$1-$20 Lunch Recommendations!



Absolutely everyone is guilty of falling into lunch ruts. We circle between the same two to three lunch spots for weeks on end. It gets repetitive, and the food you once craved becomes a standard. However, we know that budgeting a week of food can be stressful. We want to give you some new ideas for the next time you can’t figure out the right splurge birthday spot or find yourself with only pocket change at the end of the week!


$1 Ramen 

When it comes to one-dollar meals, there aren’t many options on 7th avenue. However, if you find yourself in this predicament, look no further than aisle 4 of ‘Ace’ deli. They have a limited supply of shin noodles, a personal favorite instant ramen of ours. It has a complex salt, garlic, and black pepper broth base, with rehydrated shiitake mushroom and scallions to garnish. Above all else, it has a heaping of soft, chewy noodles that fill up the entirety of the large bowl. If you choose to indulge, bring it up to the counter and ask the cashier for boiling water. You can bring this one-dollar delight to the seats next door at Petsmart and enjoy! 


$5 Bagels

Everyone knows of Bagel Pub; you don’t even have to cross the street from school to reach the store. Always buzzing, long lines, and of course, famous bagels. However, there is more out there than the predictable spot one might call Bagel Pub. Suppose you are interested in a cheaper, less crowded, and very New York bagel. In that case, La Bagel Delight or Bagel Market are for you. Bagel Market carries a delicious variety of chewy, soft bagels. These bagels are incredibly cheap relative to the other options and pack the same flavor punch. You can afford a toasted bagel with any toppings if you have five dollars and still have spare change for snacks. On that subject, we must add that Bagel Market’s snack selection is unbeatable: Hi-Chews, chips, cookies, granola bars, drinks, and black and white cookies. 


A similar choice, La Bagel Delight, falls between the Lower and Upper School buildings. Their bagels are just as strong, if not stronger, than Bagel Market’s. An additional benefit of shopping at La Bagel is their no credit-card minimum. This small yet unique characteristic of La Bagel does not go unnoticed for those of us who use Apple Pay or a credit card to pay for lunch. In summary, if you’re struggling to choose lunch that’s cheap, not busy, and filling, then Bagel Market and La Bagel are the perfect places for you. 


$10 Pita Pan

With a $10 dollar bill, the options start to lay out in front of you. Even so, to maximize that money with convenient, nutritious, and comforting food, you must take a short stroll down to Pita Pan, located on 7th Avenue between 1st and 2nd street. As you walk into the restaurant, you will be greeted by iconic employee Philip’s homey smile and the aromatic spices of the Middle East. The restaurant has a minimalist yet cozy interior, with both indoor and outdoor seating. From chicken kebabs to falafel platters, the menu can truly accommodate people with all types of dietary preferences, restrictions, and spice tolerances. A few personal favorites include the caramelized onion and lentil side dish and the lamb shawarma sandwich. The lentil dish acts as a counterbalance to the sometimes overwhelming flavor of hot sauce tahini and pepper flakes, which dominate many of the main courses. While modest, it’s addictive, and it usually leaves me wishing I had purchased the meal in a larger size. The sandwich consists of hot pita bread, lamb freshly shaved off the spit, lettuce, tomato, and tahini. It’s the perfect size to leave you full but not clutching for your stomach in your next-period class! If you have a Hamilton lying around, there’s no better place to dine at or local business to support than Pita Pan. 

$20 Bar Basic

Having a birthday at school is hard enough, but finding the right celebratory restaurant to fit the occasion adds another layer of complexity. Stress no more because Bar Basic is the perfect recommendation for you. Not even a block from school, it has incredibly comfortable indoor and outdoor seating. This restaurant will also split the check for however many people you are dining with. Some recommendations that will stay in our $20 range include: the pesto cauliflower for $9 and the cast-iron Mac n Cheese for $11. All of their sandwiches are delicious as entrees, and there is even an Impossible burger for that one vegetarian friend. Additionally, most sides are priced around 10 dollars. Though some complain about service time, its proximity to school will ensure you will have enough time to enjoy your meal and be on time for 5th period. 

As students, school is our constant and our center. Lunch is arguably the largest piece of that daily student experience. In order to diversify our lives, we don’t have to throw ourselves into some all-consuming change. We only have to alter the little things at the core of our worlds and work outwards. Thus, lunch is the perfect place to start. Branching out a few blocks further from school can translate to a more open-minded world approach. Maybe that’s reaching, but it can never hurt to branch out. The worst that can happen is you walk away with chicken shawarma in one hand and baked mac and cheese in the other!