Affordable Disney World Dining: Quick Service and Snacks

Continuing our series on Disney Dining, this week we’re going to discuss the largest food category at Disney World…and the one that nearly everyone will experience multiple times throughout a Disney vacation: Quick Service meals and Snacks.

When it comes to food choices in the Quick Service category, there are literally hundreds of places to eat. Over two hundred in fact, between the parks, resorts, and Downtown Disney. And if you add in the many, many more places where you can just grab a quick snack and keep on going….well there are a lot more than that. In other words… name it when it comes to food…and Disney has probably got it somewhere.

Quick Service meals are also known as “counter service” meals, and are of course, those meals where you get in and out quickly. You’re at a theme park for heaven’s sake: there are rides to ride and shows to see! Quick Service meals make it easy for you to get in and out, and Disney, being Disney, is pretty good for the most part, at making the process of eating….well…..quickly, pretty smooth.

So what kind of food is available as Quick Service….and what is it going to cost you?

While many QS places are lunch only, there are some (most, but not all, at the resorts) that also offer breakfast items. Nearly all offer a variety of foods beyond the basic entrees that are featured, with sides, desserts, fruit in some cases, and of course drinks available as well. Here you will also find kid’s meals, and happily Disney lately now offers healthy options for little ones (and parents who are *trying* to minimize the junk, fat, and sweets), with fruit and veggies instead of fries and dessert.

One of the nicest surprises for many folks who are visiting Disney for the first time, is just how much of a variety of food choices there are for QS meals. Yes, you can still get that theme park staple of burger, fries, and a soda…but you also can get many QS food options from countries all around the world, in addition to wraps, salads, “noodles”, turkey legs, sandwiches, chili, rotisserie chicken, soups…and a whole lot more. In fact, there is probably as much variety at Disney World in the QS food category, as there is in the Table Service category.

As to cost, there is again, a variety, but you can expect most QS adult entrees to be between $5-$7 each, but typically under $10. Not cheap, but the portions are also large, so it is very easy to make one entrée serve two people…or at least one adult and one child.

And what about Snacks?

When it comes to snack items, you will find these pretty much everywhere. Many “snacks” are located at the QS places, and if you are on a Disney Dining Plan, you will find all snacks identified with the DDP snack designation. In addition, there are snacks at many little counter areas and carts all around the parks. Some snacks, like packaged chips, pretzels, and candy are available in shops (if you are trying to use DDP snack credits, always ask if you are not sure, as this does change). And again, you’ll find a lot of choices! Breakfast snacks include bagels, croissants, muffins, and breakfast sandwiches …and increasingly, fruit and yogurt.

Snacks for the rest of the day? Well, you name it and it is probably in Disney World somewhere! In fact, there are some really incredible snack options available, with many folks having some strong opinions as to the “best” snack available! In fact, entire articles have been written to describe some of these fantastic snacks, so if you want to really have an idea of specific items that you just HAVE to try, check out these blog posts:

As to cost for snacks? These can really add up if you are not careful. Here is where a food budget can easily be blown, even if you are on one of the Dining Plans because you buy stuff on a whim because it just “looks so darn good!” In general, you will find snack prices to vary widely from a dollar or so, up to $4-$5 each. (Tip: If you are using the Dining Plan, and think you will consume more snacks than your daily allotment of Snack Credits….save the Credits for more expensive items, and pay cash for cheaper things like fruit etc.)

What is available back at the resorts?

At the resorts, you will find a wide variety of Quick Service and snack options as well. At the Value and Moderate resorts there are food courts, while Deluxe properties don’t typically have food courts, but instead have snack shops or counters where you can get a QS meal or purchase snacks. Because these are in the resorts, most have a decent selection of breakfast items, and some are open 24 hours (always check though, as we have tried to get “late night” snacks a few times and missed out because they were closed).

One of the most important things to keep in mind when it comes to QS meals or snacks is that being creative can provide you with some delicious food…and possibly save you some money as well….so try some new things, share large portions, watch for healthy choices, and use those Dining Plan credits wisely,

Our favorite Quick Service and Snack locations…

In case you are wondering, here are some of our family’s favorite places for a Quick Service meal, as well as some yummy Snacks:

  • Magic Kingdom: Columbia Harbour House for lots of *different options* like soup and chili (and be sure to check out the upper level for a quieter place to eat)
  • Epcot – Future World: Sunshine Seasons in the Land Pavilion for practically everything! There are tons of great options, and here you will find many of the healthier choices in Disney as well. Great place for breakfast too.
  • Epcot – World Showcase: Nearly every country in Epcot has great QS options. It’s a fun way for kids to *try new things* without the expense of a Table Service meal. (We especially like the lovely garden behind Japan, for a peaceful, un-themepark-like place to eat.)
  • Hollywood Studios – Rosies All American Café has a nice variety of food.
  • Hollywood Studios – Starring Rolls Bakery for….well everything! 🙂
  • Animal Kingdom – Flame Tree Barbecue for the smoked chicken: easily large enough for two people!

And if you would like more suggestions on great Quick Service or snack options, be sure to check out these great posts from the Disney Food Blog:

We are pleased that this post is part of the Disney Blog Carnival. Be sure to head on over there to see more great Disney-related posts and articles from some of the internet’s most interesting and talented bloggers!

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One Response to Affordable Disney World Dining: Quick Service and Snacks

  1. Pingback: Disney Blog Carnival #8: August 16th, 2010 | DisMarks - Disney Social News

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