Cheap & Good Eats: Top 5 Budget Lunch Spots in the Galleria


fountainviewpancakes.jpg
Photo by Brooke Viggiano
The pancakes at our No. 3 spot are what dreams are made of.
3. Fountain View Cafe

Enter the Fountain View Cafe any time of day and you're likely to be hit with the glorious scent of bacon. That's because the counter-service, old-fashioned restaurant makes breakfast (and some serious lunch) all day long (7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekends). Check out the chalkboard menu, grab yourself a cup of Joe and wait for your short stack of crisp, vanilla-laced pancakes ($3.95), custom-made omelet (starting at $5.45) or classic tuna melt ($5.50) to arrive. Plump and juicy 1/3-lb all-beef burgers are fantastic and start at just $5. Add a cup of soup, side of slaw or pile of fresh-cut fries for just a few bucks more. You just can't beat these old-fashioned prices.

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Photo by Joanna O'Leary
This homemade cheese -- battered, fried and served on a bed of ajvar (red pepper relish) -- is just one of many reasons to visit our No. 2 spot.
2. Cafe Pita Galleria

Cafe Pita has made its name in Houston's dining scene for a reason, and the reason is its unbeatable Bosnian food. If you haven't tried it, do yourself a favor and visit the quaint one-story cottage on Richmond. There you'll find several dishes that you may be more familiar with than you realize, like the Bosnian musaka, a version of the popular eggplant-and-potato dish moussaka -- made here with layers of eggplant and zucchini, ground beef and a rich béchamel. Served in a zesty tomato sauce, it is not to be missed. Neither is the goulash, chunks of tender, melt-in-your-mouth beef stewed and served on a bed of basmati rice. Lunch specials are just $7.99 and include a soup or side salad, but gyros, stuffed burek (puffed pastry), kebabs and entrée salads are available as well.

Location Info

Venue

Map

Fountain View Fish Market

2912 Fountain View Drive, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Argentina Cafe

3055 Sage, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Fountain View Cafe

1842 Fountainview, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Cafe Mawal

6006 Fairdale, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Zabak's Mediterranean Cafe

5901 Westheimer, Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

Cafe Pita +

5506 Richmond Ave., Houston, TX

Category: Restaurant

My Voice Nation Help
21 comments
Justin Montez
Justin Montez

Antonio 'TONE' Martinez y'all need to try #3... Off the chain bro!

frankenreich
frankenreich

Dumpling King, Indias, Thai Gourmet, House of Kebab way way better than Mawal or Zabak's, Biryani Pot.

Zabak's is pretty average, more Americanized than the good middle eastern places in the area...they don't even use a vertical spit for beef shawarma, but pressed beef like stuff they buy in sheets.

gossamersixteen
gossamersixteen topcommenter

Good list but Chinese cafe' should be on the list, I adore their weird school lunch tray smorgasbord lunches, and the double spicy chicken is legendary..

Eddie Brito
Eddie Brito

And now these five places will have their rent increased. (With the exception of the JCI) Mentioning JCI is rediculous. Might as well mention MC Donalds too.

Sharyar San
Sharyar San

I need to try couple of them. Zabak?

Michelle Balch
Michelle Balch

Zabak's is one of my favs. Best falafel in town! It used to be Mama's Po-Boys.

Nate
Nate

You nailed number one.  Zabaks is so, so good.

Kathy Stabe
Kathy Stabe

Do one on cheap and good eats near Market Square next

JayFrancis
JayFrancis

In the same shopping center as Pho Binh: newly opened in what had been an all you can eat, a new restaurant with a chef / owner from Chengdu called Chuan's. Not cheap but I believe their interpretation of MaPo tofu on the lunch menu is one of the most balanced and perfect ones in Houston.

kjstravel
kjstravel

Zabak's also has some incredible art on its walls. The artist lives in the Galleria area so keep an eye out for her. She is known to drop in whenever she chooses.

Come for lunch and enjoy Art by Cherisse!

tinyhands
tinyhands

Pho Binh instead of JCI (or any of the others, for that matter). It's expensive for pho, but still a cheap lunch without driving outside the belt.

JayFrancis
JayFrancis

And, of course, French Riviera Bakery on Chimney Rock.

johnnybench
johnnybench topcommenter

@tinyhands If you replace JCI for Pho Binh they will basically have identified my lunch rotation. 

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