I'm looking for places around town with cheap eats - like $5 and under cheap. Are there places you know of with some just plain good deals? I like supporting local, but if there's a chain that'll give me something decent without breaking my wallet, I'm interested.
I have loved Chopstix for dinner, but I went recently for lunch and was really disappointed! The chicken tasted like it was coated in ketchup, and the fried rice like it had been dunked in dishwater. I hope it was an abberation - I was assuming they just sacrificed quality at lunchtime. Glad to hear others have had better success.
I like Kai's (on Harvard near UNM) lunch specials. About $5. The twice-cooked pork is very good. Go for anything in brown sauce.
El Dorado Bakery (NW corner of Gibson and Broadway) has great burritos. 3.25 for a very tasty burrito made to order. (I don't eat meat and they custom make a veggie one for me.) They also have really good pastries and tortillas for purchase as well.
I should add that you need to bring your Spanish with you just in case the owner isn't there. He speaks English no problem (and is really nice!), but the other employees are hit and miss (with the English, not the niceness).
Acapulco Taco on San Mateo SE has the tastiest chile this side of your tia's kitchen. I rarely go a week without a #2 burrito (green chile and beans), less than $4. The tacos are shredded beef with a wicked salsa on the side. The red chile and carne adovada are just as good, but the green calls to me....
It is takeout with a covered patio in back. Be careful eating in your car; I have left with chile stains down the front of my shirt. I think they are open till 7 pm, and have recently been closed on Sunday.
Not quite $5 and under (though there are a few items) but definitely a good meal for under $8 can be had at the restaurant @ the south end of Pros Ranch Market, 4201 Central Ave NW, Albuquerque, NM 87105, (505) 833-1775. That's west of the river, but east of Coors. The supermaket is a great place to shop, too, though this gringo could do without the constant barrage of mariachi music on the sound system. I've never seen another place with 4-5 brands of lard, plus generic lard rendered by the in-house butcher. And I've never seen an Anglo market where the meat is trimmed as leanly as here! Huge fresh fruit and vegie section, with lots of Mexican specialties, too.
I, too, am always on the lookout for cheap eats. Thanks for starting this thread.
I work in the University area and my favorite cheap lunches are Ho Ho's combo (1 entree and side) who make my favorite sesame chicken, Costco's hotdog/sausage and a drink for $1.60, Sonic's dollar menu (the burger is a really good deal for the $).
My favorite cheap (and filling) breakfast is Blake's Lottaburger breakfast burrito. For under $4 you get a HUGE burrito (especially at the Richmond/Candelaria location.) El Modelo also has a great breakfast burrito for $4 which has better flavor than Blake's but beans instead of hashbrowns. I haven't tried the Blake's version with beans yet, but for the money either one of those burritos will fill you up (possibly with leftovers for the next day.)