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Cheap Eats: Nine Wallet-Friendly Meals in Seattle

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[Clockwise: Cafe Racer, Marination Ma Kai, Pike St. Fish Fry, Hattie's Hat]


Hole-in-the-pants pocket leaking change? On a student budget, or just like a good deal? Going out to eat can add up fast, but Eater has you covered with a handy map of nine restaurants where you can be fabulously frugal. From fish and chips and lo mein to bagel sandwiches, all of these square meals are under $10.
—Jake Uitti

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Eater maps are curated by editors and aim to reflect a diversity of neighborhoods, cuisines, and prices. Learn more about our editorial process. If you buy something or book a reservation from an Eater link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics policy.

Chili's Deli

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Two samosas for $3.66, masala dosa (wrapped with spiced potato and onion served with chutneys) for $7.99, and pan-fried tilapia fish in homemade batter for $8.99: this U-District location has plenty of options to get your full, spiced up, and back in the world with money to burn.

[Photo Credit: Larifa F./Yelp]

Hattie's Hat Restaurant

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Hattie’s is good at all hours of the day, but we recommend brunch. $6.50 for biscuits and gravy ($3.50 for a half order) or $10 for the Chang’s Migas (peppers, onions, tomatoes, Serrano chiles, and cheddar scrambled eggs with a fried corn tortilla.) This cozy spot will satisfy.

[Photo Credit]

Italian Family Pizza

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Giant pizzas that could serve a family of four or an army of 400, this East Coast-inspired spot on 1st will whet your appetite. A large pie is $22, but it is easily split between three people–that’s less than $7.50 each for a trio of full bellies.

[Photo Credit: Italian Family Pizza/Facebook]

Marination Ma Kai

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$2.50 tacos or sliders or the $6.00 out-of-this-world kimchi fried rice is the ticket. There are a number of options to end your hunger cravings at this Hawaiian-inspired restaurant, and with locations in West Seattle and Capitol Hill, options abound.

[Photo Credit]

Oliver's Twist

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Sometimes you have to give a little on the decor when you want to eat cheap. That’s not the case with this charming Phinney bar (or at its new Magnolia outpost.) Oliver’s Twist offers a $9 amazing grilled cheese sandwich with a tomato cappuccino. If you haven’t had this at least once in your life, you’re missing out.

[Photo Credit: Oliver's Twist/Facebook]

Paseo Caribbean Restaurant

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Okay, there’s most likely going to be a line, but Paseo really is worth it. This sandwich hub might have the best food in town–and they know it, confidently disallowing any removals or substitutions. Try the $8.50 chicken breast sandwich or the tofu delight.

[Photo Credit: Paseo/Facebook]

Pike Street Fish Fry

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This may already be your go-to when it comes to tasty, budget-friendly meals: Try their catfish and chips for just $8, lick your fingers clean and go home satisfied with two bucks from your Alexander Hamilton to spare.

[Photo Credit: Pike St. Fish Fry]

Cafe Racer

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Café Racer, with its Obama room of art, arcade games, and acoustic guitars, also offers an affordable menu, including $5 hot dogs, $8.95 chili dogs, $7.95 burgers, and an incredible $5.50 breakfast burrito—they keep some wrapped up and ready to go during all business hours. Plus, tater tots.

[Photo Credit]

Tai Tung Restaurant

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Chinese comfort food at its best, Tai Tung has all the staples (fried rice plates for $5.95 and lo mein with oyster sauce for $4.25,) plus Chinese-style steak for $8.95, deep fried shrimp for $9.25, and squid with ginger for $8.75.

[Photo Credit: Patrick S./Yelp]

Chili's Deli

Two samosas for $3.66, masala dosa (wrapped with spiced potato and onion served with chutneys) for $7.99, and pan-fried tilapia fish in homemade batter for $8.99: this U-District location has plenty of options to get your full, spiced up, and back in the world with money to burn.

[Photo Credit: Larifa F./Yelp]

Hattie's Hat Restaurant

Hattie’s is good at all hours of the day, but we recommend brunch. $6.50 for biscuits and gravy ($3.50 for a half order) or $10 for the Chang’s Migas (peppers, onions, tomatoes, Serrano chiles, and cheddar scrambled eggs with a fried corn tortilla.) This cozy spot will satisfy.

[Photo Credit]

Italian Family Pizza

Giant pizzas that could serve a family of four or an army of 400, this East Coast-inspired spot on 1st will whet your appetite. A large pie is $22, but it is easily split between three people–that’s less than $7.50 each for a trio of full bellies.

[Photo Credit: Italian Family Pizza/Facebook]

Marination Ma Kai

$2.50 tacos or sliders or the $6.00 out-of-this-world kimchi fried rice is the ticket. There are a number of options to end your hunger cravings at this Hawaiian-inspired restaurant, and with locations in West Seattle and Capitol Hill, options abound.

[Photo Credit]

Oliver's Twist

Sometimes you have to give a little on the decor when you want to eat cheap. That’s not the case with this charming Phinney bar (or at its new Magnolia outpost.) Oliver’s Twist offers a $9 amazing grilled cheese sandwich with a tomato cappuccino. If you haven’t had this at least once in your life, you’re missing out.

[Photo Credit: Oliver's Twist/Facebook]

Paseo Caribbean Restaurant

Okay, there’s most likely going to be a line, but Paseo really is worth it. This sandwich hub might have the best food in town–and they know it, confidently disallowing any removals or substitutions. Try the $8.50 chicken breast sandwich or the tofu delight.

[Photo Credit: Paseo/Facebook]

Pike Street Fish Fry

This may already be your go-to when it comes to tasty, budget-friendly meals: Try their catfish and chips for just $8, lick your fingers clean and go home satisfied with two bucks from your Alexander Hamilton to spare.

[Photo Credit: Pike St. Fish Fry]

Cafe Racer

Café Racer, with its Obama room of art, arcade games, and acoustic guitars, also offers an affordable menu, including $5 hot dogs, $8.95 chili dogs, $7.95 burgers, and an incredible $5.50 breakfast burrito—they keep some wrapped up and ready to go during all business hours. Plus, tater tots.

[Photo Credit]

Tai Tung Restaurant

Chinese comfort food at its best, Tai Tung has all the staples (fried rice plates for $5.95 and lo mein with oyster sauce for $4.25,) plus Chinese-style steak for $8.95, deep fried shrimp for $9.25, and squid with ginger for $8.75.

[Photo Credit: Patrick S./Yelp]

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