Off-Campus Dining

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Off-Campus Dining

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4 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: For a small town such as Waco, it has plenty of variety of foods, even though some of it does not taste authentic it is still good to try out new things.

3 College Junior

Off-Campus Dining: Near campus, you'll mostly find an assortment of fast food places- they're great as far as convenience, cost, and late night options go- but, of course, not so great if you want something good quality or healthy (with maybe a few exceptions, notably the Subway near Penland). Most of the good restaurants are a bit further away- if you're able/willing to drive a ways, there's quite a bit of variety too (most of it, chain restaurants, but I don't mind that).

Personal favorites? Chuy's is one of my favorite tex-mex restaurants, so naturally I recommend the one in Waco. There's also a Torchy's Tacos- conveniently located among the cluster of fast food restaurants just across the highway. Ninfa's isn't perhaps my favorite as far as tex-mex, but still good. If you want good Italian food for an excellent price, try Baris- be warned though, it's likely to be crowded unless you go at an off hour. For sandwiches, try Schmaltz' or Food for Thought. Katie's Frozen Custard is an absolute must (though I can only vouch for their custard, as I've never tried their fast food). Common Grounds is a popular coffee shop located on the south edge of campus- just as good if not better than Starbucks, and they host lots of shows on their back patio. Mi Tequila has low quality food, but excellent margaritas (in a good variety of flavors too) for an excellent price.

4 College Sophomore

Off-Campus Dining: I really like the taco places around campus. They are pretty healthy.

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3 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: There are a few interesting places to visit, each one is great in its own way, but like I said, as far as I know, there are only a few.

3 College Freshman

Off-Campus Dining: Inconvenient placing, but good food is the name of the game in Waco.

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Student Author OverviewWhat's this?

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Right across the street from campus, on the other side of I-35, lies the strip center of fast-food chains known as Fast-food Row, including Fazoli's, Taco Cabana, and McAlister's Deli. Even closer to campus is Dubl-R Burgers. In terms of eating off campus, the amount of choices and their variation are aplenty, even for a medium-sized city.

The saddest thing about Baylor students is that many of them won't explore the privately-owned, non-chain dining options off campus. There are a million little places all over Waco, some of which are owned and operated by Baylor alumni, that are fantastic. The most popular places are regularly packed if you try to go during the dinner rush, either because of reputation or because most students aren't willing to pay $7 and risk food poisoning in a place they've never heard of. The plus side to having so many of the chains is that you're offered the consistency of regular restaurants whose specials and atmosphere are always predictable. The biggest perk about living in a college town, especially one where there really isn't a whole lot to do in terms of nightlife, is that the restaurants do their best to make up for what everything else lacks.

Facts & Statistics

Student Favorites
  • Bush's Chicken
  • Chili's Bar & Grill
  • Cricket's Grill and Draft House
  • George's Restaurant
  • Ninfa's
  • Vitek's Barbeque
24-Hour Dining
  • Taco Cabana
  • Whataburger
Best Asian
  • Summer Palace
  • Teriyaki Park
Best Breakfast
  • IHOP
  • Rudy's BBQ
Best Healthy
Health Camp
Best Pizza
Papa Rollo's Pizza
Best Wings
Vitek's Barbeque
Best Place to Take Your Parents
  • La Fiesta
  • Ninfa's
  • Rosa's Cafe
  • Texas Roadhouse
Other Places to Check Out
  • Applebees
  • Casa Ole
  • Food for Thought
  • Fuddruckers
  • Lolita's
  • Quiznos
  • Schmaltzes
  • Sloepokes
Did You Know?
  • Every fall, right after the start of classes, is Waco's annual Salsaritaville. Salsaritaville takes place in the center of town and is a competition between local restaurants' margaritas, queso, and salsa. Ticket holders can enjoy the food and drinks while the judges decide on the winner.
  • A huge Czech community lives just north of Waco, where you can enjoy Westfest, specialty baked kolaches, and other Czech food at the Czech Stop

Grocery StoresWhat's This?

HEB
1102 Speight St., Waco
(254) 752-0374
Target
5401 Bosque Blvd.
(254) 399-0067
Wal-Mart
4320 Franklin Ave., Waco
(254) 751-0464

Restaurant ListingsWhat's This?

