Tasty, Cheap Eats in New York
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Tasty, Cheap Eats in New York
Cavan Images/Getty Images
Gray's Papaya, 2090 Broadway
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Gray's Papaya

2090 Broadway
New York, NY 10023
Neighborhood: Upper West Side
Phone: (212) 799-0243
For the quintessential New York hot dog, head to Gray's Papaya, where a frankfurter with spicy mustard costs $1.25. Got a bigger appetite? Order the Recession Special: two franks and one drink for $3.50.

Bánh Mì Saigon, 198 Grand St.
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Bánh Mì Saigon

198 Grand St.
New York, NY 10013
Neighborhood: Little Italy
Phone: (212) 941-1541
Vietnamese food in Little Italy? Yes, indeed. Bánh Mì Saigon offers one of the city's best bargains with its cheap, flavorful sandwiches. The foot-long bánh mì Saigon (pork) sandwich is $6.25.

Oasis, 161 N. 7th St.
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Oasis

161 N. 7th St.
Brooklyn, NY 11211
Neighborhood: Williamsburg
Phone: (718) 218-7607
This hipster magnet serves cheap falafel and shawarma sandwiches until the wee hours of the morning. It's still only $4 for a fresh, crispy, fried-chickpea sandwich with all the veggie toppings you can squeeze in — a price that's held since 2015.

Peter Pan Donut and Pastry Shop, 727 Manhattan Ave.
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Peter Pan Donut and Pastry Shop

727 Manhattan Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11222
Neighborhood: Greenpoint
Phone: (718) 389-3676
Anyone who has ever been to this beloved Brooklyn doughnut bakery comes back for the quality. The low prices are just the icing on the éclair. The specialty here is the cake doughnut, which comes in many flavors and is touted by many customers as the best they've ever had. Doughnuts start at $1.10 a pop.

Big Wong King, 67 Mott St.
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Big Wong King

67 Mott St.
New York, NY 10013
Neighborhood: Chinatown
Phone: (212) 964-0540
It might take longer to read the menu at this cheap New York restaurant than to eat whatever Chinese dish you've ordered. Among the more than 100 options at Big Wong King are duck congee for $4.50 and wonton soup for $3.75.

Tanoreen, 7523 Third Ave.
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Tanoreen

7523 Third Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11209
Neighborhood: Bay Ridge
Phone: (718) 748-5600
Eat enough Middle Eastern appetizers and you don't need to spring for a main dish. At Tanoreen, you can have your fill of tasty and cheap dishes such as eggplant with tomato and basil for $13 or grape leaves stuffed with lamb for $10.

Sugar Sweet Sunshine Bakery, 126 Rivington St.
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Sugar Sweet Sunshine Bakery

126 Rivington St.
New York, NY 10002
Neighborhood: Lower East Side
Phone: (212) 995-1960
Do you have a giant sweet tooth and a small budget? Skip the "Sex and the City"-inflated prices at the cupcake place across town. At Sugar Sweet Sunshine Bakery, scrumptious flavors such as pistachio, peppermint chocolate, and red velvet sell for $2.75 each or $1.50 for the mini size.

Tacos Matamoros, 4508 Fifth Ave.
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Tacos Matamoros

4508 Fifth Ave.
Brooklyn, NY 11220
Neighborhood: Sunset Park
Phone: (718) 871-7627
This cash-only joint in Sunset Park has delicious, super-cheap Mexican fare and a BYOB policy. Tacos Matamoros serves large chicken, beef, or pork tacos for $3 each. With those prices, the $9.50 burritos feel like a splurge.

Xi'an Famous Foods, 41-10 Main Street
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Xi'an Famous Foods

41-10 Main Street
Basement Stall #36
Queens, NY 11355
Neighborhood: Flushing
The competition is hot for the best budget Asian noodles in New York, but Xi'an Famous Foods is a serious contender. Try the hand-pulled noodles starting at $6.50 or a spicy cumin lamb burger for $5 in the Golden Shopping Mall food court. If Flushing is too far away, there are plenty other locations listed on the chain's website.

Empanada Mama, 765 Ninth Ave.
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Empanada Mama

765 Ninth Ave.
New York, NY 10019
Neighborhood: Theater District/Hell's Kitchen/Midtown West
Phone: (212) 698-9008
It's hard to beat the quality for the price at Empanada Mama. Among the many varieties of the namesake dish are cheese steak and Viagra (seafood). Some can be made with corn flour instead of wheat or oven-baked instead of fried. Prices start at $4 per piece.

