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Dining Information

While Residential Life does not manage dining, many students look to our department for information about dining. Please review the below information for dining cost, details, hours, and locations. You can also check out Bon Appetit’s website and/or MacNav for more information. For specific Dining concerns not addressed below please connect with Bon Appetit General Manager Amy Tomes at [email protected]

Macalester Dining Information for 2023-2024

  • General


    Fall semester meal plans begins on August 26, 2024 and ends on December 18, 2024

    Spring semester meal plans begin on January 21, 2025 and end on May 12, 2025.


    Dining charge per year is $7,456.00 for plans A-C. The Commuter Plan charge per semester is $975.


    Declining balance dollars work similar to a bank checking account with some significant differences highlighted below. Every time you make a food or meal purchase, the total cost of your purchase is subtracted from the dollar balance in your account.


  • Plan Details Per Semester

    To determine which meal plan is best suited for you, consider your lifestyle preferences. Do you enjoy eating more traditional meals a few times a day or prefer smaller meals or snacks throughout the day? Are you a big breakfast eater or do you find yourself snacking late at night? Will you be off campus for specific times when you would want to take food with you?

    Our meal plans are designed with varied proportions of all-you-care-to-eat meals and flex  dollars. The block portion of each meal plan represents the number of all-you-care-to-eat meals available for use per semester at Cafe Mac. Only the owner of the plan can use these meals. Students have the flexibility of using a different number of meals each week. The Flex dollars portion of the meal plan is for use at any of the dining locations on campus.


    Meal swipes can be used to access Cafe Mac and at each of the other foodservice locations.

    Dining Plan A – 19 meals per week, 100 flex points, 5 guest meals

    Dining Plan B –  14 meals per week, 225 flex points, 5 guest meals,

    Dining Plan C –  10 meals per week, 300 flex points, 5 guest meals

    A dining plan is not required for residents in the Language Houses, Eco House, Grand Cambridge Apartments, Summit House, Veggie Co-op and Dietary Affirming Intentional Community.

    New first-year students are assigned to Dining Plan A for fall semester.  At the beginning of spring semester, all students may change their dining plan to A, B, or C.

    • Meal counts reset early Sunday morning before breakfast.
    • Unused meal counts each week are lost.
    • Additional flex dollars cannot be purchased.
    • Flex dollars must be used by the end of the semester. They do not carry over to the next semester or into January.
    • Dining Plan A, B and C includes 5 Guest meals each semester that can be used at all times and all locations. Tell the checker you want to use a guest meal to avoid a second weekly meal taken by mistake. The Commuter dining plan does not have guest meals.
    • Double Swipes: Students may use two meals during one period at two different Satellite locations. The exception is that Cafe Mac can not be used for the second swipe during the same meal period. Two swipes in the same location are not permitted except for the use of a guest meal. The Commuter dining plan does not have guest meals.
    • Want to take your meal from Café Mac outside/another location on campus? Ozzi is your answer and can fit the equivalent of (2) meals. Re-entry to the café is not an option during the same meal period.
    • Each student will receive (1) Ozzi container at the beginning of the semester. Please go to the grill to redeem your token OR first container, you will swipe your ID card for this one time transaction.
    • We politely ask that no Café Mac plates/mugs/cups/silverware leave Café Mac.

  • Summer Dining Hours and Options

    Residents are required to pay the of $20 per day in addition to the summer meal plan. You must choose from the following block plans

    50 meals for $621

    100 meals for $1,244

    150 meals for $1,868

    If your meal plan is going to be sponsored by a department, faculty member, or staff member, please reach out to Student Accounts and let them know this information.

    Dining will be available from Breakfast, May 28th – Dinner, July 26th. Please note, Cafe Mac may be closed on Memorial day (May 27th), Juneteenth (June 19th) and 4th of July (July 4th) or have limited hours during these days. Plan accordingly.

