8 restaurants for late-night munchies

Picture this. It's 12:05 a.m. on a Saturday, and after finally getting back to the dorms it happens — the stomach starts to growl and hunger sets in.  

After opening up the refrigerator, and bathing in the bleak light reflecting off the empty shelves, the only options that remain is to find the nearest Denny’s or order a pizza from Dominos — but after living off pizza for the last three days, Dominos no longer sounds appetizing. Familiar? 

Luckily, on the weekends the options are no longer as limited. Here are a few restaurants just off campus that keep their doors open after the clock strikes midnight.

Downtown Campus

Welcome Diner

A four minute drive from the Downtown Phoenix campus is Welcome Diner. Open from 5 p.m. until 2 a.m. Tuesday through Sunday, this valentine diner-style restaurant offers a Southern-inspired menu to be enjoyed on a charming patio resting below strings of sparkling lights. From its award-winning fried green tomato sandwich to the bumblebee biscuit, the menu offers something more interesting than pancakes or pizza.

A photo posted by welcomediner (@welcomediner) on


Hanny’s opens on weekdays at 11 a.m. and on Saturday and Sunday at 5 p.m. and serves food until 1 a.m. all week. The ambiance is sleek and classy with dimmed lights and elegant architecture. This restaurant could easily be off the streets of Manhattan rather than its downtown Phoenix home. Serving typical bar food such as pizza and sandwiches, this is a great midnight snack option for someone who wants a casual taste in a sophisticated setting.


During the weekdays, FEZ is open until midnight, but on Friday and Saturday this original restaurant keeps its doors open an extra hour for any late night snackers. The modern style and bright orange accent color makes FEZ stand out from the gray walls of downtown Phoenix. It has affordable options such as the all American burger for $11.95, but for someone with fancier tastes, they have more expensive options such as a bacon mushroom bistro steak for $19.95. 

A little surf n turf this whole weekend @fezoncentral delish!

A photo posted by FEZ Restaurant & BAR (@fezoncentral) on

The Duce

With recognition from multiple sources as “unusual,” “wacky” and “interesting,” The Duce transports diners back to the prohibition era in both atmosphere and taste. If that doesn’t sound better than dreaming to midnight snackers, trying out the 1915 soda fountain or biting into mac 'n' cheese muffins that made an appearance on Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-ins and Dives might. The Duce stays open until 1 a.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Unfortunately, anyone under 21 turns into a pumpkin at 9 p.m., but for the older Cinderellas, The Duce is a perfect option.

Squid Ink

On Friday and Saturday Squid Ink Sushi is open until 2 a.m. for anyone who gets sushi cravings late into the night. With a wide range of options, midnight snackers can order anything from $25 pepper crusted filet mignon to a more affordable $5 avocado roll. When the food comes out, it looks as good as it tastes. In the heart of downtown Phoenix, the environment of the restaurant is fast-paced and fun, and that excitement doesn’t die when the sun goes down.

Tempe Campus

The Munchies Cafe

The Munchies Cafe on Mill Avenue and Sixth street keeps its doors open until 3 a.m., and is a great stop for quick service and Mediterranean eats. While the classic Mediterranean menu offers plates such as gyros, it also offers some surprising options like a 6 inchPhilly Cheesesteak. If that doesn’t sound appetizing enough, perhaps this will — the highest price on the menu is $9.95 with the majority of prices ranging around $5.

El Paisano Market

From the outside, many may be unaware that nestled in the corner of El Paisano Market is a small area that makes burritos, tacos and other Mexican food. Walking by the aisles of this convenience-style market, the fresh Mexican food is a gem. The market is open until 2 a.m. everyday of the week, and while the outside of the market may not look like a restaurant, the food is a treat.

Bacus Bros. Hot Dogs & Beer

New to Mill Avenue,  Bacus Bros. Hot Dogs and Beer offers more than just hot dogs. One interesting menu item is the bierock, which is a pastry pocket filled with meat. Like Subway or Chipotle, at Bacus the diner gets to choose the meat and toppings they want as they go down the line, and it serves up food until 3 a.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Related links:

Tempe eatery Golden Restaurant and Bakery acts as second home for international students

Best of ASU

Reach the reporter at ndusanek@asu.edu or follow @NikkiDusanek on Twitter

Like The State Press on Facebook and follow @statepress on Twitter

Get the best of State Press delivered straight to your inbox.