Our Favorite Magic Kingdom Restaurants

Magic Kingdom, how we love you. You are, for many of us, the source of our earliest Disney Memories. Heck, some of us remember when you were the ONLY Park. (Am I showing my age here?)

Walt Disney World's Magic Kingdom

Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom

But even though you’ve been around the longest, we’re no less fond of you. In fact, coming back to ride old favorites or experience new attractions always feels a bit like coming home.

However, even with so much to do and see in Magic Kingdom, it’s the eating that we look forward to the most! And I know a lot of you are planning your 2016 Disney trips RIGHT NOW and are wondering what our favorites might be.

So today, let’s take a closer look at our Favorite Magic Kingdom Restaurants. They are spots that we love for all kinds of reasons — from food to history and atmosphere and beyond!

Favorite Magic Kingdom Restaurants Disney World

Hooray! Let’s eat!

Be Our Guest Restaurant

When Be Our Guest Restaurant was first announced, we were excited to say the least. I mean, New Fantasyland, a new classic film, Be Our Guest, restaurant? It was practically destiny. (Now if they could just rig up a singing candelabra, life would be perfect.)

The Themeing Makes Be Our Guest a Must See!

The Themeing Makes Be Our Guest a Must See!

If you ever wanted to step into a Disney movie, this is your chance. Imagineers went to extraordinary lengths to recreate Beauty and the Beast in every room of this castle. Right from the beginning, the West Wing struck a chord with guests — and with us!

West Wing Dining Area

West Wing Dining Area in Be Our Guest Restaurant

If you dine there, be sure to check out the Beast’s portrait as the painting changes from the arrogant, handsome prince to the Beast — if only for a second!

Morphing Prince Portrait in the West Wing

Morphing Prince Portrait in the West Wing

West Wing Beast Portrait

West Wing Beast Portrait

But as truly amazing as the theming is, it’s not the only draw here. We’ve also had some pretty delicious food as well — especially at lunch. The format at lunch is quick service, but the meals are anything but fast food. While you order (or pre-order) your meals at a kiosk, you sit down and your food is delivered to you. On real plates! And don’t bother looking for burgers. But why would you, with options like Braised Pork Coq Au Vin Style?

And don’t forget — breakfast and lunch at Be Our Guest are such hot tickets, you can actually make advance dining reservations for them. (Since dinner is table service, you should also plan to make ADRs for that meal as well.) You also have the option of pre-ordering breakfast and lunch via the My Disney Experience App.

Braised Pork Coq Au Vin Style

Braised Pork Coq Au Vin Style

Dinner is delicious as well. For the evening meal, you’re treated to a table service experience. But know this — dinner at BOG is the hottest ticket in the Magic Kingdom. You’ll need to book 6 months in advance for this one.

Grilled Strip Steak

Grilled Strip Steak

And to complement the French-inspired cuisine, you can also indulge in wine or beer — the only place in all of Magic Kingdom where you can.

Chimay Blue at Be Our Guest Restaurant

Enjoy the Novelty of a Chimay Blue at Be Our Guest Restaurant

As much an attraction as an eatery, Be Our Guest Restaurant is worth exploring during your next Disney World visit.

Liberty Tree Tavern

And now we travel across lands and through time — from one of Magic Kingdom’s newest restaurants, to one of its originals. Liberty Tree Tavern is one of our perennial favorites.

Exterior

Liberty Tree Tavern

Liberty Tree Tavern is as much a slice of history as anything else. Themed in 18th Century American Colonial style, rooms reflect the personality of notables they’re named for. Dine in the shadow of Benjamin Franklin, Betsy Ross, John Paul Jones, George Washington, and others.

Coats and Hat Hanging at the Ready

Coats and Hat Hanging at the Ready

One interesting aspect of dining at Liberty Tree is that lunch and dinner offer different menus, and take on different formats. Lunch is an a la carte selection, while dinner is a family style feast, offering American favorites, like turkey dinner with all the trimmings.

While both are excellent, I prefer lunch, which features some of my all-time favorite Disney dishes, like the Liberty Tree Tavern Burger. Trust me, you can skip dinner when you have this for lunch!

Liberty Tree Tavern Burger

Liberty Tree Tavern Burger

But you can’t skip dessert! Because anytime Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake is an option, I’m going to take it.

Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake at Liberty Tree Tavern in Magic Kingdom

Ooey Gooey Toffee Cake

Stop by for the history, stick around for the food — or vice versa. Either way, you’re winning.

Sleepy Hollow Refreshments

But if you suddenly feel hunger threatening and you don’t have an advance dining reservation, don’t despair. Sleepy Hollow Refreshments is another dining destination we wouldn’t want you to miss.

Sleepy Hollow Refreshments

Sleepy Hollow Refreshments

Sleepy Hollow Refreshments

Sleepy Hollow Refreshments

Located a stone’s throw from Liberty Tree, this counter service spot also sits in the shadow of Cinderella Castle and it offers some of the most interesting — and filling — snacks in all of Disney World. We’d argue that they would easily pass for a meal.

