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10 restaurants in New York City to eat for less than $15

One of the things I always try to show here on my blog is that there is a New York City for every traveler – and that New York City also goes beyond fast food (unless you want to) and you don’t have to spend a lot to eat well. So, today, I feature 10 restaurant options for you to eat with up to $15. Before we dig in, it is good to remember that:

    • these options do not include appetizers or dessert, but they are delicious choices;
    • the calculation was made considering taxes and tips;
    • I also recommend famous tourist spots and areas near the restaurants.
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1. Playa Betty’s – The place serves California-style Beach Food, with a Mexican influence. The tacos are the specialty here, with choices based on meat, fish, pork, chicken and even vegetarian. Each taco costs, on average, from $4 to $5. They have generous sizes and I would say three tacos are enough to leave you satisfied. And there’s more: on Taco Tuesday, the promotional price of the tacos is $3 each!

Address: 320 Amsterdam Ave. Next to the Museum of Natural History | Central Park West | Lincoln Center.

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2. Deep Indian Kitchen – they offer Indian food, including vegetarian options. The first question is: spicy or no spicy? I recommend not ordering spicy if you can’t handle something very spicy. Then you choose one of the proteins (pork, chicken, fish), rice, delicious sauce, salad, and warm bread as a side – the garlic one is really good! This meal, called feast, costs $12 + tax.

Locations
  • 940 8th Avenue  – near Columbus Circle and Times Square
  • 1190 6th Avenue – at Rockefeller Center
  • 25 W 23rd Street – near Flatiron Building
  • 601 8th Avenue – near Time Square
  • 109 W 37th St – Herald Square – near Macy’s and Empire State Building
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3. GRK Fresh Greek – specialized in Greek / Mediterranean food and here I highlight two options, which are delicious and come in great sizes: the pita sandwich, where you choose a protein, a sauce + tomato and onion: $9.50 tax included; and also the plate, which includes a protein, two side dishes, bread, and sauce: $13 tax included.

Locations:

  • 111 Fulton St – Downtown; near 9/11 Memorial, Century 21.
  • 51 East 8th Street – near Washington Square Park;
  • 451 Lexington Ave – near Grand Central Terminal.

 

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4. Gyu Kaku – is a chain specialized in Japanese barbecue. Under normal circumstances, I would recommend that you should have the barbecue experience itself, which costs, on average, from $25 to $30 per person. But, as we are talking about spending up to $15, there are other dishes like noodles and ramen with prices from $9 to $11 in super generous portions.

Locations:

  • 321 W. 44th St. Unit 103 – near Times Square
  • 805 3rd Ave., 2nd Floor – when you are coming from Roosevelt Island
  • 34 Cooper Sq. – East Village

 

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5. Osteria Morini – a super sophisticated Italian restaurant with delicious pasta. The tip here is to go on Monday, after 9 pm, to take advantage of Pasta night, when pasta costs only $12. Generous and delicious portions! With taxes and tips, the final price is $15, on average.

Address: 218 Lafayette Street – Soho.

 

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6. &pizza – same way that you choose the ingredients of your dish in Chipotle or your salad in Sweet Green, this is how it works in & pizza. You choose the dough – traditional, whole wheat, or gluten-free – and then choose a sauce – tomato, spicy tomato, garlic with ricotta, truffled mushroom, pesto or French onion. Then, you choose the cheese: mozzarella or vegan mozzarella. Finally, you get your 4 toppings – and there you have it all: vegetables, fruits, and meats. On top of that, you can add special sauces or other ingredients such as olives, olive oil, and more. Vegan and gluten-free options are available.

Locations:

  • 740 Broadway – Soho
  • 15 W 28th St – near Flatiron Building and Herald Square
  • 63 Wall Street – Downtown

 

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7. II Corallo Trattoria –another Italian option, because it’s hard to go wrong when it comes to pasta and pizza! This restaurant is in Soho and the prices are very good. The atmosphere is very simple, but the service is great and the menu includes several types of pasta – from $12 – and pizzas – from $10 – and the overwhelming majority of options are below $15! For lunch and brunch, they have a prix fixe menu for $10.95, where you choose an appetizer (soup or salad) + a main course (pasta, pizza, or sandwich).

Address: 176 Prince Street – Soho.

8. Time Out Market – is a food court with incredible options. According to the concept, a meal at the Time Out Market means that you are really enjoying the city’s most delicious dishes, a collection of everything you might want to eat, drink and see, all under one roof. There are 21 restaurant options, with savory and sweet options – in addition to a rooftop with incredible views of the Brooklyn Bridge and the city skyline. At Juliana’s, Pat LaFrieda, and Felice, you’ll find options for up to $15 anytime.

Address: Empire Stores Building – 55 Water Street – Dumbo. 

 

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9. Hummus & Pita Co – Mediterranean food chain where the highlight is the sandwich with freshly baked hot pita bread. You choose the type of protein (lamb is delicious), vegetables, sauce, and hummus! There is also the option to choose your ingredients served on a plate or bowl.  Vegetarian options are available. The final amount is between $9 and $15, depending on the option chosen.

Locations:

    • 585 6th Avenue – Chelsea 
    • 79 Chambers Street – Downtown
    • 616 8th Avenue – Times Square

 

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10. Zest Sushi – do we have sushi fans here? I guarantee you will not find a better price than this. Zest is a small, simple place in the Lower East Side and the sushi is great! From Monday to Friday, from 3:30 pm to 7 pm, and on weekends, from 12 pm to 7 pm, they offer happy hour, where everything costs $4 – from sushi rolls (4 to 6 pieces) to drinks. That’s right! It is super worth it, not to mention that it is a very local and cool region.

Did you like my suggestions? New York City can be a very expensive city, but, believe me, it is possible to eat on a budget!

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