If you’re like me, you absolutely love trying cheap eats that are also super yummy. Vancouver is a city that is filled with delicious food, especially when it comes to Asian cuisine. I’ve compiled a list of some of the best cheap eats in Vancouver and I’m here to share it with you!
Every place on this list will be under $20 per person if you order what I normally get. There’s no need to always eat at expensive restaurants in the city because these eats are easier on your wallet and JUST as tasty – if not better!
Here is a list of some of my FAVORITE places that serve the BEST CHEAP EATS IN VANCOUVER!
First up, we have Wang’s Shanghai Cuisine in Vancouver. I grew up eating here, as I lived right around the corner from it and I used to walk to get dumplings here ALL THE TIME.
This is my FAVORITE place to eat in Vancouver, hands down! A lot of my recipes on my blog are actually inspired by them.
They wrap their xiao long bao (soup dumplings) fresh on the spot in the corner of the restaurant and you can always see someone wrapping through the window. They also hand-pull all their noodles, which is why it’s always extra delicious!
Here are some of my favorite dishes:
Xiao Long Bao (XLB/Steamed Pork Soup Dumplings) ($6.75)
Hands down the BEST XLB in the city! Always freshly made and the soup inside is amazing.
Dom and I are complete opposites when it comes to how we like our XLB. I love eating mine with black vinegar, whereas Dom is more of a soy sauce person.
What do you prefer with your dumplings? Let me know in the comments down below!
Deep Fried Pork Chop Noodle Soup (Pai Gu Mian) ($10.75)
This is Dom’s favorite dish here. It’s perfect if you want more of a soupy and hot dish. Their fried pork chop is perfectly crispy on the outside, and juicy and tender on the inside. The soup is made to perfection and just warms you up inside!
Shanghai Style Pan-Fried Noodles ($11.95)
Wang’s Shanghai Noodles are easily the best I’ve ever had. I actually have a similar recipe on my blog if you want to try making it at home! You can also ask for no meat if you are vegetarian. This is a must if you come to Wang’s!
Veggie Buns ($7.25)
The Veggie Buns here are a great option if you are vegetarian. They are fluffy on the outside, super flavorful on the inside.
Even Dom, who usually only eats meat dishes, loves this which means it’s absolutely amazing! It reminds both of us of our childhood and there’s nothing else like it.
With how authentic, tasty and cheap this restaurant is, it definitely tops my list of the BEST CHEAP EATS IN VANCOUVER!
Next we have Hawker’s Delight Deli! This place is SO good and has amazing vegetarian options. It’s a hole in the wall restaurant and is truly a hidden gem. They serve Singaporean/Malaysian street food and not many people know about it, but it’s super yummy and I HIGHLY recommend it!
Nasi Goreng ($12.49)
This is my absolute FAVORITE dish here. It’s a fried rice dish filled with fresh ingredients and amazing flavors. You can choose between spicy or non spicy, and you can also add fried egg on top for just $2, which I always do!
Vegetable Fritters ($1.99)
Crispy and crunchy on the outside, filled with yummy vegetables on the inside. You get 2 per order (what a great deal!) and is the perfect portion for an appetizer.
Roti Prata ($3.00)
The Roti here is really amazing. The perfect balance between fluffy and chewy, and comes with a delicious curry dipping sauce.
Every time Dom and I come here it brings us back to when we traveled around Southeast Asia for 4 months. The flavors are on point and I love the homey vibe! Some other popular dishes here include the Fried Kuey Teow, Hainanese Chicken Rice and Mee Goreng.
Dooboo is one of my favorite Korean restaurants because it’s reasonably priced, portions are good and the food is consistently delicious! Their tofu soup is my favorite and the interior decor is super cute. It’s also a family owned small business!
Soft Tofu Soup
This is my favorite dish by far!! The tofu is so soft and the soup is really flavorful. It comes with stone pot rice, and they pour barley tea on the crispy scorched rice to soften it and create a soup that is so delicious and refreshing.
Bibimbap is a classic Korean dish where the rice is served in a hot stone bowl. It comes with seasoned vegetables, marinated beef, egg, seaweed and kimchi – and you mix all of these ingredients together in the stone bowl.
Quick tip: Make sure you let the rice crisp up a bit along the edges of the bowl first before mixing!