    For most of the summer, hours are:

    Breakfast: 8:30am-9:30am
    Lunch: 11:30am-12:30pm
    Dinner: 5:30pm-6:30pm

  • Dining Locations

    Café Mac – Campus Center

    Accepts: Meal swipe, Flex points, Mac Money, Credit Card. Mac Money/Credit card prices:

    This document supplements the terms and conditions of participation in the college meal services program as described in your Housing and Dining Contract and describes current dining options and locations. Those options and locations are subject to change as the College needs dictate.

    Café Mac


    Breakfast 7:30-9:00 a.m.

    Lunch 11:00 a.m.-1:30 p.m.

    Dinner 5:00 p.m. -8:00 p.m

    Saturday and Sunday:

    Brunch 10:00 am – 1:30 pm

    Dinner 5:00-7:00 pm

    Grille-Campus Center:

    Accepts: Meal Swipe, Flex points, Mac Money, Credit Card

    Monday – Friday: 7:30 am – 10:00 pm

    Saturday & Sunday: 10:00 am -10:00 pm

    Meal Swipe options at the Grille:


    • Breakfast:  Monday – Friday: 7:30 am – 10:30 am
      • An item from the bakery display, a bagel, oatmeal or a yogurt w/beverage & piece of fruit
    • Dinner: Monday – Friday: 8:00 pm-10:00 pm
      • Limited Cafe Selections
    • Bag Lunch: Monday – Sunday: 7:30 am – 10:00 pm
      • Choice of sandwich (ham, turkey or peanut butter & jelly) w/chips and a beverage; Beverages – Minute Maid juice, Small Coffee, Tea or Coke product

    Nessie’s Mediterranean-Lower Level of Campus Center:

    Accepts: Meal Swipe, Flex points, Mac Money, Credit Card. Credit card/Mac money

    Monday – Friday: 11:00 am – 2:00 pm

    Meal Swipe Options

    • Lunch – Halal menu featuring flavors of Morocco, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt and surrounding Middle Eastern cultures. Build your own bowl and beverage.
    • Beverages –Minute Maid juice or Coke products

    2nd Floor Grill at Campus Center


    Bread + Pickles in the Leonard Center Athletic Building:

    Monday – Friday: 11:00 am – 2:00 pm

    Meal Swipe Option

    • Build your own sandwich OR wrap

    Coffee Cart in Janet Wallace Atrium:

    Monday – Friday:  8:00 am to 1:00 pm

    Meal Swipe Options

    • Specialty coffee drinks + grab and go items

  • Meal Plan Change Instructions


    The default dining plan is A. Returning students may change their Fall Semester meal plan from Plan A to B, or C anytime after Housing Selection in the spring through Validation Day (aka Last Day to Add/Drop a Class) in fall semester is resolved – per the Academic Calendar. Plans A, B, and C all cost $3,728 per semester; and $7,456 per academic year.

    New first-year students are assigned to Plan A for fall semester.  They may change to Plan B or C, spring semester.

    All students may make meal plan changes until Validation Day (aka Last Day to Add/Drop a Class) is resolved – per the Academic Calendar (this includes refunds).


    1. Log into 1600grand
    2. Locate the Student Life tab, select Housing and Dining Self-Service.
    3. At Housing and Dining Self Service, select Dining from the menu square at the top of the page.


    If approved, it will be on a prorated basis beginning the day the resident officially checks out of their room.

  • Meal Plan Additions (off-campus students)

    A dining plan is not required for students living off-campus or residents in the Language Houses, Eco House, Grand Cambridge Apartments, Summit House, Veggie Co-op and Dietary Affirming Intentional Community as these spaces are considered “off-board” areas.

    A Commuter Plan is available for purchase for students living in off-board residence halls and students living off-campus.

    • The Commuter Plan charge per Semester is $975.
    • Plans A-C are $7,456.00 per year.

    If you would like to purchase a meal plan, and do not have the option on your 1600grand housing and dining webpage, please reach out to [email protected] to get a meal plan added to your account.