This post covers the best-value snack credit uses on the 2024 Disney Dining Plan. These include delicious Walt Disney World desserts, cupcakes, EPCOT festival snacks, Dole Whips, Starbucks specialty drinks, and more. Maximizing the ‘bang for your buck’ out of each snack credit is important for a couple of reasons, which we’ll cover in this post. (Updated June 8, 2023.)
Items that qualify as snacks for the purposes of the Disney Dining Plan are denoted by a little purple and white “DDP” symbol on the restaurant menus across property. Some items that are considered snacks in some locations aren’t considered snacks elsewhere. Make sure to consult the menu before ordering any item you deem a “snack” as Disney may not agree!
As a general matter, anything that is priced over $6.50 is a good use of a snack credit on the 2024 Disney Dining Plan. Since there are literally hundreds–if not thousands–of different ways to redeem your snack credits, that rule of thumb might actually be more helpful than this top 10 list, which shares some of the very best ways to get the most bang for your buck from DDP snack credits.
Unfortunately, the most common snacks you’ll find at Walt Disney World are poor uses of your snack credits. We cover this, and the pitfalls of using your precious credits on them, in our Worst Uses of Disney Dining Plan Credits at Walt Disney Worldpost. (Seriously, stay away from Goofy’s Candy Company and fresh fruit…albeit for very different reasons!)
Now, you might be thinking, “who cares–is there really a bad way to use snack credits?!” The answer is an unequivocal yes. Walt Disney World’s Dining Plan is only worth the money if you use your credits in a savvy way. Otherwise, you’re better off simply paying out of pocket. The other plus side? The items that are an objectively better use of Disney Dining Plan snack credits usually taste better, too. Win win!
Snack prices are obviously lower than Table Service and Counter Service meals, so there’s generally less of a difference between high and low snack prices than there is between high and low priced meals. Nevertheless, it’s worth paying attention to snack prices if you want to maximize your total value on the Disney Dining Plan, as some EPCOT festivals have $10 items and other snacks might cost as little as a few dollars.
In other words, someone who stockpiles their snack credits and uses them strategically on the highest-dollar items can come out way ahead as compared to someone who uses them on plain coffee or bottled water. In aggregate, the difference at the extremes could actually amount as much or more of a difference than good vs. bad uses of counter or table service credits.
This list is updated annually, with the most recent refresh occurring in Summer 2023 after Walt Disney World released the List of Restaurants on the 2024 Disney Dining Plan. While it includes a lot of locations, this is presumably incomplete and will include more third parties once Walt Disney World finalizes contracts with them.
Even without this list, we have a pretty good idea of what will be offered as a snack credit on the 2024 Disney Dining Plan because, oddly enough, Walt Disney World has continued to put the snack credit icon next to would-be eligible items during the last 3 years while the DDP has been on hiatus. This has happened without fail for every EPCOT festival and menu update and, frankly, we don’t really know why. Either way, it should offer at least insight into what will be eligible for snack credit redemptions in 2024.
Additionally, Walt Disney World revealed that it’s reducing the number of snack credits on the Disney Dining Plans from 2 to 1 per night. This is a hugely negative and disappointing change, especially for those who are adept at saving and strategically using snack credits. It’s also not a huge shock, as a lot of guests wasted snack credits–or raced against the clock at the last minute to use their extra credits on pre-packaged treats to take home. (I’d hazard a guess that over half of Mickey Mouse Rice Krispies Treats and Goofy’s Candy Co. products were previously “purchased” with spare snack credits.)
With that explainer out of the way, let’s delve into the top 10 uses of snack credits on the 2024 Disney Dining Plan…
TBD. Ice Cream – For several years, one of the chart-toppers for snack credit value was Ample Hills Creamery, which had by far the best ice cream at Walt Disney World. Unfortunately, that never reopened post-closure and is now gone for good (and too soon).
Fortunately, several other ice cream shops have opened since then, with the most notable options being Salt & Straw at Disney Springs, Gelateria Toscana in EPCOT’s Italy pavilion, and BoardWalk Ice Cream (the direct successor to Ample Hills). At present, none of these are listed as accepting the 2024 Disney Dining Plan, but we expect that to change for at least one–and possibly all three.
If any of them do accept the DDP, it’s likely that only the small cups, cones, and ice cream sandwiches will be eligible as snacks on the Disney Dining Plan. Even so, those will be an exceptional uses of a snack credit. We’ll keep you posted!
10. Zebra Domes – These bad boys can be elusive. Sometimes, you can find them on the Boma buffet at Animal Kingdom Lodge. Sometimes, you can find them for sale at Mara. More reliably, they’re available over at Kidani Village’s Johari Treasures.
If you’re eating at Boma, get them there for “free.” If you’re not eating at Boma, use a snack credit to get them at the counter service restaurants or marketplaces in Animal Kingdom Lodge. Honestly, they’re kind of a borderline recommendation based on price, but a top tier pick given their deliciousness!
9. Funnel Cakes – Objectively speaking, the funnel cake carts around Walt Disney World are one of the best uses of snack credits outside of Epcot festivals. These are all typically over $7 in price, and included on the Disney Dining Plan as snack credits. Occasionally, you’ll find a seasonal offering that’s excluded, but that’s a rarity.
