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Best cheap Food in LA.

I am looking for your recomendation for cheap food in LA, I am looking for Gyro, shawarma, a good slice of pizza, chinesse food and I am open to new sugestions.

I will have a car.

Thank You all

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  1. For good pizzas, try Abbot's Pizza on Abbot Kinney. And there's one in Eagle Rock but I can't remember the name (>_<)

    For Chinese, I suggest you go to the San Gabriel Valley area (Arcadia, Alhambra, San Gabriel etc). Especially for lunches, you can get really good deals - most places have lunch specials from $3.99
    Good Vietnamese at Golden Deli in Arcadia, then for Chinese Newport Seafood right in the same strip mall, Sam Woo BBQ by the Ranch 99 on Valley in San Gabriel ...


    3 Replies
    1. re: burumun

      The pizza place in Eagle Rock is Brownstone...it's good, but I prefer Vito's.

      1. re: burumun

        What? No Casa Bianca in Eagle Rock? Legendary.

      2. Here are a few recommendations in a previous thread that should keep you busy for a time: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/460863

        5 Replies
        1. re: Servorg

          Tito's Tacos in Culver City.

          The debate goes on...

          1. re: mar52

            Joe's Pizza in Santa Monica is the best pizza in LA. Also in Santa Monica is this place called Sham, which is BYO and a hidden gem! It's cheap, and has some of the best shawarma I've ever had. I agree with San Gabriel Valley for Chinese. Had some amazing dim sum there, and it's super cheap and feels like you are in another land altogether. I usually hit it on the way to Palm Springs or Idylwild though, not the most convenient place to just drive to. If you do find any great Chinese closer please share! Been searching since I moved here!

            1. re: mar52

              Tito's - only been going for 34 years. Stick to the bean and cheese burrito. Good stuff.

            2. re: Servorg

              Or really, any search that involves the word "budget", "inexpensive" or "cheap" will yield a similar plethora of results.

              1. re: SauceSupreme

                You're right SS. There were a ton of those, but I tried to track down a thread that concentrated on cheap eats rather than one that interspersed them among a lot of other recommendations.

            3. for falafal, get the monday and wednesday all-you-can-eat falafal sandwich special at the Hungry Pocket in santa monica across the street from santa monica college.
              the falafal is always delicious and freshly made. (unlike another place in town, they make the falafal and hand it to you directly as it comes out of the fryer--no microwaves, no stockpiling cooked falafal balls). their home-made piquante sauce is the best in town.
              you can specify whole wheat pita if you like.
              they also will squeeze juice to order for you.

              1 Reply
              1. re: westsidegal

                I have recently discovered the Hungry Pocket, on the north side of Pico in a minimall directly across the street from SMC, and I'm a big fan. It is a good deal even without the AYCE special -- falafel pitas are only about $3.50 and the lamb schawarma pita is a bargain at $4.99. And yes, besides the fresh vegies and tahini on the sandwiches the red hot sauce is potent and delicious. If you have them stamp the little cards you earn a free sandwich for every five you buy. One of the very best bargains on the westside.

              2. Great advice... I am taking notes...:)

                1. Shawarma, how about Zanou? Or Shamshiri?

                  Pizza? Red ballz, Mulberry st. plenty of others.

                  Gyro Papa Christo's/C and K importing.

                  Second the SGV for good chinese. Really affordable. For take out counter, I like Yum Cha, for sit down, a plethora of options.

                  Also, consider getting some sort of Ethiopian on Fairfax Blvd. A "combo" platter from Rahel or Messob is so inexpensive, as is Rahel's buffet lunch!

                  I found a super deal on Isreali food at Hummus Bar.

                  For affordable Indian, I prefer Woodland's Pure in Chatworth. A friday night buffet is all you can eat plus as many dosas as you can hold

                  For inexpensive sushi, go to Midori in Studio City, Encino, or Sherman Oaks for All you can eat.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Diana

                    Yum Cha is also now in Chinatown. Each item is around a buck. There are tables at the Chinatown location. I would also recommend the taco trucks in Highland Park on York. Either Pique or La Estrella. Tacos are 1.25.

                    1. re: hpcat

                      There are tables in the San Gabriel Superstore location as well. We had lunch there with visiting friends a while back:


                      1. re: hpcat

                        Yum Cha Cafe is amazingly cheap. My new favorite cheap dim sum joint. The one in Chinatown is pretty decent.

                    2. For Cuban, El Cochinito on Sunset in Silverlake. The lunch specials are great, large portions and $7.95.

                      Also, I think Banh Mi are one of the truly great, astoundingly cheap things to eat. I'm partial to Banh Mi Che Cali on Valley Blvd. in Rosemead. If I recall correctly they are $1.75 to $2.00 for fantastic sandwiches. They've also got cheap and great spring rolls with shrimp and other such stuff.

                      Oh yeah, and tacos. Go to East L.A. at night, cruise along Cesar Chavez or Whittier Blvds. looking for mobile taco carts and taco trucks. Great food, really cheap, and a fun experience. I could recommend a bunch but opinions vary and you'll probably end up with a worthwhile experience and at least a decent meal at almost any one.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: estone888

                        In the same mall as Banh Mi Che Cali is one of our favorite dim sum places, 888. Serving cart dim sum daily from around 10 AM until 3 or 3:30, then they become a seafood restaurant. Never been there for that part, but I'd trust'em.

                        1. re: Will Owen

                          I second the 888 recommendation. One of my favorite dim sum places in town and it's very difficult to spend more than about $10 - 12 per person. I guess you could do it but you'd need to be hand-trucked back out to your car afterwards you'd be so full.

