Explore New York City

Great Grab-and-Go Meals in New York City

We get it—life is always on the go, especially in New York City. Here are some fantastic meal options if you’re in a hurry.

Hello, New York. Home to 20 million people who seem to never sleep and are constantly in a rush. Stand in the middle of the street in New York and take a look around. The city is filled with fast walkers and talkers who appear to be perennially impatient and in self-imposed isolation with their headphones on and head down. It is an overwhelming rush of humanity. 

Where to Find Grab and Go Meals in New York City

While New Yorkers might seem unfriendly to some, the majority are genuinely just busy and in a hurry to check off items from their long list of to-dos. This rush is why there are plenty of grab-and-go meal options in the city that provide food quicker than a New York minute to cater to the busy lifestyle. However, faster meals do not mean that quality has to be sacrificed. Dining at fast-food chains does not have to be the only option for eating a quick bite. Restaurants throughout the city offer prepacked meals and meal kits for delivery or pickup that are more than just sandwiches and a bag of chips. If you are looking for a grab-and-go meal without sacrificing quality or taste, you’ve come to the right place.

Katagiri Japanese Grocery

Katagiri Japanese Grocery was the first Japanese grocery store in the United States. When they first opened over a century ago, there was a tiny Japanese community in New York. Sushi and sashimi were not part of mainstream American culture like they are today. At Katagiri, you will find many authentic Japanese snacks and sweets you can quickly grab and take with you on the way to your next meeting. If you are looking for a heartier meal on the go, prepackaged items like sweet shrimp, sushi, sashimi and tuna belly are recommended options. The Omusubi Gonbei stand inside the grocery store sells onigiri with an array of filling options, including shrimp tempura and salmon.

Shrimp and Salmon Nigiri Sushi | WhereTraveler
Shrimp and Salmon Nigiri Sushi (©Lili Liu)

Winner

Winner is a Brooklyn-based bakery and cafe that has numerous meal kits available for pick up. The “Friends and Family” kits have a rotating menu, and the best part is, there is no preparation involved. These grab-and-go meals are ready to eat as soon as you pick them up. One week you may see Greek Moussaka on the menu and then see a more traditional roast chicken dinner for the week after. The menu is so diverse that you can also find monkey bread and vegetarian banh mi sandwiches for a quick bite to eat. 

Bread Loaves on the Go | WhereTraveler
Bread Loaves on the Go (©Bas Peperzak)

Pasta Louise

Pasta Louise is a restaurant located in Brooklyn. Although they have only been in business for less than two years, they have already gathered a strong community of patrons, who come to dine on their fresh pasta, sip some wine and socialize. Everything here is made from scratch, from the pasta to the sauces to the desserts. If you want the experience but don’t have time to dine in the restaurant, grab one of their curated pasta kits to make at home. We love “Dad’s Famous Deluxe Kit,” which includes their best-selling “Dad’s Famous Roasted Red Pepper Sauce.” Also included are crispy prosciutto, lumache pasta, breadcrumbs and a 500 ml bottle of barrel-aged Prescience from Wild East. If you want to add a little spice to your life, try the “Spicy Deluxe Kit.” The spicy pesto sauce has Calabrian chilies and sun-dried tomatoes. Also included in the kit is one pound of pasta, two ounces of Calabrian chilies in oil, spicy prosciutto and a 500 ml bottle of Apis Ethereal. We love how Pasta Louise includes a wine pairing with each kit. 

Pasta With Tomato Sauce | WhereTraveler
Pasta With Tomato Sauce (©Danijela Prijovic)

Office Hours

With a James Beard-nominated chef overseeing the kitchen at Office Hours, you simply can’t go wrong. The new restaurant concept from David Morton and DMK brings elevated cuisine to the grab-and-go scene. Enjoy various menu selections like the organic heirloom tomato bisque, quinoa salad and poke bowls. You’ll find premium tea and coffee selections on the beverage menu (it’s “office hours,” after all), as well as beer and cider (for after your office hours). 

Coffee and Croissant at Office Hours New York | WhereTraveler
Coffee and Croissant at Office Hours (Courtesy DMK)

Honeybrains

Honeybrains is a grab-and-go-style café that creates menu items to support brain wellness. One of the owners, a neurologist, spent years studying how lifestyle and nutrition affect brain function. He took this knowledge of brain health and infused the principles into delicious healthy, and flavorful recipes. Breakfast items include the “Power Breakfast” made with Omega 3 eggs, chickpeas and edamame. For lunch, bowls like the “Wake & Steak” are available and include grass-fed sirloin steak and basil and hemp seed mashed potatoes. Honeybrains has four locations: NoHo, Midtown, Flatiron and Honeybrains at Saks. 

Avocado Toast | WhereTraveler
Avocado Toast (©Caroline Green)

Cook Eatery

Cook Eatery offers a large selection of food options, including salads, sandwiches, tacos, burgers, ramen, sushi and bibimbap. The concept was designed to provide quality grab-and-go foods in a convenient setting for diners. The eatery seats over 200 people should you find a minute to sit down and eat. Try one of their breakfast wraps or omelets in the morning, or customize your own sandwiches or salads during your lunch hour. Cook Eatery offers a vast selection of fresh ingredient options making it easy to create your ideal meal on the go. 

Custom Salad | WhereTraveler
Custom Salad (©Kelly Visel)