10 Cheap Eats in Houston

Referenced by USA Today as “the dining-out capital of the United States,” Houston is home to many excellent culinary options and tasty treats.

Given the city’s proximity to locales like Latin America and the Cajun areas of Louisiana, Houston is known for many types of cuisine, including the ever popular tex-mex, as well as Vietnamese-style restaurants and Louisiana Creole cuisine.

With a plethora of delicious dining options to choose from, you can rest assured that in Houston, you don’t have to break the bank. During your next visit, try out some of the city’s delicious and sought-after budget eats – you’ll be happy you did!

10. Cali Sandwich.

While there are many Vietnamese restaurant options in town, Cali Sandwich stands out among the pack. Here you’ll enjoy a selection of banh mi sandwiches, egg rolls, smoothies, bo luc lac, and much more – with most items being under $10.

9. Zabak’s Mediterranean Cafe.

Under $10 for a platter or $5 for just the sandwich, Zabak’s Mediterranean Cafe has some of the best (and cheapest!) falafel in town. Other fan favorites include shawarma, baklava, and tabouli.

8. Pico’s.

Pico’s offers a suite of popular “Mex-Mex” dishes, ranging from the standard tacos and enchiladas to red snapper veracruz and pork-stuffed poblano peppers, with most items on the menu in the $10 – $15 range.

7. Torchy’s Tacos.

Once listed among the “Best Cheap Eats in the US” by Urbanspoon, Torchy’s Tacos is not to be missed! Choose from chicken, pork, fish, beef, and vegetarian tacos, select the level of spiciness, and add your veggies. Also enjoy breakfast tacos, and plenty of great sides!

6. Empire Cafe.

Hearty breakfast and rich desserts, all inside a renovated old gas station. Empire Cafe offers two outdoor dining patios, as well as a warm interior atmosphere perfect for enjoying your morning coffee and breakfast, or a relaxing glass of wine and dinner.

5. Chuy’s.

A small chain Mexican restaurant, Chuy’s has multiple locations throughout Houston. Stop by Chuy’s for a delicious Tex-Mex meal on the cheap, including fresh tacos, signature sauces, hand-pulled meat and more, all wrapped in their famous hand-rolled tortillas.

4. Bubba’s Texas Burger Shack.

Texas beer, bison burgers, and thick-cut bacon – all at very reasonable prices (most menu items are under $10). And don’t skip out just because of the line – it goes fast and Bubba’s Texas Burger Shack is always worth the wait.

3. CorkScrew Barbecue

Stop by CorkScrew Barbecue, a roadside trailer offering wood-smoked BBQ’ed goodness in the form of brisket, pork, and sausages, along with all the fixings, like potato salad, coleslaw, and much more. Pull on up to one of their picnic tables, and enjoy!

2. Kenny & Ziggy’s.

Kenny & Ziggy’s is a well known sandwich shop in Houston, serving up generous portions for a low cost. Enjoy huge pastrami sandwiches, among many other deli classics in an old-school setting.

1. Pizza Zone.

We couldn’t very well have a top 10 budget eats list without at least one pizza joint, could we? For a cheap and delicious slice, head to Houston’s Pizza Zone, offering all the classics, plus gluten free crust options, calzones, salads, and more.

After you’ve filled up on culinary goodness, enjoy a budget-friendly stay at one of our extended stay properties in Houston.

For more ideas on what to do and where to eat in Houston, check out the Area Guide tabs on the pages linked above.


15 Essential Things To Keep in Your Car

When you’re on the open road, anything can happen. Usually, this is a good thing – where new experiences, adventures, and friendships await.

But the other reality we road warriors face is that something might go wrong. Whether it’s a flat tire, a dead car battery, cuts, bumps, or bruises, there are a few essentials we should all keep in our cars to ensure health and safety at all times.

Before your next road trip, take a few minutes to assemble your very own car kit. You’ll feel better knowing it’s there, and hopefully you’ll never even have to use it!

Safety & Survival Kit

If you spend any amount of time in your car, it’s best to have a few items on hand to help in the event of an emergency. Consider collecting a few items and stowing them away – just in case.

  1. First Aid kit – include bandages, sterile gauze pads, adhesive tape, scissors, tweezers, safety pins, instant ice packs, disposable non-latex gloves, and antiseptic wipes.
  2. Food & comfort – include a blanket (or 2), toilet paper, bottled water, and energy bars.
  3. Gadgets & communication – battery-powered radio, a pocket knife or multi-tool, maps, USB mobile device charger.
  4. A few ‘tools’ – think rope, duct tape, and glow sticks.
  5. Other – matches, tea lights or candles in a tin, a shovel, batteries, flashlight.

Car Maintenance & Repair

You can’t predict when your battery might die or when you’ll get a flat tire. But you can prepare for these instances in the event they do occur. Before your next road trip, spend an hour or so gathering these essential items and familiarizing yourself with how they work.

  1. Spare tire – this is a no-brainer, but always be sure to have a spare in the car.
  2. Jumper cables – and knowledge on how to use them.
  3. Tire sealant - in a pinch, a sealant will help you patch a hole in your tire long enough to get yourself to a nearby phone, hotel, or mechanic, without having to fully replace the tire yourself.
  4. The car manual - these manuals contain a lot of helpful information about your car and how you should expect certain elements of it to work.
  5. Tire pressure gauge – checking your tire pressure regularly is a good practice, helping to prolong the life of the tire. It may also help you troubleshoot if something feels off in the car.

Personal Items

There are just a few more things you’ll need to complete your car kit, including:

  1. A change of clothes – if you unexpectedly end up somewhere overnight, or if your clothes get soaked while changing your tire, it’s nice to have another set available.
  2. Umbrella – to help keep you dry when you’re out there changing the tire!
  3. Poncho, hat, gloves – any clothing items to make you more comfortable in the elements.
  4. A little bit of spare cash - just in case!
  5. Emergency contacts – even in a digital age, it’s a not a bad idea to keep a list of names and phone numbers in hard copy in the car. If you’re in a jam and your cell phone dies, you’ll be happy you have this.

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