Eating in France is always a joy, for me it is the culinary capital of the world. There are markets everywhere with the freshest of everything, cheese shops, charcuteries, and fantastic baguettes. Paris is the center of eating well, and you can find anything you want to eat there. The problem is eating on a budget. Gourmet food is not exactly cheap, or so you might think. So how to eat cheap in Paris? The best way would be to go grab bread, olives and cheese with a selection of meats from any charcuterie and find a place in a nice park where you can enjoy it all with a bottle of decent French wine (you can find pretty nice wine for 3 euros).
But if you are more in for a restaurant experience, there are actually quite a few cheap places to eat in Paris. And you don’t have to sacrifice quality either. The French won’t except bad food, so you know what ever you try will be good.
How to eat cheap in Paris: A selection of the best places
A few great places to eat out cheaply in Paris:
Chartier Restaurant – 7, Rue du Faubourg Montmartre
This place is open every day of the week for lunch right through until 10pm. If you don’t mind waiting in line (there is always a line, no reservations accepted) then you will be treated to some very quality French cuisine at a fraction of what normal Paris restaurants charge. It is very typically French and you can manage 3 course here for around $20.
L’As du Falafel – 24, Rue des Rosiers
By far and away the best Falafel in the entire city. They have lots of other dishes to choose from and this place is cheap. The lines are always long as this place is really popular with students, locals and tourists alike. It is one of the cheapest lunches you will find in town.
Wenzhou – 18, Rue au Maire
Paris does not have a huge China town, like some other major cities, but the street of Rue de Marie is packed with decent Chinese fare. Wenzhou is by far the best of the lot, and you will dine well for under 10 euros. The food is authentic, delicious and inexpensive. You may not have come all the way to Paris to eat Chinese, but you can’t dine on Foie Gras every night.
Breizh Cafe – 109, Rue Vieille du Temple
Constantly voted the very best place in all of Paris to have crepes, it is no wonder that this place is so popular. The choices of crepes on the menu is fantastic and it won’t break your budget, not even a little. Personally I could have lunch here every day of the week, but they are closed on Monday and Tuesday, so perhaps make that your picnic day.
This is by no means an exhaustive list on places to try, there are actually loads of little cafes that are cheap and fantastic. Just avoid anything that looks like it was made for tourists, anything very close to major attractions, and places that have photos of food on the menu. If you see a long line at a cafe, it is probably cheap and very good.