If you don’t eat beef or meat, you can substitute the beef with tofu and it’s equally as delicious.
I love Korean Seafood Pancakes! Served on a hot sizzling platter, this dish is crispy on the outside, soft and flavorful on the inside. Made with assorted seafood and green onions, this dish is perfect for sharing if you come with your family or friends!
Like many Korean restaurants, Dooboo’s side dishes (banchan) are free and bottomless! Their kimchi and fish cakes are my personal favorites.
Banh Mi Saigon is the BEST place to get banh mi in Vancouver – trust me!
I’ve been coming here since I was in high school and it’s still just as good after all these years. It’s affordable, delicious, and the staff are so friendly! The sandwiches are huge so it’s really worth the money.
They also serve really good Vietnamese iced coffee and iced desserts that are super yummy!
Special – Dac Biet ($6.50)
My GO-TO order! It’s packed with ham, cheese, meatballs, meat loaf, pate, homemade mayo, soy sauce and vegetables.
The bun is perfect and fresh – slightly crunchy and flakey exterior and a soft interior. There are so many delicious ingredients inside that each bite is filled with flavor!
Veggie – Chay ($6.00)
This sandwich is super refreshing as it’s packed with tons of veggies. It includes tofu, cooked veggies, homemade mayo, soy sauce and vegetables.
I prefer having the Veggie sandwich if I’m eating it for breakfast, and the Special if I’m having lunch.
Chinatown BBQ has been serving delicious Chinese BBQ meats and award-winning beef brisket curry in the heart of Vancouver’s historic Chinatown for many years.
All of their chefs are traditionally trained in Chinese cooking styles and techniques for an authentic Chinese BBQ experience. It’s always delicious, affordable and authentic!
TWO BBQ ITEMS ON STEAMED RICE ($13.50)
Every time I come here, I always order the Two BBQ Items on Steamed Rice – it’s the best bang for your buck!
My favorites combos are:
Roasted Pork with BBQ Duck
BBQ Pork with Soy Chicken
The meat is always so juicy and tender and packed with flavor, while the portions make it perfect to bring to go!
New Town Bakery is one of the most OG spots – IYKYK!
They serve amazing baos and delectable egg tarts. Being a family run bakery, their Chinatown location has been operating since the 1980s, with another location in Surrey. Their Richmond location was also extremely popular but has closed – with plans to open a new branch in Richmond in the future.
It’s also worth noting that they do not operate the “Original New Town Bakery” on Cambie St.
At their Chinatown branch, you can either dine in or choose to take their bakery goods to go. I love buying their frozen baos and steaming it at home. They have lots of vegetarian options as well, which is great!
Check out their lunch time and brunch (dim sum) deals, it’s my favorite time to come dine in!
Egg Tarts x4 ($2.00 each = $8.00)
My absolute favorite things to get at New Town Bakery are their pastries. Their egg tarts have a fluffy and flakey crust and the insides are soft and sweet. They run out pretty fast so come earlier in the day so that you have more selection – they are SUPER popular!
Apple Tarts x2 ($2.00 each = $4.00)
These are another one of New Town’s most popular sweet pastries. Their Apple Tarts have a flakey, sugary crust and have chunks of fresh apples inside. It’s perfect with coffee in the morning or for dessert after your meal!
Pan Fried Rice Noodle with Beef ($11.50)
I love getting this dish whenever I come for lunch because it’s a large portion which means it’s perfect for sharing! It has tons of beef on top and also comes with a drink – I usually get iced lemon tea.
I also have a recipe for this dish if you want to learn how to make it at home! The key to a really good Pan Fried Rice Noodle (Chao He Fen) is the oil.
Restaurants are always super generous with their oil, that’s why it’s always so good!
Steamed Pork Bun ($3.25)
Definitely one of their most famous foods, the Steamed Pork Bun is absolutely delicious. With Cha Shao (BBQ Pork) on the inside, it’s both savory and slightly sweet and the bun is SO fluffy! I can’t emphasize this enough, the fluffiness and texture of the bun is so important to a good bao and New Town does it right.
Steamed Veggie Bun ($3.50)
The veggie baos are a good option if you are vegetarian and this is actually one of my personal favorites. I prefer it over the pork option because it’s lighter, but you honestly can’t go wrong with any of their baos!
