Watch CBS News

Best Affordable Grab & Go Food In Los Angeles

Quick, packable, healthy meals to have on-the-go are perfect for Angelenos who are too busy to prepare or sit down for a full meal. If you need a last-minute lunch or dinner pick-up without the hassle of pre-ordering, these places below offer chef-quality food items that people can grab and go.
winsome - VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: Sierra Prescott)

Los Angeles
(213) 415-1818

Located in the heart of Echo Park, Winsome's coffee bar serves as a grab-and-go hub for the restaurant, offering up pre-wrapped sandwiches to a selection of daily house-made breads, baked goods, and desserts. It's the perfect place to stop in before a picnic at Echo Park Lake or a day at Dodger Stadium.

locali - VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: Elizabeth Daniels Photography)

West Hollywood
(424) 302-0464

Locali, with locations in Hollywood and Venice, recently opened their third standalone store in West Hollywood. Each location has a robust grab & go selection of natural and organic snacks, meals on the go and drinks. Find everything from artisan vegan tamales from Mama's in MacArthur Park to gluten-free whoopie pies. When you come in for a soup, salad, smoothies or sandwich from their deli menu, you can conveniently purchase other goodies for when you're on the run. 

Thyme Café & Market- VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: Thyme Café & Market)

Thyme Café & Market
Santa Monica
(310) 399-8800

Pick up everything you could possibly need for a picnic, a family dinner, Sunday brunch or a holiday party here. Thyme offers a large selection of fresh salads, homemade soups, gourmet sandwiches, delicious pastries, Hor D'Ouveres, and holiday sides as well as custom catering. Winter favorites include turkey sausage lasagna, lobster pot pie and kale & sweet potato enchiladas with salsa roja.

friends & family - VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: Jules Exum)

Friends & Family
Los Angeles
(323) 668-2000

For go to options, Friends & Family's Grab n' Go cold case offers a number of options such as artisan cheeses, sandwiches, salads, and pressed juices. Crowd pleasers include their house made chicken meatballs and pizza dough.

Float- VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: Float Pasadena)

(626) 844-3488

Float is a gourmet cafe that's part old-school soda fountain, part coffee shop and part deli located in the picturesque Burlington Arcade in the South Lake Shopping district of Pasadena. Take a fresh pastry and matcha latte to-go or a made-to-order sandwich while sitting at one of Float's quaint sidewalk tables. Enjoy a seasonal ice cream float, like the favorite red cow, or create your own from a selection of specialty soda pops and ice cream.

King Beach- VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: Ryan Tanaka)

King Beach
Playa Provisions
Los Angeles

King Beach is one of the four-in-one concepts at Playa Provisions by "Top Chef" winner Brooke Williamson and her husband & Co-Chef/Co-Owner Nick Roberts. Adjacent to Grain, Dockside and Small Batch, King Beach is the all-day casual market counter with a variety of grab and go pastries, sandwiches, and salads. Try their housemade scones or pretzel croissants, the signature breakfast sandwich or house tuna conserva sandwich. Early risers, before 9am on weekdays, can get the commuter special, a 16oz drip coffee and pretzel croissant for $5.

Grand Central Market - VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: Hayk_Shalunts/shutterstock)

Grand Central Market
Los Angeles
(213) 624-2378

Grand Central Market is the mecca of picnic essentials, with vendors selling everything you need for a phenomenal feast. From fresh fruit and cheese to baguettes and bubbly, you'll have your bases covered. Before you head out with your date to the beach/park make sure to stop by the District Market, a great fresh produce pit-stop, then swing by DTLA Cheese to pick up the perfect spread with a selection of cheese, charcuterie, baguettes, crackers, jams, jellies, olives, marcona almonds, pickles and more. To top it all off, make sure to go to Courage & Craft for a bottle of rosé or a six-pack of your favorite hop-loaded IPA. Looking for great smoked salmon, bagels, and other deli sandwiches? Wexler's Deli is one of the hottest spots in the city.

Pitchoun- VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: Pitchoun)

Pitchoun! Bakery & Café
Los Angeles
(213) 689-3240

Perfect for a French-themed picnic, Pitchoun! offers a wide variety of sandwiches, salads, sweets and homemade breads, all of which are made from scratch daily. The cozy café, fine French bakery and pastry shop serves items made from scratch daily on-site and some of their easy and popular items to take on the go include the pan bagnat and verrines. Picnic goers are also able to choose from a variety of fresh artisan bread and home-made pastries and cakes, along with an array of healthy salads, sandwiches and soups.

Lemonade- VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: Lemonade)

Multiple Locations

With several locations in the LA area, Lemonade is known for their fresh and unique salads and seasonal menu. All of their locations offer a mouthwatering list of sandwiches, marketplace salads, and packable main dishes with newly rolled out items which include poke bowls and mango chicken bowls. The heart and soul of Lemonade is their from-scratch marketplace, which consists of vegetable-based dishes all which are travel-friendly items. Guest favorites include their pineapple chicken & green beans, snap peas & edamame, ahi tuna & avocado poke, thai chicken meatballs and their traditional or white truffle mac n cheese.

mendocino-farms - VERIFIED Jarone
credit: Mendocino Farms)

Mendocino Farms
Multiple Locations

With several locations across Southern California and one in Northern California, Mendocino Farms has become a beloved sandwich and salad destination all across the city. They partner with local farms and food artisans to create inspired dishes that area available for quick pick-up - the ideal fuel for everyone from the business professional to the mom on the go. At any of their locations, stop by and choose from their sandwiches, a selection of seasonal green salads, gourmet whole grain and pasta salads and more.

food-lab - VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: FOOD LAB)

West Hollywood
(323) 851-7120

Providing customers with breakfast, lunch, take-out and catering, the trendy gourmet cafe offers up popular sandwiches like the famous wienerschnitzel and the green lab, salads, sides as well as picnic boxes. Each picnic box includes a sandwich of your choice, a mini-vegan salad, a daily side salad, a cookie by Deluscious Cookies, a bottle of water, a stick of gum, salt and pepper, served with biodegradable eat ware and a biodegradable container.

café Gratitude - VERIFIED Jarone
(credit: Cafe Gratitude)

Cafe Gratitude
(424) 231-8000

With locations in Venice, Larchmont Village and DTLA's Arts District, Cafe Gratitude is a 100% organic plant-based restaurant that specializes in gourmet vegan cuisine. Along with partnering with local farmers to serve the freshest produce, the thoughtfully crafted menu by Executive chef Dreux Ellis is designed to support health and sustainability. New seasonal items include (with each menu item named after affirmations): kale Caesar (I am dazzling), cg double double (I am magical), macrobiotic bowl (I am whole), raw pad Thai kelp noodles (I am liberated).

Jarone Ashkenazi is a freelance writer who covers restaurants, bars, travel, sports and other lifestyle topics. View his work at, or connect with him on Twitter: @JaroneAsh.
View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.