Where to Try the Best British Food in London
London is full of restaurants that serve up just about any cuisine you could think of, but the English capital does also, of course, serve up insanely delicious British food. In London, British pubs, cafes and chip shops are in every borough across the city, but for the most delicious and affordable British dishes in London, you’ll want to know where to go to avoid the tourist traps. Bangers and mash, full English fry-ups, cream tea and a huge, homely Sunday roast, London’s best British restaurants don’t have to break the bank. We’ve tried and tested all of these cheap English dishes across the capital, spending no more than £10 in each place. For a quintessentially British foodie tour of London, check out these tasty spots…
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Fish & Chips
It’s no surprise that heading a little out of London’s city centre means prices of proper British food can drop like crazy. This is definitely the case when it comes to finding the best fish and chip shops in London. Hop on the district line to Wimbledon and get off at Fulham Broadway for a taste of the most perfect fish and chips served up at Bailey’s. Head there between midday and 6pm for their lunchtime deal where a giant portion of fish and chips is just £7. Flaky cod in a crispy (but not greasy) batter, with chunky chips and a lemon wedge, be sure to order a side of mushy peas for only £1.50 more for the real Brit foodie experience.
Bailey’s is famous amongst local West Londoners, especially the Chelsea football fans, for a good quality chippy fix served by a friendly face. When a place has customers coming back every week for their fish and chips like Bailey's does, you know you can count on it for delivering the best of the best.
Bangers & Mash
Mother Mash, Soho
The word ‘bangers’ is British slang for sausages, and bangers and mash is the kind of meal that every English kid grew up with. A lot of pubs in London will serve up delicious plates of quality sausage and mash, but in central London you won’t find it for less than £10. At Mother Mash in the heart of Soho, two sausages, a pile of mashed potato and lashings of gravy is just £9.95 and it tastes incredible.
Rather than ordering a standard plate of bangers and mash, at Mother Mash you can choose the flavour of mash, sausage AND gravy - and they’re not stingy on the selection either. Opt for classic mash, cheesy mash, sweet potato mash and more, along with Cumberland sausage, red onion sausage, chilli sausage amongst way more tasty options. Then choose one of the 5 different gravy options. We recommend cheesy mustard mash with Prince of Wales sausages and onion gravy - heaven on a plate.
Pie & Mash
M. Manze, Bermondsey
For an authentic taste of the British classic dish of pie and mash, the oldest pie shop in London is a must. M Manze has been running for over a century, serving traditional minced beef pie, mash and liquor since 1902 - and the recipe hasn't changed since. Eating inside is like stepping back into olden London with tiled walls, old school memorabilia, wooden benches and marble table tops. Get a real taste of how a portion of pie and mash would’ve been back in the day, and order a portion of their jellied eels if you’re feeling brave…
If you decide to skip the eels, then a plate of good old pie and mash covered in traditional liquor (a parsley sauce which is a must order) will only set you back £4.30, whereas in normal pubs across the city it can cost up to £20!
Check out the Best Affordable Pie and Mash Shops in London
St Christopher’s Pub, London Bridge
This one is a little above our £10 budget, but you’ll never find a quality roast dinner in London that costs any less. Head to St Christopher’s Pub on a Sunday for a roast that’ll knock your socks off for just £14. This quaint and cosy British pub on Borough High Street is our favourite Sunday spot - serving up the hearty classic to perfection along with a friendly, local atmosphere. You can choose from either beef, pork belly or chicken roasts, each complete with roasted vegetables and lashing of gravy, plus a giant Yorkshire pudding for the beef and pork, and bread sauce with the chicken.
St Christopher’s sources all of its Sunday roast ingredients from Borough Market, just a couple of minutes walk up the road, so you know the quality will be top of the range. Make the most of their enormous selection of over 100 cask ales and beers from around the world. There’s a reason people come from across the city for a Sunday roast dinner at St Christopher’s.
Sticky Toffee Pudding
St Christopher’s Pub, London Bridge
Once you’ve devoured your Sunday Roast at St Christopher’s, stay for one of the best desserts you’ll eat during your time in England. Sticky Toffee Pudding is a classic - a mouthwateringly sweet and soft sponge drenched in toffee sauce with a ball of vanilla ice cream on the side, nothing beats it. The dessert menu at St Christopher’s consists of just two options, but that must just mean they’re done to perfection. At £5.50, this pudding is a standard London cost but oh so worth spending the money on, as you’ll find yourself in a toffee filled heaven!
Full English Breakfast
Regency Cafe, Westminster
Don’t leave the UK without indulging in a full English breakfast. Complete with bacon, eggs, sausage, baked beans, toast, black pudding and a cup of tea or coffee, the fry up at Regency Cafe is famous across London for good reason. The no-frills, old school English cafe in Westminster keeps hungry customers happy and their regulars loyal by serving the perfect English breakfast for a bargain price of just £6.60! (Although it’s £1 extra if you’d like black pudding or hash browns, too).
Order your breakfast at the till, remember it’s cash only and sit down in the diner-style setting complete with old London memorabilia - mainly old photos of Tottenham football players. Just make sure you get there early or you could be queuing with the drool-worthy smell of sizzling bacon out the door and around the corner!
Check out the Best Affordable Full English Breakfasts in London
The English Rose Cafe, Victoria
Enjoy a delightfully British cream tea just around the corner from Buckingham Palace, where the Queen indulges in her own. Cream teas date all the way back to 11th century England where it was a speciality of the coastal British towns of Devon and Cornwall. Nowadays, cream tea isn’t a daily habit for Brits like it used to be, but it’s a delicious treat and a way to feel truly English! Being right near the Palace, you might think you’d be paying extortionate prices for a simple cream tea, but at the English Rose Cafe it’s actually really affordable at just £10.70 for two people.
Sit back and enjoy your pot of breakfast tea with an enormous scone covered in jam and clotted cream, in this charming British tea house, and don’t underestimate how filling it is! There’s an old English argument about whether the jam comes before the cream as you smother it on top of the two halves of your scone. And there’s another argument about whether it’s pronounced ‘scon’ or ‘scone’. Sit down and decide which side you take (although it’s definitely cream then jam, and it’s definitely NOT ‘scone’)...
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Article by Darcy King
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