Subjectively speaking, we think Walt Disney World funnel cakes can be very hit or miss in terms of quality. We aren’t willing to take this gamble when paying out of pocket, but with a snack credit, it can be worth the “risk.”
8. Animal Kingdom’s Savory Snack Stands – Animal Kingdom has been upping its snack game, adding and restoring a ton of items that are so heavy or huge that they’re essentially meal replacements.
One such item is Baked Macaroni & Cheese with Shrimp and Sweet Chili Sauce or Pulled Pork. Both are tasty, but we recommend the pulled pork. In fact, Animal Kingdom is probably the best option for savory snacks that offer a good use of Disney Dining Plan credits.
There are a variety of other pricey options that are also inventive and ambitious, so keep your eye out while you roam Animal Kingdom! Additionally, consult our Best Snacks at Disney’s Animal Kingdom. Not all of those offer great bang for buck on the Disney Dining Plan, but they are all delicious!
The top 2 are Les Halles Boulangerie & Patisserie and our #1 bakery, Kringla Bakeri og Kafe. There are about a dozen items in these bakeries that each exceed $6, which qualifies them as reasonably good values. Several other items are even more expensive and are thus excellent values as a result. It also doesn’t hurt that just about everything at these bakeries is delicious!
6. “Homemade” Ice Cream Cookie Sandwiches – These are not the ice cream sandwiches that you can find at various ice cream carts every 10 feet in Walt Disney World (I really think there might be more of them than there are DVC kiosks!).
These, for lack of a better term, are “homemade” right in front of you with freshly baked cookies and hand scooped ice cream at only a few locations in Walt Disney World.
Everyone who has tried these drinks seems to have a very strong opinion, with many being quite negative. I generally like both of them, but view them as more of a fun novelty to try (and probably split) while in Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge than a drink I crave and want to order often. I also think they’re overpriced when paying out of pocket, and subject to a ‘Star Wars surcharge.’ That’s not an issue when using DDP snack credits, and thus we highly recommend grabbing one of each flavor to taste-test among your party.
4. Magic Kingdom Floats & Swirls – You’ve undoubtedly heard of the Dole Whip, but have you tried its more elaborate counterpart at Aloha Isle, the Tropical Serenade? Are you familiar with the Citrus Swirl or “I Lava You Float” at Sunshine Tree Terrace, or other ice cream concoctions at Magic Kingdom?!
Check out our Best Magic Kingdom Snacks & Dessert List for our subjective favorites and more. In fact, most of the items on that lengthy list are also good uses of snack credits on the Disney Dining Plan! (That also includes the worst of list–the Mickey Pretzel, Cinnamon Roll, etc.)
3. Gourmet Cupcakes – Pretty much any specialty cupcakes available at Walt Disney World is going to induce mild sticker shock, but if you’ve got snack credits to burn, those ~$7 cupcakes don’t sting quite as much.
For the most part, these cupcakes live up to the hype. While the whole cupcake trend is a bit played out, Walt Disney World still has some excellent options that we highly recommend!
2. Novelty Drinks – As we cover in our Guide to Starbucks at Walt Disney World, almost every specialty drink on the menu at the 5 in-park and 2 Disney Springs Starbucks locations count as snack credits on the Disney Dining Plan. This includes the more elaborate ones that can cost over $7 each, special themed drinks, and even secret menu items.
This means that you can order the Baby Yoda Frappuccino at Disney’s Hollywood Studios before you head into Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. This is technically a “secret menu” drink at the Walt Disney World Starbucks locations, but it’s so popular (and absolutely fantastic!) that the baristas are all well-antiquated with it. This and other specialty drinks at Starbucks are all spectacular uses of Disney Dining Plan snack credits.
Beyond Starbucks, there are countless options throughout Walt Disney World, but another we have in mind here is the Night Blossom – Non-Alcoholic Specialty Beverage with layers of Apple and Desert Pear Limeade topped with Passion Fruit Boba Balls at Pongu Pongu in Pandora – World of Avatar.
For a snack credit, you can get a “normal” cup, but not the Souvenir Mug with Glowing Unadelta Seed. Don’t lose too much sleep over not getting the souvenir cup, as the it is poorly made and might not even survive your trip home.
1. EPCOT Festival Kiosk Snack Portions – If you’re visiting during one of Epcot’s three big annual festivals, read no further than #1 on this list. During the these events, you should be using ALL of your snack credits at the temporary kiosks set up.
To see just how far you can stretch your credits, check out our EPCOT Food & Wine Festival Booth Menus post which includes food photos & reviews for every single snack at the event, and also discusses good uses of Disney Dining Plan credits.
Normally, if a snack exceeds around $7, it is excluded from snack credit status, making those $8+ items a great use of snack credits! Let’s just hope Disney doesn’t wise up to this wonderful use of snack credits anytime soon, and start excluding these foods from Snack Credit “status.”
If this list doesn’t activate your sweet tooth, I don’t know what will. This just scratches the surface of value-maximizing snacks (and snacks in general) at Walt Disney World. Remember that while value is important, ordering snacks you enjoy is even more important (which is why you’ll often see us with the cheap School Bread from Norway instead of expensive snacks)!
What tips do you have for getting the most out of the Disney Dining Plan? Have any specific Walt Disney World snack items you recommend to maximize your value on the Disney Dining Plan? Do you agree or disagree with our advice? Any questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback–even when you disagree with us–is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!