The French capital is renowned for being on the pricey side, and finding the affordable places to eat in Paris takes a bit of research. But with so many delicious French dishes to try and unusual French delicacies for the more adventurous foodies, don’t settle for somewhere below average just because the price is in budget. When in the City of Light, if you look hard you can find some real gems - cheap restaurants in Paris that serve traditional French food to perfection. Beef bourguignon, moules frites, or even steak tartare or escargot, we’ve found out where to get the things you must eat when in France at the best affordable restaurants in Paris. Bon appetit!
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1. BOUILLON CHARTIER
For traditional comfort food, around €10
Traditional French dishes are usually large, rich plates of heartwarming food to feed the soul. Beef bourguignon, coq au vin, confit duck or roast chicken served with a side of perfect potatoes and a tasty sauce - a few simple yet classic dishes of France that you really must try when in Paris.
At Bouillon Chartier, you can count on a beautifully cooked French meal for just a fraction of the price of the usual places. For the seriously reasonable price of just €10,60, their duck confit isn’t just one of the city’s cheapest classics, but it’s also one of the best. Beef bourguignon costs just €9,70, and the foie gras entree is only €7,50 - you really can’t go wrong! If you plan on heading to Bouillon Chartier for dinner, make sure you get there early or you could be queuing well around the corner!
2. BISTROT VICTOIRES
For steak tartare, €10,90
Steak tartare is a French delicacy made up of ground raw beef and seasonings to give it the delicious flavour so many people love it for. This dish may not be to everyone’s taste, but once you get past the unusual texture, you might find you actually quite enjoy it! If you fancy trying something truly French and a little bit different, Bistrot Victoires does a fantastic steak tartare served with crispy chips, and it’s priced ideally for those that aren’t sure or who are on a budget.
€10,90 is all a generous portion of steak tartare costs at Bistrot Victoires - that’s a price you certainly won’t find anywhere else in Paris!
3. A LA BICHE AU BOIS
Mmm, snails. Another French special you can’t leave Paris without sampling. Unlike frogs legs, escargot really is a common dish found in French bistros, so you’ll never be short of opportunities to try them! A la Biche au Bois is a cosy spot near Canal Saint Martin, famed for its local food including a generous portion of escargot de bourgogne as an entree.
At a very reasonable price, a la Biche au Bois serves 12 garlicky snails as a starter, rather than the usual 6. Don’t be scared off by the thought of this dish! Give them a try - we bet you’ll even enjoy them…
4. Léon de Bruxelles on St Germain
For moules frites
When looking for the best moules frites in Paris, Leon de Bruxelles is one of the best affordable places for it. Here, it’s all about their spectacular bowls of mussels and fries served in a variety of ways including the delicious and classic marinière sauce as well as a strong, creamy Roquefort blue cheese sauce for something extra indulgent. Savour the taste and dunk your chips once you’ve made your way through the enormous pile of fresh mussels you’re served. There’s a reason people come back again and again, and order the moules each and every time!
5. LE BASTRINGUE
For steak frites
Steak and chips, a classic combo and one the French nail every time. The only thing is, in Paris it’s usually pretty pricey - that’s unless you head over to Le Bastringue where the steak is huge, the chips delicious and the sauces are to die for! The reasonable prices are just an added bonus!
Tucked away right by the canal, Le Bastringue is a local favourite and quintessentially Parisian in every way. Dinner service gets seriously packed and yet you’ll barely find a tourist inside, so make the most of the authentic atmosphere and try the steak frites next time you’re in Paris.
6. BISTROT VICTOIRES
For crème brûlée
For those with a sweet tooth, leaving France without indulging in the country’s famous dessert is simply criminal. Crème brûlée; the one made up of a deliciously creamy, vanilla bottom and a hard caramelized top with a satisfying crunch, nothing beats it.
Bistrot des Victoires excels in a lot of quintessentially French dishes with an extremely reasonable price tag (as we’ve mentioned above). Head here for a Parisian dinner, but be sure to leave room for their incredible crème brûlée at the end. Just €5,50, light and perfectly sweet, Bistrot des Victoires hits the spot the whole way through a three course meal.
7. LE PETIT FER À CHEVAL
For tarte tatin
If you’re after a truly French tarte tatin that’s no frills, no silly price, just melt in the mouth deliciousness, Le Petit Fer a Cheval is a must. Located in the Marais area, the tarte tatin has been this eatery’s highlight for years. People come from all over to get a taste of the speciality dessert! It’s handmade each day and served with fresh cream which goes perfectly with the beautifully caramelised apples - just be warned, it’s always a sell out.
Don’t get there too late or you’ll more than likely be left disappointed with none left for you to taste, but for the best tarte tatin in Paris, making your plans around this beauty is completely worth it!