There are so many great options for carryout and delivery right now in C-U. We wanted to round up six places we consider to be hidden gems. These local businesses are open for carryout and delivery, and if you haven't tried them yet, we think you should.
Rib tips at Lil Porgys. Photo by Cody Caudill.
In a landscape filled with some truly fantastic BBQ options, I’ll always be the first to stand up and wave the flag for, Lil' Porgy's, the longest running joint around. I’ve written about it ad nauseum about the tantalizing flavor of their sauce on these digital pages. But now more than ever, with the weather changing in particular, is a chance to really fall in love with this local gem. Sauce is available for $2 a pint to go, but everything they serve on the menu is always so yummy and fulfilling.
1917 W Springfield Ave
Su - Th 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
F + Sa 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Photo by Alyssa Buckley.
Staffed by a mother and daughter duo, Sticky Rice is serving up traditional Asian cuisine. The menu consists of authentic Thai with a twist of Lao and a few Chinese and Vietnamese dishes as well. There is an online ordering option, but I recommend you call 217-954-1929 and speak to them about your order. She can adjust the spice level to your liking and help you order dishes that carryout well. I recommend the yellow curry ($11) and the namestake side dish sticky rice ($5.50), a glutinous rice which is especially sticky when cooked. They offer over-the-phone payment in addition to carryout to your car (park in the lot next to Sticky Rice's outdoor patio).
415 N Neil Street
M - Sa 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Su 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Photo from Po Boys Facebook page.
Whatever this iteration of Po’ Boys is doesn’t really bear much resemblance to what most of us Townies know as the original Po’ Boys, run by the Yarber family. We’ve written about that, too, extensively, but right now, I am here to tell you that the Rasner family, descendents of the Huey Rasner family — yes, that Huey’s! —makes absolutely amazing pizza. What they serve up is absolutely phenomenal, and perhaps my favorite in town. It’s a hard call between this, Manolo’s, Papa Del’s, Jupiter’s, and Old Orchard. Depends on the context. But for now, let me highly recommend this ‘za to you all. The cheese is perfectly salty, and it’s oily in the right ways, and the crust is super thin, but without being soggy. Super duper job on their part.
202 E University Ave
Sa to Th 11 a.m. - 8 p.m.
F 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Combination egg foo young. Photo by Seth Fein.
My family calls this “fancy Chinese takeout,” and they’re not wrong: Rainbow Garden offers sophisticated Chinese dishes (at a bit higher cost than the usual Chinese takeout). Rainbow Garden has a wide selection of dishes including Cantonese and American-Chinese. The portions are large, and the food is flavorful without being greasy. You can view their menu here.
I recommend the Chinese Scallion Pancake ($6.95), a layered, soft-on-the-inside, crispy-on-the-outside layered triangle of deliciousness, and I also recommend the Princess Chicken ($10.95), chicken with vegetables and peanuts in a light, spicy sauce. Oh, and also the Fried Rice with Barbeque Pork ($9.45); the pork in this fried rice is some of the best pork I’ve ever had: soft and fatty with a barbeque char on the edges. You can order online at RainbowGardenUrbana.com or call 217-344-1888 to place your order.
202 E University
11 a.m. to 8:45 p.m., daily
Lo mein. Photo by Rebecca Wells.
I was almost exclusive to Rainbow Garden for Chinese take out and delivery for the better part of a decade until one day, I whimsically stopped at Ming Garden, because honestly, I was there and most of the time, lo mein is lo mein is lo mein, at places like this. Well, I am pretty much now exclusive to Ming Garden, mostly because I believe their egg foo young sauce to be a bit more to my taste, and I really really like egg foo young. Like Rainbow Garden, which is terrific as well, the flavors here are excellent and the prices are super reasonable. Delivery and carryout available, as always.
1804 Sangamon Dr
M - Sa 11 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Su 12 p.m. to 9 p.m.
*We've been informed that Ming Garden is not currently open; we will update the article when we learn that it's re-opened.
Photo by Matthew Macomber.
In Urbana, La Mixteca serves up traditional Mexican food. Matthew reviewed this spot in 2018. La Mixteca has a wide variety of deliciousness from burritos to tacos to breakfast options. I'm always drawn to tacos, but they have so many yummy menu items. The sope with chicken ($5) is delicious as is the Viva Mexico burrito ($9.99), a burrito covered in various sauces to match the flag of Mexico. They offer delivery through Door Dash or you can call 217-552-1544 to place an order for carryout.
510 N Cunningham Ave
10 a.m. to 8 p.m., daily
Alyssa Buckley and Seth Fein contributed to this article.