Every now and again, I do a post dedicated to Rome dining advice inspired by readers. In the past week I have gotten quite a few emails from incoming abroad students inquiring about budget dining in Rome, so I thought now would be a good time to share some tips. My previous posts on the subject are way outdated, so here is a brand new list of places where you can eat very good food without breaking the bank:

00100: While the pizza quality has declined lately, the fritti are still nice and the trapizzini are good enough. You can get a small for €3 or a large for €5.

Al Vino Al Vino: You can have a plate of caponata (without a shadow of a doubt the best in Rome) and glass of wine for under €10 in this popular neighborhood wine bar in the Monti district.

Enoteca Provincia Romana: Grab a sandwich for a fiver or salads, primi, and secondi for a bit more at this wine bar funded by the Provincia di Roma. It gets packed out at lunch but is rather quiet most evenings.

Forno Campo de’ Fiori: This legendary bakery serves some of the best pizza bianca in town (their other pizzas aren’t quite as satisfying). Sandwiches are served in the adjacent annex for around €4.

Antico Forno Roscioli: A hearty slice of Rome’s/the world’s best pizza bianca costs less the €1, while pizza by the slice costs quite a bit more. Still, you can try a few types of pizza for under €10, or grab some of prepared food at the back. Prices vary, but you can eat a couple of courses for around €12.

La Barrique: This wine bar in Monti recently added a kitchen and expanded its menu. In addition to stellar wines you will find a wide range of moderately priced dishes. You can easily eat lunch for under €15; dinner for a bit more.

L’Asino d’Oro: The lunch menu (3 courses for €12) is one of the best deals in town.

Pizzarium: Rome’s best pizza by the slice isn’t always cheap—I once spent €40 on lunch. Woops!—you can eat here for €5 or less. Just let the person serving you know that you don’t want to spend a lot, give an amount, and they will work with you.

Porchettoni: This super cheap fraschetta in Pigneto, brings a slice of the Castelli Romani to downtown Rome at a fraction of the cost.

Mesob in Pigneto/Prenestino is one of the city’s best restaurants. Eat spectacular and authentic Ethiopian cuisine here for around €12 a head.

Some of my favorite pizzerias where you can eat for under €20 a head if you dine conservatively include: Pizzeria Tonda, Da Remo, Sforno, and La Gatta Mangiona.

You can save money shopping at markets (as opposed to supermarkets). Check out Piazza San Cosimato, Mercato di Campagna Amica, Roma Farmers’ Market, Mercato Esquilino, and Mercato di Testaccio, among others.

Wine bars are great for a light and cheap bite. In addition to those mentioned above, I love L’Angolo Divino, Il Bacocco, and Il Goccetto.

Rome has the world’s best gelato (though not in any of the places your guide books tell you about!). My favorites are Il Gelato di Claudio Torce’, Gelateria Fatamorgana, V-ice, Fior di Luna, Gelateria Gori, and Neve di Latte.

And if you are looking for budget accommodations, as well, I recommend check out Airbnb, The Beehive, La Casa di Amy, and Hotel Grifo.

Explore related categories:
Food & Wine · Restaurants · Rome & Lazio · Rome on a Budget


  • […] read the new post here.)Over the past six months or so, restaurants in Rome have been competing for the budget conscious […]

  • […] Read the revised post here.) You don’t need to spend a lot to have an amazing meal in Rome. Some of the city’s […]

  • Fantastic, thank you! I have your ap in my iPad and many posts, including this one now, starred in Reader. I just wish I was in Rome for long enough to justify all of the information I have gathered on eating there! :)

  • woo-woo- yay for listing Forno in Campo de’ Fiori. love your list. may i also humbly suggest Il Bucatino in Testaccio? i would say that counts as a ‘budget’ restaurant. i think youre not a fan of Da Francesco (pardon me if i am wrong), but that, too is good food for those who want low price points- though not as low as €10. x shayma

  • by the way- love the look of the blog- adore the tommies in the header. gorgeous, dahling. x shayma

  • The people at the Forno at Campo dei Fiori are so rude, I can’t stand walking past the place. Good pizza bianca though!

