The 15 best cheap eats according to our readers

Published: Tuesday, July 9 2013 8:57 a.m. MDT

The average American spends close to $150 on food every week, which means roughly 11 percent of most households' income goes towards meals and snacking. Because of this, the Deseret News compiled the 25 highest rated “cheap eats” in the greater Salt Lake area according to UrbanSpoon.com, hoping to make it a little easier for our readers to cut back on monthly food expenses. The previous list, which was decided entirely by the customer ratings as reported by UrbanSpoon, included everything from well established Utah standards like Café Rio, to more obscure options like the Cotton Bottom Inn. Even with the diverse tastes, it wasn’t quite enough to satisfy everyone. We received substantial feedback from our readers, primarily suggestions of restaurants that were not included in our list. In response, we asked our readers to give their suggestions of the best affordable restaurants in the Greater Salt Lake area. While many of the suggestions overlapped with our original list — for example, Burger Bar, Café Rio and Sills Café were very popular among our readers — the new responses have made for a very different list. The interpretation of what is “cheap” and what is “good” was left up to our readers. For example, while most of the restaurants submitted were in the “under $10” price range, there were some in the “$11 to $30” range. Another interesting difference from the previous list is the dominant food type. While both lists include numerous burger joints, the reader’s choice compilation leans more favorably towards restaurants that specialize in American food, overwhelming the UrbanSpoon list’s preference for Mexican cuisine.
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Salt Lake City, UT

I realize the "poll" was not scientific in the least but it would seem that the results could have been catagorized in some way. Different styles of food, large chains versus small chains i.e., In and Our versus Crown Burger or single, one of a kind restaurants.

I guess interns need something to do.

Kearns, UT

In-n-Out Burger actually made the list? I will admit, it is cheap. I guess you can't underestimate this state's affinity for mediocre food. We have dozens of burger places that are better than that chain.

Brave Sir Robin
San Diego, CA

You know you live in a culinary wasteland when five of your top 15 restaurants are fast food chains.

I'll stick to cooking at home. Cheaper, better, and healthier than eating out.

Salt Lake City, UT

This is such a random and stupid ranking..it means absolutely nothing.

Salt Lake City, UT

The best and cheapest "eats" are the free samples at Costco and Sam's Club (especially on Saturdays, around 1 p.m.). With proper "stealth" maneuvering, one can actually purloin multiple samples from the same server. Of course, to avoid being recognized as greedy, it is critical not to make eye-contact with the server, and to be prepared to make subsequent approaches with a slight change of clothing. Examples: Approach with and without glasses on; with or without jacket; approach directly in front of server and, subsequently, from differing directions. Finally, if your wife is dieting, send her to get her own sample for you to eat. With care and patience, you can enjoy most of your major food groups and receive your minimum daily nutrient requirements, all for no cost!

American Fork, UT

Apparently I have very different ideas about what constitutes cheap. In'n'Out is okay, I would say it's a very good value for the money. My wife and I can both eat there for what it costs just one of us to eat somewhere like JCW's. Admittedly JCW's burgers are probably twice as good.

Mister J
Salt Lake City, UT

I have a fondness for Barbacoa. $7 & change for a large mission style burrito is a tasty value.

Salt Lake City, UT

Oh. I thought it was a list of Best Cheap Eats. $11-30 isn't cheap.
Sugarhouse alone has several great places for under $10. Firehouse BBQ, The Habit Burger, Soup Kitchen...

Zona Zone
Mesa, AZ

Today, Mike has introduced Mayhem. One of the best posts ever on this site!!

Pendleton, OR

and still no ICEBURG.
good eats and best milkshakes

Bluffdale, UT

Consumer reports did a survey of the top hamburger joints in the United States and amongst the 38,000 respondents In-n-Out took first place for their choice. Of course there are different tastes for everyone. For instance while ordering at In-n-Out I overheard another person ordering a hamburger without lettuce or tomato which makes for a very bland hamburger. Viva la difference in tastes.

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