Bush's Chicken
Food: Chicken
1704 S. Valley Mills Drive, Waco
(254) 754-2212
Price: $6
Buzzard Billy's
Food: Cajun, seafood, American
208 S. University Parks Drive, near campus
(254) 753-2778
www.buzzardbillys.com
Price: $12
Cool Features: Funky atmosphere, all located in historic buildings
Chili's Grill & Bar
Food: American
5804 Bosque Blvd., off Valley Mills Drive
(254) 776-8330
www.chilis.com
Price: $12
Cool Features: Chain restaurant
Clay Pot
Food: Vietnamese
920 Interstate 35 S., just south of campus
(254) 756-2721
Price: $7
Cool Features: Sit on the floor, play cards while you wait, listen to live music
Cricket's Grill and Draft House
Food: American
211 Mary Ave., on Franklin Strip
(254) 754-4677
Price: $10
Cool Features: Pool, shuffleboard, videogames, big-screen TVs
Dubl-R Hamburgers
Food: American
1810 Herring Ave.
(254) 753-1603
Price: $7
Fazoli's
Food: Italian
919 S. Sixth St., under the highway from campus
(254) 752-2929
www.fazolis.com
Price: $8
Cool Features: Fast-food Italian
George's Restaurant
Food: American
1925 Speight Ave.
(254) 753-1421
Price: $8
Cool Features: Many celebrities such as Barbara Walters, George Bush, and Pat Green have eaten there.
Health Camp
Food: American
On the Circle
(254) 752-2081
Price: $8
Cool Features: Shakes
Jason's Deli
Food: Sandwiches
4302 W. Waco Dr.
(254) 772-6611
www.jasonsdeli.com
Price: $8
La Fiesta
Food: Mexican
3815 Franklin Ave., Corner of Franklin and Valley Mills Drive
(254) 756-4701
Price: $12
Cool Features: Two-for-one happy hour on Mondays
McAlister's Deli
Food: Sandwiches
1505 Hewitt Dr.
(254) 420-3353
www.mcalistersdeli.com
Price: $10
Michna's Bar-B-Que
Food: Barbeque
2803 Franklin Ave.
(254) 752-3650
Price: $8
Cool Features: BBQ Buffet
Ninfa's
Food: Mexican
215 Mary Ave.
(254) 757-2050
Price: $10
Cool Features: Ninfaritas during happy hour
Olive Garden Italian Restaurant
Food: Italian
5921 W. Waco Dr.
(254) 751-1667
www.olivegarden.com
Price: $15
On the Border Mexican Grill & Cantina
Food: Mexican
4320 W. Waco Drive, Corner of Waco Drive and Valley Mills Drive
(254) 399-9986
www.ontheborder.com
Price: $10
Cool Features: Outside dining
Papa Rollo's Pizza
Food: Italian
703 N. Valley Mills Drive
(254) 772-9348
Price: $8
Cool Features: Look around for the NoZe Brothers Fraternity
Rosa's Cafe
Food: Mexican
4200 Franklin Ave., Waco
(254) 741-9283
Price: $5-$10 per person
Cool Features: Every year, Rosa's hands out a gift card that details five ways to eat there for $5 or less.
Rudy's BBQ
Food: BBQ
2510 Circle Rd., on the circle
(254) 750-9995
Price: $8
Cool Features: Sauces
Summer Palace
Food: Chinese
1520 N. Valley Mills Drive, Waco
(254) 776-8081
Price: $9
Taco Cabana
Food: Mexican
825 S. Sixth St.
(254) 752-4334
Price: $9
Teriyaki Park
Food: Japanese
220 S. 2nd St. # 1C2, Waco
(254) 714-1416
Price: $10-$20 per person
Cool Features: They take Bear Bucks. Green Tea Ice Cream is a local favorite.
Texas Roadhouse
Food: Steakhouse
2815 La Salle Ave., just off the circle
(254) 662-1177
www.texasroadhouse.com
Price: $14
Cool Features: Free peanuts, enormous chicken-fried steak, attractive servers
Vitek's Barbeque
Food: BBQ
1600 Speight Ave.
(254) 752-7591
Price: $7
Cool Features: The gut pack
Vito's Italian Trattoria
Food: Italian
1200 N. Valley Mills Dr.
(254) 776-5536
Price: $12
Whataburger
Food: Burgers
928 S. 7th St., Waco
(254) 753-0389
Price: $5 per person

Student Polls

Rate the off-campus restaurants on the following topics    Based on 190 responses

Very poor
Excellent
  • Cost
  • Convenience
  • Healthy/organic options
  • Late-night options
  • Quality
  • Student discounts
  • Variety/number of options
  • Vegetarian/vegan options

How would you rate the diversity of off-campus dining options?    Based on 205 responses

  • 23% A nice variety of local spots and ethnic cuisine.
  • 45% Enough variety to keep things interesting.
  • 29% Mostly just chain restaurants and fast food.
  • 3% An endless repetition of the same few places.
4
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