Get Your Mac On (Campus)

With the weather turning colder, it’s officially comfort food season. Think: carbs, melt-in-your-mouth creaminess, and a bit of warmth. To us, there’s no food more comforting than a warm bowl of macaroni and cheese. When done well, a creamy cheese sauce perfectly complements mouthfuls of pasta. Yum.

Around Penn, there are tons of options to get your mac. Here’s your guide to mac ‘n’ cheese on campus.

Clockwise from top left: Pelicana, Corner Bakery, Wawa, Boston Market, Wishbone

Panera Bread

What: A fast-casual spot for sandwiches and soup. 200 S 40th St.

Our Rating: 4.5/5

Strong Points: The cheese sauce is tangy and sharp. Comes with a side of bread.

Weaknesses: The pasta can be a little more than al dente. 

Perfect for: A wholesome lunch, especially when paired with a side baguette or roll.


What: Penn’s favorite 24/7 convenience store. 3744 Spruce St.

Our Rating: 3.5/5

Strong Points: Consistent and creamy. 

Weaknesses: Mediocre flavor. Very salty. Color is somewhat concerning.

Perfect for: Late night cravings. When you need your mac quickly.


What: Fried chicken and other comfort food. 4034 Walnut St.

Our Rating: 4.5/5

Strong Points: Flavorful, breadcrumbs on top, quality cheeses such as mascarpone.

Weaknesses: Macaroni pasta is quite bad and smooshy; can have strong onion taste.

Perfect for: When you are down for a gooood mac, or just for when you need cheese after going out on the weekend.

Pelicana Chicken

What: Korean fried chicken and more. 4002 Spruce St.

Our Rating: 3/5

Strong Points: The flavor, including black pepper and herbs.

Weaknesses: The sauce is more watery than saucy.

Perfect for: When your vegetarian friend is coming on your fried chicken run.

Corner Bakery

What: Soups and sandwiches a little off the beaten path. 3737 Market St.

Our Rating: 5/5

Strong Points: Creamy sauces, clear notes of cheddar, and perfectly cooked spiral pasta. Big portion and comes with a side of garlic bread.

Weaknesses: The breadcrumbs on top can be a little soggy.

Perfect for: When you’re really hungry and need some mac in your life.

Boston Market

What: Home cooking, from rotisserie chicken to meatloaf. 3901 Chestnut St.

Our Rating: 4/5

Strong Points: The sauce tastes like your favorite childhood mac.

Weaknesses: Texture isn’t great.

Perfect for: When you want to remember what being 7 felt like. 


What: The go-to happy hour spot known for great margs and burgers. 4000 Spruce St.

Our Rating: 4.5/5

Strong Points: The mac and cheese is freshly baked with melted cheese over top!

Weaknesses: Can’t think of any.

Perfect for: When you’re hungry at happy hour!

Louie Louie

What: Upscale French food under the Inn at Penn. 3611 Walnut St.

Our Rating: 4.5/5

Strong Points: The textures of the sauce and pasta are perfect.

Weaknesses: A little bit too cheesy.

Perfect for: Brunch with your parents.

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