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Pollo la Catira with shredded chicken, caramelized peppers and onions, and cheddar cheese from Arepa Mia in Avondale Estates, GA.
Pollo la catira with shredded chicken, caramelized peppers and onions, and cheddar cheese.
Arepa Mia

25 Atlanta Restaurants That Won’t Break the Bank

Affordable dining deals on burgers, tacos, noodles, arepas, and sandwiches at restaurants throughout Atlanta

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Pollo la catira with shredded chicken, caramelized peppers and onions, and cheddar cheese.
| Arepa Mia

Atlantans love to eat out, but the cost can quickly add up, leaving many folks with both sticker shock and an empty wallet. A delicious meal that also happens to be reasonably priced is something most people will agree is a great find these days in Atlanta. Thankfully, there are plenty of restaurants around ATL serving up really good food with an affordable price tag attached. This map shines the spotlight on just a few establishments offering excellent, budget-friendly dining options — most with dishes on the menu priced around $10.

17 Atlanta Gas Stations to Fill Up on Biscuits, Wings, and Tacos

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Disclaimer: Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; it may pose a risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial COVID transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here. It is highly advised people wear masks indoors or when in crowded situations, regardless of vaccination status, to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

Gut Busters

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AUC graduates of the past 20 years are familiar with the college-friendly affordability at this local breakfast and cheesesteak chain, as it has had multiple West End locations. There’s still a generously stuffed, six-inch shaved meat sandwich for here $4.99, or a footlong for $7.50. Along with the cheesesteaks, most items on the menu are under $10, including entrees like shrimp over rice, wings, burgers, tenders, fried fish, and salads.

Wing Depot

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It’s nice to visit a chicken wing stand that doesn’t charge $1 or more per wing, particularly when the wings are really good. That’s the case at this permanently parked red food trailer in Southwest Atlanta, just off I-285’s Campbellton Road exit. The fried wings, including the standard Buffalo flavor, are a perfect mix of salt, butter, pepper, and hint of citrus. A 10-piece order costs around $8 or get an order of 50 wings for just under $38. 

One Love Cafe ATL

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This Caribbean and soul food cafe opened in the former Acapulco Mexican restaurant space in Riverside in 2019. Come here for homey comfort food, friendly smiles, and platters of jerk chicken, brown stew, oxtails, or rasta pasta. Entrees come with a choice of two sides and cost between $10 and $12 per person. Check out the daily chalkboard specials, too.

D Cafe and Catering

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This Westview neighborhood staple serves homestyle dishes during breakfast and brunch paired with super friendly service. Order one of the breakfast platters here, which typically comes with eggs, a fresh-baked biscuit, bacon or sausage, and grits or a stack of three pancakes with a side of eggs and bacon. At brunch, order the Bankhead cheeseburger served with fries or the West End kale and quinoa salad tossed with black beans, cranberries, and olive oil. A hearty meal here averages around $13.

K & K Soul Food

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K & K has been serving the Bankhead community for more than 43 years now, and for good reason. The food is just that good here. Biscuits can be filled with red sausage links, pork chops, chicken or beef sausage, country-fried steak, or fatback. However, this is where to come for meats like beef liver or chicken gizzards as well as stewed beef or fried whiting. The family-owned, counter-service restaurant with its brick-tiled floors and 3-D mural includes a few booths. Check out K&K’s vegetable plates, too.

Don Chon

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From 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. every weekday, Don Chon offers a Mexican buffet with a glass of water for just under $10. Find marinated meats, fresh-made tortillas, vegetables, a salad station, and everything to make a custom nacho plate. Don’t skip the $3 tacos here, including the barbacoa, tripe, lengua, carne asada, and chorizo.

Dat Fire Jerk Chicken

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When it comes to a slightly oversized carryout plate, Dat Fire offers solid jerk, brown stew, curry, and other Caribbean preparations of proteins on its menu — and quite inexpensively. Prices rise when choosing pork or goat, but a large jerk chicken meal here costs just under $10. Stop by during lunch and both brown stew and jerk poultry served with rice and peas, cabbage or collard greens, and either a can of soda or bottled water comes in around $6.