Whether you find yourself at Sleepy Hollow for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, we heartily recommend that you save room for one of their Waffle Sandwiches. Introduced just a few years ago, they’ve quickly won a place on our list of must-try treats!

Chicken Waffle Sandwich and Nutella and Fruit Waffle Sandwich

Chicken Waffle Sandwich and Nutella and Fruit Waffle Sandwich

But if it’s an afternoon dessert that you’re looking for, you can also enjoy a Handmade Ice Cream Sandwich or a yummy dressed up waffle here.

Birthday Cake Ice Cream Sandwich

Birthday Cake Ice Cream Sandwich

Dressed Up Waffle!

Dressed Up Waffle!

Be sure to check for seasonal favorites at Sleepy Hollow, too. Both Ice Cream Sandwiches and Funnel Cakes tend to change depending on the time of year you visit!

Plaza Restaurant

Plaza Restaurant. You may be thinking, What is that? That’s because this table service spot is often overlooked when it comes to Magic Kingdom’s more razzle dazzle spots, like Be Our Guest Restaurant and Cinderella’s Royal Table.

But take my advice: don’t overlook this place! Because the Plaza Restaurant offers two great things — good food and great value (by Disney standards).

It may be a little nondescript as themeing goes, but it is pleasant and fits into Main Street USA beautifully. Watch for visits from the Mayor of Main Street or the Fire Chief through your meal, and be sure to check out the view of Cinderella Castle from The Plaza.

The Plaza Restaurant -- Outside

The Plaza Restaurant — Outside

We have also been impressed with their menu offerings. The Meatloaf Meal might not sound all that interesting, but it’s one of my favorite best kept secrets at Walt Disney World!

Meatloaf Meal at The Plaza Restaurant

Meatloaf Meal at The Plaza Restaurant

Another favorite is the Chicken Strawberry Salad — it’s as beautiful as it is delicious.

Chicken Strawberry Salad

Chicken Strawberry Salad

And you can’t pass up the temptation of a great Milkshake, right? Me neither!

Plaza Restaurant Milkshake

Plaza Restaurant Milkshake

With the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor right next door, these hand-dipped treats are the real deal!

Crystal Palace

But our list of Top spots wouldn’t be complete without characters + food! And so we make our way to Crystal Palace next.

This Magic Kingdom fixture has also been around since the dawn of Disney time. Inspired by England’s Crystal Palace and other Victorian-style conservatories, the space is stunning.

Crystal Palace Atrium

Crystal Palace Atrium

But step inside and you’ll meet your favorite characters from 100 Acre Wood!

Winnie the Pooh...

Winnie the Pooh!

Whether you choose to enjoy breakfast, lunch, or dinner, the buffet is expansive, and offers a wide array of American-style favorites. Guests who enjoy their morning meal rave about the Breakfast Lasagna, while the lunch and dinner crowd enjoy freshly prepared Rotisserie Meats, roasted in view of the carving station.

Fire Where Meats are Spit Roasted

Rotisserie Meats

And be sure to take a look at the Dessert Spread. There’s something for everyone, from Sugar Free desserts to Soft Serve Ice Cream. I couldn’t resist the Turtle Cheesecake on my recent visit!

Turtle Cheesecake on the Dessert Buffet

Turtle Cheesecake on the Dessert Buffet

Many of you tell us that your Disney vacay wouldn’t be complete without a visit here. With beautiful surroundings, warm character interaction, and good food, we can totally see why!

Honorable Mention: Cinderella’s Royal Table

Even though we’ve reached the end of our Top 5 — and trust me, there are other notables we’d love to mention — we can’t wrap up our list without a nod to Cinderella’s Royal Table.

I mean, the castle is so iconic that it represents the entire Walt Disney company. And are you kidding me that there’s a restaurant in there, too???

Cinderella's Royal Table

Cinderella’s Royal Table

Really, a meal at Cinderella’s Royal Table has to be on the bucket list of every self-respecting Disney fan. Who doesn’t want to see inside those walls and turrets?

Dining Room Windows at Cinderella's Royal Table

Dining Room Windows at Cinderella’s Royal Table

Dining at Cinderella’s Royal Table ensures character interaction, too. While you enjoy your meal, Cinderella’s princess friends meet and greet and take pictures and offer autographs. (Cinderella doesn’t actually mingle, but you have a chance to meet her before you’re seated.)

Jasmine Is One of the Princesses You May Meet at Cinderella's Royal Table

Jasmine Is One of the Princesses You May Meet at Cinderella’s Royal Table

In the past, the food here was considered largely overpriced and forgettable. But in the last few years, changes have been taking place. We’re seeing more turnover on the lunch and dinner menu as chefs look to take a more seasonal approach and capitalize on hot and healthier food trends.

Roasted Chicken

Roasted Chicken

And guests have raved about the breakfast offerings for quite sometime — especially the Pastries and the Stuffed French Toast, which changes up now and then.

The characters and ambiance are still the big draw. But chances are nowadays, you’ll enjoy your meal here as well.

