With so many quick-service restaurants at Disney World, picking the best one is daunting. We’ve eaten at nearly every quick-service restaurant at the Disney Resorts in the last year alone. Unfortunately, some of our former favorites have not been great, while other restaurants have significantly improved their menus. Suffice it to say that things have changed as we venture into 2024.
Things have changed so much that we’ve completely re-ranked the top ten best options for quick-service dining at Disney World’s Resorts. You don’t want to see the scribble scrabble on my notepad that shows how many times I changed the order before it felt right.
Below, we’ll look at our picks for the best Disney Resort quick-service restaurant. I’ll share a few things we’ve tried at each location.
Best Disney Resort Quick-Service Restaurants
Here is our list of the top ten quick-service restaurants at Disney World Resorts ranked.
- Riverside Mill Food Court
- Centertown Market
- Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory
- Roaring Fork
- Gasparilla Island Grill
- The Mara
- Capt. Cook’s
- Contempo Cafe
- The Artist’s Palette
- Primo Piatto
#10 Riverside Mill Food Court
Riverside Mill Food Court does not usually make our list of the best quick services. However, during our stay at Port Orleans Riverside last year, I was impressed with the resort’s quick service and that some items were freshly prepared. For example, when I ordered the shrimp and grits dish pictured below, the chef cooked the shrimp in front of us. He then added grits and fresh toppings. It was delicious.
If you’re visiting the Port Orleans Resorts, Riverside and French Quarter have excellent quick-service restaurants. Since they are within walking distance (or a boat ride), you might preview the menus and dine at whichever most suits you. (Preview Riverside Mill Menu with Prices)
Related: Riverside Mill Food Court Review
#9 Centertown Market
A few years ago, I wouldn’t have dreamed of adding Centertown Market to this list. But the quick service at Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort wowed us this year by adding a greater variety of items to their menu. Now, it’s a place that we want to dine.
I enjoyed the mixed grill platter for lunch one afternoon during our last trip. Warning: I was alone for lunch and had no idea what I was getting into! I guess the word “platter” should have cued me in that it would be a small feast. But at the time, I was focused on ordering something low-carb.
I wasn’t crazy about the chicken because it was a little on the dry side, but the ribs and sausage were excellent. There is a large smoked sausage underneath the ribs that’s difficult to see in the photo below. I didn’t realize it was there until after I took photos. My favorite part of the meal was the roasted vegetables. They were tasty.
If you decide to go this route, ask for extra plates and share it! It’s a great value, especially if you can make two meals out of it for the cost of one. (Preview Centertown Market Menu with Prices)
Related: Centertown Market Review
#8 Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory
Our next choice for the best quick service is Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory. This restaurant is located at Disney’s Port Orleans French Quarter Resort. We love this charming, quick service and dine here fairly often. Their roast beef sub sandwich is my go-to menu item, and it comes with a side of Disney’s house-made chips. They are a salt lover’s dream snack.
This location usually has a specialty burger that changes from time to time. A while back, they had an out-of-this-world good beignet burger. As you can imagine, the burger patty was served on a savory beignet! Maybe one day we’ll see it again. (Preview Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory Menu)
Speaking of beignets, you can pick them up next door to Sassagoula Floatworks at Scat Cat’s Club Cafe. They are served daily from breakfast until they close. Be prepared to wait in line first thing in the morning.
#7 Roaring Fork
Disney’s Wilderness Lodge is an excellent place to visit for the vibes alone during your Walt Disney World vacation. While you’re there, you might decide to enjoy a meal. But if you don’t have a reservation, don’t worry. The resort’s quick service, Roaring Fork, will do just fine.
Roaring Fork makes our list of best quick-service restaurants due to location and variety. You can expect the usual, like burgers, sandwiches, and salads. But they also have a few unique items like barbecued brisket and burnt ends or a country-style baked meatloaf. These specialty items are prepared at nearby Whispering Canyon Cafe and offered at the quick service.
We tried the brisket on a recent visit, and it was a huge meal. It comes with potato hash, fiery cole slaw, and cornbread. We substituted the slaw for an extra side and got the mashed potatoes that normally come with the meatloaf. Everything was delicious. This is another item that you’ll probably want to share with someone.
If you’re in the mood for dessert, don’t miss the dessert cases inside Roaring Fork. They. have a few irresistible treats like magic bars and cupcakes. The specialty campfire cupcake is a real treat when it’s available. (Preview menu with prices for Roaring Fork.)
Related: Roaring Fork Review
#6 Gasparilla Island Grill
Sometimes, you just want a sandwich with a side of the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa. If so, you can take the monorail from Magic Kingdom to the resort and enjoy a meal at Gasparilla Island Grill. On a serious note, Gasparilla Island Grill has stepped up their game in the last year with a new menu. They now offer an excellent selection of sandwiches for lunch and several specialty bowls for dinner.
This last year, we’ve had the Cuban Sandwich and the Gourmet Grilled Cheese. We loved the Cuban. But my grilled cheese was a little more crusty than I’m sure was intended. If the weather is pleasant, you might prefer to dine outside on the patio. This resort’s quick service ranks high for its location. (Preview the menu for Gasparilla Island Grill)
Related: Gasparilla Island Grill Review
#5 The Mara
The Mara is the quick-service restaurant at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. If you have some time and aren’t already staying at this resort, we think it’s worth a visit. While there, you can explore the Jambo House lobby and the public viewing areas behind the lobby and the pool. You might even enjoy a meal at The Mara. It’s on the lower level of the resort that surrounds the pool area.
