The fall semester is starting back up and that means hundreds of new or transfer students have just moved to Murfreesboro. After a few weeks of meal plan gluttony, you’ll probably want a change of pace and a trip off campus. Below are all of the best eats for college students in Murfreesboro. Mostly locally owned and not too expensive, these are all great options for broke college students tired of ramen noodles and Cookout trays.
Best Mexican Food
Located right off campus as well as three other places around town, Camino Real is the perfect college Mexican food joint. Their prices are low and they offer a 10 percent discount with student I.D. You can even place to-go orders online.
Famous for $1 Taco Tuesdays, Nacho’s features one of the largest menus and is open later on the weekends.
Most popular for their super cheap lunch specials, La Siesta is less than a mile from campus and has a cool outdoor patio for atmosphere.
If you’re into Tex-Mex, you’re sure to find many of your favorite dishes on this simple and concise menu.
Best Local Restaurants
The Alley on Main
If you’re looking for a more upscale experience after weeks of the campus cafeteria, look no further than The Alley on Main. It’s located right off the Square and features steak, fish, large portions and amazing salads. Definitely a pricier option — but worth the money.
Toot’s is the top spot for inexpensive appetizers and fried foods. It’s always lively on the weekends and a good option for large groups. It’s been in Murfreesboro for 30 years and is a local favorite.
Right across from The Walnut Grove on Main Street, The Boulevard is always populated by MTSU students. They have an eclectic menu that can please any craving, from fish and chips to tacos and specialty burgers.
Best Breakfast Options
This is the cutest breakfast place in town, and they even have gluten-free and vegetarian/vegan options on their menu. You get to pour your own pancakes onto the griddle right at your table and customize them with plenty of toppings.
Donut Country has two locations; the one that’s closest to campus is open in the mornings and the other is open 24 hours. If you’re craving breakfast pastries any time of the day this is the place to head to — they even put out fresh donuts at 2 a.m. Their iced coffee is one of Murfreesboro’s best-kept secrets if you arrive there early enough to get it.
Although it’s only open on weekends and early in the morning, City Cafe has without a doubt the best breakfast in town. It’s about a mile off campus in the Square. They serve Southern breakfast foods with plenty of grease alongside free coffee refills. It’s an A+ spot for Saturday morning brunch.
Best Vegetarian Food
Unfortunately, Murfreesboro doesn’t have many options that cater to vegetarians other than chain restaurants. However, locally-owned and operated The Block has vegan and vegetarian options on every section of their menu, from appetizers to soups to entrees. All the food made here is locally grown and fresh. You can check out our feature on them here.
These are in Nashville but worth the short drive for vegetarians and vegans. These places are located in the same center and have a full menu of completely meatless and mostly animal product free options.
This Italian pizzeria delivers until 4 a.m., perfect for all-nighters spent studying. Their pizza is always fresh and typically better than most fast food pizza.
It is a chain restaurant, but Pita Pit is a lifesaver when it comes to living on campus. Believe it or not, there will be a point where you get tired of eating at the Cyber Cafe every night at 1 a.m. and you’ll need something with vegetables on it stat. Pita Pit delivers until 2 a.m., and you can usually get a whole meal for about 10 bucks.
China Spring is the closest Chinese place to campus that delivers. Everything on the menu is priced low so you can load up on multiple menu items and have leftovers for days — an essential for any dorm fridge.
If you’re looking for fancy pastries and uniquely flavored donuts, this is your place. The cutesie interior makes it a great place to grab a snack any time of the day.
Mars Frozen Treats
Right on the Square, this locally owned shop features dozens of homemade flavors of ice cream and popcorn. It’s a perfect place to go after a dinner date or while on a walk around downtown with friends. You can read our interview with the owners here.