Sydney's Top Cheap Eats

Enjoy delicious food that won't break the bank.

It’s never cool to waste money. What is cool it to be clued up about 
a city, so that everything you eat while you’re there is sensational and a sensationally good value. How do you do that in Sydney? Read below to find out where to get food that is high on taste and low on your hip pocket.


Single Origin Roasters cafe in trendy Surry Hills (©Single Origin Roasters)
Single Origin Roasters cafe in trendy Surry Hills (©Single Origin Roasters)

Single Origin Roasters

Coffee roasteries are good places to get a high-quality, good-value feed in Sydney. They know all about flavour and sourcing great produce because they’re building their coffee businesses on those two things. Anyway, Single Origin Roasters is a great place to eat. There are cafes in Surry Hills and the Sydney CBD. The tiny city outlet has a short menu of toasties, salads and simple breakfasts. The Surry Hills menu is more substantial. The Mothership Bowl makes you feel strong and healthy just reading the ingredients, including poached eggs, avocado, sweet potato, grains and fermented cabbage.


Mouthwatering sushi bites at Umi Sushi (©Umi Sushi)
Mouthwatering sushi bites at Umi Sushi (©Umi Sushi)

Umi Sushi

Inexpensive, nourishing food for a family can be hard to find when you’re traveling. Unless you’re in Sydney and fancy a big, hearty bowl of spicy kimchi pork udon or wagyu udon. Umi Sushi has outlets at Town Hall, Haymarket and Darling Quarter. The Darling Quarter Umi won The Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Under $30 award a couple of years ago for best family-friendly venue. If your children (or you) don’t fancy udon, pick something off the sushi train or choose a bento box. Out front and within viewing range of the restaurant is the enormous Darling Quarter playground. So even though it’s great value if you’re heading to Umi without children, it’s super value if you do have children with you and the playground buys you an extra hour to sit, eat and relax. Priceless.


Subterranean Bar and Grill at GPO Grand (©Subterranean Bar and Grill)
Subterranean Bar and Grill at GPO Grand (©Subterranean Bar and Grill)

Subterranean Bar and Grill

There’s no shortage of atmosphere down under the GPO. And though sandstone walls are classic Sydney, when you dine at Subterranean Bar and Grill it’s not hard to imagine you’re in a taverna somewhere within a stone’s throw of the Mediterranean. Grilled barramundi fillet or Atlantic salmon with salad and chips are a steal for lunch or dinner. There are lots of Greek-style share plates with dips, barbecued haloumi, dolmades, pita, octopus and calamari. There are also burgers and big, juicy wraps.


The classic Crackles roll from Mr Crackles (©Mr Crackles)
The classic Crackles roll from Mr Crackles (©Mr Crackles)

Mr Crackles

At Mr Crackles, it takes three days for chefs Carlos and Sam to prepare the pork belly for a cup of crackling: salting and spicing before 10 hours of braising and many more hours of roasting to make the crackling. Diners love the cup of wings with blue cheese dip and if you’ve a lot of fat-burning walking planned, add a cup of crackling. If you’re after an actual meal as well, there are plates of roast meat and salad or roast vegetables plus filled rolls.


Fratelli Fresh in Bridge Street in the city (©Fratelli Fresh)
Fratelli Fresh in Bridge Street in the city (©Fratelli Fresh)

Fratelli Fresh

You’re not up in the rarified air of Sydney’s world-famous, fine-dining restaurants when you’re eating at one of the Fratelli Fresh locations. They’re bustling, busy places with produce all around. But you’re eating authentic, full-of-flavour, Italian-style food made with Sydney’s best produce. Fratelli Fresh supplies produce to restaurants, cafes and home cooks who like good food. There are cafes at Alexandria, Potts Point, Walsh Bay and in the Sydney CBD. 


Still hungry?

Modern Turkish cuisine at Efendy (©Asli Sivrioglu/Efendy)
Modern Turkish cuisine at Efendy (©Asli Sivrioglu/Efendy)

Try Paul’s Famous Hamburgers in Sylvania, Mary’s in Newtown and Sydney, Chaco Bar in Darlinghurst, Chum Tang in Chatswood, Al Aseel Lebanese Restaurant (
several locations), Sun’s Burmese Kitchen in Blacktown and Efendy in Balmain.