In 2015 we teamed up with the awesome content producers at The Urban List to bring the great people of Brisbane a list of Ultimate Cheap Eats. Eating cheap doesn’t mean eating nasty!
By now you’ve probably noticed our dedication to sourcing Brisbane’s cheapest eats is bordering on unhealthy, but there’s a good reason. Every week (following our usual bender of Beluga caviar and Kobe beef) we find our appetites whetted for splendid repasts but with barely enough loose change to hit up Maccas. Not willing to drop the palatable standards to which we’ve grown accustomed, us valiant few have braved the menus of every reputable (and non-reputable) thicket of Brisbane’s foodie wilderness to forage for sustenance that is both wallet and tooth friendly.
The struggle is real.
Fortunately, Brisbane’s jazziest restaurateurs have rewarded our tenacity and kindly dotted their menus with utterly delicious and satisfying meals that save us from burrowing into our shoe budgets.
And now for 2019 we’ve reviewed our old list, and included the must-visit locations for 2019 if you’re looking for Brisbane’s ultimate cheap eats: delicious feasting that costs less than the cab fare home:
1. Oysters for $1.50 each at Darling & Co.
Every Friday, Darling & Co. (formerly ‘Iceworks’) serves up natural oysters for $1.50 and Kilpatrick oysters for $2 each. Pair with a glass of sparkling for a classy lunch or dinner date on a budget.
2. Heya Bar’s $5 menu
Thursday’s after 1pm are $5 cheap eats days at Heya Bar. Choose from a range of tasty street food menu items. You can even book a table in advance.
3. 5-course menus for $26 at Fat Dumpling
Grab some friends together and take advantage of the group banquet at Fat Dumpling. For $26 a person, you will get a 5-course meal including a house wine or beer.
4. Mrs Luu’s $8.50 Banh Mi
Treat yourself to lunch with these delicious roasted rolls with your choice of beef, pork, chicken, or tofu fillings for just $8.50.
5. $10 Brooklyn burgers at Red Hook
These burgers aren’t just your ordinary burgers. Red Hook serves up New York-inspired burgers, meaning you get bang for your buck! Every Thursday from 4pm, $25 gets you two cheeseburgers and two fries
6. Breakfasts from $6 at Bread & Meat Co.
Huge breakfast meals from $6, lobster and fish rolls with spinach on a fresh baguette for just $10.50, and sweet potato parm fries for $6 – Bread & Meat Co. is fresh, delicious, and affordable.
7. Six Krispy Fried Buffalo Wings for $7 from Miss Kay’s
Choose from original, buffalo, or sweet BBQ wings. While you’re there, finish with a drink of a classic spider for just $5.
8. Dine on $10.90 American cheesesteaks at PJ’s Steaks
PJ’s Steaks specialize in classic Philly cheesesteaks and fries. Try the original cheesesteak with wagyu beef, your choice of cheese, fried onions on an Italian roll for just $10.90. For something more, you can get yourself a $13.90 lunch special every Wednesday. It includes an original cheesesteak, small fries, and a can of coke.
9. $15 wraps from Little Greek Taverna
Get a taste of authentic Greek cuisine with a pita wrap of chicken, lamb, pork, halloumi or grilled vegetables with tomato, onion, and tzatziki served with Greek salad or chips for just $15.
10. $2 tacos at the Tippler’s Tap
Taco Tuesday’s at Tippler’s Tap gets you a spicy beef taco complete with salsa, sour cream, cheese, and coriander for just $2. Or try the vegan tacos for $3.
11. The Fox Hotel’s $10 parmi’s
Every Tuesday from 6pm you can feast on $10 chicken parmigiana with chips & salad. Visit on Thursday’s for $4 pizzas and $5 burgers from 6-8pm.
12. $6.50 toasted bagels from Clancy’s Espresso
If you’re in a rush to get to work and need a cheap breakfast, head to Clancy’s Espresso for a $6.50 toasted bagel with your choice of spread.
13. All-you-can-eat tacos for $25 at Mucho Mexicano
From 5pm every Tuesday, arrive at Mucho Mexicano with an empty belly so you can take advantage of their all-you-can-eat taco deal for just $25. You have 2 hours to eat as many tacos as you like. Kids eat for $10.
14. $9.50 rice bowls at Miki Beautiful Sushi
Choose from Katsu curry, spicy pork, teriyaki salmon, teriyaki chicken, or crispy chicken rice bowls for just $9.50. Sushi rolls are available for between $2 and $4.
15. $1 dumplings and side dishes at Steamed
Every Tuesday and Thursday Steamed offer $1 dumplings and side dishes. For something more, get a pork bun with four dumplings for only $10.
16. Kiss the Berry $10 acai bowl
Get an original acai bowl with banana, granola, strawberries, chia seeds, and honey for $10. Perfect for a healthy on-the-go snack.
17. $13.50 lunch specials at Embassy Bar
From Monday-Thursday, get your choice of chicken schnitzel, rump, or barramundi for $13.50. All meals served with fries and garden salad.
18. $14.50 toasties at Strauss
Not your boring toastie – Strauss offers a smoked ham, cheddar, aioli and relish toastie on rye for $14.50.
19.Vege Rama’s $11 salad plate
The freshest, gourmet salad plates for $11 makes for a healthy lunchtime option on a budget.
20. Avocado on sourdough for $14 at Felix for Goodness
Try the avocado on sourdough complete with kale furikake, corn & red pepper miso salsa, kraut, and chilli oil for $14 as part of the all-day brunch menu.
21. $5 New York bagels from Melt Brothers
If you’re looking for cheap, tasty comfort food then Melt Brothers is the place to go. From a toasted New York bagel for $5 to smashed avo on toast for $5.50, make this your daily lunch stop.
22. $12 pizza’s from Johnny’s Pizzeria
All pizzas on the menu are $12, but on Friday’s they drop to $5 each! From classic Margherita to a supreme pizza, you can afford the extra $8 for a cheese & garlic calzone.
23. Ramen with the works for under $20 at Taro’s Ramen
All menu items from Taro’s Ramen are under $20 and offer rich, delicious noodles, miso’s and gyoza.
24. The Vietnamese Restaurant salt and pepper squid for $16.50
A main course of salt and pepper squid sets you back just $16.50. Other cheap eats include the crispy duck ($17.50) and the chilli and lemongrass chicken ($14.50)
25. Govindas $12.90 all-you-can-eat meals
This Indian restaurant offers some of the best curries in Brisbane along with a $12.90 ($10 for students and concession) all-you-can-eat meal that includes rice, mixed vegetable curry, lentil soup, koftas, chutney, Pappadams, fresh garden salad, and a semolina fruit pudding with custard for dessert. The meal also includes homemade ginger & mint lemonade.