There's no question that with its distinct mix of classic and uber-trendy cuisines, New York is one of the greatest food cities in the world. Though the pandemic hit the food service industry hard, innovation from restaurants and grocers has resulted in some pretty cool stuff for consumers. From bottled goods to DIY meal kits, along with the classic mail-order standbys, you can now eat like a New Yorker from almost anywhere in the US.
Bronx Little Italy Tomato Sauce and Pasta
Arthur Avenue, located in the Belmont section of the Bronx, is the vibrant heart of New York's most authentically Italian and Italian-American neighborhood – currently New York's real Little Italy. Locals and tourists alike come from all over to get a taste of Italy at drool-worthy restaurants, delis, bakeries, and pastry shops. And now, Little Italy in the Bronx has bottled the essence of the area with their line of sauces and pasta inspired by the enclave; with a portion of proceeds from sales goes to supporting the Belmont Business Improvement District, a group dedicated to preserving the neighborhood and its traditions. From Arriabitta to Vodka sauces and pasta including gnocchi, spaghetti, and rigatoni these delicious products (Mamma mia, the Alfredo!) bring the flavor of the Bronx over to your neighborhood. Get them here.
Vassilaros and Sons Coffee
If you've ever been to an NYC diner you've most likely had Vassilaros and Sons coffee, the family run company that's been supplying most of them for years. Immigrant-grown and women-owned, they've been in the coffee game since 1919, filling those iconic little blue Greek coffee cups (called the Anthora) so closely associated with New York. The company recently expanded from strictly wholesale to direct to the consumer, so you can now enjoy a perfect cup of NYC diner coffee at home. Order yours here – and while you're at it, you might as well get your own anthora cup!
When a New Yorker thinks of cheesecake, they think Junior's. Born out of the downtown Brooklyn restaurant (with its iconic signage) in the 1950s, their version of the classic New York dessert is simply the best – and they have the awards to prove it. Thanks to their mail-order business, you can bring a beautiful slice of Brooklyn to your door, from the classic Original NY Plain Cheesecake to a colorful and delectable assortment including the Brownie Explosion, Tiramusu, and Key Lime Pie Cheesecake. Sampler cakes mean you don't have to choose just one flavor. And if you really want to show someone you care, you'll never go wrong with one of these as a thank you or a gift. Order here.
Carmine's Restaurant Marinara Sauce
Though Carmine's originally opened on Manhattan's Upper West Side, this southern Italian restaurant's Times Square location has become synonymous with Broadway. Before the shutdown, the first part of "dinner and a show" for tourists and locals alike often meant coming to Carmine's for the delicious and enormous family-style portions of Italian-American classics. After everything changed due to the pandemic, Carmine's started bottling their sauce to make it available across the country. So if you can't get to midtown, order a jar, find a Broadway show to stream, and do something you can't do on the Great White Way – enjoy a meal while watching the show! Order your sauce here.
Desi Galli Meal Kits
With two locations (on in the the East Village and one in Murray Hill, affectionately known as "Curry Hill" for its concentrated number of Indian restaurants and shops) Desi Galli's tiny take-out joints specialize in Indian street food, especially Chef PriaVanda Chouhan's Desipoutine. A culinary expression of her Indian-Canadian roots, this decadent chaat (snack) of french fries topped with tikka sauce and shredded paneer was quickly adopted by New Yorkers as a favorite. When the pandemic hit, Chouhan (who credits Rachael for her love of cooking) quickly adapted her small business to include groceries and a wider delivery area, eventually expanding into creating Indian meal kits to ship nationwide with the goal of not just reaching more people with her food but to also demystify many's fear of preparing Indian meals. Try the bhel puri kit – it could not have been easier to prepare, nor more satisfyingly delicious. Order meal kits here and use the special code for Rachael Ray In Season readers – RRTEN – at checkout to save $10 off your first purchase.
Titan Foods Groceries and Baked Goods
Located in the Greek neighborhood of Astoria in Queens, Titan Foods is the largest Greek grocery and food shop in North America. From avgolemono to taramousalata, olive oil, pastries, and more (I'm pretty sure these guys didn't run out of feta during the TikTok pasta frenzy!) Packaged goods are available for nationwide delivery along with some selections from their own bakery. Click here to shop.
