Here are places for the kid at heart with or without kids that specialize in unique ways to experience comfort foods in a new way. These are L.A. County fast-casual places for when you’re in need of a place to grab a quick lunch or snack with a nostalgic twist! Except for the still-totally-worth-it California Donuts line.
1. Elbows (Cerritos and Brea)
If you’re a Mac-and-Cheese enthusiast Elbows is the place for you. The whole menu is dedicated to the heavenly-cheesy dish that we all know and love, but with many twists. From a spicy Indian-inspired MACsala to food-bending PIZZA My Heart to just the classics with their version of the Blue Box, there will always be many takes on the Mac you won’t be able to settle on, because they sound so delicious. Other options include: Cajun Sensation with Andouille sausage, the mushroom truffle Fun Guy, Okey Dokey Artichokey the spinach dip mac, and the I can’t believe it’s not cheese for Vegans. There are also salads, sandwiches and dipping Beignets on the menu in case you go to the mac-and-cheese place, and not order mac-and-cheese, but who are we kidding?
2. Mix and Munch (South Pasadena)
A fun breakfast and lunch option, Mix and Munch boasts a huge selection of your favorite breakfast cereals and a variety of grilled cheese options. Feeling like Cookie Crisp, Lucky Charms, Fruity Pebbles, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Frosted Flakes? Well, they’ve pretty much got it all and you can mix different types into one bowl. Indecisive of which to mix together? They have suggestions. Then, of course you’ve got all the different grilled cheeses to pick from and luckily there are also suggestions for those.
3. Spread PB (Studio City)
If Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwiches and brown bag lunches are more your thing, Spread PB is the spot for you. You can design your sandwich from type of bread, type of jelly, right down to type of peanut butter from their PB bar. They’ve got creamy, nutty, Nutella-ey, green curry-ey (that’s right), and a variety of different toppings to create your own unique sandwich. Want it sushi-style? They’ve got it, banana slices and your pic of PB wrapped into a tortilla and cut into rolls with chocolate or honey drizzle. Picture it, desire it, and go get it!
4. The In-Field Hot Dogs (Sherman Oaks)
For a classic lunch choice, try The In-field hot dog stand, which features stadium- and bench seating – and makes you feel like you’re at a game. Their hot dog menu is extensive and ranges from home team style dogs (The Dodger Dog) to other city faves (Brooklyn, Philly, Chicago). You’ll also find classics like the chili cheese dog, pastrami dog, and just the plain ol’ dog. You can even get a fried Twinkie dog if you’re adventurous. Oh and on Sundays, all the hot dogs are $2.50 (no modifications and excludes the dessert dogs!)
5. California Donuts (Los Angeles)
There is really something about the options at California Donuts that are kinda mind blowing. It can pretty much be summed up with the existence of the maple bacon bar, M&M overload, the blueberry toast crunch, and the crazy Snickers Bar, which has a whole actual snickers bar baked inside. Yeah, diabetes, but there are the usual normal flavors too, which are super scrumptious and less intense than the specialty ones. I totally recommend checking out their entire selection, and their seasonal specialties are fantastic too. During Girl Scout cookie season, they have offered Thin Mint- and Samoas-flavored donuts. YUM!
What are your Fun Food Places in Los Angeles recommendations?