Animal Kingdom is one of my favorite parks to eat in! There are so many delicious options especially in the quick service category—unique menu items freshly prepared. Let’s dive right in and get to the eats!
Located in the Discovery Island section of the park, Flame Tree Barbecue is all about the meats—the smoked meats. The menu features ribs, chicken and pulled pork, and it is all delicious and usually very juicy. You can smell it as you approach! One of the things I love about Flame Tree is the outdoor seating. It is mostly covered to shelter you from the sun or a light rain shower, and there are fans to cool you off. It is centered around a fountain and courtyard with views over the water and off toward Expedition Everest. It is really a lovely area, especially if you dine at an off-peak time and it is a little bit quieter. The best part about it is the design of the patio covers—they are decorated with what looks to be pre-Columbian art depicting predators and prey. So one area might feature an anteater eating ants, others might have an alligator eating a fish, even the chairs feature this circle of life type theme. Ironic since most guests are dining on meats! My current menu favorites are the Baked Mac & Cheese with Pulled Pork and the side item French Fries with Pulled Pork and Cheese. Take your food and venture all the way down the seating area toward the water and you’ll be awarded with great views. Just watch out for the sometimes aggressive and always outgoing birds.
Venturing into Dinoland USA we find Restaurantosaurus. This quirky restaurant represents the various areas used by paleontology students working on the dinosaur digs nearby. There are a lot of great sight gags and just other fun details to check out as you dine here. The menu is great for pickier eaters as you will find some great quick service “stand-bys” like cheeseburgers, chicken nuggets and grilled chicken sandwiches. But, you can also have breaded shrimp or a great salad with chicken, mandarin oranges and cranberries. There is also a fixings bar to personalize your order. My favorite place to sit in here if you can grab one of only 2 tables is inside the airstream that you will see parked outside (you enter through inside the restaurant). In the evenings Restaurantosaurus transforms part of the seating into a lounge with some fun cocktails and a few quick bites of food.
3. Yak & Yeti Local Foods Café
In Asia there is a Table Service restaurant, Yak & Yeti, but there is also a counter service option—the Yak & Yeti Local Foods Café. Ordering and seating is outdoors in the Anandapur Village, and offers great people watching and plenty of immersive details to take in. Yak & Yeti is nice because it serves breakfast, lunch & dinner. So if you rope drop Flight of Passage, you could walk over to Asia for breakfast—your choice of before or after conquering Expedition Everest. Egg Sandwiches, English Muffins, Breakfast Tacos and other fairly generic items are served in the morning. Lunch & Dinner offer a varied menu that gives you one stop to please pickier eaters (Burgers & Hot Dogs) and those with a more adventurous palate. Standouts include Vegetable Tikka Masala, Teriyaki Beef Bowl and Honey Sesame Chicken. Some of the sides make a great value for a meal like the egg rolls and fried rice. There are some very pretty seating areas, including a water feature, but the area does stay crowded with traffic moving through Asia a lot of the time.
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Ah, Harambe Market. What a love/hate relationship I have with you. I love Harambe Market when it is open, but it has very reduced serving hours and the last several times I’ve tried to visit they were not serving food (but the outdoor seating area was open). Harambe Market is located just outside the main village of Harambe (not to be confused with the Harambe Fruit Market). The menu has some great options including a Beef & Lamb Gyro and Roasted Vegetables. It is also home to one of my favorite drinks, the Frozen Flamingo (non-alcoholic). I just wish they were open more frequently to enjoy. The seating area is fun too with the Wildlife Express train going by the back of the seats—this gives kids (of all ages) something to watch & wait for during their meal. The seating is outdoors but there are covered areas to shield you from the sun and light rain. And there are tons of details all over the walls to check out. This is the area where one of the Instagram popular walls “You are most beautiful” can be found.
Pizzafari is found in Discovery Island, just outside the entrances to both Africa and Pandora—it is in a great spot as far as a busy crossroads that sees many guests. This colorful restaurant features rooms that are dedicated to a certain animal environment. One room features art that looks aboriginal representing animals from Australia. Another mural is the snowy arctic, or the African savanna, or nocturnal animals and so on. All of the murals are full of color and life. The menu here is what you would expect from the name: pizzas, flatbreads and Caesar Salads. The Cheese & Pepperoni options are your typical Disney pizza, a good fit if pizza is what you are craving in Animal Kingdom, but nothing to write home about. Some of the flatbreads they offer like the Shrimp Flatbread (Roasted Shrimp, Tomato, Red Pepper, Alfredo Sauce and Pesto and topped with Greens) are a little more creative. While this is the place to go in Animal Kingdom for pizza, I think that you have so many other great quick service options to choose from. Pizzafari now features a Family Style Dining experience featuring Italian style favorites. This offering is from 5-8pm nightly and you can make reservations to make sure you get a seat. For this experience you check in at a designated podium. You proceed to a register to place your drink orders, pay for your meal and pick up your first salad course before going to your designated table. Guests may have all three entrees (currently baked ziti, chicken alfredo and pepperoni pizza). And miniature cannolis are the current dessert offering. This still qualifies as a quick service credit on the Disney Dining Plan.
6. Satu’li Canteen
Over in the other worldly environment of Pandora: World of Avatar you will find an out of this world quick service restaurant, Satu’li Canteen. Falling in line with the Pandora theme of ecology, conservation and being one with your environment, the menu at Satu’li Canteen has some healthy yet delicious options. The base of the menu are their bowls which can be made with beef, chicken, fish or tofu with your choice of a base and sauce to make it personalized to your tastes. Another fun menu feature is the Cheeseburger Steamed Pod-Bao Bun. This cute Bao bun is filled with ground beef and “toppings” to taste like a cheeseburger. This is even offered on the kids menu. My favorite menu item here is the Blueberry Cream Cheese Mousse (Blueberry Cream Cheese Mousse with Passion Fruit Curd)—that is as pretty as it is delicious for a sweet treat after dinner. My tip is to pick up a Night Blossom frozen drink at the Pongu Pongu stand outside to go with your meal. Also, there is seating inside and out, but inside is a little less hectic and noisy.
7. Walk Up Kiosks
Throughout Animal Kingdom you will find several walk up type kiosks offering great food options, and with all of the outside seating you can easily turn these into a great meal. Many have abbreviated schedules so you may have to check to see if they are serving. Here are highlights from a few of my favorites:
- 8 Spoon Café: On the walkway between Discovery Island and Asia. The baked Mac & Cheese here is delicious. Have it plain or topped with Pulled Pork or topped with Shrimp & Sweet Chili Sauce.
- Trilobites: Dinoland USA. Buffalo Chicken Chips . . . yummmmm
- Kusafiri Coffee Shop & Bakery: Breakfast: Elephant Ear Pastry, perfect for Africa. For lunch try one of their delicious sandwiches: Sandwiches and Paninis like the Roast Beef & Cheddar Panini or the Tomato & Mozzarella Sandwich. All served with house made curry spiced chips.
- Harambe Fruit Market. When you just want some fresh fruit. And a Mickey Pretzel.
- Caravan Road: Serving up Teriyaki Beef slider with pickled cucumber or edamame.
What is your favorite quick service restaurant in Disney’s Animal Kingdom?