Every visitor to New York City should see the Mets and Yankees in person. And even if you don’t yet understand the beauty of baseball itself, Citi Field and Yankee Stadium offer plenty to please anyone who appreciates another great American pastime: eating. Below, we’ve rounded up nine options from each park for a full game’s worth of masticatory matchups. Who wins? Both teams, naturally. We’re the Official Guide to New York City, and love our baseball teams equally. In this case, there are ties in baseball.
Carnitas (El Verano Taqueria), Section 139
Corona, Queens, has great Mexican food, and El Verano uses tortillas from nearby Tortilleria Nixtamal. The slow-cooked pork in the carnitas nachos is covered with grated cotija cheese, sliced radish and fresh cilantro. Those not in the market for meat should check out this stand’s vegetable pozole tacos and elote corn. —nycgo.com staff
Bao Buns, Toyota Terrace
These are a good gateway nosh for those seeking nontraditional stadium food. They’re handheld like a hot dog, but a bit more adventurous. Out of the four buns on the menu, don’t skip the new addition for 2018: adobo chicken. It’s made with Filipino-style pulled chicken, garlic aioli and crispy pork cracklins for a satisfying crunch. –Gillian Osswald
French Fries (Box Frites), Section 140
Box Frites offers a pleasing variety of french-fried products for anyone who counts him or herself among Team Tuber. We had the standard salted version, and they also serve varieties like sweet potato and parmesan-garlic. You get one dipping sauce with your fry order, and can add more if you’re willing to pay.
Garlic Fries (Frank’s Red Hot Terrace), Sections 108, 206, 331 and the Triple Play Grill.
Garlic fries have spread to ballparks far and wide, and we’re in favor of that development. The ones at Yankee Stadium are doused in garlic butter, smell incredible and are crisped to perfection. You will not be able to stop eating them. (At least we couldn’t. We haven’t met you. Maybe you have excellent self-control.) —GO
Flat-Top Hot Dog (Shake Shack), Section 140
Citi Field offers many commendable takes on this ballpark staple. We’re singling out Shake Shack because the place has been a fan favorite since day one. They've got plenty of other options, of course, including the reliable Shack Burger. —nycgo.com staff
Hot Dog (Hebrew National), Great Hall at Gate 6 and Sections 107, 129, 202, 214B, 236, 312, 329
The classic ballpark treat should be enjoyed in classic New York style, with deli mustard and steamed onions or sauerkraut. We employed all three on our frank for full effect (though we won’t judge if you add ketchup or relish). It was plump, had plenty of juice and possessed a big beefy kick, delivering on all the measurables. —Andrew Rosenberg
Lil’ Chicken & Waffles (Lil’ Sweet Chick), Jim Beam Highball Club – Promenade Level
A spin-off of Southern comfort-food spot Sweet Chick, Lil’ Sweet Chick offers a handful of options: the Nashville Hot sandwich, OG Fried Chicken sandwich and the standout Lil’ Chicken & Waffles. Served with honey butter and maple syrup, the chicken is seasoned and crisped to perfection. —Christina Parrella
Pulled Pork Sandwich (Mighty Quinn’s), Sections 133, 214, 320A
Barbecue is just about as American as baseball, so a pulled pork sandwich at the game just makes sense. While these smoked-meat purveyors are new to the stadium this year, they don’t disappoint with a generous serving of melt-in-your-mouth pork and an ideal sauce-to-meat ratio. —GO
Chicken Parmesan Sandwich (Nicoletta), Field Level Fan Fest Area, Section 141
Chef Michael White brings everything you love about his down-home Italian comfort food to Citi Field. His version of this classic sandwich is built around a breaded and fried chicken cutlet; topped with marinara sauce, basil and a dollop of stracciatella cheese; and served on crusty toasted sesame seed bread. He also nails the meat-to-sauce ratio. —CP
Big Island Crispy Chicken Sandwich (King’s Hawaiian), Sections 115 and 334
Anytime you add fried pickles to a food item, you’ll get our attention. This sandwich, constructed on a soft, sweet bun, places lightly battered dill chips atop fried chicken that’s been bathed in “Lava sauce.” Consider it a curveball, but with a little heat. (Note: the tasty King’s Hawaiian pulled pork nachos deserve intense scouting as well.) —AR
Filet Mignon Sandwich (Pat LaFrieda), Field Level, Section 139 and Upper Level 415
These local meat suppliers have been among New York’s go-to beef sources since 1922. Their filet mignon steak sandwich lives up to the hype. The middle-of-the-order sandwich features chunks of prime filet topped with caramelized onions and melted Monterey Jack cheese on an artisan baked roll. It’s real steak, and a hearty portion—you may need to call in some relief to finish it.