Tannour Mediterranean Grill

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Located in Home Park, this family-owned and operated restaurant serves up hearty portions of hummus, falafel, and shawarma as platters, bowls, or wraps and sides of baba ghanoush, lentil soup, and tabbouleh salad. Most items on this menu are between $11 to $12, with fries and a drink adding an additional $3 to make a combo.

Aviva by Kameel

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This downtown food gem is deceptively hidden in the mall at Peachtree Center. While more of a food court than a mall, make a beeline to this Mediterranean food stall filled with dishes served by the delightful chef Kameel. Aviva by Kameel also has a location in Midtown at the Collective at Coda.

El Progreso

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El Progreso is one of those “in-the-know” kind of places in Atlanta. Located at the back counter of the southeast Atlanta Mexican grocery store across from the federal penitentiary, this is where to head for super good tacos in town. Regulars swear by the beef barbacoa, spicy chorizo, and the el pastor, but there’s really no wrong order here.

Little's Food Store

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This Cabbagetown neighborhood market and grill happens to serve one of the best burgers in town. Grab an old-school, counter-service cheeseburger, fries, and Coke for under $10. There’s also a slider version with fries and slaw, or grab a Chicago hot dog basket piled with onions, tomatoes, and relish with a side of fries and a Coke for under $8.

It’s hard to pass up this Atlanta landmark restaurant for a hearty yet super-affordable meal, especially when a meat-and-three combo costs around $10. In addition to lemon pepper, barbecue, and jerk chicken on the menu, Eats also serves turkey meatloaf and tilapia. The priciest meal here is the chicken alfredo with garlic bread offered on Thursdays and Saturdays for $12

Mama's Restaurant

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Mama’s Cocina Latina in the Piedmont Heights neighborhood serves a mix of comfort foods and familiar Mexican dishes like tortas, tacos, burritos, and tostadas on its menu. Grab hot wings, fajitas for one, two, or three people, or a grande dinner platter with two enchiladas, a taco, rice, and beans. The platter hovers around $10. For breakfast, try the huevos rancheros or Mama’s breakfast with scrambled eggs, pancakes, and bacon for under $10. Open 24/7. Drive-thru service available.

Jack's Pizza & Wings

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Special slices, like the Hangover topped with bacon, tomatoes, green peppers, spinach, and jalapenos, may go for $5 at Jack’s, but a jumbo slice of cheese pizza from this endearingly divey Old Fourth Ward pizza and wing joint costs just $2.50 on Mondays. It’s also the spot for a great deal on beer-and-a-shot combos, too.

Julianna's Coffee & Crepes

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Julianna’s is tucked inside a circa-1901 house on Lake Avenue in Inman Park. The counter-service crêperie serves Hungarian-style savory and sweet crepes made from an old family recipe. Try the Breakfasty One with scrambled eggs, ham, Swiss, and sautéed mushrooms or the Royale with Tasso ham, Gruyere, field greens, and peach chutney. Dishes on the menu range between $7 and $12.

Home Grown

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Whether dining in for breakfast or for lunch, no one ever leaves hungry after eating at this cozy Reynoldstown establishment full of Southern food and charm. Most of the menu options at Home Grown stay well within the $10 to $15 range. However, lunch offers a Blue Collar option — a “value-sized portion” with cornbread and a drink for just a couple of bucks more.

Golden Drops Café

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More than just a coffee shop with a great covered patio on Clairmont, Golden Drops cafe serves a selection of Latin American pastries and sandwiches on it menu throughout the day, including guava and cheese empanadas, teardrop-shaped coxinha filled with shredded chicken, and Cuban sandwiches. Most items on the menu are under $10, and beer and wine is served here, too. Can’t decide what to order? Try the Golden Drops Sampler platter, which comes with a coxinha, two empanadas, and pao de queijo (Brazilian cheese puff) for under $11.

Pan American Bakery

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This small bakery off of Clairmont Road offers only one sandwich on the menu: the Cuban. And it’s really good. This pressed ham and cheese sandwich is toasted to crispy perfection. Make sure to grab a guava pastry or two here, too. Cash only.

The Imperial

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This buzzy Oakhurst neighborhood bar includes an affordable menu filled with pub grub, like wings, baskets of chili fries and poutine, and a selection of burgers and dogs. Try the Ol’ Fashion double cheeseburger topped with sautéed onions and Thousand Island dressing for right around $10. All burgers and dogs come with a choice of French fries, coleslaw, sweet potato fries, steamed broccoli, baked beans, or a side salad.