2 Bros. Pizza, 32 St. Mark's Place
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2 Bros. Pizza

32 St. Mark's Place
New York, NY 10003
Neighborhood: East Village
Phone: (212) 777-0600
Slap a buck on the counter at 2 Bros. Pizza in the East Village, or one of 10 other locations, and a fresh, steaming slice is yours. For a full meal, grab two slices and a soda for $3.

Related: Best Hole-in-the-Wall Pizza Joints Across America

Petey's Burger, 30-17 30th Ave.
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Zaragoza, 215 Avenue A
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Zaragoza

215 Avenue A
New York, NY 10009
Neighborhood: East Village
Phone: (212) 780-9204
Some of the best cheap burritos in New York are found at this Mexican deli and grocery in Alphabet City. An enormous burrito filled with meat, cheese, and mouthwatering sauces costs only $6.

Vanessa's Dumpling House, 118A Eldridge St.
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Vanessa's Dumpling House

118A Eldridge St.
New York, NY 10002
Neighborhood: Chinatown
Phone: (212) 625-8008
Dumplings cross culinary boundaries. If it's the Chinese variety you crave, turn to Vanessa's Dumpling House. A full plate loaded with dumplings costs $5 or less and delicious sesame pancakes are $1.25 each.

Prosperity Dumpling, 46 Eldridge St.
Prosperity-Dumpling/facebook.com

Prosperity Dumpling

46 Eldridge St.
New York, NY 10002
Neighborhood: Chinatown
Phone: (212) 343-0683
There's no shortage of cheap dumplings in this neighborhood. Prosperity Dumplings features deliciously cheap fried pork and chive dumplings for $1 each. Make sure to hit the ATM first: It's cash only.

Shake Shack, 11 Madison Ave.
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Shake Shack

11 Madison Ave.
New York, NY 10010
Neighborhood: Flatiron District
The city's best-known burger has spread to locations around the world, but this is the original. The single Shack Burger, with its Danny Meyer pedigree, costs less than $6. Plan to wait on line in Madison Square Park — go online to check the Shack Cam and wait for the crowd to thin.

Tasty Hand-Pulled Noodles, 1 Doyers St.
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Tasty Hand-pulled Noodles

1 Doyers St.
New York, NY 10013
Neighborhood: Chinatown
Phone: (212) 791-1817
Slurp up ultra-cheap Chinese cuisine at Tasty Hand-Pulled Noodles, where enormous portions of eponymous noodle soups start at $6.25. Meat and veggie options are available.

Punjabi Grocery and Deli, 114 E. 1st St.
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Punjabi Grocery and Deli

114 E. 1st St.
New York, NY 10009
Neighborhood: East Village
Phone: (212) 533-3356
This under-the-radar place serves tasty, homemade, all-vegetarian Indian food 24 hours a day. Look for the taxis parked out front, just north of Houston Street near Avenue A, while hungry drivers procure a taste of home. Meal prices start at $5 for two helpings of vegetarian dishes such as chana masala and paneer over rice or bread.

Joe's Shanghai, 136-21 37th Ave.
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Joe's Shanghai

136-21 37th Ave.
Queens, NY 11354
Neighborhood: Flushing
Phone: (718) 539-3838
You can hardly go wrong with cheap Chinese when you're in Queens. Joe's Shanghai is the place for delicious dishes such as an eight-piece order of steamed pork buns ($8) or Peking-style minced pork noodle soup ($8.25), also available at the restaurant's Chinatown location.

Rakka Cafe, 81 St. Mark's Place
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Rakka Cafe

81 St. Mark's Place
New York, NY 10003
Neighborhood: East Village
Phone: (212) 982-9166
This East Village gem is a go-to spot for cheap, fast, fresh Middle Eastern food. The best deal on the menu at Rakka Cafe is a falafel sandwich loaded with homemade salads, veggies, pickles, and house-made tahini and hot sauce. One of these will keep you full for a night out at the nearby bars for just $4.

Ray's Candy Store, 113 Avenue A
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Wo Hop, 17 Mott St.
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Wo Hop

17 Mott St.
New York, NY 10013
Phone: (212) 962-8617
Neighborhood: Chinatown
This late-night Chinatown staple offers some of the most beloved, authentic Chinese fare in the city. The menu features bargains including six fried dumplings for $5.25 and Hunan crispy sliced pork for $9. Virtually everything is less than $12, making this a perfect spot to fill up after a night of munchie-inducing bar hopping.

Wah Fung No 1, 79 Chrystie St.
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Wah Fung No 1

79 Chrystie St. 
New York, NY 10002 
Phone: (212) 925-5175
Neighborhood: Lower East Side
This neighborhood haunt is famed for low prices and long lines. There's no seating (grab food to go), but many find it worth the wait for a $4.50 lunch box that comes with roast pork or chicken, rice or noodles, and veggies.