice cream shop, and creperie are all available quick service options. 
  • Yorkshire County Fish Shop – There is also a Yorkshire County Fish Shop at the UK pavilion that is quite yummy and their seating area by the water is one of the best spots to unwind. 
  • Tutto Gusto Wine Cellar – One of our favorite hiding spots to take a break from the theme park crazy and Orlando heat is the wine bar tucked away unassumingly in Italy pavilion. Tutto Gusto Wine Cellar is a dark cave like atmosphere with a great selection of wine and snack options, including cheese and charcuterie plates, and the option to order larger dishes from the main restaurant. 

Favorite Food Options at Hollywood Studios 

  • Hollywood Brown Derby – Our favorite spot inside Hollywood Studios! We always hit this park super early to get the major attractions done and by the time 11AM rolls around, we are typically done the attractions in the park and ready to eat. We sit at the outdoor lounge (they open at 11AM and it is beneficial to get there for opening as seating is limited). We sit under the shade and watch the world go by while we sip on blood orange margaritas and nom’ing on their famous cobb salad.  
  • Baseline Tap House – This popular spot fills up quick but we were happy to have eaten here once and need to return on a future trip. Beer and wine on tap with snack options such as charcuterie boards and pretzels, it is the perfect spot to unwind after a long morning riding attractions.
  • Star Wars Galazy Edge – There are new dining options in Star Wars Galaxy but it has honestly been too crowded in this area for us to try any of it yet. I have not tried it yet but I hear very good things about Ronto Roasters the ronto wraps here.
  • Woody’s Lunchbox – Another one where we would love to try it but it has been mobbed since it opened but their menu always looks great. 

Favorite Food Options at Animal Kingdom

  • I have experienced very few spots in Animal Kingdom and that is not for lack of food options – there are plenty! Normally we only spend a half day here so we end up missing the opportunity for a meal as we are typically heading someone else for lunch or dinner. So this is definitely an area I need to improve upon!
    • What we have done is headed to Animal Kingdom Lodge for the food selections there. Animal Kingdom Lodge – one of the best resorts for all around dining options! We have to try the others like Jiko and Boma but we loved our experience so much at Saana. If you are doing a day at Animal Kingdom, it is worth the break to stop by the lodge. Or better yet, if you are lucky enough to stay at this resort, even better!
  • Nomad Lounge – Comes highly recommended as a quite spot in the parks to relax offering specialty beverages and snacks. 
  • Satu’li Canteen – One of the most popular quick service locations inside all the theme parks due to the innovative and healthy menu. From make your own grain or salad bowls to burger boa buns, this is a spot to hit during your Animal Kingdom day. 
  • Tusker House – Character dinning is sought out by many families visiting and this one of the best character dining options plus amazing food! Typically character dining options over charge and under deliver on food but this one definitely has the perfect combination.

Favorite Food Options at Disney Springs 

  • There are so many dining options at Disney Springs and we certainly have not even made a dent in trying all there is to offer. Do not forget to set aside some park free time to explore parts of Walt Disney World like Disney Springs!
  • Wine Bar George – If I was a local, I would be here all the time. Wine bar that features an extensive menu with unique pour options to get to mix and match as well as try more exclusive bottles without the heavy price tag. And the menu here is phenom. We typically do dinner or snack here (cheese and meat plate) and we recently tried lunch here (which was very hyped up) and it was definitely worth the hype. The George of Wine Bar George is one of the only master sommeliers in Florida and can often be found at the restaurant – he is the nicest guy! 
  • Salt and Straw is coming soon! I think I need to plan a trip once they announce the opening day, I am that big a fan. If you have read any of DESKRIB California content you know I am in love with this ice cream. I think I’ll have to make a trip to Disney Springs each day of the trip once it is open.
  • For a quick and affordable option, I hear great things about Chicken Guy – will have to try it on an upcoming trip.
  • Gideon Cookies – A new comer to Disney Springs, these half pound each cookie is worth the hype! They also freeze extremely well so feel free to stock up, bring up and continue to enjoy at home as well. Since this is an extremely popular spot, make sure when you arrive to Disney Springs to check in with Gideon’s first to get in the virtual queue line, then go about the rest of your time exploring the area. Then when it is your time to enter the store, you will be notified – seamless process! 
  • Sprinkles is a popular cupcake but go here from the captain crunch ice cream – you can thank me later. 

