Paris on a Budget: Best Cheap Eats in Paris

| January 15, 2014 | 15 Comments

Although Paris has a reputation for being one of the most expensive city in the world, the rumours are now unfounded. In 2012, Paris dropped ten places in the Mercer cost of living survey. And with the Euro looking weak, now is probably pretty good time to find some cheap flights and discover the city of love on a budget.

Best Cheap eats in Paris, Eiffel Tower at Night, Paris

Eating in Paris can catch a lot of tourists out. Avoid the expensive restaurants and snooty maître d’s on the Champs Elysees and follow our guide for the best cheap eats in Paris.  Spend less on food and possibly splurge a little on a nice hotels in Paris instead!

Best Cheap Eats in Paris

Head to the Marais

Famous for its selection of ethnic eateries, the trendy Marais area of Paris is perfect for picking up a quick snack.

Check out L’As du Falafel where you can grab a flatbread filled to bursting with golden fried balls of falafel, smothered in hummus, and accompanied with red cabbage. For €4 to take away, you can’t really argue with that. If it’s too busy, simply head to Chez Hanna down the street for equally tasty food at equally low prices.

Best eats in Paris, The Louvre, Paris

Enjoy an Oriental baguette

Vietnamese food is popular in France, and nowhere can you see the fusion of two cultures more clearly than at Saigon Sandwich in the Belleville district of Paris.  Their speciality, banh mi, is a light and crusty French baguette filled with flavours of South East Asia. 

There are only a few options (poulet, bouef, maison and special) but for €3 a go you could happily sample them all.

Find French food on the cheap

Believe it or not, there are some restaurants specialising in French cuisine that won’t see you stumbling into your overdraft. Les Temps des Cerises is one of them.

Described by Yelp as a “Dive Bar”, nothing could be further from the truth.  Run by a cooperative, it attracts a distinctly bohemian crowd. The menu is small, but the food is prepared from ingredients which sing with freshness and high quality.

View from the top of Arc de Triomphe

Eat like a local celebrity …

Rumour has it that Pierre Herme, one of Paris’s most celebrated pastry chefs, makes a habit of visiting the Belleville restaurant Le Baratin. The prices are surprisingly low for the delicious Argentinian fare.

Time Out Magazine recommends the tuna carpaccio with cherries, or the spicy basque lamb. Pop in at lunch time for the prixe fix menu. At €18 for three courses it’s hard to complain.

… or eat like a local office worker

Bistro Victoires is a favourite amongst Paris’s locals. It doesn’t look like much from outside, and the wine list leaves a lot to be desired, but when you sit down to enjoy some of the best steak frites in Paris, all else will be forgiven.

Portion sizes are enormous and the waiters often remind patrons that if they order a starter, they won’t be able to tackle the main course. Despite being a popular location just steps away from the Palais Royal, it still manages to be a hidden gem.

Champs-Elysees Sunset

What are your tips for finding the best cheap eats in Paris?

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Comments (15)

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  1. Kathryn says:

    Off to Paris in March so I’ll be sure to check out some of your tips. Can’t wait!
    Kathryn recently posted..Cabo Verde Urban Photography #FriFotosMy Profile

  2. Arti says:

    I would love to go to Paris some day! And explore all the local food and just enjoy!
    Arti recently posted..A Slice of Ancient Japan: NaramachiMy Profile

  3. Bianca says:

    I’ll be in Paris in July. I’m going to be hitting the set menu lunches hard and pretty much just eating as much as possible.
    I didn’t realise Vietnamese food was popular in France. Crusty bread rolls are all over the place in Vietnam but I didn’t realise the influence went both ways.
    Bianca recently posted..Weekly Photo – Bollards on the Geelong WaterfrontMy Profile

  4. Renuka says:

    These are really valuable tips on Paris eats. I view Paris as an intimidating destination, but I guess it’s not so scary(pricey).
    Renuka recently posted..Charminar And The Charming Surrounds – A Photo EssayMy Profile

  5. Ian says:

    Excellent tips … as someone who be tackling West Europe for the first time in the next year or so, I appreciate the heads-up about where to get food that won’t break the bank! :)
    Ian recently posted..Top Destinations In CwmbranMy Profile

  6. I couldn’t believe how expensive food was in Paris, even for little crappy restaurants. Great post!
    Writing The Region recently posted..Top Things To Do In AndorraMy Profile

  7. Jeff says:

    I will be visiting Paris in near future and i will definitely use your tips.
    Jeff recently posted..Is Air Travel Really the Safest Way to Get to Your Destination?My Profile

  8. Ian says:

    That is a real beauty! Thanks for this post, now I know how to eat in Paris in a budget when I visit.

  9. I love the tips! Hopefully I can eat as much food that I like when I go there without hurting my pocket.

  10. Jasmine Brown says:

    When in Paris, do what Parisians do. Traveling is really an expensive hobby so its good that there are articles like this that help you enjoy the most out of your vacation without burning a hole in your pocket.

  11. Naomi says:

    Thank you for sharing this. I have always shunned visiting Paris because of the ‘High Cost’ rumor. I will plan a visit there very soon. I will also share this with my clients visiting Paris.
    Thank you!

  12. Tina says:

    Nice tip, This is the best time to visit Paris… :)

  13. The Marais is my favorite neighborhood on the planet. Seems like cheap eats are everywhere. Thank for reminding me. Paris, it has been a while!
    Jonathan Look, Jr. recently posted..The Beautiful Burmese PeopleMy Profile

  14. Kelly Rogers says:

    I read in many novels that food in Paris is very delicious. So now, I want to try Parisian food. And your article will be a great help. :)

  15. There are many little bistros where you can order a fixed price menu. It includes starter, main course and dessert. You can also buy delicious baguette sandwiches from any bakery for around 5 euro.
    Milena Yordanova recently posted..Musée d’OrsayMy Profile

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