Eating on a budget in New York City can be challenging. After all, this is a city where you can expect to pay over $250 for a burger in some places. So if you are visiting the Big Apple, but do not want to have to take out a second mortgage just so that you can eat, it pays to check out some of these less expensive venues.
Vietnamese food is healthy and tasty, and you can pick up some cheap and delicious banh mi, the Vietnamese baguettes, at Hanco’s. This mini-chain has three venues in Brooklyn, with each baguette costing between five and ten bucks. Flavours on offer include pork, chicken and sardine, as well as vegetables. For four bucks more, you can wash your sandwich down with some bubble tea.
Keeping the theme Asian, but moving into Sri Lanka rather than Vietnam, you can pick up a spicy treat from the NY Dosa Cart, in Washington Square. Here, Thiru Kumar, originally from Sri Lanka, makes lentil crepes, which retail for between three and five dollars each. Don’t worry if the spices of South Asia are sometimes a touch too hot for you, the snacks come in mild and spicy versions to suit every palate.
Another super Asian venue is the Pakistan Tea House, located on Church Street in Tribeca. This is where to go if you are feeling hungry at night, as it is open 24 hours a day. For just eight bucks you can receive a massive plate of halal and vegetable dishes. A mark of its quality is how popular the venue is with Pakistanis themselves.
If you’re in Staten Island and have a hungry hole to fill, then heading to the Island Roti Shop and Bakery, on Victory Boulevard, is a very good idea. This Trinidadian outlet offers a staple of life on the Caribbean island, by serving rotis, a kind of wrap, for around five dollars each. The beef roti is huge, and will probably do for a lunch and a tea-time snack. Make sure you order the hot sauce too, it really gives things a tasty kick.
NYC is now well-known for its trendy, and often very good, food carts. One of the original and best of these operates on the corner of 6th Avenue and 53rd Street. Known as the Halal Guys, this truck serves some huge stuffed pittas which come with a range of meaty and other fillings. While the lines are long, and often full of office workers, the service is speedy, so don’t worry about getting served. Prices start at four dollars.