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Cheap places to eat in Edinburgh for under a tenner

Running low on cash but still want a decent feed? We take a look at some of the best value eateries in Edinburgh

Published: February 29, 2016
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The capital has perhaps an unfair reputation for many of its eateries to be unreasonably expensive, however scratch below the surface and you quickly realise that Edinburgh's restaurant scene is so varied and extensive that it really does cater for all tastes, including for those on a budget.

So, here are some of our favourite places to grab some quality food in Edinburgh for under a tenner.

Wannaburger

(7/8 Queensferry Street, Edinburgh, EH2 4PA, tel: 0131 220 0036)

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In the West End, Wannaburger provides the city with some of its best burgers – plus shakes, Cajun fries, giant pickles, unlimited refills and US sports on big screens – and all for only a couple of quid more than McDonald’s. The bonus is that the burgers are Aberdeen Angus, the buns are from a local baker, the mayo is homemade and there are no artificial additives in anything.

Red Box Noodle Bar

(51 West Nicholson Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9DB)

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Cheap, quick, filling, formulaic and delicious, at this wonderful little Noodle Bar. You pick your noodles, pick your meat, pick your vegetables, pick your sauce, hand over £6, take your change and enjoy your dinner – at a table in the adjoining dining room or across the street on Bristo Square watching the world skateboard by.

Taste of Italy 

(9 Baxter's Place New Town Edinburgh EH1 3AF)

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Owned by the Crolla family, whose portfolio of Edinburgh eateries includes the Vittoria pizzerias and the upmarket Divino Enoteca, Taste of Italy is one of the best value eateries in the Capital.

Popular and well loved by its regulars, ToI offers all-day, casual dining with a great selection of light bites, choose from arancini, focaccia and paninis to pasta, pizza and indulgent home-made cakes and desserts, all for under a tenner.

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Also be sure to pick up their loyalty card, which will see you get a free hot drink for every eight you buy.

Kebab Mahal

(7 Nicholson Square, Edinburgh, tel: 0131 667 5214)

It would be almost impossible to create a list of cheap Edinburgh eateries that the city loves without featuring Kebab Mahal.

It may be a no-frills, glass-fronted fridge, open-till-2am kind of place, but don’t dismiss this eatery as a mere small-hours pit stop. For a start, it has held its own for more than 36 years, and taken the top prize at the Scottish Curry Awards. Not to be squandered on drunken tastebuds, the kebabs, with meat or falafel, are authentic and fresh. Basic, busy and a bargain.

Oink

( 34 Victoria St, Old Town, Edinburgh EH1 2JW, tel: 07771 968233)

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For food on the move, Oink  is unbeatable and on budget. Thanks to the whole roast pig in the window you can’t miss it, and – at £2.95 for a pile of freshly carved succulent pork in a soft roll topped with sage and onion, apple sauce, cheese sauce, chilli relish or haggis and topped with crackling – you shouldn’t. Choose from the Piglet, the Oink or the Grunter as appetite dictates.

El Toro Loco

(60 Grassmarket, Edinburgh, EH1 2JR, tel: 0131 290 2411)

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Love Mexican food? Us too. Mirroring the rise of Mexican cuisine in Glasgow, Edinburgh has no shortage of great places to get your burrito fix.

Serving up as much fun as a Cinqo de Mayo parade, El Toro Loco brings a little bit of Latin America to the Grassmarket. Have your breakfast fill of tostadas and huevos rancheros, then choose from burritos and quesadillas filled with slow cooked Scottish pork shoulder, vegetarian chilli or chipotle chicken for lunch or dinner, all finished off with a spicy Mexican mousse.

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Street Hawker

(35 Polwarth Cres, Edinburgh EH11 1HR, tel:0131 221 9906)

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The clear successor to Ninja Buns' crown - following their departure from Paradise Palms (we hope they make a return soon) - Street Hawker offer deliciously fresh street food, inspired by the hawker stalls and traders of Asia.

Malaysian coconut curry, pulled pork & black pudding steamed buns, Chicken Noodle soup; SH pull their menu from the very best an entire continent's cuisine has to offer.

Mother India’s Café

(3-5 Infirmary St, Old Town, Edinburgh EH1 1LT, tel:0131 524 9801)

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The tapas at Mother India’s Café would be worth it at twice the price. At the best Indian restaurant in the city the low prices are a mere bonus – the tapas start at £3.25, the most expensive is £5.95 and two or three are more than enough each. Don’t miss the fried dry okra with tomatoes.

Wings

(5/7 Old Fishmarket Close, Edinburgh, EH1 1RW, tel: 0131 629 1234)

Is there a simpler - or more genius - combination than chicken wings and beer in a tavern of geeky paraphernalia? Throw in all the possible sauces you can imagine; ranging from mild sauces like 'Nae Nonsense' (plain BBQ) and 'the Skywalker' (ranch) right through to 'Taps aff!' (Extremely spicey house hot sauce) and the 'Slowburner' (the house hot sauce with even more spice) and at around £3.50 for 6 wings, you have the recipe for a great night.

Mosque Kitchen

(31 Nicolson Square, Edinburgh EH8 9BX, tel:

Picture: Yelp

Picture: Yelp

Who doesn't love a cheap curry served on polystyrene plates, especially if it's made with the passion and technique on offer at Mosque kitchen. We appreciate the simplicity of the menu - as well as the value for money - with chicken, lamb and vegetable curry, all with rice, for under six quid. A city favourite, we love regular trips and can't recommend the lamb curry or saag aloo enough.

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Union of Genius

(8 Forrest Rd, EH1 2QN, tel: 0131 226 4436)

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Scotland’s first dedicated soup café, Union of Genius use take-out packaging and cutlery made from plant starch, and reward customers for bringing the packaging back so that they can compost it. With dedicated soup-mongers and the finest ingredients, this place is good for you and the environment. They offer 6 soups for lunch every day, including three seasonal specials, and keep an eye out for Union of Genius very own meals-on-wheels; their soup van affectionately known as Dumbo, serving great soups on the north west corner of George Square.

MUMS

(4a Forrest Road, Edinburgh, Telephone: 0131 260 9806)

There's something deliciously enticing about the phrase 'great comfort food', that conjures up memories of rushing home after a hard day at school to be welcomed by the aromas of your favourite meal being cooked in the kitchen by your mum. Well, imagine that memory had been snatched from your mind and recreated as a restaurant and you might come close to what's on offer at MUMS. With delicious mains like haggis and macaroni cheese closely followed by great puddings like eton mess and banana split, all cooked lovingly and delivered straight to your table. With such great food at such great value, you'll wonder why you haven't visited sooner.

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