  • The photo accompanying this post brought a huge smile to my face. If I could hop a plane to FCO right now, my first stop after exiting the #8 tram would be the Antico Forno….then I’d have to go over to the Ghetto’s Forno for the best pizza rossa. Sigh…to be in Rome on a lovely fall day. Now I’ll just have to bake my own damn p.b and p.r. today!

  • Thanks for this! See you at the inaugural Parlafood event domani.

  • I went to Pizzarium this summer on your recommendation. You are right–not necessarily cheap, but worth every cent…

  • Hell to the yeah- great post and excellent mention of 00100.

  • We just got back from Rome – thank you so much for this blog, which we relied heavily upon for meal planning. I would add to your list above:
    La Carbonara (Via Panisperna, 214, Metro:Cavour). You recommended it for reliable, relatively inexpensive food. We went twice b/c it was close to our hotel and had two very good experiences. The portions were generous, the food great and the prices highly reasonable. A couple of dishes on the menu weren’t available b/c the ingredients were out of season – which I took to be a good thing. I was a little nervous about going b/c I have seen posts indicating the staff can be less than friendly to tourists, but we found the staff friendly and helpful. The place was packed at 9-9:30 PM, but I had no trouble getting a reservation, once with only about 3 hrs notice. We also hit up many of the gelaterias you recommended and one of our favorites was Danielgelo (Via Gabriello Chiabrera, 40, Metro: Basilica S. Paolo); I think it belongs on this list b/c their portions were so generous. I have an unrelated question – after trying it at La Carbonara, I really want to try making pasta e cece – Katie, what is your favorite Italian recipe website?

  • Katie

    @CheesyK Super!! Let me know how your trip turns out and what you liked (or didn’t like!). Buon appetito!!

    @Shayma do you know that your blog is my inspiration? it is so clean and uncluttered. Rob gave me a good talking to and helped me get rid of some junk. thanks for adding Il Bucatino and Da Francesco. I don’t dislike either of them, but haven’t visited either in ages and I tend to only endorse places I have been to in the past 3-4 months.

    @you know who Ha! that things we go through in rome to eat good food:)

    @Celeste oooh you mean Urbani? Thanks for reminding me about that place. i never go, as i get distracted by the biscotti and pizza ebraica at the kosher bakery nearby!!

    @Jeffrey the good news is that they will work with you if you are on a budget. i see kids go in with 2 euros all the time and walk out with slices of the simpler pies. there is a nice balance there between quality, price, and potential luxury

    @Erica thank you very much!

    @Cathy yes La Carbonara in Monti needs to be on this list. it is super cheap and quite good. im glad you enjoyed it!! im a fan of danielgelo, too. and another really good spot on the same street is Cu Mangia Crisci. the fried sicilian treats are out of this world. for pasta e ceci, i follow maureen fant’s recipe in her Williams Sonoma Rome cookbook. i dont have a favorite recipe site in particular, but browse various ones based on the dish i am preparing. otherwise, i consult a cookbook. hope that helps!!

  • Thanks so much for the shoutout to my post! Great dining picks. You know how I feel about L’Asino d’Oro… I was actually there for their lunch special not once, but twice, last week. I think they’re getting sick of me :)

  • […] Budget Dining in Rome, Revised […]

  • I’d add Mordi e Vai, at the Testaccio Market. My absolute no. 1 cheap (€3 for huge tasty bollito-stuffed pannino) eat, if I’m hanging around the flat but want to get out for a quick lunch break. And really, I’d travel for Mordi e Vai way more than for 00100…

  • Thanks for the great list, Katie. LOVE L’Asino d”Oro — probably our new favorite. Above all, amazing lamb meatballs … We look forward to trying even more of your recommendations!

    – David and Laura

  • thanks for speaking at the uc center yesterday! i’m determined to try all of the places you spoke about!

