Top 10 cheap restaurants in San Francisco

Kaplan Students guide to cheap eats in San Francisco

We admit that finding a cheap and delicious restaurant in the biggest city of California is not easy. But nothing is impossible for Kaplan International Colleges. We have asked our students at our San Francisco school to give us their favourite places in  and we came up with a 10 top list, just for you. Tasty doesn’t have to be expensive, just follow the guide…

1. Yamo

The Burmese food at Yamo is delicious and the portions are big enough to fill you for hours. All dishes are extremely cheap: you can't really beat a great dish for $6! Our students recommend the tea leaf salad, the curry beef with noodles and the samusas. Enjoy!

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2. Tonga Room Hurricane Restaurant & Bar

This bar/restaurant is one of most famous Tiki establishments in San Francisco. The place offers Asian cuisine with a hint of Hawaiian flavors. This kitschy restaurant will blow you away not only for its food and drinks, but also for its music, as the live band plays every single night.  In short, the Tonga Room is all about the experience!

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3. Café Abir

This great little café is the perfect place to get a sandwich and relax. All of the sandwiches are under $7 and they all come with a beer or Italian soda. With its very comfy couches, free WiFi and multiple plugs, this place has become very popular among students and young workers! Join the fun!

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4. Ella’s

If you thought that “brunch” and “pricey” were married for life, think again. At Ella's, you can have a full brunch for under $15. The chicken hash, served with eggs and toast is a must. For your sweet tooth, try the sweet potato pancakes with maple pecan butter. A delight.

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5. Tu Lan

Tu Lan is usually described as “a hole in the wall”: the restaurant is not sophisticated, but the food surely is! Tu Lan manages to give an American spin to its great Vietnamese dishes AND stay cheap. The food is always fresh, portions are huge and most dishes are under $6. What else could you wish for?

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6. Eden’s Mediterranean Turkish and Greek Restaurant

This restaurant is a one-man show, but the chef is exceptional, so the wait is worth it. If you can’t choose, go for the $10.99 mixed grill and try a variety of dishes, including the kofte and lamb kebabs. Our students recommend the falafel wrap, deep fried seasoned chick pea patties with tomato, cucumber, and lettuce and tahini sauce for only $6. A delight!

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7. Angkor Borei

If you have never tried Cambodian food, pay a visit to Angkor Borei. This restaurant offers fresh and high-quality food with dishes that have a different flare from the ordinary Asian food. The Mock Chicken is one of our students’ favourites: tender and seasoned to perfection, you can’t go wrong by ordering it! Don’t forget to try the deserts: the black sticky rice with mango is to die for!

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8. D&A Café

This place offers an eclectic and authentic Chinese soul food menu with dishes all under $5. Singapore chow fun should definitely be on your try-list: the flat noodles accompanied with chicken, sprouts, shrimp, and tender beef cubes are definitely unforgettable. The iced milk is only $1.38. If you want cheap, authentic, and delicious Chinese food, D&A is the place to go. Bonus: During happy hours, the food and drinks are even cheaper.

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9. The Broken Record

The food at The Broken Record is just amazing: not only is it cheap, fresh and tasty, but the cozy atmosphere has a vibe you won’t forget any time soon. With the Mac & cheese with bacon, practically melting in your mouth, you’re in for a ride. In short, with most of the food for $6-$10, this bar is just magical.

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10. Taqueria El Castillito

If we tell you that Taqueria El Castillito serves the best burritos in town, we mean it. The portions are huge and the fresh and well-prepared ingredients won’t disappoint you. Because the meat is grilled in front of you, your burrito will never be cold. We’ve heard the super chicken quesadilla is to die for…anyone else tried it?

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Got any other helpful tips for Kaplan students in San Francisco? Leave a comment to share them with other readers.

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