Cheap breakfast dishes and bargain brunches in NYC

Start your weekend right with these affordable deals—cheap breakfast and affordable brunch dishes that all clock in at $15 or less.

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  • Photograph: Jakob N. Layman

    Bubble and squeak at the Wren

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

    Lamb bacon and egg sandwich at Parish Hall

  • Photograph: Alex Strada

    Johnny cakes at Parish Hall

  • Photograph: Melissa Sinclair

    La Vara patty topped with tetilla cheese on a Semolina bun at La Vara

  • Photograph: Melissa Sinclair

    Squid and morcilla on broken fried eggs at La Vara

  • Photograph: Jakob N. Layman

    Shaved brussel sprouts salad with poached egg at Mother's Ruin

  • Photograph: Jakob N. Layman

    Chicken and waffles at Mother's Ruin

  • Photograph: Jakob N. Layman

    "Stuff" cocktail at Mother's Ruin

  • Photograph: Jakob N. Layman

    Green shakshuka at Jack's Wife Freda

  • Photograph: Dominic Perri

    Desserts at Benoit

  • Photograph: Dominic Perri

    Desserts at Benoit

  • Photograph: Dominic Perri

    Desserts at Benoit

  • Photograph: Dominic Perri

    Desserts at Benoit

  • Photograph: Dominic Perri

    Desserts at Benoit

  • Photograph: Dominic Perri

    Desserts at Benoit

  • Photograph: Marielle Solan

    Adult Dude sandwich at Fatta Cuckoo

  • Photograph: Caroline Voagen Nelson

    Cold pizza terrine at Do or Dine

  • Do or Dine

    Photograph: Caroline Voagen Nelson

    Ramen topped with bacon and soft-boiled egg at Do or Dine

    Do or Dine

Photograph: Jakob N. Layman

Bubble and squeak at the Wren

The Wren

Why we love it: This Irish-style gastropub does a roaring trade with East Village night owls, but come brunch time, it’s blissfully quiet—a windfall when you’re nursing a hangover. The sparse crowd means you can easily score a seat by the front windows or in the cozier, candlelit back space.
Why it’s a deal: Bubble and squeak ($13) is traditionally a breakfast plate of leftover potato and brussels sprouts fried into patties. The Wren remixes the classic, using whole boiled spuds, plus two crispy-edged fried eggs, a plump Berkshire-pork sausage and a dollop of sharp, grainy mustard blended with charred onions. Pair the hearty fare with a brunch cocktail (noon–2pm, $6; 2–4pm, $10) like the Back in Black: a bracing mix of La Colombe black coffee, burnt sugar, Black Bush whiskey and a shot of Guinness.

  1. 344 Bowery St, (between Bond and Great Jones Sts)
More info

Parish Hall

Why we love it: This seasonal eatery lies just blocks away from its perma-packed predecessor, Egg; but the masses have yet to cotton to it, leaving optimal seating available without the wait—for now.
Why it’s a deal: The heftiest brunch item clocks in at just $14, and there are a wealth of cheaper (and equally restorative) choices. You’ll find ample filling in the gamey house-cured lamb-bacon-and-egg sandwich ($12) or opt for the toothsome griddled cornmeal cakes ($10).

  1. 109A North 3rd St, (between Berry St and Wythe Ave), 11211
More info

La Vara

Why we love it: These Sephardic Spanish tapas give the disenchanted brunchgoer some fresh options. Plus, it’s hidden away on a picturesque, leafy brownstone block.
Why it’s a deal: Prices begin at a paltry $3, and the plates are perfect for sharing. Don’t miss the tender squid and salty morcilla, which sits on broken fried eggs ($11), or the sizeable and peppery La Vara patty topped with tetilla cheese and sandwiched inside a semolina bun ($11).

  1. 268 Clinton St, (between Warren St and Veranda Pl)
More info

Mother's Ruin

Why we love it: A peaceful haven from Soho’s shopping-bag-toting hordes, this light-filled Nolita bar feels especially welcoming during daylight hours, when it’s scarcely populated and offers a friendly neighborhood vibe.
Why it’s a deal: Cheap but filling dishes—try the salad of shaved brussels sprouts and bacon lardons topped with two perfectly poached eggs ($10) or the chicken and waffles ($13)—leave cash to spare for expertly crafted cocktails. The daily special of tequila, lime and blood-orange jam ($12) is eye-openingly tart.

  1. 18 Spring St, (between Elizabeth and Mott Sts), 10012
More info

Jack's Wife Freda

Why we love it: Brunch purists may balk at the globe-trotting offerings at this airy Soho café, but for the rest of us, the multiculti dishes are a welcome departure from standard bacon-and-eggs fare.
Why it’s a deal: Most of the creative brunch options clock in at $10 or less. We especially like the green shakshuka ($10), a take on a traditional Middle Eastern baked-egg dish that’s lavished with a salsa-like concoction of green tomatoes, tomatillos, garlic, cumin and serrano chilies, served with challah toast to mop it all up.