Buena Gente Cuban Bakery

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Even when Buena Gente was a food trailer, it was consistently serving some of the best Cuban street eats in the city. Owners Manny Rodriguez and Stacie Antich took Buena Gente permanent in Decatur last year and continue offering their flaky and buttery empanadas on the menu for just $4 each. There’s also ham croquetas for$3 here and $2 beef pastelitos, too. Order a meaty Cubano sandwich on fresh-baked bread for around $10 and throw in a side of plantain chips for a couple of bucks more.

Atlanta China Town Food Court

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Head to Atlanta Chinatown and its food court to partake in everything from hand-pulled noodle dishes and hot pots to succulent roast duck and dumplings. Most stalls here offer generously portioned dishes for around $10 to $15 each. Grab a cup of complimentary hot tea and take a seat inside or in the garden courtyard patio.

Victory Sandwich Bar

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This hipster slider shop continues to put an astounding amount of effort into every small sandwich that comes out of its kitchen. For those craving braised beef, try the Beast on Yeast. Most sandwiches here, including the pulled pork Porky’s Revenge, the meaty Mile High Club with fontina cheese, chicken, bacon, ham and avocado, or vegetarian sliders the Beeter or Weed Eater, are just $5 each. Add Victory’s popular Jack n’ Coke slushie for $8, too.

Quoc Huong Banh Mi Fast Food

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Many Atlantans consider the bánh mì at Quoc Huong in the Asian Square complex to be the best in metro Atlanta. The fresh French bread definitely contributes to this reputation. The favorite order here is the barbecue pork. The shop is cash only, but sandwiches average around $3.50 each. Order five bánh mì, and that sixth one is free.

Chat Patti Indian Vegetarian Restaurant

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For over 22 years, this counter-serve, vegetarian restaurant in Decatur has been feeding its loyal regulars Indian street foods like dosas, samosas, and biryani as well as a variety of thali platters. Chat Patti offers an expansive menu and serves generous portions, with most items hovering around $10. A great place to feed a crowd and eat family-style.

Arepa Mia

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This Venezuelan restaurant, owned and operated by Lis Hernandez, serves its signature menu item stuffed with everything from fried tilapia and 12-hour roasted beef to deviled ham and those filled with Venezuelan-style scrambled eggs, tomatoes, caramelized onions, and queso de ano. Arepas here average around $10 to $11. Make sure to order a side of crispy yuca fries or tostones for an extra $5 or try the cachapas (Venezuelan sweet or savory pancake) topped with proteins like roast pork or shredded chicken and assorted vegetables.

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Gut Busters

AUC graduates of the past 20 years are familiar with the college-friendly affordability at this local breakfast and cheesesteak chain, as it has had multiple West End locations. There’s still a generously stuffed, six-inch shaved meat sandwich for here $4.99, or a footlong for $7.50. Along with the cheesesteaks, most items on the menu are under $10, including entrees like shrimp over rice, wings, burgers, tenders, fried fish, and salads.

Wing Depot

It’s nice to visit a chicken wing stand that doesn’t charge $1 or more per wing, particularly when the wings are really good. That’s the case at this permanently parked red food trailer in Southwest Atlanta, just off I-285’s Campbellton Road exit. The fried wings, including the standard Buffalo flavor, are a perfect mix of salt, butter, pepper, and hint of citrus. A 10-piece order costs around $8 or get an order of 50 wings for just under $38. 

One Love Cafe ATL

This Caribbean and soul food cafe opened in the former Acapulco Mexican restaurant space in Riverside in 2019. Come here for homey comfort food, friendly smiles, and platters of jerk chicken, brown stew, oxtails, or rasta pasta. Entrees come with a choice of two sides and cost between $10 and $12 per person. Check out the daily chalkboard specials, too.

D Cafe and Catering

This Westview neighborhood staple serves homestyle dishes during breakfast and brunch paired with super friendly service. Order one of the breakfast platters here, which typically comes with eggs, a fresh-baked biscuit, bacon or sausage, and grits or a stack of three pancakes with a side of eggs and bacon. At brunch, order the Bankhead cheeseburger served with fries or the West End kale and quinoa salad tossed with black beans, cranberries, and olive oil. A hearty meal here averages around $13.

