Students at the Spencer Grill


Locally sourced. Globally inspired.

In the Grinnell dining hall, you’ll discover as much depth and variety on the menu as in the intellectual conversations around our tables. We’re proud to have a national-award-winning dining selection that accommodates a wide variety of dietary needs, keeps our community satisfied, and takes inspiration from culinary practices all over the world. Not to mention, more than 90 percent of the dishes we serve are made entirely from scratch. Stop in and see for yourself why Grinnell dining redefines college cuisine.

Current Students on What It’s Like to Eat in the D-Hall

Vegetables being tossed in a skillet over a flame on a stove

New Culture, New Food, Lots of Vegetarian-Friendly Options

To meet the needs of Grinnell’s globally diverse student body, the D-Hall offers many different food stations, including halal and vegan. The chefs enjoy trying new recipes that students share with them in order to bring a taste of home to the students’ second home in Grinnell.

Saketan Anand ’21, an economics and Spanish major from Mumbai, India, says he was blown away by the variety of food options available in D-Hall when he arrived on campus.

row of spices in small, clear glass jars

Use the Spice Rack

Grinnellians are experts at adapting to new situations and finding creative solutions. Fitsum “Fit” Getahun ’21, a biology and history double major from Addis Ababa, anticipated many differences between Ethiopian cuisine and the food served in Grinnell’s Marketplace Dining Hall but has since found the secret to balancing flavor and practicality — the spice rack.

Grinnell welcomes students from diverse food cultures. The D-Hall’s array of food stations offers many options, including ways for students to customize their meals.

Marnie's lunch a spinach salad, a turnover, a green apple, and a dessert bar

What's It Like to Eat in Grinnell’s Dining Hall?

I had a lot of questions about the Grinnell College experience before I arrived on campus for New Student Orientation, and some of the most pressing involved food. What if I didn’t like anything in the dining hall? Would I find anyone with whom I could sit? What if it all just tastes bad in general?! Luckily, those fears were totally unfounded, and eating at Grinnell has been an easy, and sometimes even enlightening, experience.

  • A small saute pan with fresh spinach leaves and ground meat, ready to be tossed together

    Our Approach to Food

    What’s on your plate?

    With all the variables to consider when deciding where to go to college, you already have plenty on your metaphorical plate.

    So what about the food that literally will be on your plate?

    We chatted with Scott Turley, executive chef at Grinnell College, to learn about his approach to food and the options open to students.

  • Student studies with mug on cabinet next to her

    Places to Eat on Campus

    Where to go to get the grub you want.

    Our Marketplace Dining Hall and the Spencer Grill are both located in the Joe Rosenfield ’25 Center. The award-winning Marketplace offers a diverse menu and a sit-down-style eating area for students, other campus denizens, and guests. The Spencer Grill is your go-to for made-to-order items, as well as a variety of beverages, fresh bakery items, and other snacks. Our talented culinary staff also offers full catering services for club activities and larger campus events.

  • Students heading to a brightly lit Noyce Science Center at night

    Dining Plans

    Grazers. Foodies. Early risers and late-night snackers. We’ve got something for everyone.

    Your individual meal plan options are determined by your class standing and housing status. That’s because we want to make sure you’re getting enough to eat and have access to what you need to be healthy, happy, and focused. If you’re a first-year student, you’ll start with the Full Meal Plan (Plan 1). Returning students have a few other options based on your housing facilities. If you reside in the designated co-ops, campus houses, or live off campus, you may choose any plan, or opt out.

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