When it comes to finding delicious food in Chicago, one of America’s most iconic cities, there’s no reason why you have to break the bank. With a little effort and a willingness to explore, you can easily find the best cheap eats and hidden gems that the Windy City has to offer.

Chicago Deep Dish Pizza

A trip to Chicago wouldn’t be complete without trying their famous deep dish pizza. But you don’t have to spend a fortune to enjoy a slice. A hidden gem that locals love is Pequod’s Pizza. They’re known for their caramelized crust, which makes their pizza extra flavorful, and they have been rated among the best pizzerias in Chicago. Lou Malnati’s is another go-to spot for deep dish pizza that won’t break the bank.

Hot Dogs

Chicago-style hot dogs are one of the city’s most famous street foods. Portillo’s is a popular spot for a classic Chicago dog, but if you’re looking for a more unique experience, check out The Wiener’s Circle. Here, you’ll find hot dogs loaded with all the classic toppings, but the real fun is in the atmosphere. The staff is known for being sassy and playful, making your visit memorable.


Tacos are a staple food across the US, but nobody does them quite like Chicago. A great option to try is Taqueria Los Barrilitos, a small joint that specializes in delicious and authentic Mexican cuisine. You’ll find a wide variety of tacos, including classics like al pastor and carnitas, as well as more unique options such as their chicken tinga and mole tacos.


The Windy City has gained a reputation for amazing burgers, and there are several places to try them. Kuma’s Corner is a local favorite, serving up large, flavorful burgers, including the popular Slayer Burger, which is topped with bacon, cheddar, and a fried egg. For a more traditional burger, head over to Billy Goat Tavern, a popular spot since 1934.


If you’re looking for a sweet treat to indulge in, don’t miss Do-Rite Donuts. They offer a wide variety of flavors and have unique twists on classic donut flavors, like pistachio lavender and maple bacon bourbon. Donut Vault is also a local favorite, and their donuts sell out quickly.

Chicago may be known for its fine dining, but inexpensive and delicious food options can be found everywhere if you know where to look. Exploring Chicago’s food scene on a budget can be a fun and rewarding experience, with plenty of hidden gems waiting to be discovered.