Enable JavaScript to run this app.
Skip to Main Content
OpenTable logo
  1. Home
  2. The Best Cheap Eats
  3. The Best Cheap Eats in New York City
A photo of Cheap Eats  thumbnail

The Best Cheap Eats in New York City

New York City has a storied legacy for being home to some of the world's best restaurants. The city has amazing eateries, authentic mom-and-pop spots, trendy places for people-watching, and everything in between. Luckily, taking advantage of the best dining spots in NYC does not mean dropping a fortune—there are plenty of dining establishments with options as affordable as they are delicious. But where are the smartest, savviest diners eating out? We’ve pulled data from thousands of restaurants to find the top spots among OpenTable's most expert, seasoned diners. You’ll find everything from neighborhood gems to rooftop bars, buzzy tapas spots to airy brasseries—all vetted by the types of tastemakers who know the best spots around the city. Impress your friends and family and score a table; we wish we could join you.

A photo of Otlogo
The OpenTable Team
18 Restaurants
Updated October 01, 2021
Restaurants:Freds Madison at Barneys New York, Bar Boulud, Westlight
Price Range:$$ - $$$
Cuisines:American, French
Neighborhoods:Upper East Side, Upper West Side, Williamsburg
A photo of Freds Madison at Barneys New York restaurant

Freds Madison at Barneys New York

$$$$
American
Upper East Side
4.5
1814 reviews
When it comes to shopping in New York City, Barneys considers itself to be one of the most high-end and expensive department stores. However, luckily, the restaurant in the Madison Avenue location of Barneys is not the same. That restaurant is Freds, and its menu offers affordable bites that will refuel diners so they have more energy to try on shoes and clothes. Enjoy salads, soups, and sandwiches, or stay for dinner to have a heartier meal. Just because one is at a pricy institution for apparel does not mean that the sustenance will also break the bank.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
A photo of Bar Boulud restaurant

Bar Boulud

$$$$
French
Upper West Side
4.1
7474 reviews
Daniel Boulud is one of the most famous restauranteurs in NYC. For the best cheap eats that he has to offer, then go to Bar Boulud, the most budget version of Daniel Boulud's food. Boulud is famous for his restaurant Daniel, which originally defined the fine dining scene in New York. Bar Boulud allows more people to sample his cuisine because the prices are more reasonable and the atmosphere is more accessible. To save as much money as possible at Bar Boulud, order one of the appetizers, which can be big enough for the main course if it is not shared. Some of the best are the tarte flambee and French onion soup.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
A photo of Westlight restaurant

Westlight

$$$$
American
Williamsburg
4.6
943 reviews
For a trendy, inspiring atmosphere that also serves some cheap eats, head to Westlight. Westlight is in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, arguably the trendiest neighborhood in the entire world. Browse the menu at Westlight to find items that are affordable, like duck carnitas tacos or herb fries. Be sure to dress well here; this is a place to get seen and a place to see others, too.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Minetta Tavern restaurant

Minetta Tavern

$$$$
French
West Village
4.5
2530 reviews
Looking for historic, classic New York fare that is affordable? Minetta Tavern might just be the place. When compared to some of the more recognizable names in New York restaurants, Minetta Tavern comes in on the relatively affordable side. Order the steak tartare or the moules frites in order stick to the cheaper side of things. Minetta Tavern is a celebrity magnet, so be prepared for sightings of famous people while dining.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
A photo of Le Coucou restaurant

Le Coucou

$$$$
French
SoHo
4.7
3903 reviews
French food is the star at Le Coucou, the beloved French eatery where food comes artfully prepared and the service is reliably helpful and friendly. Le Coucou has a couple of options for cheap eats. Order the poireaux or the oysters. Le Coucou started in Paris, and moved to the very desirable and trendy neighborhood of SoHo in NYC. Head to Le Coucou for an unforgettable meal, then shop all of the stores in the fashionable shopping district.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?


