20 Dinners Under $20

By Anna May
26th Nov 2014

There’s a reason the ATM has a $20 minimum – it knows that it enough to get you a satisfying cheap eat in Sydney without having to bump it up to $40. 

We understand the joys of a frugal feed, and have scoured Sydney’s best restaurants for some delicious dinners that won’t have you living on stale Cruskits for the rest of the week, or giving in to the $5 menu at certain ‘pizza’ establishments – no matter how ‘game changing’ they claim to be. 
Here are just 20 dinners under $20 in Sydney:

  1. The lobster cobb salad (or ‘Lob Cobb’ as we like to call it) at Burger Liquor Lobster will only set you back $15 and is all kinds of yum. 
  2. The pillowy soft potato gnocchi with roasted sprouts, jamon and truffled pecorino at The Lodge Bar is only $19 – feel free to put the extra coin in the plastic guide dog coin box that is so often neglected.
  3. A handsome helping of slow cooked pork ribs, dripping with smoky barbeque sauce, chips and salad from Shakespeare Hotel will making parting with your dosh a pleasant experience, setting you back just $15.50.
  4. A serving of heavenly nasu dengaku, eggplant with caramelise miso sauce, is just $15 at Zushi. Add a cheeky cup of miso soup for $3.50 and you’ll be laughing. 
  5. The cauliflower salad at Kepos Street Kitchen is super satisfying and only $18.
  6. The tortita ahogada, a soft, spicy, dripping-with-sauce pork sandwich from Mr Moustache is just $14, leaving you some extra coin for a serving of mini esquites (corn on the cob). 
  7. The Oaks Hotel’s mixed plate with a variety of dips, cheeses and olive bread is an easy $16.
  8. The piri piri chicken salad from Mona Vale Hotel is just $19.50, so you can score yourself a red frog from the convenience store on the way home.
  9. The ridiculously good patate pizza from Da Mario in Rosebery is just $16 take away and will prove why we feel potato is a seriously undervalued pizza topping.
  10. Help yourself to a generous portion of the special South Indian thali from Taj Indian Sweets and Restaurant in Harris Park. Four curries with plenty of sides is just $13.90 and will leave you feeling immensely satisfied.
  11. Got a hankering for some Japanese? Sushi Suma’s combination meals are the way to go. $16.80 will get you combination of dishes including sushi with tempura and sashimi with katsu. 
  12. Vapiano offer a wonderfully warming ratatouille with your choice of pasta for a cool $17.90.
  13. The Rose Hotel understand your wallet woes and offer a plethora of dishes for under $20. We recommend the steak sandwich.
  14. You’ll be as wise as your restaurant if you pick up the beef skirt steak with nam jim jeaw from Avalon’s Yoda.
  15. The $18 eggplant parmy burger at The Bank is everything you ever wanted in a burger and more.
  16. A fresh, steaming bowl of pho noodle soup will only set you back around $13 at Pho PHD in Marrickville. 
  17. The newest addition to Manly, Miami Cuba offer senorita sloppy Josephine burger (use your imagination) with fries – just $16.
  18. Home to some of the best dumplings in Sydney, New Shanghai can whip up a serving of their famous pork xiao long bao and a side of fried rice for just under a $20 note.
  19. A personal favourite of ours, the 3-layered pork from The Tall Lemongrass in Crows Nest is just $19 and will solidify you a new favourite.
  20. Finally, the baked artichoke dip with sourdough from Bondi Hardware is the stuff of dreams and worth the $16 you’ll pay for it. 

Image credit: Tanya Lee for Shakespeare Hotel

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