The Best All-You-Can-Eat Deals For When You're Sick Of Small Plates

The best spots in NYC to stuff your face with unlimited KBBQ, sushi, meatballs and more.
Hometown hotpot interior

photo credit: Alex Staniloff

All-You-Can-Eat is a beloved tradition in this land of excess, and we brought our stomachs to the brink of total war to put this guide together. Endless plates of marinated bulgogi. Buffets with curries stretching to infinity. Spirals of sushi, rolled with more rice than seemingly possible (we may have pocketed a few to avoid a penalty). For a flat rate, these are the best spots in NYC where you can climb a mountain—and ultimately decide for yourself just where the summit is.


photo credit: Alex Staniloff



$$$$Perfect For:Big GroupsBirthdaysUnique Dining Experience
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Hometown Hotpot does double duty on this list. At this two-floor Chinatown spot, you can not only get hot pot with unlimited lamb and shrimp ($38), or bulgogi-fueled Korean BBQ ($42), but you can also combine the two for $48. Beers start at $5, and once you add in the fact that kids under 4 1/2 feet tall eat for half-price, Hometown Hotpot is a no-brainer for a celebration with a big group, or an extremely fun dinner. They have an additional ace up their sleeve for birthday parties: show up within three days of your birthday and your food is free, provided you show ID and come with at least six people.

Lakruwana on Staten Island might have the best AYCE deal of anywhere on this guide, but it’s only available on the weekends. For $20.99, this bright, lantern-filled Sri Lankan spot offers a buffet laid out with exceptional pork curry, several vegetable dishes, dal, and more. The buffet is on from 12:30-9:30pm, and if you show up at a peak meal time, there will probably be wait. Thanks to a 90-minute time limit, it shouldn’t be too long, and you can reward your patience by eating your weight in egg curry and eggplant under the watchful eye of a Buddha statue. Lakruwana is also BYOB, so bring a bottle of champagne to make your own mimosas.

$$$$Perfect For:BirthdaysBig Groups

It really is marvelous how much meat the human body can consume when it’s given a 100-minute limit. That might seem like a long time, but it goes remarkably fast when a cyclone of things like spicy bulgogi and pork short ribs are flying onto your table grill at Let's Meat. This Koreatown classic has two tiers of AYCE ($43 and $49), beer bongs, and $15 bottles of soju. It's one of our favorite Korean BBQ spots in the area, and one of the most useful places for big groups, or last-minute birthdays in the city.

photo credit: Alex Staniloff



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The AYCE deal from City Island Pizza Co. in the Bronx doesn’t involve endless piles of sliced meat, like some of the others on this list. Instead, they offer an Italian-American Sunday feast. For $25, your meal will start with a large salad, garlic bread, and bucatini with home-style Sunday gravy, and you can load up on porky sausage and giant meatballs. If you’re one of City Island’s full time residents, congratulations. If not, it’s worth the trek. Just make sure to make a reservation.

The priciest AYCE on this guide, Churrascaria Plataforma in Hell’s Kitchen has a Brazilian rodizio feast that costs around $79, though you can get the same deal at lunch for around $50. You’ll get the perfectly-grilled picanha and top sirloin of your dreams, carved tableside, for as long as you want. You’ll also get access to the salad and feijoada bars in this stadium-sized restaurant. When you’re finally ready to tap out, flip your coaster over from the green to red, signaling that you’re ready to go home and shower away the meat sweats.

Normally, AYCE sushi spots mean one thing: birthday parties for barely legal college students, with sake bombs, pitchers of beer, and people going "Woo!" And that’s just fine, if that’s what you’re looking for. If you’re not, try Akino Sushi in Elmhurst, a quieter spot that offers $26 AYCE at lunch, and $41 at dinner on weekdays (weekends are $43). They avoid some of the classic maneuvers you might find at similar spots, like serving nigiri with avocado-sized balls of rice. Instead, their sushi is simple but solid, and genuinely endless. Drink a $5 beer while checking off rolls for your sixth round of sushi.

The AYCE deal at this hot pot restaurant in Chinatown costs $45, and also involves the city’s largest broth selection. Hou Yi offers over 30 different types of broth, making it the Coca-Cola Freestyle machine of dipping meat and seafood into boiling liquid. Come with a few friends, mix and match herbal broths with tomato-based soups, and make sure at least one person gets something very spicy. When you’re ready to cool off, the deal also includes all-you-can-scoop ice cream, with 12 flavors to choose from.

Sunset Park is as close to hot pot heaven as you can find in NYC. And Chong Qing Wharf, with its blue neon lighting and two-hour, $49 per person AYCE deal, is one of our favorites. This place gets absolutely packed—so make sure to join the virtual wait list, and if you want to make the most of your time, look at the menu and know your first round order before you sit down. Snow crab legs, whole lobsters, and a giant plate of paper-thin lamb are a great way to start.

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