Graduate and Postdoc Student Dining FAQ

Are the meals really all-you-care-to-eat?

Yes! The meal plan program features unlimited servings for all meals eaten in the dining halls. Please take only what you can reasonably eat at each meal. Tupperware, Ziploc bags and all other to-go containers are not allowed in the dining halls. The food you select is to be consumed on the premises and not removed from the dining hall. Please be considerate of your fellow diners waiting in line behind you and limit yourself to a reasonably sized portions; you can go back for more food.* Plates, trays, glassware and dishware are not to be removed from any of the dining room areas. R&DE Stanford Dining reserves the right to inspect any packages, coats, bags, purses, etc., brought into the dining areas. Students apprehended for theft of food or property, allowing another person to use their meal card, or any other attempt to defraud can be subject to Stanford University’s judicial system.

*R&DE Stanford Dining reserves the right to limit the number of servings at special event meals (e.g. Lunar New Year, Ethiopian special dinner).

Do all the dining halls serve the same food?

All dining halls serve a similar core menu and augment that with their own specialties. Wilbur for instance, serves Vietnamese pho noodle soup and Thai curries at their Star Ginger station. Stern offers burritos, Latin bowls and other Latin/Mexican specialties such as roasted achiote chicken with chipotle salsa. Florence Moore offers a popular Sunday night Indian menu with delicacies such as chicken tikka masala, naan bread, mango lassi, dal lentils and vindaloo curry. Diners flock to Ricker for their Death by Chocolate cake Tuesdays at lunch and Thursdays at dinner. Ricker also serves popular honey butter biscuits Thursdays at dinner. Arrillaga Family Dining Commons has Performance Dining foods, such as foods with anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. Try all eight of our dining halls! For a dining hall map and hours, visit .

I stockpiled many blocks of lunches and dinners before the price increase. Will I be charged the new, higher price when my card is swiped?

Grad meals don’t expire, though if your meal card is inactive for one academic year, your account will be closed and your meals forfeited—just like a frequent flier account. Our system is set up so that when your card is swiped, the older priced meals get used first. These meals are still usable.

Can you explain the new block plan?

Enjoy significant savings when you purchase the blocks with the most number of meals. For example, if you purchase a block of five breakfasts, the cost is $31.25, which comes out to $6.25 per breakfast. However, if you purchase a block of 25 breakfasts, the cost is $112.50, which breaks down to $4.50 per breakfast. Since meals don’t expire, take advantage of the volume discount!

Are there any locations open after regular meal hours?

Arrillaga Family Dining Commons offers continuous service on weekdays, which means there is food served between breakfast and lunch and lunch and dinner. In addition, R&DE Stanford Dining has Arrillaga Nights at Arrillaga and Late Night @Lakeside (which also has MSG-free pho noodle soup!) that offer after-hours dining including pizza, burgers, wraps and smoothies from 9 pm to 2 am and take Meal Plan Dollars and Cardinal Dollars. These can also be used at R&DE Stanford Hospitality & Auxiliaries' cafés including The Axe and Palm (for all kinds of burgers, including veggie or buffalo), which is open until 2am! For more information regarding R&DE Stanford Dining hours of operation and locations please visit the hours and locations page.

What about dietary restrictions?

All dining halls offer vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, lactose-free and halal options. For celiacs, Arrillaga Family Dining Commons offers a locked microkitchen. Email for access to the microkitchen. Ricker Dining is the first on-campus dining facility in the country to designate itself a peanut-sensitive environment. Ricker also accommodates other nut allergies.

Halal meat is available at every dining hall’s grill station during lunch and dinner and at least one daily halal dish is available for dinner at every dining hall. For more information on our halal options, visit

In partnership with students, Hillel and Residential Education, there are kosher options at three dinners per week (Monday-Wednesday) to students who have signed up in advance for the kosher program. The meals are cooked at Hillel and served at Florence Moore. Friday meals are served at Hillel for Shabbat dinner. To sign up for the kosher program and for more information on our kosher options, visit .

Can my children eat in the dining halls?

Yes, we welcome grad families! Children 6 and under are free. Children 7 to 12 are half price. Children 13 and up are full price.

Why would I need Cardinal Dollars if I already bought blocks of meals?

Meal blocks are only for the dining halls. Cardinal Dollars can be used for Late Night @Lakeside and Arrillaga Nights at Arrillaga. In addition, Cardinal Dollars can be used to purchase meals at any R&DE Stanford Hospitality & Auxiliaries retail café, including The Market at Munger. This means that you can use it at Subway, Panda Express, Starbucks or Fraiche at Tresidder Union; Alumni Café (which is open until 7 pm on weekdays, another option for eating in the afternoon besides  Arrillaga Family Dining Commons’ continuous service); Med Café over by the medical school or Russo and the Law School Café by the law school. A 10% bonus is added at the time of purchase. Cardinal Dollars Cardinal Dollars carry over from quarter to quarter, and from year to year. They do not have an expiration date.

What is the alcohol policy in the dining halls?

Alcoholic beverages are prohibited from being possessed or consumed in R&DE Stanford dining halls, outside seating and patio areas. R&DE staff can deny admission, access, or meal service to anyone who is deemed to be overly intoxicated by the Dining management staff.

Is it generally possible to host political or religious events in the R&DE Stanford Dining Hall?

R&DE Stanford Dining does not take political nor religious positions and does not co-sponsor nor advertise these types of events.

Can I post a flier/poster, eblast, etc. with the R&DE Stanford Dining name or logo on it?

We do not allow fliers, posters, etc. to be posted or distributed with the R&DE Stanford Dining name, logo or use of the name of any Dining Hall without the prior written consent by the Executive Director of R&DE Stanford Dining. Any fliers, posters, marketing materials, etc. that are found to contain this information will be removed without prior notice.

Can students or student groups post information on the student community boards?

We encourage students or student groups to post comments, fliers, photos, etc. on the bulletin boards. But please behave. We may monitor and remove inappropriate, offensive or any other postings.