Top 5 ‘Cheap Eats’ in Downtown Orlando

Are you planning a trip to Orlando? Worried you won’t have much money after spending a lot on theme parks? 

Then let us offer help finding a quality restaurant that also doesn’t break the bank. These creative restaurants are made for enjoyment. Due to COVID, restrictions are still in place and masks are required. No reservations needed — it’s “first come, first served.” Here are five of the best:

Tacos Al Pastor with fresh pineapples from Tin & Taco. (David Espinosa/SFMN)

Tin & Taco
40 W. Washington St.

Located in the heart of downtown Orlando, Tin & Taco is the place to go for the best tacos, and the best of the best is their “al pastor.” Its fresh veggies, mild sauce and pineapple laid on top make this a culinary delicacy. Tin & Taco also has mac & cheese bowls topped with bacon and extra cheese. The total was around $10, and two people can eat from one order. A steal.

The $6 lunch deal, including the signature mojo fries from Jimmy Hula’s. (David Espinosa/SFMN)

Jimmy Hula’s
68 E. Pine St.

Hidden between a club and a restaurant, Jimmy Hula’s is a diamond in the rough. With double-stacked burgers, signature homemade sauces and their one-of-a kind mojo fries, you could easily get addicted. Its affordable and high-quality food make this the perfect choice for someone who wants both. Jimmy Hula’s Wednesday lunch special includes a beer/drink of your choice and a signature burger for just $6, along with weekly lunch specials. A great place to come on a lunch break.

The Chicken Bacon Ranch Pizza from Planet Pizza (David Espinosa/SFMN)

Planet Pizza
14 W. Washington St.

Ever need a late-night bite? Pizza Planet is the perfect family-owned business that opens at 6 p.m. and closes at 3:30 a.m. The chicken bacon ranch pizza, or the fully loaded meat lover’s pizza, along with other New York/Italian style menu options are a must when visiting. A slice of pizza is $4.50 and it fills you up, too. This is definitely the spot for a late-night snack while out with friends. You won’t be disappointed.

Entering the colorful Tropical Smoothie Café.(David Espinosa/SFMN)

Tropical Smoothie Café
63 W. Washington St.

Healthy options are essential. Tropical Smoothie Café has a wide selection of fruit and veggie smoothies. They also offer a variety of salads, fruit salads and wraps. This destination is perfect for a light lunch, quick meeting spot or just to buy healthy food alternatives. A smoothie and a wrap would average around $6 to $7, depending on what you order. Make sure to stop by one of their many locations and try an “Avocolada” smoothie! 

Colombian beef empanada and a Samba chocolate desert from Arepas La Gran Caracas.(David Espinosa/SFMN)

Arepas La Gran Caracas
65 E. Central Blvd.

This is authentic Colombian food to die for! Arepas La Gran Caracas offers mouthwatering arepas that are made with corn dough and your choice of chicken, beef, steak or pork. It is topped with shredded mozzarella cheese. They also serve empanadas made with a similar corn dough that breaks apart as soon as you take your first bite. For desserts, they have a variety of authentic Colombian delicacies, including Samba chocolate wafers, and ice cream flavors like dulce de leche and guayaba. Expect to spend about $10 for two people. It is open on the weekends from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the heart of downtown.

David Espinosa, a senior at Florida International University, is majoring in journalism, with a concentration in film. He enjoys writing, music and art.