Iceland is a stunning country but without a doubt is an expensive destination. And Reykjavik the capital is not much different.
You’ll likely find a wide variety of restaurants and cafes but if you’re traveling on a budget, here is my list of cheap tried, and trusted restaurants in Reykjavik.
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101 Reykjavik Street Food
This is one of my favorite restaurants in Iceland. The location is unmatched, just at the beginning of the famous rainbow street.
The menu is limited but the food has high quality for a low price. The best dishes to try are the fish and chips — a generous portion of fish, perfectly fried— and the lobster soup which is a super rich, creamy soup with a slightly spicy touch. Also, the soup has a decent amount of meat, so it will keep you full for longer.
The lobster soup comes in a cardboard bowl that you can take away but be careful because they serve the soup boiling and you can burn yourself easily. The warm soup container kept my hands away from freezing in the Icelandic cold.
They also offer a vegan option: vegetable noodle soup. Delicious and a lighter option.
Price range: 12 – 18 $ per person.
Lamb street food
When I’m traveling on a budget in Europe I’m always on the haunt of that kebab place where you can find fulfilling wraps to get my daily protein intake for a cheap price.
In Reykjavik, I found this restaurant that has basic kebabs with kofta (lamb) and more.
Even though they mainly sell lamb-based dishes, you can also find vegetarian options like salad and falafel wraps.
They have a good range of healthy options too. I feel like this is a good restaurant when traveling with a group, so everybody can have their needs met.
The local is cozy and inviting, but they also offer a takeaway option.
Price range: 15 – 22 $ per person
Bæjarins Beztu Pylsur
This is an extremely popular hot dog stand — you will find a long queue outside most of the time. Many celebrities have visited this hot dog stand: Bill Clinton, James Hetfield, Anthony Bourdain, etc.
In itself, the hot dogs are nothing out of the ordinary but they are tasty, fulfilling, and cheap. In my case, they were even a lifesaver because, after a northern light that ended late, this was the only place that my husband and I found open at midnight.
They have a minimal menu, hot dogs with ketchup, remoulade, mustard, fried onions, and raw onions.
If you want a drink they also have soda and hot chocolate.
Price range: 8-12 $ per person
One of my favorite restaurants in Iceland. This is not your classical margarita pizza — they also offer it btw. The menu in this pizza place offers a wide variety of fresh ingredients and some “weird” combinations, that are worth a shot.
This is mostly a takeaway restaurant but upstairs they offer a few tables to enjoy a freshly made wood oven pizza with a huge glass of Viking of Gullf beer.
Price range: 15 -20$ per person
Krónan / Bonus (Supermarket)
The ultimate way to save money on food while traveling will always be to prepare simple meals yourself with the help of local supermarkets. Of course, this option is only available for those that are staying in AirBnB or in another place with a fully functioning kitchen space.
I took advantage of their prepackaged food and sandwiches. I lived a few days out of their roast beef and mustard sandwich by the brand Somi, I can’t recommend these sandwiches enough — plus they only cost 4 euros and you get a good-sized meat sandwich.
Price range: it depends
I know that this is not authentic Icelandic food but this article is about saving money while traveling as much as you can, and there is no denying that fast food chains tend to be a safe option.
But there are not many fast food chains in Iceland: no Burger King or Mcdonald’s for example.
On the other hand, there are a lot of subways and they maintain a pretty competitive price. Around 3000 ISK per small sandwich. Of course, this price will variate according to the size and ingredients that you choose to add.
Price range: 10 – 15$ per person
Owner and Food blogger on The Cookware Geek. She loves cooking, baking, traveling, playing with the cats, and knitting. She believes that eating delicious meals doesn’t require a culinary degree or a Michelin-star chef in your kitchen.