Favorite Food Options at Resorts

  • The resorts have some of the best dining options on property so do not think just because you may spend most of the day inside the theme parks that is where you are destined to eat. And what is so amazing is that there are resorts within walking distance from some of the theme parks that make hopping out of the park for an amazing meal quick and easy. 

Magic Kingdom Monorail Loop

  • What I love about the monorail loop is how many awesome spots there are to eat and how accessible it is to the Magic Kingdom. And if you are staying in this area, you have so many options to choose from. 
  • Contemporary has all around great dining. California Grill is an all time favorite that sits atop the resort which gives a wonderful view of the Magic Kingdom fireworks if you time your dinner appropriately. Steakhouse 71 (previously the Wave) was a secret spot for fantastic food at a reasonable price – we will eat here on every trip the food is that good. Plus they share a wine menu with California Grill so you can still have great wine here as well. on our last trip, we had to eat at Contempo Cafe out of convenience and we were all blown away but how amazing this quick service was – so much so that we ate here twice! Contemporary has got a great triple threat for food.
  • Polynesian – Trader Sam’s is the best place to hang out especially for adults only vacation. This tiki bar features the coolest interactive elements that surround the menu. I won’t spoil it but we have spent hours here – Trader Sam’s is one of the reasons why adult Disney is so freaking awesome. 
  • Grand Floridan – Citricos is another wonderful dining location featuring an upscale and creative menu. If you are in for a real treat, look into Victoria and Albert’s.
  • Fort Wilderness and Wilderness Lodge – While not on the monorail loop, it is right next to it and a quick boat ride sends you into the woods. Stop by Whispering Canyon, Geyser Point or personal favorite dinner show Hoop-Dee-Doo Revue.

Epcot/Hollywood Studios Loop

  • Flying Fish – Ahh this one of our absolute favorites! Located at the lovely Boardwalk (also our favorite resort), this spot is known for their seafood but do not miss their pork belly and cheese plate. Flying Fish was one of the last restaurants to open post pandemic so now that they have reopened I cannot wait to visit here on a return trip.
  • Beaches and Cream – This one is super fun for the entire family for little and big kids alike. With a seashore vibe and menu with boardwalk fare like grilled cheese, hot dogs and burgers, the shining star here is the incredible ice cream sundaes – they are epic! Make sure to save room for them and consider sharing. What a challenge for a larger group? Go in on the kitchen sink – it will be on of the most memorable parts of your trip! Make sure to get reservations – even if it is just for ice cream as it is extremely popular. 

Ones on our to do list:

  • Toppolino Terrace for dinner at Riveria Resort – supposed to rival California Grill which is definitely our top five restaurants
  • Jaleo at Disney Springs – we love tapas and this one is reviewed very well. I also read it isn’t cheap but the quality and service validate the price. 
  • Nomad lounge and Satu’li Canteen at Animal Kingdom – since we are lacking on our Animal Kingdom dinning options.

I will keep this list updated as we try new spots with eat trip – keeps making return visits worth it! Let me know your favorites in the comments.

Currently, you can make advanced dining reservations (ADRs) starting at 60 days before your trip – 6 AM online and 7 AM via phone. Many popular spots are quite competitive to get into to, especially if you want the more common dining time. It is important to have an idea of what you want to do for dining at the 60 day mark in order to give yourself the best chance. You can modify and cancel dining reservations without penalty up to 24 hours before the booked reservation so if you do not get what you want, make sure to keep checking!

Read all of the tips and tricks for planning Disney vacations here!

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