Whether you are living in Tampa or you’re just planning a visit, there are so many things to love about this Sunshine State city. From clear blue waters to world-famous attractions, Tampa has it all, and you’ll find plenty of budget-friendly restaurants serving up delicious meals when you visit this vibrant city. No matter what you’re in the mood for, you’ll be able to satisfy your cravings in Tampa. Here are just a few of the best budget-friendly restaurants in Tampa that offer excellent food at excellent prices.
1. La Teresita
3248 W Columbus Dr, Tampa, FL 33607
La Teresita is by far one of the best budget-friendly restaurants in Tampa if you’re in the mood for Cuban cuisine. At La Teresita, you’ll be able to satisfy your appetite with Cuban favorites like ropa vieja, yellow rice with chicken, and grilled skirt steak. La Teresita is also home to one of the tastiest Cuban sandwiches in the city. Come for the food, enjoy the atmosphere, and leave with your belly and your wallet feeling full.
2. Mama’s Kitchen
5524 S Dale Mabry Hwy, Tampa, FL 33611
Whether you need breakfast, lunch, or dinner, you’ll be able to get your fill of your favorite foods at Mama’s Kitchen. Soups, salads, refreshing beverages, and delicious desserts are available at wallet-friendly prices that everyone can agree on, and best of all, breakfast is served all day long. From simple egg platters to shrimp scampi and steak dinners, Mama’s Kitchen offers something to satisfy your hunger at any time of day.
3. El Tipico Criollo
4721 Normandy Dr, Tampa, FL 33615
This tiny restaurant in a Town ‘N’ Country strip mall may not look like much, but it offers some of the tastiest Dominican eats in Tampa. Serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, El Tipico Criollo offers egg platters, breakfast sandwiches, smoothies, pork, chicken, beef, and seafood prepared in the traditional Dominican style. Smashed plantains and their Cuban sandwich are popular menu items, but nothing beats their chicken and yellow rice paired with black beans. Their melt-in-your-mouth empanadas are super cheap and absolutely delightful.
4. Saigon Deli
3858 W Waters Ave, Tampa, FL 33614
Say hello to Tampa’s tastiest, most affordable Vietnamese food. Savory pho infused with plenty of fresh scallions is waiting for you to enjoy. Rice noodles, vermicelli, wonton soup, and all types of pho soup come at budget-friendly prices at Tampa’s Saigon Deli. The Bahn mi and boba tea are popular favorites of Saigon Deli’s loyal customers. Saigon Deli also offers pre-packaged meals that you can take on the go and enjoy in your office or on a picnic.
5. Mel’s Hot Dogs
4136 E Busch Blvd, Tampa, FL 33617
Since 1973, Mel’s Hotdogs has been serving up one of America’s favorite foods in the best ways imaginable. If you’re planning a trip to Busch Gardens, you’re in luck. Mel’s is located near the park, so be sure to stop by and enjoy one of their unique franks loaded up with all your favorite toppings. You won’t have to shell out much money to chow down on the best hot dogs in Florida. Enjoy Mel’s Chicago-style hotdog on a poppyseed bun or go for something different and try a veggie burger. At Mel’s, there’s a dog for everyone.
6. Fresh Kitchen
4616 W Kennedy Blvd, Tampa, FL 33609
On a hot Florida day, there’s nothing more refreshing than a cold salad loaded with crisp, juicy vegetables. At Fresh Kitchen, you’ll find healthy options that you can enjoy on the go. This fast-food restaurant offers noodle bowls, rice-based dishes, salads, and cold-pressed juices that will light up your taste buds and rejuvenate your body. If you’re craving something sweet after your plant-based meal, you’ll be able to enjoy a tasty dessert made from healthy ingredients you can feel good about. Fresh Kitchen is located in Tampa’s upscale SoHo district, but you’ll find that their prices are fair and the food is high-quality.
7. Taco Bus
913 E Hillsborough Ave, Tampa, FL 33604
The only thing better than tacos is tacos that come from a food truck. While Taco Bus has expanded to include two standing restaurants, you can get your taco fix at the original food truck on Hillsborough Avenue. Taco Bus came to town over twenty years ago before food trucks were cool, but it was instantly loved by everyone. Fresh ingredients, authentic recipes, and tortillas made with love make it hard not to enjoy the delicious food offered at Taco Bus.