Pastosa Ravioli Meal Boxes
Originally opened in 1966, Pastosa Ravioli settled into its current Bensonhurst, Brooklyn location in the 1970s and over the years has expanded to 11 locations across the New York/New Jersey area. A Brooklyn institution, their fresh deli case filled with stuffed hot peppers, Roman artichokes, and prosciutto bread and could make you faint from the beauty held within. (Seriously – been there!) Their own line of pasta, sauces, and olive oils with their iconic packaging have been pantry staples for locals and now with nationwide shipping can be for everyone else as well. Choose from pre-set boxes or curate your own from a selection of cured meats, cheeses, sauces, and pastas. Order here.
Xi'an Famous Food Meal Kits
Founded by a Chinese immigrant and now owned by his son Jason Wang, Xi'an Famous Foods started as a tiny mall stall in Flushing, Queens (aka "Queens Chinatown," the district so vibrant it's surpassed Manhattan's storied neighborhood as the first place people think about when hearing the word Chinatown. Quickly expanding to small shops across the boroughs, these authentic hand-pulled noodles helped change New Yorkers perception of Chinese food as they lined up and waited for their spicy and belly-warming dishes. Since the pandemic, they've been offering meal kits where you can hand pull your own noodles and recreate their now classic dishes at home. Order yours here.
Zabar's Gift Baskets
Their slogan says it all, "New York is Zabar's...Zabar's is New York." This Upper West Side appetizing store–an emporium of bagels, lox, and black and white cookies – is the OG cross-country shipper of Gotham's beloved foods. Mentioned in NYC-centric TV shows from Will and Grace to The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel to prove just how New York they are, Zabar's, still a family-run business, has been feeding New Yorkers for more than 80 years. Their abundant mail-order has so much it could be hard to choose what to order, but make it easy on yourself with a kit like their Morning Basics Kit that includes bagels, cream cheese, lox, rugelach and coffee, the New York Sandwich Kit (sourdough rye, corned beef, pastrami, salami, and mustard), or the Zabar's is New York Gift Box (nova, bagels, rye, deli meats, amaretti cookies, black and white cookies and more). Kosher boxes are plentiful as well. Check it all out here.
Teitel Brothers Groceries
Founded in 1915 by two Jewish-Austrian immigrant brothers who settled in the Bronx's Little Italy where they learned Italian before English, Teitel Brothers went on to become an integral importer of Italian products for not only the local community but grocery stores and restaurants across the tri-state area. You know those trendy Italian restaurants everyone was talking about in the Before Times? These guys most likely supplied them with pasta and whatever else they needed. This tiny store is a wonderland jam-packed with imported tomatoes, cured meats, cheeses, pasta, and olive oils with unbeatable prices. You can order most of it here.
Milk Bar Baked Goods
A relative newcomer to the NYC scene, Christina Tosi's Milk Bar desserts became instant Manhattan classics. Customers would line up in front of the original East Village shop for Cereal Milk soft serve, Compost Cookies, and the famed Milk Bar Pie. These crazy confections are flash-frozen and securely packed so they arrive fresh and intact (possibly even more so than if you dragged them on a crowded subway!). You can get them here.
Sylvia's Restaurant Mixes, Sauces and Spices
Since 1962 Sylvia Woods, the "Queen of Soul Food" has fed everyone from Nelson Mandela to Vice President Kamala Harris at Sylvia's Restaurant, her famed Harlem eatery. A meeting and eating spot for locals and tourists alike, former President Bill Clinton, who had an office nearby one said, “When people came to see me from all over America and the world and wanted to know what Harlem was like, I sent them to Sylvia’s.” With her packaged goods line, Sylvia's can now be sent to you. Order here.