                          1. re: estone888

                            We typically eat ourselves silly for $8 or so apiece. Went there once with my ex and her husband who are used to San Francisco dim sum, and when she saw the accumulation of stamp marks on our tab she turned a little white and offered to chip in. I said it wouldn't be necessary. When she saw the total, she was stunned - she'd expected around $150, and it was less than half that.

                            You can spend more if you get a lot of the more expensive things, like that wonderful cold octupus. My big indulgence is the stewed tripe with the chile oil sauce - it always tickles the cart ladies to see an old white guy go for that stuff.

                            1. re: Will Owen

                              My husband turned the same white when I took him there. the two of us ordered so many things, he saw little dollar signs flying away with the arrival of each cart. Then he saw the bill, and was amazed it was under $15 per person.

                      2. Sounds like a great advice, thank you all for taking the time to post.

                        1. There is a mega-tasty hole-in-the-wall shawarma kitchen on Van Nuys and Ventura, in Sherman Oaks. I think it's called Pita Kitchen, next to the newsstand. You can get a pita or wrap for around 5-6 bucks (the wrap is pretty overwhelming for me, and I normally eat a lot), or a plate with a couple of side dishes for 7-8, which is really awesome. I've had the beef/lamb shawarma as well as the falafel (which once or twice has come slightly burned, but otherwise has been insanely delicious). The shawarma is really flavorful and tender and the falafel are crispy and well-seasoned. Wrapped with chopped cucumbers (and tomatoes? in yogurt I think) and hummus. Mmmm...this place is so tasty and satisfying. Parking is nasty though, the only lot is down the street (behind Aahs!) down the alley, and there are never any street parking spots. But I see businessmen on lunch break pull up in their BMWs and just leave their cars idling and blocking the alley, so... I guess that's an option too.

                          http://thepitakitchen.com/ there's a menu!

                          1. Gyro: Papa Christo's (corner of Pico & Normandie, by St. Sophia's)
                            Shawarma: Falafel King (on Broxton, in Westwood)
                            Pizza slice (NYC, I assume): Lamonica's (on Gayley, also in Westwood)
                            Chinese food: The entire friggin' San Gabriel Valley

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: J.L.

                              I'd speak against Falafel King and Lamonica's. The shwarma is oversalted and dry, and why people tout Lamonica's pizza is just beyond me. Every time i've tried it it was pretty horrid. Domino's or pizza hut is definitely better. For reference, my personal favorite is Mulberry, but that doesn't really belong in a cheap eats conversation :). Just my experience..

                              1. re: karamazov

                                Wow, karamazov. We must live in diametrically opposite universes (taste bud-wise at least), because I find Domino's & Mulberry to be abominable.

                                OK, how do you feel about a slice of NYC pie at Vito's on La Cienega?
                                Also, where do you suggest our original poster go for shawarma?

                                1. re: J.L.

                                  I actually like Vito's. I think it's a close second to Mulberry. It seems strange you like Vito's but not Mulberrys - i think they are pretty similar but Mulberry's sauce has more kick to it, it's more spicy. Besides subjectively tasting bad to me, I think Lamonica's ingredients are of significantly worse quality than those two places.

                                  As far as shwarma, I don't really have a killer place for that. If i had to pick one I'd go to Sunin on Westwood blvd just north of Santa Monica. Sunin qualifies for both low prices, and the food i've gotten from there has been consistently good to great.

                                  I've gone to Falafel King after drinking in westwood (graduated UCLA recently) more than once, and even drunk it tasted bad! A new place in westwood that's cheap and good is The Stand. I'd much rather have one of their sausages than shwarma from Falafel King.

                            2. India Sweets & Spices has full meals (I think with a drink) for $5 or 6. I've only been to the location on Los Feliz Blvd. in Atwater Village.

                              I like Senor Fish's Scallop Taco (less than $3 - I find it pretty filling). I go to the one in Eagle Rock.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: typetive

                                the scallop burrito there is a similarly good deal.

                              2. You can get a lot of excellent Chinese food in the SGV for cheap. I personally recommend 888 in Rosemead for dim sum, Tasty Garden in Arcadia for Hong Kong-style food, and J&J for Shanghai food. All are very affordable. Here are some mini-reviews: http://www.geocities.com/raytamsgv/ch...

                                You can also get some great Vietnamese sandwiches. Bahn Me Che Cali is excellent:

                                1. Happy Hour...
                                  I need advice about a good one...


                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: josephml1

                                    if you like polish, warszawa is great!

                                    murano on melrose in weho

                                    cat & fiddle

                                    nic's martini lounge in bev hills

                                    3rd stop

                                    border grill

                                    zu robata


                                  2. One of my favorite stops for cheap eats: the taco truck/stand on Olympic and McBride in ELA. In my opinion some pretty kick ass tacos de lengua and tripas.... I ask for 1 tortilla only to make it "lighter."

                                    1. The best cheap food in Los Angeles lies eastward. Excellent regional Chinese and Vietnamese in San Gabriel Valley (great pizza at Petrillo's), Mexican in East Los Angeles, and Middle Eastern in Glendale and Pasadena. SGV is also the birthplace of In-N-Out, so good burgers too. You could easily do an inexpensive sampling of banh mi, tacos, dim sum, burritos, etc. over the course of several days

                                      1. taqueria sanchez on centinela.
                                        they close early, though, so check the closing time before you go.

                                        1. Hollywood: Zankou for the 1/2 chicken plate
                                          Culver City: Versailles for Cuban, or India Sweets and Spices
                                          Venice: Abbot's Pizza

                                          1. Great advice I am taking a lot of notes :)))))))))))


                                            1. Papa Cristo's for a gyro, but you are better off looking for shawerma - LA has plenty of shawarma but gyro's are lacking(along with Greek food in general). Zankou still is my fav place for shawarma and tarna and the price, while risen is still fair for the amount of meat you get(especially the plates)