12 RVA Lunch Spots You Have to Try

There are plenty of places around campus to grab lunch, but these spots are some of my favorites. They all have good quality meals at a decent price, that won't burn too much of a hole in your pocket. There's something for everyone on this list. Some are popular within the community and others are hidden gems. Next time you think about going out for lunch close to campus, try one of these places. You'll be glad you did. 

1. Mobile Munchies: If you haven’t tried this place yet, you need to! It’s right on campus between Temple and the commons. The folks who run it are a married couple and are the friendliest people ever. They make you feel like you’ve known them forever, even if it’s just your first time. They serve veggie and chicken wraps, with a bunch of different combinations to choose from. ‘The Monster’ is my favorite wrap. It has basmati rice, a three-bean mix, veggies like carrots and zucchini, and seasoned grilled chicken. They have a bunch of sauces like their oriental BBQ, liquid love, cheese and spicy. All so yummy! You have to add cream cheese to it too, it makes the wrap 10 times better. Their drink menu is also pretty big. I suggest trying their limeade and adding some fresh ginger to it. A wrap and a jumbo drink will cost around $8.

2. Bombolini: I can’t believe I never tried this place until my senior year. I wish I would’ve come across it sooner, especially since they have fresh pasta. They make their own pasta in house and it is amazing. You get to pick what type of pasta and sauce you want, I like getting the linguine and meatballs. This place also has the best meatball I’ve ever had in my life. Try it, it’ll only be around $10 with an entree and a drink.

3. Hibachi Box: Hibachi box is one of the greatest inventions ever. It has cool decor on the inside and a great vibe in all. The food is also delicious, an entree box includes protein, rice, noodles, grilled veggies and a salad on the side. It’s Japanese hibachi without having to spend $25 an entree. You know those expensive places where they make the food in front of you? Well, now you can pay $8-14 instead, depending on what protein you want. Double yum-yum sauce, please.  

4. CAVA: CAVA is like a Chipotle for Mediterranean food. It is so delicious and worth it! A pita wrap or a bowl would both be great choices when trying the place out. If you’re a fan of chicken kabobs, you’ll like this place. In all, you will spend about $11 for a bowl and a drink. Not too bad for some fresh Mediterranean food.  

5. Goatocado: This place is amazing for vegans and vegetarians. Even herbivores will dig it. One of the best items they have is the California bowl. It has quinoa, beans, apple-corn pico de gallo, avocado, chipotle-pineapple dressing and shredded gouda cheese. A bowl is about $9, a decent price for such healthy and yummy food. The smoked gouda mac & cheese is also worth a try.

6. Kokonut Grill: Nestled along those colorful looking houses on W. Main St., Kokonut Grill serves up some flavorful tropical asian fusion food. The best thing on the menu is the Koko Box, which includes a choice of protein, three sides and a sauce. I recommend trying the crispy chicken, the coconut rice and their macaroni salad. You can’t go wrong with any of those. You’ll spend about $9 for a box.

7. Deep Run Roadhouse: This place has the best BBQ I’ve ever tried. So many restaurants have tried to stay alive in this building location and none have survived like Deep Run Roadhouse has. Their pulled pork sandwiches are super-tasty, especially when you combine all three of their homemade barbeque sauces. Some of their best sides include their macaroni and cheese, cornbread with honey butter and their crispy potato wedges. They also make a southwest slaw, it’s the best slaw I’ve ever had. A sandwich and one side will cost about $8. Be sure to check the Yelp app though, they have a special free small mac & cheese coupon you have to take advantage of!

8. Four Brothers Bistro & Grill: Four Brothers looks basic on the outside and is a place most have never heard of. I went here randomly and my whole mindset was changed. They have some of the best made-to-order burgers and fries in town. They also have $6.99 burger night on Tuesdays, where you get a burger and fries that is originally $8.99. If they ever have their lemon cake, try that too, it’s amazing. Everything tastes so fresh and made with quality ingredients.

9. Harrison St. Cafe: This place is right next to Christian's Pizza. It’s perfect for vegans, vegetarians and anyone else. Their beer-battered tofu steak sandwich is really flavorful and will cost about $8. It’s reminiscent of a chicken sandwich, but veganized.

10. Chicken Fiesta: If you like Peruvian-style rotisserie chicken, you have to try this place out. It’s about $6 for chicken and a side. I suggest trying their yucca fries, they are just like french fries but with some extra crispiness and a thicker texture. Super delicioso! 

11. Lemon Cuisine of India: This place is more of a sit-down restaurant, but they do have takeout. Their chicken tikka masala with rice is the best and I would also suggest trying their garlic naan. It’s a bit pricier than the other lunch spots, but that may be because most Indian spots are expensive. Their chicken tikka masala will be about $12.

12. Lee’s Famous Recipe Chicken: If you haven’t tried Lee’s yet, where have you been? Almost every local agrees that this place beats out Cane’s any day. Their three-piece chicken strip meal is $7.99 and comes with two sides and a biscuit. I suggest trying their mac and cheese and mashed potatoes with gravy. Also, after you taste one of their fluffy, buttery biscuits, you’ll be left wanting to order some more.

Don't be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and try some of these amazing food places on campus! I bet you'll find a new favorite restaurant. 

Photo Credits: Cover, 1, 2, 3 by Jasmine Medrano-Guevara, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 by Jasmine Medrano-Guevara, 9 by Jasmine Medrano-Guevara, 10, 11, 12, 13