Cheap Eats


I love to cook but I also enjoy eating out, and since my 2020 New Year’s Resolution involves watching my budget, I am always looking for a bargain at local eateries. With the help of My City Assistant Editor, Pete Hinterman, we found some meal deals that are not only budget-friendly, but also fresh and delicious!

Battiste’s Temple Dining Room

755 Saginaw St., Flint

My story assignments often take me to Downtown Flint – interviewing a judge at the court house, writing about the Flint Farmers’ Market or a new project or business. I try to plan the interviews so I can have lunch at one of the many great Downtown restaurants. The best deal I’ve found is lunch at the Temple Dining Room located downstairs in the Masonic Temple building. You can get their famous chicken dinner (a half chicken fried golden brown) for $6.95. The meal includes two sides, your choice of French fries, whipped potato, vegetable du jour, molded salad, coleslaw or tossed salad AND rolls and butter. The hot beef sandwich served with whipped potatoes and gravy is just $5.20. What a bargain! Give it a try Monday-Friday 11am-2pm – it’s comfort food at its best!

The Flushing A

200 S. Cherry St., Flushing

On any given day, I am out and about interviewing people for interesting and informative stories to share with MCM readers. I was in Flushing recently and stopped by the Flushing A restaurant for a quick bite on my way back to the office. Tuesday is Coney Day and a Coney or hot dog with red sauce is just $1.69. Add crispy French fries and a frosty mug of root beer for just three bucks more! My bill was under $5 and I left with a full tummy and money in my wallet (not to mention it was delicious!) Note: Flushing A offers a 50 percent discount for police officers and firefighters, and a 20 percent discount for veterans and seniors.

Freakin’ Unbelievable Burgers

5100 Corunna Rd., Flint

There are many days when the My City staff takes the time to lunch together. On those days, Assistant Editor Pete and Web Developer Jonathan often turn to Freakin’ Unbelievable Burger for a yummy and affordable meal. A made-to-order Freakin’ Burger – a juicy Angus beef patty topped with American cheese, Freakin’ Sauce, pickles, lettuce, tomato and onion on a toasted brioche bun – is a quality steal for just $4.99!

Grandma’s Recipe

3538 Richfield Rd., Flint

When MCM Assistant Editor, Pete Hinterman has a big day filled with interviews and travel ahead, he makes a stop at Grandma’s Recipe for a hot breakfast at a great price. The atmosphere is always welcoming, kind of feels like the U.P. here in Flint. The breakfast specials are the best in the area – a meal of two eggs, French toast, two sausage links or two bacon strips for $3.83 is hard to beat! Pete’s favorite is the Skillet Scramble with two eggs, home fries, sausage and tomatoes all cooked together, topped with melting cheddar cheese and served with toast for $4.26. It’s a great start to the day!

Great Lakes Smoothie Co.&Eatery

8048 Miller Rd., Swartz Creek

After shopping with my daughter on a wintry Saturday afternoon, we stopped for lunch at Great Lakes Smoothie Co. & Eatery in Swartz Creek. I ordered the turkey panini – turkey, cucumber, mayo, provolone cheese and crispy bacon on grilled sourdough bread. At just $6.34, it was fresh, delicious and affordable. The independently-owned cafe serves fresh, made-to-order food including healthy salads, wraps, locally roasted coffee, refreshing bubble tea and more!

La Azteca Taco House

1902 W. Court St., Flint

Best taco in town! When our assistant editor is working on a story in Flint, on the way into the city from our office, he often stops for lunch at La Azteca Taco House. The $6 lunch special of one enchilada, two tacos and a drink is always filling and quick to the table. For some even cheaper eats, tacos are sold a la carte for $1 each. No need to wait for Taco Tuesday!

Lotus Room Chinese Cuisine

6004 Torrey Rd., Flint

Located in a strip mall on the corner of Torrey and Hill Roads, this little hidden gem serves some of the best Chinese food I’ve ever had and the lunch specials from 11am-3pm are a real steal. I ordered the Mongolian Beef in a sweet garlic soy sauce with scallions, bedded on crisp rice noodles for just $7! The tasty dish is served with hot tea, egg fried rice, your choice of egg drop or hot & sour soup AND your choice of Crab Cheese Rangoon or an Asian Spicy Chicken Wing appetizer. Yum!

Mario’s Restaurant & Pizzeria

G5227 Fenton Rd., Flint

This old-school, wood-paneled pizza parlor specializes in classic pies, pasta, seafood and steak and it’s one of my go-to places for pizza with the fam. During the week, Mario’s offers a variety of specials from 1-4pm. I recently stopped for an early dinner after work. Since nothing is more comforting than hot pasta on a cold, wintry day, I ordered Fettuccine Alfredo ($9.25) and added shrimp for 75 cents more. The plate of noodles in luscious, creamy Parmesan cheese sauce was topped with shrimp and served with crusty Italian bread and a fresh garden salad with Mario’s house-made Italian dressing. Note: Since I have Benefits Plus® through my credit union, I received a ten percent discount on my meal. My total bill: $10.01.

The Red Baron Taproom & Brew Pub

2495 Center Rd., Burton

It’s Thursday night out with the gang and this Burton mainstay is the place to go! Thursday is 50-cent Wing Night and the wings are delicious. The Buffalo style is hot and spicy, served with blue cheese dressing and celery sticks to cool it down. The wings are also available Extra Hot, BBQ, Cajun, Honey Mustard, Teriyaki and General Tso. You can polish off a pile for just a few bucks!

Soggy Bottom Bar

613 Martin Luther King Ave., Flint

Sometimes you’ve just gotta splurge for something delicious. That’s what I did after enjoying a concert at The Capitol Theatre with friends. The Soggy Bottom Bar in Downtown Flint is known for its cocktails and carefully prepared, fresh food! You have to try the truffle fries – crispy thin and seasoned with truffle oil, truffle salt, topped with parmesan cheese and served with garlic aioli – they’re well worth the $6 price. For a bargain, try one of their yummy sliders for just $4 each! The crab cake slider is fantastic!


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