It's the beginning of the school year and you're about the semester with new classes, adventures, and opportunities. The same meal from the same restaurants on campus no longer satisfies for some reason! For those of you who are tired of ordering from 'Tapingo', take a look at these exotic restaurant choices. Here are my top 5 Must-Try Underrated Tucson Restaurants! 

1. China Pasta House

This small eatery is hidden near the University of Arizona campus. A walkable distance from 'Arbol de la Vida' dorm, this is a great place to enjoy authentic Chinese dumplings. China Pasta House offers fast, affordable and hospitable service, and is definitely a place to check out for lunch with friends.

#SpoonTip: Try their stuffed buns or dumplings. 

2. India Oven

Growing up in a suburb filled with authentic Indian cuisine, I was disappointed when I was unable to find many good restaurants in Tucson. However, I was super surprised to discover this restaurant filled with savory spices and curries. Being a North Indian and Punjabi focused restaurant, their 'meat dinner thale' dish is not something to be missed. Make sure to check out their affordable lunch specials, like the $10 buffet. 

3. Island's Plate Lunch Restaurant

Poke is such an amazing, healthy dish to eat for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Island Plate Lunch stands out because they are notorious for their home cooked Hawaiian food. With seasoned sauces and various vegetables, it is no wonder poke bowls are such an addicting meal! If you aren't in the mood for raw fish, there are plenty of other options! One recommendation from a customer was the 'chicken katsu' menu option, which is breaded chicken with a curry sauce. This is one of my favorite Tucson eats for delicious poke

4. Zemam's

Before I came to Tucson, I had never tried Ethiopian food. After trying various dishes, I am so glad to have discovered this restaurant. Zemam's originated in Tucson and has been around for more than 20 years. Known for their unique feature of being served family style, you often have to use your hands when eating the dishes. Make sure to come with a couple of friends, because their most noteworthy dishes are the 'sampler plates', which are served in large portions. 

5. Pappoules

Last but not least, this Mediterranean spot will be sure to amaze you. This is a great place to stop by if you are on the go. 

Pappoules is known for its popular steak and chicken sandwiches. What makes these sandwiches so delectable is the fresh and warm pita bread. For those who choose not to eat meat, there are tons of vegetarian-friendly options. The salads are flavorful and tossed with the perfect amount of dressing.

So what are you waiting for? Get your notebook and pen out, and start making a list of new places to try! After all, college is the time to adventure past your comfort zone.