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20 Affordable Restaurants Around Atlanta That Won’t Break the Bank

From burgers, tacos, and noodles to soup and sandwich combos and a Chinese food buffet

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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 to $12.

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Gut Busters

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AUC students and graduates of the past 20 years are familiar with the college-friendly affordability at this local breakfast and lunch chain. And even after all these years, there’s still plenty of breakfast fare on the menu hovering between $4 and $6, along with cheesesteaks, wings, and burgers under $10. Gut Busters includes multiple Atlanta locations now.

Jamal's Buffalo Wings

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Residents who lived in or attended school near Vine City and Castleberry Hill over the last two decades are likely familiar with the wing shack that sat in the parking lot on Northside Drive across from what used to be the Georgia Dome. Now located on the edge of Westview Cemetery, the crispy fried, sauce-soaked wings from Jamal’s have stayed exactly the same — delicious — and are still affordable. A 10-piece wing combo with fries hovers around $10, as does the the eight-piece Buffalo shrimp.

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.

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 around $15 and includes generous portions.

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.

MetroFresh

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Located in the Midtown Promenade complex, MetroFresh is the spot for an affordable lunch or dinner in one of Atlanta’s most expensive neighborhoods. Think comforting bowls of freshly made soups, seasonal salads, and hearty sandwiches as lunch combos, starting at $15. Dinner is also easy on the wallet, with entrees like the restaurant’s popular smashburger served with roasted potatoes, soup, or salad coming in at $16 or a heaping bowl of Cajun shrimp alfredo for $20.

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 hovering at about $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 around $10.

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 around $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.

Pollo Primo

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Sinaloan-style chicken restaurant Pollo Primo, from the team behind Supremo Taco, offers a quarter-sized chicken meal for $11, which comes with sides of fresh tortillas, rice, and beans. Add an agua fresca or horchata for $3 or a can of Modelo beer for $5. For $33, a family meal includes a whole roasted bird with the aforementioned sides.

TGM Bread

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Located next door to sister restaurant the General Muir, TGM Bread is more than just a bakery, it’s also a great place for a quick and affordable lunch of soup and bread. Order bowls of soups like pasta e fagioli (pasta and beans) made with vegan orzo pasta, potato leek, or chicken and mushroom served with freshly baked hunks of crunchy pain au levain or soft and buttery Hawaiian rolls for just under $10. A soup and salad combo at TGM Bread costs around $13.

Hibachi Buffet

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For around $12 at lunch or $16 at dinner, partake in an all-you-can-eat Chinese food buffet on Buford Highway. Pile a plate full of egg rolls, dumplings, fried rice, and a variety of seafood like blue crab, snow crab legs, and shrimp, or partake in hibachi dishes, sushi, bowls of egg drop soup, and crab rangoon.

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. Grab a ham and cheese empanada for $5 or a cheese quesadilla for $10. Try the Golden Drops Sampler platter, which comes with a coxinha, two empanadas, and pao de queijo (Brazilian cheese puff) for $16.

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.

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 between $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 sandwich 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 $6 each. Add Victory’s popular Jack n’ Coke slushie. A small slushie is $5, while a large slushie costs just $10.

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 $4 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 $12. A great place to feed a crowd and eat family-style.

Gut Busters

AUC students and graduates of the past 20 years are familiar with the college-friendly affordability at this local breakfast and lunch chain. And even after all these years, there’s still plenty of breakfast fare on the menu hovering between $4 and $6, along with cheesesteaks, wings, and burgers under $10. Gut Busters includes multiple Atlanta locations now.

Jamal's Buffalo Wings

Residents who lived in or attended school near Vine City and Castleberry Hill over the last two decades are likely familiar with the wing shack that sat in the parking lot on Northside Drive across from what used to be the Georgia Dome. Now located on the edge of Westview Cemetery, the crispy fried, sauce-soaked wings from Jamal’s have stayed exactly the same — delicious — and are still affordable. A 10-piece wing combo with fries hovers around $10, as does the the eight-piece Buffalo shrimp.

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.

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 around $15 and includes generous portions.

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.

MetroFresh

Located in the Midtown Promenade complex, MetroFresh is the spot for an affordable lunch or dinner in one of Atlanta’s most expensive neighborhoods. Think comforting bowls of freshly made soups, seasonal salads, and hearty sandwiches as lunch combos, starting at $15. Dinner is also easy on the wallet, with entrees like the restaurant’s popular smashburger served with roasted potatoes, soup, or salad coming in at $16 or a heaping bowl of Cajun shrimp alfredo for $20.

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 hovering at about $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 around $10.

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 around $12

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.

Pollo Primo

Sinaloan-style chicken restaurant Pollo Primo, from the team behind Supremo Taco, offers a quarter-sized chicken meal for $11, which comes with sides of fresh tortillas, rice, and beans. Add an agua fresca or horchata for $3 or a can of Modelo beer for $5. For $33, a family meal includes a whole roasted bird with the aforementioned sides.

TGM Bread

Located next door to sister restaurant the General Muir, TGM Bread is more than just a bakery, it’s also a great place for a quick and affordable lunch of soup and bread. Order bowls of soups like pasta e fagioli (pasta and beans) made with vegan orzo pasta, potato leek, or chicken and mushroom served with freshly baked hunks of crunchy pain au levain or soft and buttery Hawaiian rolls for just under $10. A soup and salad combo at TGM Bread costs around $13.

Hibachi Buffet

For around $12 at lunch or $16 at dinner, partake in an all-you-can-eat Chinese food buffet on Buford Highway. Pile a plate full of egg rolls, dumplings, fried rice, and a variety of seafood like blue crab, snow crab legs, and shrimp, or partake in hibachi dishes, sushi, bowls of egg drop soup, and crab rangoon.

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. Grab a ham and cheese empanada for $5 or a cheese quesadilla for $10. Try the Golden Drops Sampler platter, which comes with a coxinha, two empanadas, and pao de queijo (Brazilian cheese puff) for $16.

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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.

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 between $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 sandwich 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 $6 each. Add Victory’s popular Jack n’ Coke slushie. A small slushie is $5, while a large slushie costs just $10.

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 $4 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 $12. A great place to feed a crowd and eat family-style.

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