Finding yourself #lunchunder10bucks is something easily realized in most corners of the globe. Trying to accomplish this when dining-out in downtown Toronto, however, can provide some added complexity to the budget.
The Toronto Food Blog’s #lunchunder10bucks project aims to prove that you can eat well, on the cheap, if you’re willing to venture off the beaten path.
The first #lunchunder10bucks PODCAST episode is dropping soon and will be dedicated entirely to Scarborough cheap-eats. Be on the lookout!!!
For now, here are the Toronto Food Blog’s TOP TEN places to find #lunchunder10bucks in the city of Toronto…
Before we get started on our TOP TEN, an honorable mention goes out to Loga’s Corner in #Parkdale for their awesomely cheap & tasty momos, potato balls, and some of the best hot sauce in town
#10… Chakula Hut (1871 O’Connor Dr) #EastYork
In the farthest-east reaches of the city lies an East African mom & pop that serves the traditional dishes of Uganda & Tanzania. Chakula Hut’s flash-fried okra dish is one of my favorite things to eat… full stop. Their kitchen is full of Indian influence, with samosas and meat curries that are nothing less than outstanding! Not always easy to find Indian #cheapeats. These guys nail it!
#9… Gold Standard (385 Roncesvalles Ave) #Roncesvalles
Can we just stop for a moment and chat about how good the Telway Burger is at Gold Standard? Patty Melt with pickle, fried onion, mustard and cheese. This is near perfection for around six bucks. To be quite honest, it’s my favourite burger in town.
#8… Que Ling (248 Boulton Ave) #EastChinatown
Tucked away behind the main drag of East Chinatown, Que Ling does a couple of things really, really well. A bungalow turned dining room, table seats are hard to come by at lunch hour. And it’s obvious why… these guys are doling out some of the heartiest broth in town. If you like beef and you like soup, this is the place to come. A real hidden gem in the #cheapeats category. I probably eat here the most of any place on the list. Dare I say the best Pho in town? There, I said it!
#7… Egg Bae (189 Augusta Ave) #KensgintonMarket
I’m not the biggest fan of the most important meal of the day… but holy crap; Egg Bae makes a good breakfast sandwich!!! Scrambled egg, chives, Muenster cheese, caramelized onions, bae sauce, fluffy egg bun. Sandwich of the year candidate right here! Check them out next time you’re in #kensingtonmarket
#6… Chamsine (235 Queen St E) #MossPark
Chamsine is a Syrian shawarma restaurant that brings a culinary respite to one of downtown’s toughest corners. I just adore their Falafel Salad. This is an absolutely enormous plate of food, loaded with wonderful accouterments such as fried cauliflower, eggplant, potato and pickle. Great hospitality, food and people watching. This place has become part of my weekly lunch rotation thanks, in part, to their proximity to my office. Lucky me!
#5… When the Pig Came Home (3035 Dundas Ave W) #Junction
One of my favourite west-side spots, the $5 Peameal Sandwich @ When The Pig Came Home is a real show-stopper. While many swear by the versions on offer at the St. Lawrence Market, I’ll make my way across town for one of these bad boys any day of the week. Have been chatting with the owner about being one of the first on-site locations for our PODCAST. Stay tuned for that!
#4… Bitondos Pizza (11 Clinton St) #LittleItaly
Hands down, my favourite slice of pizza in town can be found at Bitondos. Have been going here since childhood for slices and calzone. Not much has changed over the years, including their prices. Will always drop in for a snack when I’m in this neck of the woods. There’s something to be said about keeping it simple.
#3… Tropical Joe’s (1000 Gerrard St E) #Riverdale
Hidden in the back of Gerrard Square lies Tropical Joe’s. These guys are making a name for themselves by serving, perhaps, the best food court fare in the city. I eat here at least every couple of weeks, and each time I do the queue gets a little bit longer. I’ve even asked Chris to cater a few of our holiday parties (to rave reviews). All of your Caribbean favourites, on the cheap. Pro tip: a small order is more than enough food… and will help keep things on budget.
#2… New Hong Fatt BBQ (443 Dundas St) #Chinatown
They say it’s all in the details… and I think my favourite little thing about the BBQ Duck at Hong Fatt BBQ is the layer of steamed cabbage and onion they place in between the meat and the rice. My go-to spot downtown for Chinese BBQ; these guys have been doing it right ever since I was a kid. #thosewhoknow
#1… Square Boy (875 Danforth Ave) #Greektown
It’s no secret that my favourite #lunchunder10bucks is the Souvlaki on a Bun from Square Boy. Huge chunks of grilled pork or chicken on a toasted foot-long hero roll with all the fixins (plus pickles for me) for around $5. If I’m extra hungry, will add the best Greek Salad in town and still come-in on budget.
Did we miss anything? What’s your favourite spot that didn’t make our list? Let us know and we’ll feature it on our PODCAST!
-The Cannonball (641 Queen St E)
-Zet’s (6445 Airport Rd)
-Burger Shack (223 Eglinton Ave W)
-Grandma Loves You (1084 Yonge St)
-Mr. Jerk (209 Wellesley St E)