K & K Soul Food

K & K has been serving the Bankhead community for more than 43 years now, and for good reason. The food is just that good here. Biscuits can be filled with red sausage links, pork chops, chicken or beef sausage, country-fried steak, or fatback. However, this is where to come for meats like beef liver or chicken gizzards as well as stewed beef or fried whiting. The family-owned, counter-service restaurant with its brick-tiled floors and 3-D mural includes a few booths. Check out K&K’s vegetable plates, too.

Don Chon

From 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. every weekday, Don Chon offers a Mexican buffet with a glass of water for just under $10. Find marinated meats, fresh-made tortillas, vegetables, a salad station, and everything to make a custom nacho plate. Don’t skip the $3 tacos here, including the barbacoa, tripe, lengua, carne asada, and chorizo.

Dat Fire Jerk Chicken

When it comes to a slightly oversized carryout plate, Dat Fire offers solid jerk, brown stew, curry, and other Caribbean preparations of proteins on its menu — and quite inexpensively. Prices rise when choosing pork or goat, but a large jerk chicken meal here costs just under $10. Stop by during lunch and both brown stew and jerk poultry served with rice and peas, cabbage or collard greens, and either a can of soda or bottled water comes in around $6.

Tannour Mediterranean Grill

Located in Home Park, this family-owned and operated restaurant serves up hearty portions of hummus, falafel, and shawarma as platters, bowls, or wraps and sides of baba ghanoush, lentil soup, and tabbouleh salad. Most items on this menu are between $11 to $12, with fries and a drink adding an additional $3 to make a combo.

Aviva by Kameel

This downtown food gem is deceptively hidden in the mall at Peachtree Center. While more of a food court than a mall, make a beeline to this Mediterranean food stall filled with dishes served by the delightful chef Kameel. Aviva by Kameel also has a location in Midtown at the Collective at Coda.

El Progreso

El Progreso is one of those “in-the-know” kind of places in Atlanta. Located at the back counter of the southeast Atlanta Mexican grocery store across from the federal penitentiary, this is where to head for super good tacos in town. Regulars swear by the beef barbacoa, spicy chorizo, and the el pastor, but there’s really no wrong order here.

Little's Food Store

This Cabbagetown neighborhood market and grill happens to serve one of the best burgers in town. Grab an old-school, counter-service cheeseburger, fries, and Coke for under $10. There’s also a slider version with fries and slaw, or grab a Chicago hot dog basket piled with onions, tomatoes, and relish with a side of fries and a Coke for under $8.

Eats

It’s hard to pass up this Atlanta landmark restaurant for a hearty yet super-affordable meal, especially when a meat-and-three combo costs around $10. In addition to lemon pepper, barbecue, and jerk chicken on the menu, Eats also serves turkey meatloaf and tilapia. The priciest meal here is the chicken alfredo with garlic bread offered on Thursdays and Saturdays for $12

Mama's Restaurant

Mama’s Cocina Latina in the Piedmont Heights neighborhood serves a mix of comfort foods and familiar Mexican dishes like tortas, tacos, burritos, and tostadas on its menu. Grab hot wings, fajitas for one, two, or three people, or a grande dinner platter with two enchiladas, a taco, rice, and beans. The platter hovers around $10. For breakfast, try the huevos rancheros or Mama’s breakfast with scrambled eggs, pancakes, and bacon for under $10. Open 24/7. Drive-thru service available.

Jack's Pizza & Wings

Special slices, like the Hangover topped with bacon, tomatoes, green peppers, spinach, and jalapenos, may go for $5 at Jack’s, but a jumbo slice of cheese pizza from this endearingly divey Old Fourth Ward pizza and wing joint costs just $2.50 on Mondays. It’s also the spot for a great deal on beer-and-a-shot combos, too.

Julianna's Coffee & Crepes

Julianna’s is tucked inside a circa-1901 house on Lake Avenue in Inman Park. The counter-service crêperie serves Hungarian-style savory and sweet crepes made from an old family recipe. Try the Breakfasty One with scrambled eggs, ham, Swiss, and sautéed mushrooms or the Royale with Tasso ham, Gruyere, field greens, and peach chutney. Dishes on the menu range between $7 and $12.

