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Cheap Eats at Disney World (How a family of four can eat for under $50 per meal)

Cheap Eats at Disney World

When I think of a Disney vacation and the different parts of the vacation budget, there are three items that stand out to me.

  • Lodging
  • Tickets
  • Food

In order of most to least expensive.  So I wanted to provide you with some real information on where you can eat cheaply at Disney World. Because the food part of your Disney vacation budget can quickly get out of hand.

Personal Story: I took a last minute trip to Disney World, didn’t plan at all, and spent $1,000 on food for two people in 3.5 days.  THAT’S INSANE. On most trips, I spend $40/day/person plus about $150 for groceries.  So that should have been more like $400.  I don’t know about you, but I don’t have $600 to throw around.

Random Thought: I am just about ready to go into some detail on the Disney Dining plan and why it’s not the best choice when doing a Disney vacation on a budget.

But we will have to save that for another post.

I mention it because this post is going to give you a few options for eating at Disney for under $50/meal for a family of four.  (I guess it wasn’t that random of a thought)

I decided the best mock family would be two adults and two children.  One over the age of 8 and a child a bit younger.

What I ‘d like to accomplish here are two distinct objectives.

  1. Give you actional tips.  AKA places you really can have these meals starting right now.  Perfect if you’re currently on your Disney trip.
  2. Show you a way of thinking.  There’s a commonality here. A certain way of thinking, if you must.  Which we will definitely discuss after.  I will go over this at the end.

With these example meals, remember, you don’t know the size of the entrees or sides.  You have to trust me.  You can get more if you purchase everything and still are hungry but I doubt it.

Magic Kingdom

Casey’s Corner

Foot long, toppings covered foot longs with sides!

(1) Chili-Cheese All-Beef Foot Long Hot Dog – topped with Chili and Cheddar. Served with Apple Slices or French Fries – $12.49

(1) Macaroni & Cheese All-Beef Foot Long Hot Dog – topped with Macaroni and Cheese and Bacon. Served with Apple Slices or French Fries – $12.49

(1) Featured All-Beef Hot Dog – topped with Barbecue Pulled Pork, Coleslaw and Barbecue Sauce Drizzle and served with Apple Slices or French Fries – $10.99

(2) French Fries – – $2.99

Drinks – Water you brought with you.

Total: $41.95


Cosmic Ray’s Starlight Cafe

Cosmic Ray’s is famous for having large portion sizes.  This is enough food for three adults and a child to share.

(1) 1/2 Rotisserie Chicken – Slow-roasted Rotisserie Chicken served with Mashed Potatoes and Green Beans – $14.49

(1) Chicken Breast Nuggets – 8 pieces – 8-piece Chicken Breast Nuggets served with French Fries or Green Beans – $9.99

(2) French Fries – – $3.49

(1) Macaroni & Cheese – served with Carrot Sticks, GoGo squeeZ® and choice of small lowfat Milk or small Dasani® Water – $6.59

Drinks – Water you brought with you.

Total: $38.05



Les Halles – France

(2) Jambon Beurre – ham and cheese, dijon mustard butter on a demi baguette $7.50

(2) Croissant Jambon Fromage – ham, cheese and bechamel in a croissant $4.75

(4) Sides or desserts $5

Drinks – Water you brought with you.

Total: $44.50


Sunshine Seasons

(2) Oak-grilled Rotisserie Chicken – Rotisserie Cooked 1/2 Chicken with Yellow Rice and Black Beans $12.29

(1) Spicy Fish Tacos – Pan-seared Tilapia topped with Lime-Cabbage Slaw and Spicy Poblano Pepper Aïoli $11.79

(1) Salmon with Cheesy Grits and Andouille-Corn Succotash –Oak-grilled Salmon with Cheesy Grits and Andouille-Corn Succotash $12.99

Drinks – Water you brought with you.

Total: $49.36


Hollywood Studios

Backlot Express

(2) Chicken Breast Nuggets (10 pieces) – served with your choice of Carrot Sticks or French Fries $10.99

(1) Dark Side Chicken and Waffles – Darth Vader Waffles topped with Chicken Breast Nuggets served with Maple Syrup $11.49

(2) French Fries – $3.29

Drinks – Water you brought with you.

Total: $40.05


Animal Kingdom

Yak and Yeti Local Food Cafe

(1) Honey Chicken – Tempura Chicken, Carrots, Snap Peas, Honey Sauce, and White Rice $10.99

(1) Teriyaki Beef Bowl – Marinated Beef, Carrots, Snap Peas, Onions Mushrooms in Sweet Teriyaki Sauce with White Rice $11.49

(2) Chicken Fried Rice $4.99

Drinks – Water you brought with you.

Total: $32.49



Disney Springs

Earl of Sandwich

(4) Sandwiches of your choice $8

(4) Dessert $4

Drinks – Water you brought with you.

Total: $48.00

I promised to detail the way of thinking that is going on here.  Once you master it, you’re set for your entire Disney vacation.

The truth is, some of the Disney meals and entrees, actually most, are big.  Meaning if you add an extra side you can split the entree with two people.

You can also purchase just the entree from a Disney location, all the prices you see on the menu are for meals.

Aim for places that are known to serve good food but are counter service or quick service locations.  This just means you won’t have a Waiter or Waitress.

A good place to start is with the Disney World App.  It can be downloaded from the app store (iPhone) or play store (android).  It allows you to look at places to eat either on a map or as a list.  Quick Service locations have one $.

If you aren’t on your Disney vacation yet that means you have some time to do some serious planning.  If you ate 50% of your meals from your groceries, another 3o% with this method, and splurged for the last 20%.  Your Disney budget is going to be close to perfect.

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cheap eats at disney

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