Deluxe Steamed Bun ($4.25)
This is the bao that they are most famous for. It has everything inside that you could want in a bun – chicken, pork, ham and egg yolk. It’s literally the size of my face! The bun is very fluffy and the inside is super juice – it’s just SO GOOD. If you like baos, you need to check out their Da Bao!
Pho Goodness is one of my FAVORITE pho restaurants in Vancouver. There are so many good pho places in Vancouver and while there isn’t anything particularly special about Pho Goodness, it’s just our personal favorite because it’s so consistently yummy!
However, if you are visiting Vancouver you don’t necessarily need to go out of your way to try it because there are so many great pho places, such as Little Minh’s Kitchen, Truong Thanh Restaurant on Kingsway, and Pho 68 Edmonds.
They have two locations: one in Mount Pleasant and one in Downtown on Davie St.
Most of their entrees are under $15, making it one of the best cheap eats in Vancouver.
Goi Gun Dac Biet (House Special Roll) – ($7.50)
Their House Special Roll is a MUST try, I get this EVERY time I come here. It’s a spring roll wrapped inside a classic Vietnamese salad roll. Salad rolls are one of my favorite things to order at Vietnamese restaurants but after trying Pho Goodness’ House Special Roll, my mind was blown and I can never go back!
Com Ga Nuong Trung Op La (Grilled Lemongrass Chicken with Fried Egg) – ($14.25)
Their Grilled Lemongrass Chicken with Fried Egg is another one of my favorite dishes. The chicken is always so fresh and juicy and flavored to perfection. The fried egg is a nice touch!
Pho Dac Biet (Special Beef Noodle Soup) – ($13.95)
This is Dom’s favorite at Pho Goodness. It’s their House Special Beef Noodle Soup with rare beef, brisket, beef balls, and tripe. They also offer a Spicy Peanut Satay soup option with their pho for $1.75 extra, making the soup spicy and unique.
This is a popular choice and what sets their pho apart from other places.
They also have REALLY delicious chilli oil that you can add to all your food!
It’s worth noting that Pho Goodness only accepts cash or debit, so make sure you are prepared!
Next up is Cafe Xu Hue, which easily has the BEST Bun Bo Hue in the Lower Mainland.
It’s extremely authentic and actually better than a lot of the bun bo hue we had when we were traveling around Vietnam.
You can tell how great this spot is by how busy it was in the morning – we got here just before 11 AM and it was PACKED. The restaurant only has around 8-10 tables so if you come on a weekend, expect a line-up!
Bun Bo Hue Dac Biet ($11.75)
Easily their most famous dish, the classic Bun Bo Hue is a spicy Vietnamese vermicelli dish with spiced pork & beef in soup. It’s the BEST bun bo hue I’ve ever had outside of Vietnam!
Be warned – the broth here is very spicy as bun bo hue should be. But just a heads up for anyone who can’t handle spice very well. If you love spicy food, this is the dish for you!
Banh Canh Cua Bot Loc ($11.95)
We also had the Banh Canh Cua Bot Loc, a Vietnamese vermicelli dish with crab meat in soup. This is my favorite when I don’t want to have spicy soup, the seafood is fresh and the broth is so yummy!
Banh Mi Dac Biet ($5.00)
Their Banh Mi, a specialty French sandwich, is so underrated. The bread is fresh and the ingredients used inside are all high quality for how cheap it is. Highly recommended if you’re not in the mood for soup noodles or anything on the heavier side!
I’ve been coming here since high school and it has stayed consistently delicious and is always busy for good reason.
It’s important to note that this hole-in-the-wall restaurant is cash only.
If you’re craving some delicious Bun Bo Hue, make sure Cafe Xu Hue is on your list as it’s definitely one of the best cheap eats in Vancouver!
If you ask anyone from Vancouver about Japadog, you’ll likely hear great things about it!
The award-winning Japadog hot dog stands are worth trying if you’ve never had it before because it’s a very interesting take on hot dogs with authentic Japanese tastes. I would classify it as fusion street food.
Having started in Vancouver, they’ve tried to grow worldwide with a location in California and a location in New York that is now closed. There are plenty of stands and locations in Vancouver and Richmond.
Their unique style paired with authentic Japanese tastes at an affordable price point makes this one of the best cheap eats in Vancouver.
