Writing about food and restaurants is hard. This is a highly subjective topic. But who can resist great cheap eats in DC? We wanted to identify restaurants where you can get a meal for ten dollars or less per person. And for visitors, we wanted to find restaurants that are relatively easy to get to.
All of the prices referenced are recent as of 2018.
1. District Taco
District Taco started about 10 years ago as a single taco cart in nearby Arlington, Virginia. Today they have locations all over the DC area. You can get a set of three tacos, a burrito, or a burrito desnudo. They also serve nachos and quesadillas. On certain days of the week, fish and shrimp tacos are served. There is also a salsa bar, with salsas ranging from mild to very hot.
One bonus hack for District Taco is that while chips and guacamole usually cost extra, if you get a meal without any meat on it, they’ll give you the guacamole for free!
2. Good Stuff Eatery
Good Stuff is a burger restaurant owned by local celebrity chef Spike Mendelsohn,. You might recognize him if you’re into food competition shows on TV. The cool thing about Good Stuff Eatery is that you can get a sort of “celebrity chef experience” without paying the celebrity chef prices.
Our recommendation from the menu is the Colletti’s smokehouse burger. However, if you’re looking for something a little lighter, than Michelle melt, named after the former first lady, is a turkey burger that’s pretty tasty. The burgers are mostly under ten dollars, but it does get a little more expensive if you add fries and a drink. A useful lunch hack is that if you’re traveling with a family or a group, have everyone get their own burger and then share the fries and a shake. The shakes are delicious and filling.
3. Falafel Inc
A true cheap eat! Falafel sandwiches are only $3 and falafel bowls only $4. These are usually sufficient for lunch, but if you’re a big eater you can add a salad or some hummus for a few extra bucks. The six sauce options give you a chance to spice up your falafel to your exact taste. When you go, don’t be intimidated by the long line. The line moves quick because they have a limited menu and can move the orders really quickly. This is also a great option if you have vegetarians in your group because everything on the menu is vegetarian.
&pizza makes every single pie fresh right in front of you. The pizzas are an interesting oval shape. However, they do not really fit into any kind of traditional style of pizza. Most of their suggested pizzas cost right around $10 but if none of those interests you, you can build your own as well. A typical pizza could probably serve two medium hungry people or someone who is really hungry could eat an entire pie themself.
5. Bub and Pop’s
Depending on what you order, this might break out ten dollar rule, but it’s worth it. Bub and Pop’s is exactly where you want to go if you’re looking for a true mom-and-pop experience. This husband-and-wife team (and their son) prides themselves on making as much of their food as possible in-house. It’s worth it to splurge and get the pickle and chips on the side. A bonus hack when you go is to try to avoid the lunch rush on weekdays between about 11:30am and 1:30pm. There are a lot of office buildings and hungry office workers nearby.
If you look closely at the name, you’ll see it is a combination of the words taco and Korean. Just like District Taco, TaKorean also started as a single food truck and now has several locations in the city. A bonus hack for TaKorean is that if you’re in town on a Tuesday, they do have Taco Tuesday discounts.
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