The best lunch spots around campus

Taco Truck from the 5th Ave food truck pod

As many of us are back on campus for winter term at PSU, students are wondering where to grab a bite to eat. Wonder no more! These are my Top 7 places to grab some grub, whether I need a full meal or a snack between classes. All of these places are within a 10-minute walk of PSU and provide budget-friendly options for everyone. 

Phat Cart, 420 SW College St.

This is my all-time favorite lunch spot around campus! This little restaurant specializes in Asian fusion and has amazing dishes and housemade drinks. My favorite dish from them is the Crispy Chicken Bento which includes not only fried chicken but a load of sauteed veggies, rice, and aioli. The other top dish in my household is the Larb Poke Tuna Bowl and the roti dessert. For drinks I recommend trying their housemade fizz (my favorite flavor is the blueberry-lime). Phat Cart also has lots of delicious cocktail choices including a Lychee Sonic. If you find yourself heading toward Hillsdale, you can also stop by their food cart on SW Capitol Highway!

Crispy Chicken Bento Box from Phat Cart

Bowery Bagels in Smith, 1825 SW Broadway

Smith’s Kitchen in Smith Memorial Student Union

Bowery Bagels is a common lunch time stop for many students on campus. The workers are so friendly and really make it an experience that has me coming back again and again. All of the names of the bagel sandwiches pay homage to different streets and landmarks in the city of Portland. If you find yourself in Smith Student Union, try the Lovejoy bagel sandwich with a can of Bubbly seltzer. If you don’t feel like a bagel, there are several other delicious options in Smith, such as Ring of Fire and Bashas Cafe in Smith’s Kitchen, Smith’s Place coffee shop, University Market and even the Gameroom concession stand.

Cane’s Chicken, 700 SW 5th Ave.

For the best fried chicken chain, you will need to walk a little bit to Pioneer Square to find Raising Cane’s Chicken. You can choose between tenders or a chicken sandwich and all meals include fries, coleslaw and a slice of Texas toast. You get lots of food for your money and you will leave wanting more. Because of its location, you get time to walk off all of the chicken before your next class. Pioneer Square also has great access to the Max.

Love Belizean, 1503 SW Broadway

My favorite place to go when I want something warm to eat. This spot, on the corner of Broadway and Clay, serves many Caribbean offerings with stews, curries, and meat plates. I have had their soup and it’s amazing during the cold winter term.  

Park Ave Cafe, 1535 Park Ave.

If you want something light, or caffeinated, the Park Ave Cafe is the place for you. There are lots of drink choices ranging from coffee and smoothies and their sandwiches are perfect for the midday pick-me-up. Lots of the sandwiches come on croissants and other breakfast grains. It’s located on Park and Market and is the perfect break and walk while you are studying on campus.

Bowery Bagels in Smith Student Union.

Sesame Donuts, 1503 SW Park Ave.

Are you craving a quick donut?? Then head over to Sesame Donuts, located a couple stores down from Park Ave Cafe and is the option if you need some grub and are on a budget. They also have good bagel and caffeine options. If Sesame Donuts isn’t your top choice, then you can head over to Coco Donuts located under the Karl Miller building.

5th Ave Food Carts , 324 SW 5th Ave.

Can you and your friends not decide on a place to eat?? Easy solution: The food carts on SW 5th Ave. These carts line the block and there are so many different options ranging from paninis, gyros, sushi, Indian cuisine, and more! These carts are perfect for a nice day where you can order food with friends and enjoy the weather in the Park Blocks.




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