Former Disney World employees share 8 of their favorite places to eat in the theme parks

shot of mickey and minnie balloons floating on strollers passing behind cinderella castle at magic kingdom
There are hundreds of dining options across Disney World.Gary Hershorn/Getty Images

Disney World vacations aren't cheap. A weeklong trip to the parks costs at least $6,000 for a family of four if they stay on the property.

If you're shelling out all that money, you want to ensure you're getting the best value — especially when it comes to the plentiful dining options in the parks.

Business Insider spoke with former Disney World employees about their favorite places to eat on the property.

Here's what they said.

Flame Tree Barbecue at Animal Kingdom is a must-try

For former Magic Kingdom employee Kaitlyn Cahalen, Flame Tree Barbecue is the main Animal Kingdom restaurant she frequents.

She specifically praised the quick-service location's baked mac and cheese with pulled pork.

"I have tried a couple of other restaurants in Animal Kingdom, but I always go back to Flame Tree Barbecue for this dish," she said.

Roundup Rodeo BBQ has great options for picky eaters

interior shot of roundup rodeo bbq restaurant in Hollywood studios
Roundup Rodeo BBQ is a newer restaurant in Hollywood Studios.Jenna Clark

If you're traveling to Disney World with picky eaters, Roundup Rodeo BBQ in Toy Story Land at Hollywood Studios can be a lifesaver.

Kalyn Breisch, a former Disney College Program participant who worked at Epcot, told Business Insider that she can be picky. But she appreciates the lengthy list of sides on the menu.

"Roundup Rodeo is the perfect place to mix sides that you know you will like such as mac and cheese, but also be able to try ones like street corn."

Le Cellier offers an elevated in-park dining experience

Josie Maida Aguirre, former Disney World employee turned writer and content creator, enjoys the fancy vibes and higher-quality menu offerings at Le Cellier in the Canada Pavilion at Epcot.

"The food is incredible — always amazing," she said. "Steaks are great, and the desserts just cannot be missed."

Be Our Guest restaurant offers a themed atmosphere and high-quality cuisine

dining room at be our guest restaurant in magic kingdom
The main dining room looks like the ballroom from "Beauty and the Beast."Matt Stroshane/Walt Disney World

Although Be Our Guest in Magic Kingdom is on the pricier side, Joyce Wingate Boyden, a former merchandise employee at Epcot and Magic Kingdom, is a big fan of the "Beauty and the Beast"-themed restaurant.

"The decor and theming is amazing, and it is so fun to feel like you're eating delicious food inside a movie set," she told BI. "The 'Grey Stuff' is delicious."

You can watch an attraction in action while eating at Pinocchio's Village Haus

Pinocchio's Village Haus gives diners a front-row view of the iconic Magic Kingdom ride It's a Small World.

Wingate Boyden recommended ordering one of the flatbread pizzas and sitting near a window to get the best view of guests boarding the attraction.

"It's fun to wave to them as they are floating by," she told BI

Casey's Corner is a go-to for comfort food and parade views

hand holding fast-food boat with a plant-based hot dog from casey's corner at magic kingdom
Casey's Corner serves things like hotdogs, corn-dog nuggets, and fries. Jenna Clark

If you're looking for a quick-service meal at Magic Kingdom but don't want to spend too much money, Casey's Corner on Main Street is a solid pick.

"The corn dog nuggets and fries will never let you down, and if you're lucky, you might get a table outside and catch a glimpse of the parade," Breisch said.

Hollywood & Vine hosts a lively character breakfast

As far as character-dining opportunities go, Wingate Boyden recommended Hollywood & Vine at Hollywood Studios.

"I love the buffet options and the character meet and greets," she told BI. "It's a special bonus to get pictures with favorite Disney characters while seated at a table."

The Hollywood Brown Derby offers one of the best salads on the property

hollywood brown derby famou cobb salad disney world
The salad was coined at the original Brown Derby in California.Carly Caramanna

When it comes to quality salad, The Hollywood Brown Derby at Hollywood Studios does not disappoint.

"I love their Cobb Salad. First, because it's always delicious, and second because it reminds me of very happy memories of when my parents came to Disney World." Wingate Boyden said. "The decor and ambiance of the restaurant are beautiful and very enjoyable."

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