Eat Like A Foodie King In Africa On A Budget: 7 Affordable Yet Delectable Eateries

Eat Like A Foodie King In Africa On A Budget: 7 Affordable Yet Delectable Eateries

Africa is a continent of diverse cultures, landscapes, and cuisines. From the spicy tagines of Morocco to the hearty stews of Ethiopia, from the fragrant jollof rice of Nigeria to the succulent braai of South Africa, there is something for every palate and budget. Whether you are a backpacker, a tourist, or a local, you can enjoy the rich flavors and aromas of African food without breaking the bank. Here are seven eateries that offer delicious and affordable African dishes that will make you feel like a foodie king.

1. Eastern Food Bazaar, Cape Town, South Africa

If you are looking for a quick and cheap bite in the heart of Cape Town, head to the Eastern Food Bazaar. This bustling food court offers a variety of dishes from India, Turkey, China, and the Middle East, as well as some local favorites. You can get a generous portion of curry, biryani, shawarma, falafel, or samosa for less than R50 (about $3). The food is fresh, flavorful, and filling, and the atmosphere is lively and colorful. Don’t miss the homemade ice cream and the freshly squeezed juices.

2. Robby’s Place, Soweto, South Africa

Soweto is a historic township in Johannesburg, where you can experience the vibrant and resilient spirit of the South African people. It is also home to Robby’s Place, a cozy and friendly restaurant that serves traditional African dishes with a twist. You can try the pap and wors (maize porridge and sausage), the tripe and trotters (cow stomach and feet), or the mogodu and dumplings (beef stew and steamed bread). The portions are huge and the prices are reasonable, ranging from R40 to R80 (about $2.5 to $5). The owner, Robby, is a charming and hospitable host who will make you feel at home.

3. Dosa Hut, Johannesburg, South Africa

Dosa Hut is a hidden gem in the busy and chaotic Fordsburg neighborhood of Johannesburg. It is a small and simple eatery that specializes in dosas, thin and crispy pancakes made from rice and lentil batter, filled with various savory fillings. You can choose from cheese, potato, onion, spinach, mushroom, paneer, chicken, lamb, or beef, and enjoy it with a side of chutney and sambar (a spicy lentil soup). The dosas are crispy, thin, and delicious, and the fillings are generous and tasty. The prices are very affordable, starting from R25 (about $1.5) for a plain dosa to R65 (about $4) for a meat dosa. Dosa Hut also serves other Indian snacks and sweets, such as idli, vada, bhaji, and jalebi.

4. Asmara, Nairobi, Kenya

Asmara is a popular and elegant restaurant in Nairobi that offers a fusion of Ethiopian and Eritrean cuisines. You can enjoy the injera (a sourdough flatbread) with various meat and vegetable stews, such as doro wat (chicken stew), tibs (fried meat), shiro (chickpea stew), and gomen (collard greens). The food is spicy, aromatic, and flavorful, and the injera is soft and fluffy. You can also try the traditional coffee ceremony, where you can sip the strong and fragrant coffee brewed in a clay pot. The prices are reasonable for the quality and quantity of food, ranging from Ksh 500 to Ksh 1500 (about $4.5 to $13.5) per person.

5. Chez Alain, Abidjan, Ivory Coast

Chez Alain is a cozy and charming restaurant in Abidjan that serves authentic and delicious Ivorian dishes. You can savor the attiéké (grated cassava), the aloco (fried plantain), the foutou (mashed plantain or yam), and the sauce graine (palm nut sauce) with various meats and fish. The food is fresh, hearty, and satisfying, and the portions are generous. You can also enjoy the local drinks, such as bissap (hibiscus juice), ginger juice, or palm wine. The prices are very cheap, starting from CFA 1000 (about $1.7) for a plate of attiéké and CFA 2000 (about $3.4) for a plate of sauce graine.

6. Addis in Cape, Cape Town, South Africa

Addis in Cape is a stylish and sophisticated restaurant in Cape Town that specializes in Ethiopian cuisine. You can feast on the injera with various meat and vegetable stews, such as doro wat, tibs, shiro, gomen, and more. The food is rich, spicy, and complex, and the injera is soft and tangy. You can also try the tej (honey wine), the tella (barley beer), or the coffee ceremony. The prices are moderate, starting from R85 (about $5.5) for a vegetarian platter to R165 (about $10.5) for a meat platter.

7. La Terasse, Marrakech, Morocco

La Terasse is a rooftop restaurant in Marrakech that offers a stunning view of the city and the Atlas Mountains. You can enjoy the tagine (a slow-cooked stew in a clay pot), the couscous (steamed semolina with meat and vegetables), the pastilla (a savory pastry with meat and nuts), and the harira (a tomato and lentil soup). The food is fragrant, tender, and delicious, and the portions are large. You can also try the mint tea, the fresh juices, or the desserts, such as the baklava (a sweet pastry with nuts and honey) or the orange salad (sliced oranges with cinnamon and sugar). The prices are reasonable, starting from MAD 50 (about $5.5) for a tagine to MAD 100 (about $11) for a couscous.


Q: What are some tips for eating like a foodie king in Africa on a budget?

A: Some tips are:

  • Do some research before you go. Look for online reviews, recommendations, or blogs that feature the best and cheapest eateries in your destination.
  • Ask the locals. They know where to find the best and most authentic food for the best price. You can also join a food tour or a cooking class to learn more about the local cuisine and culture.
  • Be adventurous. Try new and unfamiliar dishes, ingredients, or flavors. You might discover a new favorite or a hidden gem.
  • Eat where the locals eat. Avoid touristy or fancy restaurants that charge high prices for low-quality or generic food. Look for street food stalls, markets, food courts, or hole-in-the-wall eateries that offer fresh, tasty, and cheap food.
  • Share your food. If you are traveling with someone, you can order different dishes and share them. This way, you can sample more variety and save money.
  • What are some tips to avoid food poisoning or stomach problems in Africa?
    • Food poisoning or stomach problems can ruin your trip, so it’s important to take some precautions when eating in Africa. Some tips are:
      • Drink only bottled or filtered water and avoid ice cubes, tap water, or unpasteurized milk.
      • Wash your hands with soap and water before eating and after using the toilet.
      • Peel or wash fruits and vegetables with clean water before eating them.
      • Avoid raw or undercooked meat, seafood, eggs, or dairy products.
      • Eat only hot and freshly cooked food and avoid buffets, street food, or leftovers.
      • Carry some antidiarrheal medication and oral rehydration salts in case you get sick.
  • How can I find vegetarian or vegan food in Africa?
    • Finding vegetarian or vegan food in Africa can be challenging, but not impossible. Some ways to find plant-based food are:
      • Learn some words or phrases in the local language to communicate your dietary preferences or restrictions. For example, in Swahili, you can say “sili nyama” (I don’t eat meat) or “nina kula mboga tu” (I eat vegetables only).
      • Look for restaurants or cafes that cater to tourists, expats, or locals who follow a vegetarian or vegan diet. You can use online platforms like HappyCow or TripAdvisor to find them.
      • Try some local dishes that are naturally vegetarian or vegan, such as beans, lentils, salads, soups, stews, bread, rice, couscous, or injera (a type of flatbread).
      • Ask for modifications or substitutions when ordering food. For example, you can ask for cheese or eggs to be removed, or for vegetables or tofu to be added.
      • Bring some snacks or staples with you, such as nuts, seeds, dried fruits, granola bars, oatmeal, or peanut butter. You can also buy some fresh fruits and vegetables from local markets or supermarkets.


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