Today is November 1, 2023, and the holiday season has arrived! While this time of year in Dallas-Fort Worth tends to be extravagant, our November 2023 Hot List is dedicated to budget-friendly restaurants that offer excellent food. In November and December 2023, high-end, flashy restaurants tend to attract a lot of attention. That's why we've compiled a list of reliable, often family-owned restaurants that consistently serve delicious dishes at reasonable prices.
Cris and John in Far North Dallas Cris and John, a Vietnamese street food restaurant, offers a menu with reasonable prices. From $6 dumplings to $3.75 bao buns and $8 chicken wings, there are plenty of affordable options. Don't miss their Southern Soul bao, featuring honey-glazed fried chicken, pickled carrots, Sriracha mayo, and more. If you're dining with friends, consider the $30 weekly special, a rotating platter selected by the chefs.
DeLucca Gaucho Pizza & Wine in Dallas, Fort Worth, Plano, and Southlake DeLucca's pizzas are a steal at just $9 each from 4:30 to 6 p.m. on Tuesdays through Fridays. This Brazilian restaurant also offers an all-you-can-eat option where servers bring around appetizers and pizza until you've had your fill. If you're not near one of their existing locations, keep an eye out for two new DeLucca restaurants opening soon.
El Fenix — 14 locations in North Texas El Fenix, North Texas' oldest restaurant, celebrated its 105th anniversary in September 2023. For an affordable lunch with a side of history, visit on Wednesdays for the $7.49 enchilada special, featuring chicken, beef, or cheese enchiladas served with rice and beans.
Halcyon Coffee Bar & Lounge in East Dallas Halcyon on Greenville Avenue in East Dallas is an all-day café, offering coffee, brunch, lunch, and hosting various events like trivia, calligraphy classes, and movie nights. During happy hour from 3-7 p.m. daily, they offer $5 beers and $7 cocktails. On Friday movie nights at 8:30 p.m., wine is half-price, making it an inclusive and budget-friendly spot.
Loro in Addison and Dallas Loro, an Asian smokehouse created by two renowned Texas chefs, is a place of discovery. Some must-try dishes include the Malaysian curry chicken, papaya salad, and the cheeseburger with red onion brisket jam. Take advantage of their happy hour on weekdays from 2-6 p.m., with $5 glasses of boozy slushes, wine, and sake, paired with $5 green curry hushpuppies, $6 smoked salmon dip, or $6 chilled ginger noodle salad.
Keller's Hamburgers — 3 locations in Dallas Keller's is renowned for its affordable and delicious burgers. A simple hamburger costs $3.85, and a grilled cheese is just $3. For a favorite, try the No. 5, a double-meat patty with cheese, lettuce, tomato, and special dressing on a poppy seed bun. They also offer longneck beers "dressed" at the Northwest Highway drive-in, complete with lime and salt on the rim.
Malai Kitchen in Dallas, Southlake, and Fort Worth Malai Kitchen's daily lunch specials on weekdays, priced at $12, are a real treat. Options include fried chicken and rice on Mondays, vermicelli noodles with beef tenderloin and turmeric-ginger sauce on Wednesdays, and coconut curry with shrimp and noodles on Thursdays. You can also enjoy some of their best appetizers for $7 throughout the day.
Mama's Daughter's Diner in Dallas, Forney, Irving, Lewisville, and Plano Breakfast remains a cost-effective meal, and Mama's Daughter's Diner offers great deals. Biscuits and gravy are just over $4, while a fried egg sandwich costs less than $6. At lunchtime, you can enjoy the meat-and-three, which includes a variety of options that change daily and cost just under $12. For a substantial lunch at a small price, consider the two chicken-fried steaks for $15 or less, perfect for sharing with a friend. Prices and options may vary by location, so check the menu before you go.
Postino in Addison and Southlake Visit Postino during lunchtime, between 11 a.m. and 5 p.m., for $6 glasses of wine and pitchers of beer. Their half panini and half salad combo is a light and delicious option to consider.
Prince Lebanese Grill in Arlington If you're headed to a Dallas Cowboys or baseball game in Arlington, drop by Prince Lebanese Grill. They offer beef shawarma sandwiches, gyros, and falafel for $8 or less. You can also add a bite of baklava for just $1.25. Even Food Network star Guy Fieri visited this family-owned restaurant for an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives in 2012.
Seasons 52 in Plano Although the Seasons 52 restaurant at NorthPark Center has closed, there's another one in D-FW at the Shops at Legacy in West Plano. The best deal is from Monday through Thursday, 3-6 p.m., when you can enjoy a glass of wine paired with a flatbread for $12.50 per person.
Stan's Blue Note in East Dallas Stan's Blue Note on Greenville Avenue offers a blast from the past with its affordable prices. On Tuesdays, you can get burgers for just $3.99, with the requirement to purchase a drink.
What the Pho in Plano What the Pho offers an incredible dinner deal: buy one, get one free bánh mì sandwiches for $8.99. You can choose from various options, all served with cilantro, jalapeño, cucumber, carrots, and daikon. If you're attending a holiday potluck and need food, consider What the Pho's party trays, which include 50 chicken dumplings for $40 or 100 pork or veggie egg rolls for $50.
Boardwalk Bites in Dallas-Fort Worth area Of course, you don't want to forget the most affordable yet very satisfying Carnival Food Truck in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, Boardwalk Bites. Enjoy our Funnel Cake ($10.00), Ribbon Fries ($7.00), Mozzarella Sticks ($7.00), Salted Caramel Corn ($14.00), Bacon Wrapped Sausage Basket ($18.00), Chicken Tender Basket ($15.00), and 32 oz Strawberry Lemonade for only ($9.00). Check our menu now.
Enjoy these budget-friendly dining options throughout the holiday season and beyond!