  • Did not see it on the list but recall from 2011 trip Osteria La Gensola in Trastevere as great food and not too expensive

  • Great post! I’d also add almost anywhere in San Lorenzo (near La Sapienza) – great food, great nightlife and, most importantly, it can all be done on a student budget!

  • Once at L’asino they couldn’t accomodate me (vegetarian) at lunch and so the soup I had (amazing) and wine were on the house. I love me some Forno, in fact my hippy friend’s grandparents were the former owners. They are dead now.

  • Hi Katie!
    I’m a roman foodie and I love your list: budget & quality!
    I suggest, about pizza by the slice, also Angelo e Simonetta (Via Nomentana 581): a little out of centre, but they made an excellent pizza! Maybe the best by the slice.. The dought is… incredible!!!

  • Now I’m really curious! :) I just returned from Rome several weeks ago, and I can swear I read about I Caruso gelato in your blog! do you not think it’s good anymore? we loved it!! Also, thanks for great reviews, we enjoyed Pizza after your recommendation as well :)

  • Did you really mean to recommend Forno for pizza bianca, rather than pizza rosso?

  • Katie

    Forno in Campo x pizza rossa tutta la vita; Bianca @ Forno Roscioli. Too much sauce on rossa @ Roscioli IMO and often undercooked.

  • Not sure I’d call the Enoteca Provincia di Roma budget. If you can stand the wait to get a table, it’s pretty pricey. To me, budget is more like pizza from Formula Uno in San Lorenzo or fixed-menu Italian meal from Del Pallaro at Campo di Fiori. You can also get decent, fixed-price Italian meals at Burro e Sugo near Basilica Sao Paolo.

  • […] recent post about budget dining is chock full of specifics as to where to eat cheaply (and authentically) in […]

  • […] are lots of budget dining options in Rome. Visit this post or browse the “Rome on a Budget” category for […]

  • You are the best Katie. Glad to see a New Jersey International providing amazing gastronomic info in the Eternal City.

  • Hello Katie-

    What a delight stumbling onto your informative, fresh and lively site as I search for ways to have a more ‘local’ and affordable experience when we visit Italy in August.

    We’re modestly experienced European travelers – like to avoid tourist traps – and are certainly not made of money especially now that our Italian trip will include two more mouths to feed and plane tickets to buy – in our 2 kids – 9 and 12 (the last time we lived la dolce vita was for our honeymoon in the 90’s).

    Since our 2 are beyond the years of being cute little tykes (though they’re pleasant looking enough and dress up well :) )- and are capable of comporting themselves well in adult environments we tend to take them to bars and restaurants, late night activities, etc. when we travel because we know they can usually handle it – and we resist doing ‘kid places’ in lieu of ‘real places’ when we travel. They’re not the most adventurous eaters – but tend to be better ‘away from home’. I think the Italian cuisine should be right up their alley and the photos and posts I’ve seen from your budget dining in Rome posts already have my mouth watering.

    I wonder – if there are any particular places that you would recommend or advise families to shy away from knowing we’ll have our kids in tow. I don’t want to give up a rooftop view of the sunset just because we’ll have the kids with us but we also don’t want to needlessly annoy the locals either :). We do love al fresco dining and rooftop bars or lovely garden restaurants or dining with long views or among ruins or columns, etc. – so if you have any posts/recommendations that point that way we’d sure love to see them.

    Anyway – didn’t mean to turn this into a personal request for advice :) hopefully the info would be relevant to others – so if anything comes to mind I’d love to hear about it – and I’ll be searching for it using the google machine as well. :)

    Thanks for your wonderful writing and recommendations. It’s nice to have some excellent local Rome food recommendations that are not so expensive.

    Do you do Venice, Florence, Siena or Barcelona as well? :)

  • […] dining options in Rome are immense and hugely varied but I’ve only covered authentic roman food, especially […]

  • […] dining options in Rome are immense and hugely varied but I’ve only covered authentic roman food, especially […]

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