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Lakeview - BIG & little’s
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Top Rated Cheap Eateries in Chicago

 Living on sandwiches and subs is boring. Why not take a break and venture out on the roads of Chicago? You’ll  discover amazing treasure troves that dish out exotic foods without burning a hole in your pocket.

 

  1. Andersonville – Sunshine Café
Andersonville - Sunshine Café
Andersonville – Sunshine Café

Looking for authentic, yet inexpensive, Japanese food in Chicago? Sunshine Café at Andersonville should be your only choice. This homestyle Japanese restaurant serves simple yet delicious Japanese comfort food like udon soup and char-grilled mackerel. Expect to get a big bowl of broth with a generous helping of meat and vegetables. The main course is equally impressive and includes shrimp tempura, sukiyaki and a delightful sweet chicken teriyaki, all nominally priced.

 

  1. Bridgeport – Pleasant House Bakery
Bridgeport - Pleasant House Bakery
Bridgeport – Pleasant House Bakery

Tasty, succulent butter crust filled with steak, hearty chicken, or mushroom and kale – Pleasant House Bakery welcomes you with its signature dish. Extremely pocket-friendly, the steak and chicken pie dish is priced at $7.50 while the mushroom and kale one is priced at $6.50. The pies are to die for,  but on Fridays you can get fried fish alongside crisp nubs of fries and Meyer-lemon tartar sauce. Now if that’s not finger-licking good, what is?

 

  1. Chinatown – Sweet Station
Chinatown - Sweet Station
Chinatown – Sweet Station

Though the name might trick you thinking it’s a bakery, actually it’s not. It’s an authentic Hong Kong-style Chinese restaurant that serves a wide range of food choices ranging from pan-Asian to Hawaiian to Portuguese at a very pocket-friendly price. Try out their BBQ Four Things with Fried Rice at $7.95 and Hong Kong-style stir-fried beef and rice noodle at $9.25. Want something other than Chinese? Abrus herb and pork tongue, Portuguese chicken, or squid balls will not only satiate your taste buds but will also give you an adventurous feeling.

 

  1. Rogers Park – Khan BBQ
Rogers Park - Khan BBQ
Rogers Park – Khan BBQ

A dash of Indo-Pak flavour and warmth at the heart of Chicago. Juicy beef, goat and chicken marinated with a range of exotic spices and grilled in huge clay tandoors fill the place with aroma. Start with chicken boti with naan and gradually move on to seekh kabab and tandoori chicken. And if all these seems too hot, cool yourself down with raita or tangy yogurt sauce.

 

  1. Edgewater – Cookies & Carnitas
Edgewater - Cookies & Carnitas
Edgewater – Cookies & Carnitas

Affordable food for the common man – that’s what it takes to describe Cookies & Carnitas in a single sentence. You get to taste all types of fast foods like pizzas, sandwiches, salads and cookies. But their signature dish is their Proprietary Dog – a massive block of frankfurter. Beefy Cheezy is another giant sandwich with a heap of juicy braised beef brisket slathered with onion jam and oodles of cheese. The coffee bar serves java from local Sparrow Coffee Roastery along with cookies and other baked delights.

 

  1. Gold Coast – Lou Malnati’s
Gold Coast - Lou Malnati’s
Gold Coast – Lou Malnati’s

It’s only natural to get tired of regular dose of steak and pie and seek some relief into juicy pizzas. So here comes Lou Malnati’s with its signature deep-dish pizzeria. This family-owned pizzeria was opened in 1971 and the tradition is still continuing. Every Lou Malnati’s pizza is handmade using only the finest ingredients, the tomatoes are handpicked and the sausages are specially seasoned. And it’s merrier on the price front as well. A small sausage deep dish costs just about $13.65. Cool, eh?

 

  1. Humboldt Park – Grandma J’s Local Kitchen
Humboldt Park - Grandma J’s Local Kitchen
Humboldt Park – Grandma J’s Local Kitchen

Braised pork belly Bennie, $14; Duck eggs and ham, $13. Mismatched wooden furniture and curios jumbled up together may not give quite a nice impression of a new-age eatery, but if you brave that and go inside, you’d be sweetly surprised to find the friendliest restaurant in the world. Have a go at their braised pork belly Bennie with bacon and fried chicken.  And for every order you get  complimentary cheesecake. Now that’s really sweet – isn’t it?

 

  1. Irving Park – D’Candela
Irving Park - D’Candela
Irving Park – D’Candela

Peruvian restaurants are not common in Chicago and this family-run store is certainly one of those few serving the finest Peruvian dishes. The purple and lavender interior might give you an Easter-like feel but the menu is nowhere near chocolaty, sugary stuff. The choice you get here is quite wide but the main attraction is its pollo a la brasa, i.e., crispy and succulent rotisserie chicken flaked with oregano and served with a spicy green aji dip. Also try their seafood and Pollo entero (baked whole chicken) all comfortably priced around $10.50 range.

 

  1. Lakeview – BIG & little’s
Lakeview - BIG & little’s
Lakeview – BIG & little’s

Tired of hot dogs? Step into BIG & little’s and give your taste buds the much needed relief with its quick service fish and chips and tacos. You can have juicy burgers made of Angus beef but the most tempting dish is the French fries served with a side of foie gras priced at $16. You will also get cheeseburger and fries at $9 and Samurai fish taco at just $4.75.

 

  1. Lincoln Square – Aroy Thai
Lincoln Square - Aroy Thai
Lincoln Square – Aroy Thai

A veteran restaurant serving authentic, delicious and traditional Thai food at a moderate price – that’s the secret of Aroi Thai’s popularity. Indulge in ground pork simmered in curried coconut milk and served over a crispy omelette or meatballs in sour broth. Beef ball and tendon soup available at just $9.50 is a charmer. If you wish to have something heavier, choose Phrik khing with crispy pork for a complete meal at $11.50.

 

  1. The Loop – BenjYehuda
The Loop - BenjYehuda
The Loop – BenjYehuda

Middle Eastern fast food has turned into quite a craze here across The Loop, but among all of them BenjYehuda wins hands down. This Israeli-styled joint describes itself as serving “Urban Street Food”. The howling wolf logo on the front glass door and the industrial warehouse like interior might give you some jitters but once settled down, expect some juicy chicken shawarma, steak shawarma and falafel. A chicken shawarma flatbread wrap costs just $6.99 and crispy fries for just $1.79 for 1 pound, making it super easy on the pocket.

 

  1. Archer Heights – Birrieria Zaragoza
Archer Heights - Birrieria Zaragoza
Archer Heights – Birrieria Zaragoza

A small, family-run Mexican restaurant in Chicago – that’s what Birrieria Zaragoza is to the uninitiated. But talk to the locals and you’d know that the name is synonymous to the best roasted goat in town. Dipped in a spicy broth and served with handmade tortillas, and maybe with a squeeze of lime, it is a never-to-be-missed dish of Chicago priced at just $9.50. You can also have made to order salsas and cinnamon-laced coffee to accompany the dish.

Originally posted 2017-08-22 06:17:41.

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