Steak Sandwich (Lobel’s), Sections 134 & 321
These esteemed butchers always seem to find themselves among the top-ranked Yankee Stadium food. We taste no reason to doubt why. The hand-carved roast beef, piled au jus on a soft bun, yielded easily; the medium-rare slices let you know care had been taken in the cooking and slicing. It’s an unfussy, flavor-packed sandwich, worthy of anchoring any lineup. —AR
Rice Balls (Arancini Brothers), Field Level by Shea Bridge and Promenade Club
Arancini Bros., who usually do business on the Lower East Side, bring their small balls of risotto to Citi Field. They’re stuffed with savory meat or cheese (or both), and are fried till crispy on the outside. Options include a ragu ball with meat sauce, a cheese blend and a version stuffed with broccoli rabe and béchamel sauce. —CP
Nachos (Tostitos Build Your Own Nacho Helmet), Sections 233A, 314, 327 and Bleachers
In defiance of trusted scouting advice, you’re getting this as much for the flash as for the product. But the product is no slouch: crisp chips, fresh guacamole and pico de gallo—lots of it. You can adjust to order, with options like jalapeños, cheese and sour cream. We went for it all, with no regrets (other than not coming anywhere close to finishing). —AR
Burger (Josh Capon’s Bash Burger), Field Level Section 135
Launched by Lure Fishbar’s John McDonald and chef Josh Capon, the Bash Burger takes Capon’s juicy award-winning Burger & Barrel patty up a notch by adding caramelized onion and bacon jam, shaved pickles, American cheese and a secret sauce (we think the secret may be thousand-island dressing). Several Citi Field employees named the burger as their favorite concession. —CP
Yankee Dingers (Frank’s Red Hot Terrace), behind left-center field
Named after baseball slang for a home run, these slider-like burgers won’t be left hanging over the plate for long. You get a trio for $12, each topped with pickle, cheese, shaved onion and mustard and sandwiched in a slightly squishy potato bun; think of them as a delicious cross between White Castle and Shake Shack. —AR
Cookie Dough (DŌ), Promenade Club and Section 105
Cookie dough is almost as popular as its cooked counterpart, but the real stuff presents some food-safety issues. DŌ’s version allows you to enjoy the sweet taste, cool temperature and immediate gratification of its raw-egged cousin, without any of the peril. Our tasting panel thought it tasted just as good. —nycgo.com staff
Oreo Churros, Concourse Village
Sure, Yankee Stadium has ice cream, egg creams and some rather elaborate “Grand Slam” milkshakes, but why not go unconventional with your closer? This mashup is not revolutionary, but it’s oddly compelling and pays homage to two very New York items: the Oreo was created at the old Nabisco factory (the current Chelsea Market), and the sugar-dusted churro is a subway platform staple. —AR
Alpine Brat (Baked Cheese Haus), Promenade Food Court
The Alpine Brat sandwich from the Wisconsin dairy specialists at Baked Cheese Haus comes slathered in melted raclette that peels off a spit like some kind of creamy cheese shawarma. Don’t worry; you’ll burn off those calories root, root, rooting for the home team. —nycgo.com staff
Tater Kegs, Sections 107 & 331 and Masterpass Batter’s Eye Deck
Just as the Yanks hope to reach the World Series every year, all food-lovin’ spectators must have goals. Here’s ours: leaving enough room to try this ballpark rookie, a skewer of giant tots doused with sour cream and cheddar and then sent to the showers for a sprinkling of bacon bits and scallions. That’s enough to turn any Bronx cheer into a standing O. –AR
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