Honorable Mention — Skipper Canteen

The jury is still out on this one, since it JUST opened in December 2015. But who wouldn’t love a Jungle Cruise themed restaurant, right?!

Jungle Skipper Canteen Sign

Jungle Skipper Canteen Sign

Yep, Jungle Cruise skippers staff this spot, and there’s a whole backstory related to the beloved ride as well.

Dine in one of three themed dining rooms, and indulge in dishes with far-flung flair (look for flavors from Africa, Asia, and South America — the three continents that are home to the rivers visited in the Jungle Cruise).

S.E.A. Shu Mai

S.E.A. Shu Mai

Those who have fond memories of The Adventurers Club in Downtown Disney can indulge in a dessert named after one of our favorite Adventurer drinks: Kungaloosh!

Kungaloosh! Dessert

Kungaloosh! Dessert

And that’s a wrap! Our List of Our Favorite Magic Kingdom Restaurants offers something for everyone. Whether food is the sole reason you choose your restaurant destination, or you enjoy equal parts of Disney history and/or ambiance, you’re sure to find at least a couple of options that meet your needs!

2016 book cover dfb guide

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The DFB Guide to Walt Disney World® Dining is full of tips and planning tools developed by Disney World experts over 20+ years of visits. We’ve done the research for you, so you’ll know just which spots will uniquely suit your family’s needs!

With sample dining itineraries, plus our “Disney Dining at a Glance” section, featuring “Where Can I Find?” options, you’ll have everything you need to plan the best vacation yet. Click here to get your copy of The DFB Guide to Walt Disney World® Dining E-book — and use code HAPPY2016 for an extra $5 discount for a limited time!

Now we want to hear from you! Let us know in comments what your picks are for the Top 5 Magic Kingdom Restaurants!

Comments

  1. Ellen Goodman says

    We’re heading back to WDW this October (CAN’T WAIT!!!!) and we will be reserving our tables at Crystal Palace and Be Our Guest for sure. Loved them!!! We’ve eaten at Cinderella’s Royal Table for dinner and it was magical to be inside the castle and meet the princesses but it’s not on my must do list this time. We have decided rather to have breakfast at Akershus in Epcot this time round.

  2. says

    I agree with your choices. A big disappointment, though, is that Sleepy Hollow has run out of chicken for the chicken waffles on our last two trips! It was the one food my daughter was looking forward to most!

  3. Mike V says

    Great timing of blog….I am one that is planning our 2016 trip. We have a group of 10 headed down and have 22 days until we can make out ADRs.
    Do you plan to do an updated blog for each park? And maybe one for all the resorts?
    I know where I want to stay, it’s just getting everyone to agree thats tough…..we meet in 2 weeks to make our decisions so any more blogs would help!!!
    Thanks!

  4. says

    Mike V — We do. We have posts for all of the parks in the works right now! Stay tuned and best of luck with your planning! :-D

  5. Stacy says

    I agree with your choices! I love Liberty Tree. It was closed on our last visit in September. Can’t wait to get back there. One of the things I love about table service meals is they serve freshly brewed unsweet tea. When dining at quick service places tea drinkers must drink Gold Peak Tea. If you’re a tea lover, you know what I mean. When I asked my children what was the most important thing was on our next trip both yelled, “Crystal Palace!” The puffed French toast and breakfast lasagna is their favorite. Who wouldn’t want dessert for breakfast!??!!

  6. Sara says

    We lucked out and scored a table at Skipper Canteen on the second day of soft opening back in December. We thought the food was amongst the best we had over 2 weeks at Disney. The food is probably on the adventurous side for a lot of people, but I’m very chilly averse and I had no problems earring anything. The dumplings we had as appetizers were delicious and my Thai beef salad made my taste buds sing as well as making my digestive system heave a sigh of relief after 2 weeks of over-indulgence. My extremely picky daughter loved the chicken (she probably ate more of that than any previous meals on the trip. Our server, Danelle was great, too. Be brave!

  7. Jennifer says

    Your forgetting Pecos Bills!!! It is a must do on our vacations. I was so afraid that when they changed their menu it would be a huge disappointed. We visited in November and were pleasantly surprised. The Mexican food was delicious and they still have their toppings bar!

  8. Jean says

    Great choices but im surprised O’hana didn’t make the cut! That’s always on out Disney to do list!

  9. Carla says

    I love Sleepy Hollow as well, but they should really do something about the cast members there. They usually confuse your order and seem annoyed when you ask them if they can fix it. Their attitude is not very Disney-like.

  10. says

    Jean — We love ‘Ohana too, but technically, it’s a resort restaurant. :-) We’re working on lists of all of our favorites. Stay tuned, and thanks so much for reading!

  11. Tiffany Dillow says

    We think Tony’s at the MK entrance is the best Italian in all of Disney and you can not beat it for watching the parade if you get a porch seat.

  12. apajax6 says

    Last time I was at Disney we went to Skipper Canteen and I absolutely loved it. I’m not one to order a vegetarian meal…ever. But I got the Curried Vegetable Stew and absolutely loved it. It’s one of the times I resent not being able to take home my leftovers!

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