Of course it's almost mandatory that you get a cheesesteak at some point, but beyond Cheez Whiz, Philadelphia has a fantastic food scene covering a variety of styles, ethnicities, price ranges, and venues — from top chefs to gourmet food trucks. Don't fall into the trap of only eating on campus when there are so many culinary options just a few blocks or miles away.
Nearby — Fast Food
30th Street Station Food Court (2955 Market Street)
There's lots to choose from at 30th Street, from snacks to meals: Subway, Taco Bell/Pizza Hut, Ben & Jerry's, Auntie Anne's Pretzels, Bridgewater Pub, Au Bon Pain, McDonald's, Cosi, Saladworks, and more.
Drexel Pizza (107 N. 33rd Street)
Breakfast, sandwiches, burgers, steak sandwiches, hoagies, wraps, Italian dishes, quesadillas, salads, calzones, and of course, pizza by the slice and by the pie. Check out Drexel Pizza.
Nearby — Real Food
Chestnut Square (33rd and Chestnut Streets)
Chestnut Square, one of Drexel's newest additions, offers multiple acclaimed eateries in a variety of flavors right on campus: Zavino, a wine bar pizzeria; coZara, a sushi and Japanese-style comfort food restaurant; Shake Shack®, a quality burger, hot dog, and frozen custard stand; and Joe Coffee, a specialty coffee shop.
Sabrina's (34th Street and Powelton Avenue)
Sabrina's has the best stuffed French toast in the city, and you can order breakfast all day. But whether you're in the mood for a frittata, a sandwich, or a salad, you can't go wrong. Check out Sabrina's.
Landmark Americana (3333 Market Street)
An array of standard grill fare, salads, appetizers, and drinks. Check out Landmark Americana.
White Dog Cafe (3420 Sansom Street)
Serving contemporary American dishes made from seasonal, local, organic, and sustainable ingredients. Check out White Dog Cafe.
World Cafe Live (3025 Walnut Street)
A music venue and a restaurant serving an eclectic menu for lunch and dinner. Check out World Cafe Live.
Picnic (3131 Walnut Street)
The food is close to fine dining, except casual and to go (like for a picnic!). Picnic offers fresh, seasonal foods and American bistro style with daily specials, buying local whenever possible. Check out Picnic.
Mikey's (3180 Chestnut Street)
An American grill and sports bar right next to campus, making it a convenient place to watch a game, play Quizzo, and get a bite to eat. Check out Mikey's.
Stephen Starr Restaurants
With restaurants spanning styles from burger shack to beer hall to French, Italian, Mexican, and homestyle, Stephen Starr's nearly two dozen restaurants are located all over the city and never fail to offer a delicious dining experience for any occasion. Check out the Stephen Starr Restaurants.
Garces Restaurant Group
As an Iron Chef (winner of the second season) Jose Garces knows how to make and present fantastic food. His seven restaurants range from Spanish tapas to modern Mexican and classic American. Check out the Garces Restaurant Group.
Pat's King of Steaks (1237 E. Passyunk Avenue)
Family owned since 1930; they claim that founder Pat Olivieri was the originator of the steak sandwich in Philadelphia. Check out Pat's.
Geno's Steaks (1219 S. 9th Street)
Son of the owner of Jim's Steaks, Joe Vento opened Geno's in 1966 directly across from Pat's (you'll know you're there when you see neon) because that's where people knew to go to get a cheesesteak. Thus was born the Pat's and Geno's rivalry. Check out Geno's.
Jim's Steaks (400 South Street)
Jim's has been in operation since 1939, opening its South Street location in 1976. Some say it's the best cheesesteak in the city. Check out Jim's.
Tony Luke's (39 E. Oregon Avenue)
This one is the original Tony Luke's, now world famous. (Their classic commercials are, well, classic.) Check out Tony Luke's.
Honest Tom's (33rd and Arch Streets)
Tacos, yummy breakfast tacos. And now they also have a permanent indoor taco shop in West Philly (261 S. 44th Street). Check out Honest Tom's.
Magic Carpet (34th and Walnut Streets)
Mediterranean worth standing in line for, so make sure you have time to wait. Check out Magic Carpet.
Pitruco Pizza (33rd and Arch Streets, Tuesdays and Thursdays)
It's a truck fitted out with a wood-fired brick oven serving up fresh, hot, personal-sized pizzas made-to-order. Check out Pitruco Pizza.
La Dominique Creperie (33rd and Market Streets)
Named as one of the top 10 crepe trucks in the country in 2011 by USA Today, sweet and savory crepes range from $5-$7 right outside Hagerty Library. Check out La Dominique Creperie on VendrTV.
Buttercream Cupcake (Market Street between 33rd and 34th Streets)
Former lawyer turned Cupcake Lady, and everyone appreciates the change. Students get a discount with ID. Cupcakes are also available at Four Worlds Bakery (4634 Woodland Avenue). Check out Buttercream Cupcake and follow on Twitter for a schedule of locations and hours.
Reading Terminal Market (51 N. 12th Street)
Among more than 80 merchant stands in this 1.7-acre market, you're bound to come across something tasty: Amish baked goods, gourmet cupcakes, freshly baked breads, homemade cookies, and traditional Italian pastries; local produce or discount produce; delis; restaurants featuring Cajun favorites, crepes, gyros, sushi, dumplings, falafel, and cheesesteaks; an array of flowers, spices, and housewares; fresh fish, meats, poultry, and gourmet cheeses; and to top it all off, Bassetts Ice Cream, America's oldest ice cream company. Check out Reading Terminal Market.
Italian Market (Along 9th Street between Christian Street and Washington Avenue)
Operating since the 1880s, the Italian Market is a Philly institution. Open-air fruit, vegetable, meat, and fish vendors, plus specialty meat, pasta, cheese, bread, spice, and kitchen gadget supply stores line several blocks near South Philly. Check out the Italian Market.