Experiences available
View Experiences
A photo of Balthazar restaurant

Balthazar

$$$$
French
SoHo
4.6
7821 reviews
Balthazar is one of the most famous contemporary dining institutions in NYC, made famous by shows like Sex and the City. Today, Balthazar gets packed starting at lunchtime because they are so legendary. However, to experience what makes them so special AND save money on food, head there for breakfast. One can find the restaurant's best cheap eats on the breakfast menu and nourish oneself for the long NYC day ahead. What should people order when they go to breakfast at this French brasserie? Try the roasted pepper and caramelized onion quiche or the ham and cheese croissant. Balthazar is also in SoHo and a great starting point for exploring downtown.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
A photo of La Pecora Bianca - Midtown restaurant

La Pecora Bianca - Midtown

$$$$
Italian
Midtown East
4.6
1051 reviews
Midtown is notoriously overpriced when it comes to dining since it is an area home to a lot of business diners eating on expense accounts and tourists who are only in town to see Broadway shows. However, find a hidden gem of affordability when eating at La Pecora Bianca. This is an Italian restaurant with a bustling atmosphere that will energize and nourish simultaneously. The best deal at La Pecora Bianca is the four-course prix fixe. They serve enough food to keep people stuffed at a price that is incredibly reasonable for the area and the quality of the dishes.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
A photo of The Polo Bar restaurant

The Polo Bar

$$$$
American
Midtown East
4.8
700 reviews
People will feel like they are at a country club when they eat at The Polo Bar, but diners will not have to pay the membership dues. The Polo Bar is surprisingly reasonable for a place that adorns its walls with equestrian memorabilia and Ralph Lauren touches. The Polo Bar has a menu that ranges greatly in price. Go for the most affordable cheap eats on the menu like the pigs in a blanket with spicy mustard or the Polo Bar salad, a house classic.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
A photo of Upland restaurant

Upland

$$$$
Contemporary American
Gramercy / Flatiron
4.6
2573 reviews
Upland is another newbie on the dining scene that will allow diners to revel in the trendy crowd of the fashion capital while eating. No one would say that Upland is one of the best cheap New York restaurants. But, they MIGHT say that they are one of the most affordable hot spots in town, which means that one can go there to sample NYC's hottest dining options without having to take out a loan. When at Upland, order and share a pizza with the table. Consider brunch for something even cheaper, since people can order large portions of main dishes at brunch for lower prices.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
A photo of The Lobster Club restaurant

The Lobster Club

$$$$
Japanese
Midtown East
4.8
316 reviews
One might think that a restaurant called "The Lobster Club" is as expensive as they come. Not so with the Lobster Club in NYC, which manages to make fine dining seem like cheap eats thanks to affordable pricing on high-quality ingredients. The Lobster Club is Japanese-focused, and all of the items on the dinner menu are for sharing with other diners. Want the most affordable dining experience there? Go for lunch and order one of their popular bento boxes. The Lobster Club sits on East 53rd Street, in Midtown East.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?

A photo of Sant Ambroeus SoHo restaurant

Sant Ambroeus SoHo

$$$$
Italian
SoHo
4.7
464 reviews
Saint Ambroeus is somewhat synonymous with luxury. There are outposts of the restaurant in places like the Upper East Side, Palm Beach, and the Hamptons. However, check out the Saint Ambroeus that actually has some cheap eats by booking a table at the location in SoHo. The best way to save money when eating at fancy Saint Ambroeus is to order off the bar menu. The portions are smaller but the prices are less. Consider the Burrata or a pasta dish. People look trendy here, so make sure not to come in gym wear or an athleisure outfit when dining.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
A photo of Lafayette restaurant

Lafayette

$$$$
French
NoHo
4.5
3006 reviews
Lafayette is one of NYC's trendiest restaurants. The atmosphere in the eatery is unforgettable: the banquettes are comfortable, the ceiling is soaring, and the baked goods displayed entice people from the minute they walk in the door. Lafayette can get pricey when eating a full meal there. But to experience what the restaurant has to offer but only pay for cheap eats, go there to try out the bakery. There are cakes, tarts, loaves of bread, pastries and more, so order something hot out of the oven and take in the stunning surroundings.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?


