“Vegetables are a must on a diet. I suggest carrot cake, zucchini bread, and pumpkin pie.”–Jim Davis
Knowing how to find the best food after midnight is one of those essential urban living skills that people who have lived in cities all their lives seem to have been born with. But if you’re from a small town or the country, you might have a little trouble with this. So we’ve written this article for the transplanted country boy looking for the best after midnight food in the city.
Most dieticians will recommend that no one eat after 6 p.m., as doing so will overtax the body’s digestive system. This is good advice. Eating so close to the end of the day can cause your metabolism to slow down, making your body work harder than it needs to in order to absorb nutrition from your food, and perhaps even causing it to store excess fat.
But let’s be honest. Who on Earth lives like that? Some of the better days don’t even get started until after 6 p.m. We’ve all been out late at night looking for a place to get a decent nosh.
Whether you’ve been working late to meet that last-minute deadline, or barhopping until the wee hours, eventually you’ll need to know how to find the best food after midnight. No matter where you live or what type of food you’re looking for, just think of these tips and you’ll be chowing down in no time.
1. Think Locally
Of course, what you can get depends on what city you’re in. For instance, New Yorkers can visit the aptly named Anytime, open until 5 a.m. on the weekends. Place orders online at Any Time NY. Los Angeles residents looking for sushi after midnight might try Oomasa. If you’re in Dallas, and you’re craving sushi, try Dallas Sushi.
If you’re an Austin denizen unafraid of running into a rowdy post-bar crowd you might try Ropollo’s Pizza, with several different locations across the city. And Miami night owls can’t beat the 9.99 T-bone steak at Tobacco Road.
2. Or, think generally
Of course, not all of us have the luxury of living in a major city. At many not-so-exotic or interesting locales, the most obvious places to go after midnight are greasy chain diners or equally greasy fast food restaurants. Not to worry, most towns will still have decent fare to offer restaurant goers well into the night if you know where to look.
If there is a college in your town, this provides a ready-made audience for affordable, late night dining. There will most likely be decent late-night comfort food available for homesick students cramming for exams. Look for small, interesting places within walking distance of the dorms.
Likewise, if there is a decent bar scene or music scene in your town, there will also likely be late-night restaurants somewhere between downtown and residential areas, providing a place for bar goers to soak up the alcohol in their stomachs before finally hitting the hay.
While you will definitely have to contend with a rowdier crowd, nothing beats the local post-bar or post-nightclub hangout for good food and a good time. Also, it’s your last chance to give your number to that hot guy or girl you’ve been eyeballing all night long.
3. Make it yourself!
Of course, nothing beats food from your own kitchen for affordability or convenience. Especially with the economy in the state it’s in, you may not have to cash to fork out for late-night food service. So why not find the best food after midnight right in your own home?
Today, even the smallest towns have a Wal-Mart Supercenter with a 24-hour grocery store inside, where you can nab some last-minute recipe necessities. There are countless cooking websites where you can find yourself something to make at all hours, such at Cook and Eat or Online Cooking.
Does your cooking repertoire not go past pouring milk in a bowl of cereal? Don’t fret. Even if you use your oven for storage, and your cupboards are bare you can still make yourself some decent after midnight snacks. Head to your nearest Trader Joe’s, famous for it’s selection of gourmet, healthy frozen foods you can make in a microwave or toaster oven.
Stock up on, for example, Joe’s Cheese Soufflé or Just Pasta dishes for a portion of the price you’d pay for a similar meal at a restaurant. While you’re there, why not pick up a few exceedingly affordable bottles from their wine section and make it a night!
So there you have it. Ignoring nutritionist’s advice has never been so delicious. Just follow these basic guidelines and you’ll know exactly how to find the best food after midnight, be it at a popular big-city eatery, a well-kept secret hole-in-the-wall or your own kitchen. Just don’t blame us if you’re spending some extra time at the gym the next day.