We love to break bread at The Mara. They have an excellent indoor and outdoor dining area. Pay attention to all the details during your visit. Even the ceiling inside the quick service is unique.
As far as food goes, you’ll find regular items like flatbreads, burgers, and sandwiches. Additionally, they have African-inspired cuisine like the Chermoula-spiced shrimp bowl and an African vegetable stew. (Preview the menu with prices for The Mara)
Related: The Mara Review
#4 Capt. Cook’s
Between the atmosphere of Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort and excellent dining options, Capt. Cook’s has it all! This quick-service restaurant has always been a family favorite. You can take the monorail from Magic Kingdom to the Polynesian to get here.
We love several items, including the Thai Coconut Meatballs with rice and the incredible Superfoods Salad. Both of these are home runs. Another popular item that gets rave reviews is the pulled pork nachos. The popular Tonga Toast is available for breakfast. They also have a nice variety of kids’ meals.
While at the Polynesian, you might explore the grounds, pick up a Dole Whip at Pineapple Lanai, and sit in the lobby underneath the impressive light fixture. You’ll surely know you’re on vacation. (Preview Capt. Cook’s Menu with Prices)
Related: Capt. Cook’s Review
#3 Contempo Cafe
Contempo Cafe ranks high on our list of best quick-service restaurants. Located on the fourth floor of Disney’s Contemporary Resort, you can enjoy a meal while the monorail passes through the hotel. Most people will tell you to dine at Chef Mickey’s, which sits next door, to see the monorail while you’re eating. But we think Contempo Cafe has better food and prices!
This quick service is one of our go-tos. You can walk or monorail from Magic Kingdom to the Contemporary. Then you’ll order food, and a cast member will bring it to the table when it’s ready. Contempo Cafe recently got a brand new menu. So far, we’ve only tried the hot turkey sandwich with chips. It was a nice, freshly prepared sandwich. The Kale Power Greens salad remains on the menu. It’s a hearty salad if you’re looking for something filling that doubles as healthy. (Preview the Contempo Cafe Menu with Prices)
Related: Contempo Cafe Review
#2 The Artist’s Palette
I wouldn’t be surprised if you hadn’t heard of our number two option for the best quick-service restaurant. The Artist’s Palette is located at Saratoga Springs Resort and Spa. I dined here for the first time a couple of years back and have been returning ever since.
Since Saratoga Springs is within walking distance of Disney Springs, I feel this location often gets overlooked. It’s a shame because I always look forward to dining here. This location has restaurant-quality food at an affordable price. Within the last year, I’ve had the ham and cheese melt, meatballs with polenta, and the roasted half chicken. For the record, the meatballs and chicken dinner are large enough to split. That meatball dish is one of the best counter-service meals ever. (Preview The Artist’s Palette Menu)
Related: The Artist’s Palette Review
#1 Primo Piatto
Primo Piatto remains in the number-one spot for 2024. This quick service at Disney’s Riviera Resort will be tough to beat. We dine here on average about once a month and have tried almost everything on the menu, including kids’ meals.
Often, I’ll leave Epcot and take the Skyliner to the Riviera for lunch. Not that Epcot doesn’t have good lunch options. But my work takes me to the resorts, and I know I can have a comfortable sit-down meal at Primo Piatto. Usually, I’ll place my order on the Skyliner and pick it up when I get to the resort. This works perfectly if you want to enjoy your meal outside.
However, I have found that I prefer to have my meal brought to the table on a regular plate with real silverware when dining inside. So if that’s the case, I’ll order at the counter when I arrive and find a seat in the dining room. My favorites are the blueberry-lemon pancakes for breakfast, the pepperoni and sausage pizza, and their grilled chicken sandwich with a side salad. (Preview the Primo Piatto Menu with Prices)
Related: Primo Piatto Review
What Didn’t Make the List?
What locations did we remove? We formerly had El Mercado de Coronado at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort on the list. But during our stay last summer, we noticed they had many items sitting under heat lamps that guests could walk up and select. If I’m paying $15.00 for an order of chicken nuggets with fries, at the very least, I want someone to put it on a plate behind the scenes. Who knows how long that stuff sits there?
We don’t cover much at the theme parks, but we enjoy a few places in the parks. At Magic Kingdom, Columbia Harbour House in Liberty Square has a delicious New England Shrimp Boil.
For Epcot, my go-to is Regal Eagle Barbecue. Hollywood Studios is lacking when it comes to counter-service restaurants. We usually get a Ronto Wrap at Galaxy’s Edge or end up at the Brown Derby Lounge.
Then, I love Satu’li Canteen or Flame Tree Barbecue at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. The barbecue-topped macaroni and cheese dish is a tasty treat.
This wraps up our list of the best Disney Resort quick-service locations. I hope you found a few new places to try during your next visit. Remember that menus change occasionally, so the items pictured might not be available on your next visit. But we update this list yearly, so the items and our rankings are fresh.
For other Disney Restaurant Reviews, you might enjoy the following:
- Best Breakfasts at Disney World’s Resorts
- The Entire List of Disney Resort Hotel Restaurants
- The Best Restaurants at Disney Springs
- The Ultimate Guide to Character Dining at Walt Disney World
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What Do You Think?
What do you think of our list of the best resort quick services at Disney World? Have you had a chance to try any of these? We would love to hear how our choices stack up against your experiences. Leave a comment below and share your thoughts and opinions.