Experiences available
View Experiences
A photo of Casa Enrique restaurant

Casa Enrique

$$$$
Mexican
Long Island City
4.7
914 reviews
Casa Enrique guests can enjoy incredible food for cheap, especially when eating lunch there. Items like guacamole, lengua (cow tongue) tacos, and chicken enchiladas are some of the standout dishes that best showcase the Mexican fare. Visit Casa Enrique in Long Island City, then take the opportunity to explore the rest of that trendy area of Queens.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
A photo of The Loyal restaurant

The Loyal

$$$$
American
West Village
4.5
585 reviews
Diners feel loyal to the food at the Loyal once they try their happy hour. While this trendy downtown eatery can get pricey, the happy hour allows customers to sample their outstanding dishes at a price that makes sense. The Loyal's Happy Hour showcases things like brandade croquettes and oysters. The restaurant features their cocktails, so don't miss the chance to imbibe when dining.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
A photo of Sea Fire Grill restaurant

Sea Fire Grill

$$$$
Seafood
Midtown East
4.7
3294 reviews
Seafood can be expensive. Why not sample some of the best at the most affordable prices possible for fine dining? The Seafire Grill finds ways to make tasting their exquisite menu of delights affordable, like their prix-fixe lunch. Head there mid-day to try it, and pay a set price for an appetizer, entree, and dessert. Sea Fire Grill is in Midtown East and convenient to destinations like Grand Central Station.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?


Takeout available
View Takeout Menu
A photo of Temple Court restaurant

Temple Court

$$$$
American
Financial District
4.6
1271 reviews
Legendary restaurateur Tom Colicchio is the mastermind behind Temple Court. Don't expect fast food prices here. But, in terms of a Tom Colicchio restaurant, this place serves up some cheap eats. One of the best ways to save money at Temple Court is to eat one of the prix fixe meals. A tasting dinner includes 5 courses. For even more cheap eats, head to the bar room where diners can eat small plates and salads at an affordable price. Temple Court is at 5 Beekman St., a historic building in TriBeCa.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?


Experiences available
View Experiences
A photo of Amaranth restaurant

Amaranth

$$$$
Mediterranean
Upper East Side
4.7
795 reviews
One of the places for best cheap eats that feels cozy and romantic is Amaranth. Amaranth is on the Upper East Side (East 62nd), and offers reasonably priced and artfully-prepared Italian food. Choose dishes like penne alla bolognese or risotto with wild mushrooms for a rich, filling meal. Amaranth offers the same quality of food as the best NYC restaurants without all the pomp and circumstance, so enjoy something that is more low-key, in addition to cheaper.

At the moment, there's no online availability within 2.5 hours of your request. Do you have another time in mind?


Experiences available
View Experiences
A photo of ABC Cocina restaurant

ABC Cocina

$$$$
Tapas / Small Plates
Union Square
4.5
2495 reviews
When looking at ABC Cocina from the outside, people see a carpet store. This makes sense since the eater is inside ABC Carpet and Home. ABC Cocina, a Latin restaurant by legendary Jean-Georges Vongerichten, is not necessarily a budget restaurant. But, compared to its sister eatery also inside the store (ABC Kitchen), it has many more cheap eats. Order something like the fish tacos or the mushroom tacos for a bite that are filling without costing a fortune. Save money at ABC Cocina and shop for home goods at ABC Carpet when leaving.

Not available on OpenTable
View More Info
  • Privacy Policy
  • Terms of Use
  • Cookies and Interest-Based Ads
  • Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information
Copyright © 2023 OpenTable, Inc. 1 Montgomery St Ste 700, San Francisco CA 94104 - All rights reserved.
OpenTable is part of Booking Holdings, the world leader in online travel and related services.
Booking LogoPriceline LogoKAYAK LogoAgoda LogoRentalcars LogoOpenTable Logo