Top 10 Cheap Eats in Ottawa

Empty wallet, empty stomach? Don’t despair. Many delicious bites can be had with little more than a few toonies. Here are our ten favourites.

Whalesbone Elgin

#Haddock catch of the day brown bag lunch at @thewhalesboneonelgin 🎣

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From 11:30AM-4:30PM each day, the Whalesbone location on Elgin Street serves up famous brown bag lunches, featuring an ever-changing “Catch o’ the Day” cut of fish on a bun for approximately $10. Whalesbone prides itself on fresh seafood and and its usually one of our favourite sandwiches in the city. If you’re in the mood to splurge, for a couple dollars more, you can try their other rotating lunch specials or fish n’ chips.

Price: $10/Catch o’ The Day brown bag lunch, $13.50/Fish n’ Chips

Shawarma Palace

We’ve tried many shawarma places in Ottawa, but none beats the palace. While shawarma may be known to some as a means to prevent a hangover, shawarma here deserves your full, sober attention. Both the beef and chicken varieties are packed with flavours and never teeter on the too-dry side of things. For a real treat, and provided no one will need to smell your breath for the next couple of days, get potatoes on the side with extra garlic sauce.

Price: $5-7/shawarma sandwich, 5$ for garlic potatoes; 15$/ shawarma platter

Quê Hùóng

$5 well spent. #banhmi #quehuong

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Pay a visit to this tiny Vietnamese eatery for homey, no-fuss cheap Vietnamese staples like bánh mì sandwiches or lemongrass beef on vermicelli.

Price: 5$ for subs, under 8$ for vermicelli bowls.

New Pho Bo Go La

Whether it be 4pm or 4am, the only obstacle to satisfying a craving for pho is deciding between the never-ending options of restaurants with startlingly similar names. This one serves our favourite bowl, with a fragrant broth and all of the fixins. We’d also recommend their BBQ Pork Rice Wraps ($5.50).

Price: $8.50 for a “small” bowl; $5.50 for BBQ pork rice wraps (2)

La Bottega

This quaint Italian grocer has been selling great-value panini at the back of their shop to for years. Quality bread, cold cuts, cheese and toppings (e.g. spicy eggplant) make for generous, custom made, meat-filled, hunger-satisfying sandwiches.

Price: 6$/sandwich

Di Rienzo

14 with the spicy eggplant, one of my favourite lunches in #Ottawa #dirienzo

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This family-run grocer in Little Italy is known for their cheap custom made sandwiches, and tasty, no-fuss pasta (served to-go in styrofoam containers). A special trip on weekends is worth it for Italian pastries (“leave the gun, take the cannoli”), imported from Montreal.

Price: under 6$ for sandwiches and pasta; 2$+ for pastries

Pataterie Hulloise

While it’s hard to find poutine that beats one you’d find in a small Quebec town that has an unrecognizable name, La Pataterie Hulloise knows all of the secrets to a good poutine: fresh fries with multiple layers of tasty gravy and audibly squeaky cheese curds.

Price: $5.45 for a medium classic poutine

Bread and Sons

This cozy bakery serves our favourite pizza by the slice (also available at the Bank Street location of Herb & Spice). Their thin crust slices with creative toppings like ricotta, kale or squash make for a satisfying quick lunch. They also happen to serve one of the tastiest cookies in the city – it’s warm, chewy, and chocolaty with candied orange and likely also contain some of what dreams are made of.

Price: under 5$ for a pizza slice; about $2.50 for their Perfect Cookie

So Good

The best #tofu in #Ottawa #sogood

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King of pan-asian cuisine, made to satisfy the Canadian palate, So Good offer up tasty treats like salt and pepper tofu (bet you can’t eat just one). It’s…so good?

Price: Fried tofu with pepper-salt: $10.95

Alirang

One of our all time favourite spots in Ottawa for delicious Korean food. Our mouths water at the thought of bibimbap, gamjatang, and their bulgogi or spicy pork.
Price: 8 – 20$

Other favourites: Kothu Rotti, YKO, El Camino and Datsun windows, Corazon de Maiz, La Cabana, Meatpress, Sansotei.

*Prices are approximate and may change with time

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