Katz's Delicatessen Meal Boxes
Founded in 1888 and located in the same Lower East Side space since 1917, Katz's Delicatessen has been in the mail-order business since WWII; famous for their catchy slogan "send a salami to your boy in the army" (If you say it in an old-school New York accent, sah-laa-mee and ahh-mee rhyme.) Katz's is known for their delicious sky-high corned beef and pastrami sandwiches (best served with a Dr. Brown's Cel-Ray soda or NYC's classic concoction, the egg cream), their dazzling neon sign, a classic wall of celebrity headshots, and yes, that scene from When Harry Met Sally. They're one of the last remaining old-school Jewish delis that used to be so prevalent in New York, one of the reasons this venerable institution is beloved by all New Yorkers. Now with nationwide shipping, you can send some salami, pastrami or even hugs and knishes (ok well, just that second part) to anyone. Check it out here.
Brooklyn Chop House Frozen Dumplings
Asian-inspired steakhouse located in Manhattan's Financial District made its mark not only with the delicious and eclectic menu but by combining two things New Yorkers love most (they put the deli sandwich inside the dumplings!) With flavors like pastrami, bacon cheeseburger, and lamb gyro, these crave-worthy pockets (we loved 'em!) inspired The Brooklyn Dumpling Shop, a brand new automat-style restaurant in the East Village. Frozen dumplings are scheduled to hit Wal-Mart Summer 2021, but in the meantime, you can order them here.
Monte's Trattoria Cookbook and Instagram Live Cook-a-Longs
Monte's Trattoria is the real deal; a classic downtown Italian red sauce joint with an old school neon sign and an inherent geniality that belies the crisp white tablecloths and black jacketed waiters. Though you can't have their veal saltimbocca, chicken marsala, or linguine alle vongole shipped to you, you can sample the dishes with The Chef of Greenwich Village, a cookbook written by chef Pietro Mosconi's daughter Joanne that includes recipes from the famed trattoria. Better yet, you can welcome the father-daughter team into your own home with their weekly Instagram cooking tutorial, "Coast to Coast Kitchen," every Saturday (check Joanne's Instagram for details), where they prepare dishes from the book. The passion for food and loving rapport between the two captures the warmth of the famed restaurant. Also, cooking with this team might just take away your fear of making stuffed artichokes – it did for us.
Feltman's Hot Dogs
Brooklyn's Coney Island is the birthplace of the hot dog as we know it today. Invented by pushcart vendor Charles Feltman when he stuck a sausage on a roll so customers wouldn't need utensils, he went on to ditch the cart and sell 40,000 per day at his epic seaside restaurant. Feltman's Ocean Pavillion contained a roller coaster, carousel, ballroom an outdoor movie theater, and even employed future hot dog mogul Nathan Handwerker of the famed Nathan's Famous. Though the Coney Island destination eatery went of business in the 1950s, Brooklyn brothers Joe and Michael Quinn obtained the Feltman's frankfurter recipe from a family friend associated with the old restaurant and recently revived the brand. Look for them at Whole Foods, Target, and at Feltman's of Coney Island website.
Murray's Cheese Boxes
Murray's is synonymous with cheese. Starting as a small cheese shop in Manhattan's Greenwich Village, Murray's now has locations across the city – and the country. Their original location on Bleeker Street is the place to go to build your cheeseboard, find some snacks, or pick up dinner. Their knowledgeable cheesemongers are happy to discuss all your cheese needs (and illustrate their point with samples!). The downtown cheese school has been closed since the pandemic but with classes now online anyone can participate. Trust us, getting a box of cheese in the mail and having an expert lead you through innovative pairings is seriously some of the most pleasure you'll have at home. If the online school isn't for you, can still order everything you'd need for the ultimate cheeseboard from them online, either a la carte, with a curated sampler, or with a Cheese of the Month Club.
Goldbelly's Regional New York Selections
Though you won't be ordering directly from the restaurants, Goldbelly's regional New York selections make it possible to indulge in even more local New York City foods unable to accommodate nationwide shipping on their own. Check out local classics such as DiFara Pizza, Ess-A-Bagel, Gramercy Tavern, Jin Fong, Momufuku, Nom Wah, Raouls, Veselka, Yonah Schimmel Knish Bakery and more here.