London on a budget: Cheap places to eat in London

Cheap places to eat in London

Ok, here’s a third article on my London on a budget series: Cheap places to eat in London.

London obviously has a great selection of restaurants – from local pubs to high end gourmet fares. But what we’re looking for is value for you money, and to be more precise… cheap 🙂 Because there are times when you want to visit the town but don’t have a lot of money. One thing that you can certainly save on is the restaurants. There are great options for eating out even for those of us that travel on budget.

Take a look:

Cheap places to eat in London

In my opinion, the cheap options are mainly as follows: fast food joints, pubs and carveries. That doesn’t mean that all pub food is cheap – or that there wouldn’t be any other options. It just means that you can mainly find the cheapest eat outs in these categories.

Fast food restaurants

There are obviously a lot of global fast food chains in London but you might want to take a look at the ethnic restaurant just around the corner, a local chip shop or some of the smaller national chains.

Indian food is very popular in the UK so you’ll always have the option of having a takeaway from a curry house. There are also plenty of other ethnic restaurants that offer fast food options such as kebabs. You’ll find them everywhere! Just pop in and give it a go.

Fish and chips is a great and often a very affordable option.

Nando’s is my favorite restaurant chain in England but it’s not exactly cheap. If you like peri peri chicken then go ahead and try a fast food alternative such as Pepe’s Piri Piri.

There also seems to be a Pret A Manger in every street corner so if you’re feeling peckish you’ll find a good selection of quality salads, sandwiches and soups at an affordable price.


I think a lot of the tourists overlook pubs as nice and affordable restaurants. Pubs in England are not just bars serving drinks. There are even some rather posh pubs in London nowadays but in general pubs offer very nice value for money when it comes to food.

If you want to eat cheap food in London – or in the UK in general – I’d recommend trying some of the bigger pub chains that are known for their affordable menus such as JD Wetherspoon or Hungry Horse. There aren’t that many Hungry Horse restaurants in London but there are several JD Wetherspoons.

I love JD Wetherspoon and if you’re in London and you have a tight budget but want to eat “proper” food, this is a great option. Take a look at their clubs in particular: Steak Club, Chicken Club, Curry Club, Fish Friday and Sunday Brunch. For example their Steak Club takes place every Tuesday and they have a separate menu for steak dishes at a great price on those days. The prices vary a bit but you can most likely have a great steak meal with a pint of cider for about £10. I think that’s great value!

JD Wetherspoon Steak Club
You can have a steak meal with a drink for about £10 at JD Wetherspoon


Well, carveries are generally pubs but the concept is different so I mention them on their own. Sadly, there are not a lot of cheap carveries in central London but if you happen to travel around a bit then keep your eyes open for such national chains as Crown Carveries or Toby Carvery. I know that there are some people who don’t appreciate this type of “buffet” food but I guess I’m easily pleased because in general, I love it 🙂 There are often a choice of about three different roasts that are carved for you. You will then also get a Yorkshire pudding and as many roast potatoes and vegetables as you wish with gravy and other sauces. The whole deal (not including drinks) is usually around £5. A bargain!

So these are my tips for eating out in London on a budget. Let us know if you’ve got some tips of your own 🙂

Also, take a look at the other parts of my London on a budget series:

Cheap clothes shopping in London

Cheap places to stay in London


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