  1. 224 Lafayette St, (between Kenmare and Spring Sts)
More info

Allswell

  • Critics choice

Why we love it: The dinner menu at chef Nate Smith’s neighborly tavern changes daily, but weekend brunch offerings stay truer to the spot’s small-town-diner vibe with a mostly constant menu of reliable favorites (plus a few specials).
Why it’s a deal: Most dishes fall into the $10 to $13 range. Standbys include eggs any style with bacon or sausage ($10) and French toast with seasonal fruit ($11), though fried eggs make a worthy topping for dishes like avocado on toasted red chili bread ($11) or beet-and-corned-beef “red flannel” hash ($12).

  1. 124 Bedford Ave, (at North 10th St)
More info

Benoit

  • Critics choice

Why we love it: This upscale French bistro is a surefire parent pleaser; your folks will forget to question your life choices as they sip champagne beneath the dining room’s stately sconces and mirrors.
Why it’s a deal: The dessert brunch bar (per item $4, all-you-can-eat $16) offers a dozen seasonal pastries and tarts, including a cloudlike, orange-blossom-scented tarte Tropézienne. Don’t be afraid to make multiple trips to the beautiful buffet—having sweets for breakfast feels downright sophisticated in these elegant environs.

  1. 60 W 55th St, (between Fifth and Sixth Aves)
Book online

Fatta Cuckoo

Why we love it: Chef Chris Mitchell worked at the Meatball Shop and the Breslin before coming to this tiny LES eatery. It’s no surprise, then, that Fatta Cuckoo excels at serving simple-yet-decadent twists on brunch fare like egg sandwiches and French toast.  
Why it’s a deal: You won’t leave hungry. Portions for dishes like the Adult Dude ($13)—which pairs a sunny-side up egg with burrata, bacon and homemade tomato sauce (almost like a breakfast grilled-cheese sandwich)—are more than ample. If you’re feeling flush, take advantage of the boozy brunch: Accompany any dish with your choice of three cocktails for only $20.

  1. 63 Clinton St, (between Rivington and Stanton Sts), 10002
Book online

Fort Reno

Why we love it: Diners who have overdosed on brunch classics will appreciate the down-home, smoke-kissed a.m. offerings at this barbecue newcomer.
Why it’s a deal: While the brunch menu isn’t extensive, the house biscuits make a nice vehicle for breakfasty toppings like apple butter ($5); egg, bacon and cheese ($7); or sausage gravy ($11). Southern sides are also morning-friendly, whether ordered à la carte ($4) or in a Hot Mess ($7): a mason-jar parfait of mac and cheese, baked beans, pulled pork, crumbled biscuits and coleslaw.

  1. 669 Union St, (between Fourth and Fifth Aves)
More info

Do or Dine

Why we love it: The proprietors of this hipster hang understand that you were out late last night, watching your friend deejay at that painfully cool new Brooklyn bar (oh, you haven’t heard of it?). Accordingly, they’ll hook you up with a Sunday brunch service that extends over the hangover-friendly hours of 2 to10pm.
Why it’s a deal: Keep the tab down by choosing kooky small plates like terrine of cold pizza ($6), or fill up on a giant, steaming bowl of ramen topped with extra-crispy rashers of bacon and soft-boiled egg ($12). To further cut costs, bypass $8 cocktails for more economical hair-of-the-dog options, such as $3 Rolling Rock and Genesee.

  1. 1108 Bedford Ave, (between Lexington Ave and Quincy St)
More info


Users say

4 comments
SHAMIR  MOSHE
SHAMIR MOSHE

I NEED A LIST OF RESTERENT POR BRAKE PAST AROUND TIME SQUARE AND ALIST WHERE WE CAN EAT DINER NOT EXEPENCIVE AROUND THE TIME SQUARE

Ann Jackowitz
Ann Jackowitz

I agree w/ thera marshall, but Inwood, the uppermost northern tip of Manhattan also has burgeoning restaurants for brunch, lunch or dinner. From tasty American fare to Italian, Japanese, Thai and Spanish, Inwood and Washington Heights are exploding with artists and musicians, young families, lots of opportunities for outside activities and evan a volunteer-run, bilingual bookstore on 175th and Broadway. The area is called NOMA, Northern Manhattan. It's been a well-kept secret until now!

thera marshall
thera marshall

These brunch places all look fine but they are all downtown. Harlem is a happening food region too. Broadway above 100th street is bursting with new restaraunts. I would love to read if there are brunch winners uptown too. --Thanx