Cheap Eats in Morningside Heights

by Erin Low

Hungry yet? We are.

If you’re planning to bum around campus over Fall Break and are totally reliant on Dining Services for your daily meals and endless supply of banana chips and Nutella, perhaps you haven’t considered how you’re going to feed yourself once the dining halls close.

Whether you’re not prepared to cook your own meals (i.e. you’re a lazy, dependent first-year student like myself), or you actually want to take advantage of Fall Break by checking out places to eat beyond our dining halls, here is a list of places that can satisfy your cravings at reasonable prices. If you’re serious about being lazy, some of these places also deliver, so be sure to check out their websites, or try finding them on GrubHub or Seamless.

Note that Columbia and Barnard’s dining halls close slightly before Fall Break, with John Jay closing on Thursday, October 30 at 8pm, Ferris on Friday, October 31 at 2pm, and Hewitt on Friday, October 31 at 3pm.

Dig Inn Seasonal Market
2884 Broadway, between 112th and 113th Streets
Monday-Sunday, 11am-10pm
Dig Inn is committed to preparing fresh, local produce in healthy and innovative ways. You can choose to have one of their platters, which consists of a protein and 2 side dishes or one of their many sandwiches and salads.

Westside Market
2840 Broadway, between 109th and 110th Streets
Open 24 hours
This local grocery store has an extensive salad bar and deli. While you’re there, you can stock up on snacks for munching on as you hole yourself in your room over break.

Culture Tea Bar
3111 Broadway, between 123rd and La Salle Streets
Two words: Bubble. Tea. A Taiwanese drink fad that never really went away (proof of how amazing bubble tea is) comes in a whole range of exotic flavors at this little café. They also serve Asian-fusion sandwiches, so this place would be great for takeout, or a light lunch.

Chapati House 
3153 Broadway between La Salle Street and Tiemann Place on Broadway
Monday-Sunday, 11am-11pm
A Yelp reviewer accurately terms this place an Indian equivalent of Chipotle (which, by the way, seemed too obvious a choice for a mention on this list). You choose your main entrée, maybe a daal or a chicken tikki masala, and it’ll come served with Chapati, an Indian flatbread, and your choice of rice. Be prepared for the most blissful carb overdose.

Taqueria Y Fonda La Mexicana 
968 Amsterdam Avenue, between 107th and 108th Streets
Monday-Sunday, 11am-midnight
If you’re craving Mexican food and are willing to venture beyond Chipotle, here’s a good restaurant to try out. They offer customizable tacos and giant burritos.

2911 Broadway, between 113th and 114th Streets
Monday-Friday, 10am-midnight, Saturday-Sunday, 11am-midnight
A short walk from campus, this is worth trying out for Middle Eastern fare if you’re a little apprehensive about the halal food trucks around Columbia. Try out their lunch deals; one of them includes falafel on a pita with a side and a soda for about $7.

Because bagels = life.

Absolute Bagels
2788 Broadway, between 107th and 108th Streets
Monday-Sunday, 6am-9pm
If you feel like you haven’t really experienced the Big Apple yet, perhaps you can do it over break by having the quintessential NY breakfast at this hole-in-the-wall bagel joint. Their cream cheese selection is endless, the fillings are generous, and to top it off, their bagels have the perfect texture, with just the right amount of chewiness.

Koronet Pizza 
2848 Broadway, between 110th and 111th Streets
Monday-Sunday, 10:30am-11:30pm
It seems a sin to exclude Koronet Pizza, no matter how unhealthy and calorie-laden it is, if we’re really talking cheap eats. A jumbo slice at $4.50 is bigger than your head. Or if you’re surrounded by a bunch of hungry and lazy friends, you can take the obvious option of ordering in, not just from Koronet, but from Famiglia as well, which most are familiar with from attending college events (mostly for the pizza).

Erin Low is a first-year at Barnard and a staff writer for The Nine Ways of Knowing.

Images courtesy of Yelp and The Amateur Gourmet.


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