Cheap eats are hard to find, I get it. I'm with you on that but there is no reason to be spending your whole paycheque on food. I mean, there is a reason, but it's not necessary.

If you really do your research, you'll come to find that you can find amazing food in Ottawa for a cheap price. When people think of cheap, they think it must not be good. Wrong. So wrong. Have you ever had a pretzel or a hotdog from a street vendor? Exactly.

Anyways, you don't need to sacrifice your taste buds just because you can't spend loads of money on food. All you need to do is follow this list and your wallet will thank me later. Here are the 12 best places to find a delicious meal for under $12 in Ottawa:

via @bytown.bites

1. La Cabaña // 848 Merivale Road

La Cabaña offers Salvadoran cuisine which is unreal. Their menu offers a wide variety of Salvadoran food, but this restaurant is known for their Pupusas, which are only $3 a plate. However, if you want a bigger meal, they have plenty of seafood and off the grill dishes that are $12 and under.

via @kimeatsottawa

2. Hintonburger // 1096 Wellington Street West

The Hintonburger, which is shown above, is a bacon and cheese burger that costs $12. This is a meal in itself, considering it's so hearty and filling. However, if you're looking for more, they have a meal deal that gets you a 3 oz burger, fries and a drink for $9.50. They have plenty of other options as well that aren't burgers that will still be under the $12 budget.

via @yettyskitchen

3. YKO Chicken BBQ // 375 McArthur Avenue

This is the best chicken in Ottawa, hands down. For $12 you can get a meal that consists of 1/4 chicken, rice, and plantains. This hearty meal will make you so full but also wanting it every single day of the year.

via @bytown.bites

4. Sam's Cafe // 102 Fairmont Avenue

This little Thai cafe is a hidden gem in a convenience store. Now, don't get the wrong impression, because the food is impeccable. I'd recommend the Classic Vietnamese Banh mi sandwich, or the green, red, or yellow curry. Hungry yet?

via @la_kay88

5. Di Rienzo // 111 Beech Street

The sandwiches, custom sandwiches and pasta are all $5.31. The pastries are $2.21. No, you're not reading this wrong. You can get a full meal at Di Rienzo's for under $12. Di Rienzo's is amazing because it's all homemade and you can taste how fresh all the ingredients are.

via @allytedesco

6. Perfection-Satisfaction-Promise // 167 Laurier Avenue

Perfection-Satisfaction-Promise is a vegetarian restaurant that has all different kinds of options. Most of their options are under $12, and I'd recommend the Plain Jane burger as well as the vegetable chickpea curry. Yum!

via @gabyfauchon

7. Soul Stone Sushi Grill and Bar // 2701 St Joseph Boulevard

Soul Stone's sushi menu is more than amazing. Their sushi is delicious, but it's also super affordable. Depending on the maki/roll you get, you can get two rolls or you can splurge on one for a higher price. No matter what you get, it's still so worth it and will mostly be under $12.

via @cpbm17

8. Good Eats // 388 Albert Street

Good Eats is an amazing restaurant that is vegan and vegetarian friendly. They're open for breakfast and lunch, and the most expensive item on the menu is $8. Their sandwiches are to die for, and they offer gluten-free bread as well, so I recommend trying that if you're in the mood for something light.

via @ottawabagelshop

9. Ottawa Bagel Shop and Deli // 1321 Wellington Street West

These Montreal style bagels are one of a kind. Most of their bagels are around $6-$8 dollars, but they do have some splurge items that are more expensive. They have options that everyone will enjoy and you'll want to stop by every morning before work.

via @jordanracine

10. Pho Thu Do // 3987 Riverside Drive

This Vietnamese restaurant is located in Chinatown and is beyond delicious. Most of their items are under $12 unless you're super hungry and want to go for a large bowl of Pho. But other than that, it's all super affordable and you can even mix and match cheaper items to get an array of flavours.

via @loulanguyen

11. Tomaso Grilled Pizza and Panini // 450 Kanata Avenue

Tomaso Grilled Pizza and Panini is a great place to go for cheap but delicious eats. For under $12 you can get a small pizza, a plate of pasta or a panini. If you're going with friends, you could even split a large pizza and grab some other sides too. No matter what you order, you won't regret it.

via @jeremymaclaine

12. Brampton Authentic Indian Food // 178 Meadowlands Drive

Brampton Authentic Indian Food is a little hole in the wall restaurant, but don't let that scare you. They have amazing options that come vegetarian as well. They also carry other items for those who are picky eaters but still want an Indian twist. You can get a full meal for under $12 and your taste buds will thank you.

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