The Best Cheap Eats in Baltimore, Maryland

Alright friends, it’s time for another roundup post!  We’re super excited to feature some of our favorite Baltimorean foodies today on Nomtastic Foods.  If you’re looking for cheap eats in Charm City, definitely bookmark and share the love because who doesn’t want to ball out on a budget?  Keep reading for some seriously delish foodporn that will keep your stomach and wallet full and satisfied.

1. @onairfranYama

Normally I’m not an advocate of strip mall sushi, but my favorite neighborhood sushi spot, Yama Sushi Bar, is nestled in Green Spring Tower Square between a Walgreens and a Hair Cuttery. Normally I’d gloss right over this, but a recommendation from a friend turned me onto this hidden treasure in Hoes Heights near Hampden and I’ve never been disappointed.

yama dumplings

Yama has a wide selection of appetizers, simple sushi rolls, specialty rolls and even vegetarian options. Despite “sushi bar” being in the title, Yama has noodle options as well, like their Shrimp Tempura Udon ($9.95), or if you’re looking for something more traditional, try the Chicken Teriyaki that comes with a soup, salad, and rice for just $11.95.

yama spring rolls

We love starting with a few appetizers like their classic pan fried, 8 piece Gyoza for just $5, the Harumaki (vegetable spring rolls) for just $2.95, or if you’re a little more adventurous, I’d recommend the BBQ squid; a whole grilled squid, slathered in barbecue sauce and sliced for just $9.95.

yama sushi

If you’re in the mood for sushi, you can’t go wrong with whichever specialty roll you choose. The Christmas Tree Roll has become a go to of mine– spicy tuna roll, topped with tuna tataki, and seaweed salad for just $10.95. The Salad Roll ($10.95) is also a favorite, a refreshing combination of shrimp tempura, white fish, crab stick complete with seaweed salad & special sauce.

yama baltimore

Other top picks include The Red Devil Roll ($10.95), The Sunset Roll ($11.95), and the Caterpillar Roll ($10.95). Yama goes above and beyond by always offering a complimentary roll as well. If you’re looking for quality sushi at a really awesome price, you definitely need to check out Yama Sushi Bar! 

2.  @thanksalatkeThe Farmers Market

Why did the DJ get thrown out of the farmer’s market?

SEE ALSO:  The Best Brunches in Baltimore

He kept dropping the beet.

Lettuce pray that no more puns will turnip in this post about my favorite bargain bites – the Baltimore Farmers Market & Bazaar under the JFX.

Shout-out to my lovely wife, Marisa, who quickly introduced me to her weekly ritual, which then became a location for our engagement photoshoot. Rain or shine we come here almost every week to not only stock up on fresh produce but to also get our nosh on . That included our wedding day when I procured a surprise bounty of Ekiben, mushroom fritters, and other local delicacies for the bridal party to enjoy during hair and makeup.

There are dozens of food vendors to choose from, and you’ll feel like Aaron Burr because you’ll only need to drop a Hamilton to start out your Lazy Sunday (h/t Andy Samburg & Chris Parnell).

Here are my Top 5 favorite Farmer’s Market bites:

Ekiben – Neighborhood Bird Bao Bun $9

ekiben bao

Craving Baltimore’s favorite bao buns on a Sunday? Have no fear – you can get your Neighborhood Bird or Tofu Brah fix right near the market entrance.

Mushroom Fritters $10

mushroom fritters

You might not have mushroom for anything more after you join the special fritter-nity of people who have chowed down on beer battered & fried oyster mushrooms topped with , goat cheese, lettuce & basil and homemade hot sauce.

Black Sauce Biscuit Sandwich $7.50

black sauce sandwich

Sunday Brunch calls for a loaded buttermilk biscuit stuffed with everything from coffee stout braised chicken w/ onion jam to brisket, egg and beef fat mayo. There’s a reason you’ll find the market’s longest line if you show up after 8am.

Curry Shack at the Market $2.75 each, 3 for $7.50

curry shack

Didi Johnson and her curry pockets are a farmer’s market mainstay. The West Indian patties are a weekly staple alongside a rotating menu, including Caribbean Veggie Samosas, African Curry Chicken, & Souvlaki Greek.

