We all the know the feeling: it’s lunchtime, you need to replenish the brainpower that Van Pelt robbed from you and you’re tired of eating at Sweetgreen, Honeygrow, Metro or Greek Lady once again. You’re looking for a place that checks the Penn student boxes: a casual location with quality food that’s under or around ten dollars and comes quickly. This assembly line pizzeria, with both prepared and make–your–own pizzas and salads, offers variety and novelty alongside low effort decision making. While not necessarily convenient to Penn’s campus, Snap Custom Pizza and Salads makes a great alternative lunch or dinner–time spot. Better yet, the $7.49 pizzas and $6.99 salads feel like a treat without bitterly reminding you of why you still need a summer job.
The cozy, newly–opened Center City location welcomes you with stools, long tables and cafeteria–style seating. The white and gray painted walls, gunmetal grey accents and wooden tables give the restaurant an artisanal and organic but modern and industrial aesthetic. They serve the personal pizzas, Instagram–ready on a wooden palette resembling a pizza brick.
While there’s not enough seating for a large party, versatility makes Snap Custom Pizza an attractive choice. You could bring friends, come on casual date or pop in while running errands and sit alone at the bar. Gluten–free pizza lovers will appreciate the accommodating crust option (an added $1) and non–pizzas eaters will enjoy the variety of salad choices. If you’re dining with children, the $3.99 kids’ pizzas and soda fountain with fun flavors will surely entertain them.
Perhaps relevant for Penn students, Snap Custom Pizza is BYOB and provides wine glasses. Be sure to stop in on Wednesdays after 5p.m. for a complimentary glass of wine with your pizza. Most importantly, they’re open until 3a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights. Did I mention they’re located right next door to Rumor? Lamentably, they’re not open late on Thursdays, but in the rare occasion you’re leaving Rumor on a Friday or Saturday night or bar hopping in the area, this is a superior spot for drunk eats.
On our visit to Snap Custom Pizza, we discovered an unexpectedly great brunch option. Sampling The Good Egg pizza—with sweet Italian sausage, egg whites, mozzarella, provolone, San Marzano tomatoes and red pepper chili oil—proves that breakfast can taste good in a pizza. The sausage dominates this pizza, best described as breakfast with a kick, but if you’re a meat and spice lover you’ll enjoy it.
Even more delicious, the Kennett Square pizza offers a classic combination of perfectly assembled ingredients: herb butter, roasted local mushrooms, baby arugula, shredded mozzarella, crumbled goat cheese and truffle oil. This dependable winner has the savory taste bud performance of a sit down meal, alongside the convenience of a personal pizza. What makes these upscale pizzas unique is that they come with flavorful, not too thin, crunchy crust that’s not too doughy, and won’t leave you with a food baby.
If you venture down the custom route with your pizza, the toppings are so good that even the average non–culinary person could be trusted to create something delicious. With ingredients like veal meatballs, cilantro lime crema and whole milk ricotta, your one of a kind creation is sure to hit the spot. On the side, we enjoyed the Thai Crunch salad—a blend of peanuts, spicy vinaigrette and vegetables—but you wouldn’t come all the way down here
Finally, while the $4.99 Nutella dessert pizza sounds and looks tempting, skip it. We couldn’t even taste the drizzled Nutella on the overly–dry crust, and the watery whipped cream felt underwhelming. Somehow, the cold banana slices—the most healthy and theoretically least appealing part of the dish—were the only part worth picking at. All in all, the savory pizzas certainly steal the spotlight here, and
the BYO and late night option make it an even more attractive choice.
TL;DR: Great pizzas for great prices; versatile, convenient lunch spot
Don't Miss: The Kennett Square pizza
Skip: The Nutella dessert pizza
When to go: Lunchtime, on Wednesday nights for a free glass of wine with your pizza, for drunk eats until 3a.m. on Friday and Saturday
Location: 1504 Sansom Street, next to Rumor
Price Range: $