Whether for business or pleasure, lunch in Seattle doesn’t have to break the bank. In fact, there are several options for less than $10.
Think the only way to cut down on the cost is to bring it in a brown bag, find a fast food value menu of regret or just skip it altogether? Think again Seattleites. Our fair city has tons of midday grub options at affordable prices and they don’t involve a drive through. With a few simple tricks and a little research, the indulgence of restaurants doesn’t have to be a drain on your wallet. You can save money without sacrificing the experience by knowing where to go:
- Join the club. Many places have loyalty or punch card programs, and if you are eating out a lot, these can add up quickly and you could score three or four free lunches every month.
- Split the difference. With large portions, à la carte add-ons and combo specials all over the place, whether you’re dining with a co-worker or a date, look at the menu together and see if there are some menu items that you want to team up on, or even literally split down the middle.
- Make it special. Many places have weekly specials, some every day of the week. Some will even offer a two-for-one option, so keep an eye out and plan your lunch dates accordingly.
Check out this list of area favorites for an affordable lunch and see if your favorite spot made the cut.
Ezell’s Famous Chicken
501 23rd Ave.
Seattle, WA 98122
People who have eaten at Ezell’s Chicken swear that it is the best fried chicken around. You’ll have to judge for yourself, but it is definitely tasty Southern food that is gentle on the wallet. Here you’ll find the usual: fried chicken, chicken strips, gizzards and livers, mashed potatoes, cole slaw, baked beans, fresh rolls, sweet potato pie and peach cobbler. Nothing fancy, just delicious.
1908 Pike Place
Seattle, WA 98101
Located in the Pike Place Market is a small yet delightful bakery serving up sweet and savory Russian fare. Piroshky is pretty much all this spot does, but it does it well with such choices as chicken, mushroom and rice, Bavarian sausage, beef and cheese, beef and onion, ham and cheese, smoked salmon, cheddar cheese and garlic, apple cinnamon roll, cherry white chocolate, chocolate cream hazelnut, cream cheese vatrushka and even more! With all of those options to choose from, it will be $10 well spent on lunch.
1401 3rd Ave.
Seattle, WA 98101
Wild Ginger serves an amazing blend of Chinese and Asian dishes and is a great place for a business lunch or a casual bite. While its prices can get pretty high depending on what you are looking for, its satays (skewered and grilled chicken, scallops, prawns, lamb, beef, vegetable and more) are reasonably priced. They are served with a “cake” of rice and pickled cucumbers.
1253 Thomas St.
Seattle, WA 98109
For your own experiment, try out the gourmet “Mac & Greens” at LunchBox Laboratory. This special includes your standard macaroni and cheese (cheddar and American) with a Southlake Caesar salad for just under $10. You get to choose one topping as well from jalapenos, sour cream, bacon, sautéed mushrooms, ground beef, green chilies, or the “Rinds of Life” crisps. The hearty lunch should tide you over until dinner no problem.
305 Harrison St.
Seattle, WA 98109
Located at Seattle Center’s Armory is the simply named “Pie” serving nothing but personal-size pies filled with all kinds of goodness. The mini pies are created fresh every morning and the selection varies from day to day. Enjoy a savory pie with a local beer or a dessert pie with ice cream during your lunch break for a delicious meal that’s friendly on your wallet.
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Jeffrey Totey is a freelance writer living in Seattle. He has a love for the arts and is a student of pop culture. He covers stories about the performing arts, theater, museums, cultural events, movies and more in the greater Seattle area. His work can be found at Examiner.com.