I honestly don’t remember how or when I downloaded Too Good To Go, but the app has saved my stomach while saving food waste. Users can buy “surprise bags” of surplus food from restaurants at reduced prices, and with how good the app’s options are, claiming some bags can be as chaotic as trying to buy tickets for Seventeen — an unnecessarily stressful waiting game, but one with a satisfying payoff.
Whether you feel like you have nothing good to eat at home, or Kimmel — objectively the best dining hall — is too crowded for your liking, Too Good To Go has almost anything you’re craving. All of the places listed here are worth paying for at full price, but if the pickup time fits in your schedule and you aren’t a picky eater or have any food allergies, the app is the perfect way to find your new favorite spot near campus.
The following are just some of my personal favorites that I’ve gone back to again and again. I can’t guarantee that you’ll love them as well, but they’re definitely worth a try!Ambo
55C E. Eighth St.
If you’re looking for something nearby after class, Ambo is perfect for any vegetarian. For $4.99, the restaurant gives its customers quite a large portion — one that I find to be more than enough for two meals. The dinner, consisting of leftovers on its Everyday Indian Bowl menu, features falafel with a rice base, beans and two vegetable sides. The slight sweetness of the gobi manchurian may not be to everyone’s taste, but the batata bhaaji and balanced flavor are unexpected stars. All and all, this Too Good To Go bag is a staple for anyone who wants something quick after a late class.fresh&co
Both times I got this bag, fresh&co gave me avocado BLTs. In no way am I complaining; like its namesake, that sandwich was so fresh, especially with whatever vinaigrette was in the sandwich. The sides are definitely hit or miss. The paleo coconut macaroons felt like they were missing something, and the texture was a big turn off. However, the lemon chicken orzo soup was very hearty and a definite recommendation. If you’re yearning for a simple, made-at-home vibe, this Too Good To Go bag is worth the $4.99.Two Boots West Village
101 Seventh Ave. S.
While I only went to Two Boots one time, the circumstances are hard to forget. Stuck in a slight existential crisis in the midst of finals season last winter, I thought it was a great idea to venture out half a mile for a Too Good To Go bag I’d never had before. Did it feel like my legs almost froze off? Yes. But I was able to catch the first snowfall of the season and four slices of not-cheese pizza for $3.99. With it being almost eight months ago, I really don’t remember what I had, and the funky names Two Boots gives to its pizzas isn’t helping. I will tell you that nothing was offensively bad and I was content with a full stomach.Raffetto’s
144 W. Houston St.
This is probably my favorite bag on this list, even though it requires a bit of work. Rafetto’s provides its customers with freshly made pasta and ravioli. For $3.99, this Too Good To Go bag is genuinely insane. The pasta shop’s cheese and spinach ravioli was absolutely divine, and I ate its pesto and black pepper fettuccine with some olive oil and a little bit of salt. While my eyes aren’t the most accurate measure of weight, I swear Raffetto’s gives me two pounds of pasta with every purchase. Because of how well it stays in the freezer, fresh pasta was my dinner for two weeks.Beyond Wok
42 Union Square E.
I have probably reserved this bag more times than I would like to admit. Although at $5.99 it’s a bit more on the pricey side, Beyond Wok never disappoints. One of the most efficient options on the list, you’ll be in and out in seconds — except for that one time the restaurant made too few bags and had to make poke on the spot. But that was a one-off event. Americanized classics like kung pao chicken and broccoli beef satisfy any palate. I personally love the earthiness of the wood ear mushroom and the lotus root’s subtle taste. Whether Beyond Wok gives you poke or Chinese food, the portions are just as big as Ambo’s and just as tasty.Unregular Pizza
135 Fourth Ave.
Right by Union Square Park, Unregular Pizza’s Too Good To Go bag is perfect to split with your roommate or anyone with a bigger stomach. The last time I went, $5.99 got me three slices of pizza. While not as good as the Two Boots offer, the food’s freshness and taste were definitely superior. Anything with the pizzeria’s tomato sauce is genuinely perfect — a 10 out of 10 in terms of taste. The cheese still had some pull to it, and the pizza tastes how it looks — fresh out of the oven. Sometimes, if you’re lucky, it’ll give you a toasty sandwich, perfect for the cooling temperatures.Madam Ji
154 Bleecker St.
For $4.99, I will admit that Madam Ji is a bit on the smaller side in terms of portion size, but I think it’s perfect for anyone who does not have the biggest appetite. With a side of white rice and chicken curry, this Too Good To Go bag ranks high in terms of taste. The curry had a nice balance between spice and salt, with a high meat-to-sauce ratio. Sometimes, it can be a bit slow on the pickup, but the restaurant’s interior can make you feel a bit more boujee than you can normally afford.AweSum DimSum
160 E. 23rd St.
Although it is the farthest from campus, AweSum DimSum is perfect for anyone who wants to pick something up on the way home to Gramercy Green. Priced at $5.99, the restaurant gives you a mix of three different entrees. I have never not liked anything from this Too Good To Go bag. The restaurant’s house-fried egg noodle is a meal in itself and difficult to not eat in one sitting. Anything with cha shao, be it in a sweet bun or puff pastry, is good as the meat’s salty-sweetness seems to pair with everything. Honestly, I would commit a crime for its spring rolls and crispy shrimp rolls. They have this perfect umami, salty taste and a satisfying crunch — I’m salivating just thinking about it.
Contact Mayee Yeh at [email protected]