Cheap Places To Eat in NYC

Being a tourist in New York is no joke. I know because before I moved here, I had visited the city many times. This place is expensive in so many ways. Accommodation, plane tickets, museums, observatories, broadway shows and other attractions can take a heavy toll on our pockets. Of course there are tricks to save money. Visiting museums on specific days that offer free or pay as you wish admission, trying the Broadway lottery or picking restaurants that are both tasteful and cheap are some of the traveler hacks.

I know the ideal trip to the Big Apple would include fancy bistros run by international acclaimed chefs. Unfortunately, not everyone can afford this lush life. I know I can’t – at least for now (hehe). That’s why I’m here to share with you five really cool and on a budget food places to dig in and not run out (of money, I mean)!

S’MAC is my favorite mac ‘n cheese spot in NYC!


I went to S’MAC for the first time with some friends in 2017. After that, I keep coming back. I always try to bring family and friends who are visiting, since it has a very American dish: mac ‘n cheese, but with a twist. Their menu is quite different as they have different types of macaroni &cheese served on 6, 8 or 10 inch cast-iron skillet.

I personally love going there because nothing is processed and nothing is pre-cooked. Plus, it’s in the heart of East Village, a very unique and hip neighborhood.

Address: 197 1st Avenue, New York, NY 10003

Artichoke’s Basile Pizza

Still on the Italian cuisine field, I strongly recommend eating at Artichoke’s Basile Pizza. First of all, the slice is huge. Second, there are a bunch of them everywhere. Whether you’re in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the odds of you finding this pizzeria are high. My favorite location is in Chelsea – it’s close to the High Line Park. So after a very nice stroll on the former train tracks, you can take out or grab a table here.

Address: 114 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011

Pommes Frites

This restaurant, located in both West Village has authentic double cooked Belgian fries with a wide selection of sauces in a very rustic – sort of Viking – looking establishment. Ketchup and mayo are free, but the other sauces cost below $2 and the smallest fries portion costs around $7 but it will mostly definitely make you full!

But of course you’re in one the best cities to eat such food, so there are many other places you need to try. That’s why I wrote a post entirely devoted to New Yorker pizzas. After all, pizza is always a good and cheap idea!

Address: 128 Macdougal Street, New York, NY 10012 

Pommes Frites, in West Village, has a long list of sauces for you to explore.

Vanessa’s Dumpling House

I love dumplings and I cannot lie! If you’re on the same boat, join me at Vanessa’s Dumplings, a Chinese takeout food at its best value. Especially if you’re talking about eating in Manhattan. With a cost next to nothing, this restaurant is a godsend when you’re really broke and not very picky. Aside from handmade dumplings, they also offer buns, sesame pancakes, and noodles in five different locations. My favorite one is in Union Square, a very busy shopping area.

Address: 220 East 14th Street, New York, NY 10003 

Taqueria Diana

Craving Mexican food? No problem. From the eatery’s menu you can choose tacos, burritos, quesadillas, nachos, salad and more. Made with fresh ingredients daily, Taqueria Diana’s appetizing food can be found in East Village, Hell’s Kitchen, Williamsburg and Lower East Side. If you’re down for an economical yet delightful experience, then this is the place to go! I recommend going to the address in Brooklyn, as there are many other things to do and see in the area.

Address: 367 Metropolitan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211

Do you know any other cheap places to eat in the NYC area? Share with me in the comments below!


Five New York Pizzas Worth Your Visit

If you know me just a tiny bit, I’m sure you heard me talking about pizza at some point. It might be part of my genetics, a real addiction or just a plain excuse to get some carbs in my blood. Whatever the main reason might be, I’m truly lucky to live in a city that has so many options of this popular Italian dish like New York City.

Even though I still need more time  – and money – to be able to afford all NYC’s pizzas, I can name five places that have already stolen my heart (not to mention my stomach and wallet). If you’re coming to the Big Apple, I highly recommend picking one of these places below:

– L&B Spumoni Gardens
Located in Brooklyn, this pizzeria has a squared Sicilian slice to die for. Aside from the pizza, you can find great gelato, nice staff and a long history. The family-owned restaurant has been in business for almost 80 years! Pizza pie is a good idea if you’re coming with a big party.

L&B’s Spumoni Gardens: long history and long lines

– Artichoke
Never in my life did I think I’d ever try an artichoke pizza, nor list it in one of my favorite spots. But you need to give it a try. It’s a distinct flavor, in a positive way, and the size of the slice is very generous. In case you’re quite resistant or absolutely hate artichoke, try the other toppings. They’re juicy, warm and tasteful as well!

– Luzzo’s 
If you’re a big fan of thin-crust pizza, Luzzo’s is the place for you. It follows a Neapolitan style and it’s actually made the time you get there in a coal-burning oven. It tastes incredibly fresh and light. I recommend trying one of their desserts as well. You won’t regret it!

Luzzo's in Brooklyn -  thin-crust pizza
Luzzo’s – Brooklyn. There’s also one in Manhattan.