Kurobata Terimayo ($7.99)
The Kurobata Terimayo is arguably their signature hot dog and what they are most known for. This take on a classic hot dog includes toppings such as teriyaki sauce, Japanese mayonnaise and seaweed. This is my personal favorite as it is so tasty and my go-to every time I get a Japadog!
The Oroshi uses a bratwurst (pork) sausage, and has toppings of grated daikon/radish, green onions, and Japadog’s special soy sauce. It’s definitely on the lighter side and is a must if you love daikon!
Shaked Fries ($2.75)
Their shaked fries are delicious! They take french fries and shake them in a paper bag with the seasonings to make sure each fry is coated with flavor. My favorites are Butter & Shoyu (Soy Sauce) and Shichimi & Garlic.
Japadog also serves desserts now! I highly recommend the Age Ice (ice cream inside a sugar coated hot dog bun), the Matcha Parfait, or the Zenzai (hot red bean soup with mochi).
HK BBQ Master was popular even before Seth Rogen and David Chang featured it in Netflix’s Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner. The two stars recommended them for a reason, as it is the BEST Chinese BBQ in all of BC.
It’s better than anything you’ll find in Chinatown (which is saying A LOT) and is probably the best I’ve ever had anywhere in the world, PERIOD.
There is a reason why there are always such long lines but the wait is always WELL worth it. It’s even good after taking it to go and reheating it at home!
One tip to combat the long lines: There’s usually a much shorter line for dine-in (if you’re lucky like we were, there won’t be any line at all!).
The best part about dining in is that you can still order food to-go!
COMBO: 3 Items on Rice w/ BBQ Pork, BBQ Duck, Soya Sauce Chicken ($13.50)
The best deal is the combo with 3 items on rice for just $13.50. If you wanted just 2 items on rice, it’s $11.50.
They are most known for their BBQ Pork, BBQ Duck, and Soya Sauce Chicken.
These are always my go-tos and I also highly recommend the soup! It’s absolutely delicious.
HK BBQ Master is the BEST Chinese BBQ I’ve had anywhere in the world, which is why it’s on my list of the best cheap eats in Vancouver.
My husband and I have both been coming to Chef Liu Kitchen for many years, even before we started dating. They serve very authentic Taiwanese food and is one of the OG spots in the Lower Mainland.
Located in the Richmond Public Market, this spot has been extremely popular for decades.
We saw many people getting takeout and there was also a lot of Fantuan delivery going out. Most people sitting in the food court were also eating from Chef Liu so it shows how popular and amazing they are!
Deep Fried Chicken Filet Combo ($15.00)
I love getting the combos because they are so worth it. All combos come with rice, 3 side dishes and tea. The Deep Fried Chicken Filet is my favorite because the chicken is fried fresh on the spot and is SO crispy and juicy. It’s literally seasoned to perfection and brings me back to eating deep fried chicken cutlets at street vendors in Taiwan.
For side dishes, I went with shredded potatoes, seaweed and Taiwanese cabbage (gao li cai). The portions are great for the price!
Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup ($14.00)
Chef Liu’s Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup is famous among the Taiwanese community in the Lower Mainland. The beef soup is absolutely delicious and the flavors are so authentic. Their noodles are also very good and the dish warms you right up.
Another one of my favorite dishes here are their Spicy Dumplings. You get 10 dumplings for $11.00 and it tastes amazing!
Chef Liu Kitchen has been consistently great for decades and that’s why it’s one of the best cheap eats in Vancouver.
Milltown was once on this list of best cheap eats in Vancouver for one reason only: their Sunday Prime Rib special. You used to be able to get an 8 oz. prime rib with Yorkshire Pudding, roasted potatoes & veggies for just $13.95 on Sundays after 5PM.
However, they’ve increased their price to $22 for this special and while this is still worth it, it’s no longer the amazing deal it once was.
I still wanted to feature them as it’s still one of my favorite spots for bar food. The Prime Rib is really tasty and in my opinion better than the Keg’s.
They have really good Brussel Sprouts and Tacos, and their Brunch is yummy as well!
The location is off the beaten path and is a great place to watch the sunset.
There you have it, this was my list of the BEST CHEAP EATS IN VANCOUVER.
Have you tried any of these spots? Did I miss any of your favorite cheap eats spots? Let me know in the comments below.
Also let me know if you try any of these places and drop a comment on whether or not you liked it as much as me!
Until next time!