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There are plenty of places to have a good mid-day meal on a budget!
In college, my friend group became obsessed with the early Food Network show $40 A Day, where celeb chef Rachel Ray visited cities across the country to try and eat great on a limited budget. As a constant seeker of a cheap lunch in my working life, I'm carrying on that same energy to this blog.
If you want to explore the great food this city has to offer but not break the bank, try these 12 places to get lunch for $10 or less.
436 Market St, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
If you're craving sushi, you have quite a few options in town. No. 1 Sushi Sushi in Market Square serves fresh sushi and homemade soup and salad. Save some cash by ordering rolls a la carte.
$10 or under choice: California roll & salmon roll combo
129 6th St, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
The authentic Turkish and Mediterranean cuisine you've come to expect from their dinner location now available for breakfast and lunch, plus a welcoming interior that you'll want to stay at all afternoon.
$10 or under choice: Potato and Sucuk Sunny Side Up Eggs (omelet with spicy beef sausage and potatoes) or the lunch poğaça (Turkish bun stuffed with cheese, tomato and sausage)
429 Forbes Ave #100, Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Apollo Cafe is the perfect place to stop if you're craving some homemade Mediterranean food. They have soups, salads, sandwiches and everything in between. This place is as quick as it gets for lunch. Dine in or take out.
$10 or under choice: Large greek salad with homemade greek salad dressing, baklava for dessert.
435 Market St, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
This local grocer has both hot food and a deli. Their lunches are far from bland and they have different hot and ready to serve lunches daily. Grab a meal or a sandwich with homemade soup and hang out in the grocery's quaint aesthetic.
$10 or under choice: Cup of daily homemade soup and a half of a sandwich.
2216 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
There's no website, just a small sign of today's specials outside of this street food vendor you can walk right by in the Strip District. However, Lucy's is perhaps my favorite hidden gem in this area with a deliciously seasoned sandwich piled with her signature sauce, cilantro, jalapeno and shredded carrots for the perfect bite.
$10 or under choice: The signature banh mi here is only $8 and a meal in itself.
1901 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
If you miss Lucy's, head into the deli at Sunseri's in the Strip instead! The pepperoni rolls here reign supreme and every sandwich here is cheap enough that you can add a cannoli and still stay under budget.
$10 or under choice: Atomic pepperoni roll or the eggplant parm sandwich
5875 Forbes Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15217
I can safely recommend Everyday Noodles for lunch because everything on this menu is so good, you'll be back for dinner to try the rest. Watch the noodles or dim sum you're about to order be made right in front of you, seasoned and cooked to perfection and enjoyed all in a quick lunch break.
$10 or under choice: Dan Dan Noodles or pork vegetable potstickers. Come back for dinner for the steamed dumplings, also made fresh in-house.
412-428 Cherry Way, Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Taste the best flavors of Argentina right here in Pittsburgh! Delicious homemade arepas (cornmeal flat bread with a variety of stuffings) plus top notch empanadas and tacos. Great vegetarian options, too.
$10 or under choice: Pabellon (shredded beef or vegetarian with plantains) arepas
2 Market Square, Pittsburgh, PA 15222 and locations throughout the city
In a culinary world where the $16 burger is becoming the norm, the sheer value you get for a gigantic Primanti Bros. sandwich is something of a miracle. This iconic Pittsburgh lunch stop still allows you to get the classics like the the Pitts-burger, capicola, pastrami and others for under $10. Piled high with cole slaw and fries, this is a complete meal that will satisfy even the hungriest appetites for
$10 or under choice: Capicola and cheese, add an egg and still say just under $10. One of the best bites in the city.
808 Penn Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
Way before I knew what vegan cuisine even was, Sree's was providing a healthy lunch full of flavor to everyone who happened by their unassuming location Downtown. Friendly owners who will recognize you after one visit, authentic flavors, and a cheap price point. There's a reason Sree's is lined with people in business casual all afternoon.
$10 or under choice: Menu changes daily, but my favorite vegan options here are their cauliflower with tomato and butter beans, vegetable kofta and green beans curry. Tuesdays and Thursdays are samosa days (get there early)!
971 Liberty Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
Have a hankering for tacos? Condado has you covered with their DIY style tacos. at $3-$4 a pop, this is probably one of the best deals for lunch.
$10 or under choice: A Dutch dragon and El Tradicional taco
301 Grant St # 3, Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Another great sushi pick in downtown has bento lunch specials that are a great bang for your buck if you're hungry and craving sushi. The bento boxes come in many different variations and are packed full.
$10 or under choice: Bento box with the spicy tuna roll and teriyaki chicken.