'; Best Disney Dining Values when Paying Out of Pocket - WDW Hints
Thursday 13 June 2024
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Best Disney Dining Values when Paying Out of Pocket

For those of you that stay off property and can’t get the Disney Dining Plan (or for those of you that choose not to purchase it), here’s a list of restaurants that provide meals considered to be of good value!  We’ve scoured the DisBoards, Mouse and Memos reviews, and other articles and have listed the restaurants that continue to be mentioned as a good value.  Whether it’s a decent amount of food given for the price, or a ‘lower than expected’ price for a dish, we hope this helps those of you that are budget-minded on your next trip!  (Keep in mind, this isn’t a comprehensive list!  We may have missed a good value meal – if so, please list your favorites in the comment section below.)

Disney’s Animal Kingdom:

  • Flame Tree BBQ (QS) – 2 adults can share a chicken platter and an order of onion rings.
  • Rainforest Cafe (TS) – Breakfast is reasonably priced.
  • Tusker House (TS) – Nutritious selections and wide variety of options at the buffet.  Lunch is priced less than Dinner – yet the buffet menus are almost identical!

Disney’s Hollywood Studio’s:

  • 50’s Primetime Cafe (TS) – Reasonably priced entrees that can be shared – such as the sampler.
  • Min & Bill’s Dockside Diner (QS) –  Grab the frankfurter in a pretzel roll for under $8 – claimed to be so big that you won’t even need chips or fries to go with it.
  • Pizza Planet (QS) – For around $10 each person gets a pizza, salad and drink – pretty filling.
  • Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater (TS) – Lunches are reasonably priced.

Downtown Disney:

  • Captain Jack’s (QS – Marketplace) – Quality of food is great.  Restaurant generally isn’t crowded.
  • Earl of Sandwich (QS – Marketplace) – Great value, great food, quick service & great cupcakes!
  • Pollo Campero (QS) –  Try the family dinner of fried chicken, rice and pintos with some plaitains – it’s more than enough to feed 3 people!
  • Wolfgang Puck Express (QS – Marketplace) – Reasonable price for the quality of the meal.


  • Le Cellier Steakhouse (TS – Canada Pavilion) – The burger is very good and not expensive.  (Keep in mind, other items like the steak are going to be expensive!)
  • Les Chefs de France (TS – France Pavilion) – Split a full 3-course meal for lunch (about $24).
  • San Angel Inn (TS – Mexico Pavilion) – Lunch portions are large, yet reasonably priced.  Families of 4 could buy 2 entrees, 2 appetizers & 2 desserts and then share.
  • Sunshine Season Food Fair (QS – The Land Pavilion) – Lots of healthy options.   The rotisserie chicken can be split between two. The seared-tuna salad is large enough to share, also! Or pick up a kids meal.
  • Tangierine Cafe (QS – Morocco Pavilion) – The platter can be shared.
  • Via Napoli (TS – Italy Pavilion) – Great pizza for a good price.

The Magic Kingdom:

  • Cosmic Rays (QS) – Split the chicken and rib combo for a great value!  The Bacon Double cheeseburger is also large enough to be shared.
  • Crystal Palace (TS) – The breakfast prices are the best out of all character buffet meals (some people have even claimed to pay out of pocket even if they have a DDP so they could use their credits on a more higher priced restaurant.)
  • Liberty Tree Tavern (TS) – Generous, share-able portions of food such as the Pot Roast or Turkey meals for lunch.  Also recommended was the Tavern Fried Cheese appetizer.  
  • Pecos Bills (QS) – The toppings bar makes it worth it for some.
  • The Plaza Restaurant (TS) – Plentiful portions, great service, desserts are large enough to share.
Resort Restaurants:
  • Big River Grille & Brewing Works (TS at the Boardwalk) – Appetizers are large enough to split, then you can order one of the ‘cheaper’ sandwich options as the portion sizes are pretty big.
  • Captain Cook’s (QS at the Polynesian) – Tonga Toast is just $6 here, and yet it costs twice as much upstairs at the Kona Cafe!
  • Captain’s Grille (TS at the Yacht Club) – Big portions of fish & chips on the lunch menu for reasonable price.
  • Beaches and Cream (TS at the Beach Club) – Prices are very reasonable, kid friendly atmosphere – even known to make items not on the menu (such as a grilled cheese sandwich).
  • Pepper Market (QS at Coronado Springs) – Breakfast and Lunch buffets at great prices!
  • Sanaa (TS at Animal Kingdom Lodge) – Not one that people realize has a decently priced menu.  Be sure to ask for a table by the window!
  • Trails End (TS at Fort Wilderness) – This is the cheapest buffet on Disney property!
  • The All Star Movies Food Court (QS) – Breakfast, taco salads and chicken parmesan are all priced fair.
The key to eating ‘more cheaply’ at Disney is simple planning. Eat breakfast in your resort room. Plan for lunch to be your ‘big’ meal’ as lunch prices are less compared to dinner prices – many restaurants have the same or very similar lunch and dinner menus. Then get CS or a snack for dinner. Keep an eye out for dishes that you could split with your spouse or with your child. Want to really save on Quick Service meals? Order from the kids menu!

Want to tell us about a meal that’s of great value? Let us know about the good deals you’ve found by commenting below!

Terri is owner, creator and an author for WDW Hints. She enjoys taking less-traveled paths of WDW and sharing her lesser-known discoveries with you!