Taco Loco -$10


Is there anything more comforting on a Sunday than a breakfast burrito? Taco Loco has you covered with bacon or chorizo, eggs, beans, pico and salsa Verde, all stuffed and grilled inside a warm flour tortilla.

3.  @i.am.avocontrolMatthew’s Pizza

matthew's pizza

If you need a lot of bang for your buck Matthews Pizza is the place for you. Consistently voted the best pizza in Baltimore, this neighborhood joint has been open for 76 years this November and has recipes that have lasted almost as long.

SEE ALSO:  Ginger's: The Best Hot Chicken in Baltimore

If the ideally priced and amazingly delicious pizza isn’t enough to keep you coming back for more, the staff always treats you like family and will remember you each time you come back (and you’ll be coming back a lot).

matthew's pasta

You can indulge in their spaghetti and meatballs and a pepperoni pizza, more than enough for two people to split, for just about $12 a person. Don’t forget to also try their iconic crab pie that balances the delicate crab flavor perfectly with the richness of the cheese.

4.  @onthemoveforfoodChatime Food Truck

Getting good boba in Baltimore used to be a rare treat for me. Either I was too far away from my fave spots or by the time I got time away from work I was just not in a boba mood (sacrilege! I know!).

But ever since Chatime’s cheerful purple food truck started showing up at work hawking their signature Taiwanese tea-based toppings-filled drinks (regular: $4.75; large: $5.50) my boba days have been plentiful.

“But Linda!” you say. “A boba isn’t a meal!” First off, who says? And second off, they don’t just have boba. This rolling Chatime also carried a variety of steam bao (Asian stuffed and steamed buns) that has satisfied my appetite many a times. Seriously. One large, fluffy, and juicy bun plus a slurptastic bubble tea makes a fantastic treat of a meal—and all for under $10!!

Chatime’s food truck goes to a variety of spots during the week. To find out if they stop near you, just check them out on Instagram at @chatimemdwheels! Onthemoveforfood’s go-to: 1 Regular Mango QQ + 1 Chicken and Sausage Bao.

5.  @charmcitytableSouvlaki Greek Cuisine

greek food baltimore

Souvlaki Greek Cuisine is a small, stylish fast casual restaurant right on The Avenue in Hampden. Their menu offers all the good Greek food everyone loves, and everything off their appetizers and pitas menu is just under $10! Feel free to order carryout or delivery but if you are not in a hurry and can grab a table, I recommend dining in as the staff is incredibly friendly and the service is stellar. Meat, vegetarian and vegan options are on the menu so all can enjoy Souvlaki Greek Cuisine and leave with their bellies, hearts, and wallets full!

6.  @food_conniesseur: Pho Bac

When it’s my turn to choose a place to eat that’ll leave me feeling so satisfied, AND without breaking the bank, my go-to food is pho! To get that, I head on over to Pho Bac, a family-owned authentic Vietnamese restaurant. Pho Bac, which opened in the heart of Canton this past spring, has stolen my heart!  Pho is one of my favorite meals all year around, and pho bac has proven to be one of the best in Baltimore! Their broths, whether it is the beef or the vegetable, are extremely flavorful, and the ingredients are all so fresh. It’s one of those things that you take one bite and KNOW that it is unlike the rest.

pho bac

What’s even better? You can get this pho for only $12! However, pho is not their only specialty, Their menu features many Vietnamese classics and the woman behind it all, Mama Trang, is always putting new specials on the menu! Every visit I get myself a bowl of pho and try their newest dish, and every time it is delicious! They have daily deals that range from free apps, $9 pho, and even happy hour! Some of my favorites definitely are the brisket pho, chicken skewers, grilled tofu, and fresh summer rolls! It’s sometimes hard to find high quality for a low price, but let me tell you, this is it! If you haven’t been to Pho Bac yet, add it to your list ASAP!

SEE ALSO:  A Guide to the Best Coffee Shops in Baltimore

pho baltimore

And that’s a wrap for today, Nomsters!  A huge, HUGE thanks to our foodie friends for sharing their favorite spots in Baltimore, Maryland.  Make sure you guys follow them on instagram to learn about the best eats in Charm City, and check out our guides tab for more.  Relevant posts are “Where To Get the Best Seafood in Baltimore,” “The Best Brunches in Baltimore,” “A Guide to the Best Coffee Shops in Baltimore,” and “Where to get the Best Crab Cakes in Baltimore.”

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