– Joe’s Pizza
Most likely the most famous pizza in all New York City. A regular slice will do wonders in your mouth. I don’t know their secret, but all I know is that they don’t need much to work their magic. Many celebrities have visited Joe’s many locations. While you’re eating, you can spend some time checking out who has also been there. Photos of actors like Anne Hathaway, Owen Wilson or Bill Murray are displayed on the walls. Because it’s always busy, your food will surely come warm. Just a heads up: it’s cash only!

There are several stores in Manhattan. This one in on Broadway, close to Times Square.

– Joey’s Pepperoni Pizza 
From the $1 dollar pizzas out there, I’d say this one is a smart pick. It’s my go-to spot when I am broke and craving a cheesy pizza that is both good and cheap. Can’t get any better than this, right?

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Five Markets To Visit In New York City

If there’s something I love to do anywhere I go is to grab something to eat and do the occasional window shopping. If you’re also the type of person who likes to do these things, I recommend taking some time to visit New York markets. These locations provide affordable options whether you’re looking to fill your stomach or your house.

Chelsea Market 
By far the most popular market! It is usually crowded – specially on the weekends. In spite of being very touristy, it is worth your visit. Conveniently located in the beautiful neighborhood of Chelsea, it does justice to its cool reputation as it has a wide variety of restaurants and stores.
Things you can find here: pastries, coffee, seafood, chocolate, ice cream, oyster, tacos, ramen noodles and so on. If it is shopping what you want, head to the end of the venue to find Artists & Fleas, where local vendors showcase clothing, vintage, jewelry, design and art products. The market also has some brands inside its facility, such as Anthropologie, a pricey but cute home & fashion retail store.
Now that you’re full and spent some money, go for a walk on The High Line, an adorable elevated linear park that once used to be a railroad.
Open hours: Monday – Saturday: 7am to 2am, Sunday: 8am to 10pm

Location: 75 9th Avenue (Between 15th and 16 Streets), New York, NY 10011

Canal Street Market
I usually avoid going to Canal Street because it is very messy. My problem here is not really avoiding the tourists, but the people selling maybe-not-so-original goods on the streets. Luckily there’s a train station very close to Canal Market, which it’s actually a pretty cool place to check out. It has shops and eateries as well, but much fewer options. Shopping findings: fashion, art, jewelry. Eat: salad, lobster roll, ice cream. Drink: bubble tea.
Open hours: (Retail) Monday – Saturday: 11am to 7pm / Sunday: 12am to 6pm 
                     (Food hall) Monday – Sunday 10am to 8pm
Location: 265 Canal Street, New York, NY, 10013

The longest line in Canal St Market was to get bubble tea at Boba Guys.
The Pennsy Food Hall
As the name indicates, this is dedicated to food only. Don’t get disappointed though. The Pennsy’s address is in Midtown Manhattan, aka every shopper’s wonderland. There are all sorts of shops in every direction you go! I recommend visiting during Happy Hour because there’s a bar with indoor and outdoor dining spaces. Aside from beer, you can get cookies, pizza, sushi, tacos or vegan food. This lively and modern high end food hall is based above Penn Station.  Website:
Open hours: Monday to Sunday: 11am – 9pm
Location: 2 Pennsylvania Plaza, New York, NY 10121

Dekalb Market Hall
Cross the East River to find this exclusively food hall in Brooklyn. It’s quite busy during the weekend but the lines are impressively short. I think it is due to the wide range of restaurants here (40 vendors!). The environment is very laidback and attended by mostly a young crowd. Among its selection, you can try Korean, Latin, Hawaiian, Chinese, Barbecue, and many other menus with also veggie choices. And now the best part: grab some ice cream at Ample Hills Creamery, a heavenly local ice cream. If you really need to shop, there are a lot of retail stores in the surroundings since it’s in the basement level of a mall. 

PS: Need to buy groceries? Trader Joe’s is right there as well!

Open hours: Monday – Sunday, 7am to 10pm 
Location: (Basement Level of City Point) 445 Albee Square W, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Try the legendary sandwich from Kat’z at Dekalb Market Hall
You won’t regret eating Ample Hills Creamery ice cream!

The Bowery Market 
Found in NoHo, it’s a fun designed outdoor market with local vendors that offer very diverse cuisines, such as Mexican and Asian. They also have an ice cream stand! However, it’s probably the one I liked the least given the fact that it’s tiny (I only saw three stands) and closes way too early. The website mentions the establishments close at 10pm, but I went there on a weekend and they had resumed service before six. I honestly thought about not including this place here, however the atmosphere is pleasant and full of bars nearby to explore. So even if you don’t like the market itself, I’m sure you’ll love getting to know that area. 
Open hours: Monday -Friday: 9am to 10pm, Saturday & Sunday – 10am to 10pm (not reliable!)
Location: 348 Bowery @ the Northwest Corner of Bowery & Great Jones

The Bowery Market is unique but tiny.
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