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Home Grown

Whether dining in for breakfast or for lunch, no one ever leaves hungry after eating at this cozy Reynoldstown establishment full of Southern food and charm. Most of the menu options at Home Grown stay well within the $10 to $15 range. However, lunch offers a Blue Collar option — a “value-sized portion” with cornbread and a drink for just a couple of bucks more.

Golden Drops Café

More than just a coffee shop with a great covered patio on Clairmont, Golden Drops cafe serves a selection of Latin American pastries and sandwiches on it menu throughout the day, including guava and cheese empanadas, teardrop-shaped coxinha filled with shredded chicken, and Cuban sandwiches. Most items on the menu are under $10, and beer and wine is served here, too. Can’t decide what to order? Try the Golden Drops Sampler platter, which comes with a coxinha, two empanadas, and pao de queijo (Brazilian cheese puff) for under $11.

Pan American Bakery

This small bakery off of Clairmont Road offers only one sandwich on the menu: the Cuban. And it’s really good. This pressed ham and cheese sandwich is toasted to crispy perfection. Make sure to grab a guava pastry or two here, too. Cash only.

The Imperial

This buzzy Oakhurst neighborhood bar includes an affordable menu filled with pub grub, like wings, baskets of chili fries and poutine, and a selection of burgers and dogs. Try the Ol’ Fashion double cheeseburger topped with sautéed onions and Thousand Island dressing for right around $10. All burgers and dogs come with a choice of French fries, coleslaw, sweet potato fries, steamed broccoli, baked beans, or a side salad.

Buena Gente Cuban Bakery

Even when Buena Gente was a food trailer, it was consistently serving some of the best Cuban street eats in the city. Owners Manny Rodriguez and Stacie Antich took Buena Gente permanent in Decatur last year and continue offering their flaky and buttery empanadas on the menu for just $4 each. There’s also ham croquetas for$3 here and $2 beef pastelitos, too. Order a meaty Cubano sandwich on fresh-baked bread for around $10 and throw in a side of plantain chips for a couple of bucks more.

Atlanta China Town Food Court

Head to Atlanta Chinatown and its food court to partake in everything from hand-pulled noodle dishes and hot pots to succulent roast duck and dumplings. Most stalls here offer generously portioned dishes for around $10 to $15 each. Grab a cup of complimentary hot tea and take a seat inside or in the garden courtyard patio.

Victory Sandwich Bar

This hipster slider shop continues to put an astounding amount of effort into every small sandwich that comes out of its kitchen. For those craving braised beef, try the Beast on Yeast. Most sandwiches here, including the pulled pork Porky’s Revenge, the meaty Mile High Club with fontina cheese, chicken, bacon, ham and avocado, or vegetarian sliders the Beeter or Weed Eater, are just $5 each. Add Victory’s popular Jack n’ Coke slushie for $8, too.

Quoc Huong Banh Mi Fast Food

Many Atlantans consider the bánh mì at Quoc Huong in the Asian Square complex to be the best in metro Atlanta. The fresh French bread definitely contributes to this reputation. The favorite order here is the barbecue pork. The shop is cash only, but sandwiches average around $3.50 each. Order five bánh mì, and that sixth one is free.

Chat Patti Indian Vegetarian Restaurant

For over 22 years, this counter-serve, vegetarian restaurant in Decatur has been feeding its loyal regulars Indian street foods like dosas, samosas, and biryani as well as a variety of thali platters. Chat Patti offers an expansive menu and serves generous portions, with most items hovering around $10. A great place to feed a crowd and eat family-style.

Arepa Mia

This Venezuelan restaurant, owned and operated by Lis Hernandez, serves its signature menu item stuffed with everything from fried tilapia and 12-hour roasted beef to deviled ham and those filled with Venezuelan-style scrambled eggs, tomatoes, caramelized onions, and queso de ano. Arepas here average around $10 to $11. Make sure to order a side of crispy yuca fries or tostones for an extra $5 or try the cachapas (Venezuelan sweet or savory pancake) topped with proteins like roast pork or shredded chicken and assorted vegetables.

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