Cheap and Good
For travelers on a budget, the trick is finding restaurants that serve the best food and the lowest prices. In Rio de Janeiro this is not a difficult feat as dining is quite affordable at almost every eatery in Rio.
Cheapest Good Food
The street vendors especially in Copacabana and Ipanema have some of the best local food in the city. Many serve local seafood they caught that morning. In the District Sul try some of the snack shacks. Meals can run $3.00-$5.00 USD and they usually serve meat pastries or prato feito a dish with pasta, meat, beans and rice. Expect to eat standing along side a counter top.
Sit Down Dining
One of the cheapest ways to eat in Rio is at one of the many pay-by-the-weight restaurants. In these restaurants buffets are laid out and diners go through the buffet and fill their plate with food. The weight of the food determines how much you have to pay. Expect to see buffets filled with pasta, beans, veggies and salads as sides. Main dishes consist of 4-17 choices of fish, chicken and meat. In most of these restaurants you will pay $10.00 USD including a drink.
The Best Pay-By-Weight Restaurants
There are several dining options by kilo system. Some of the best known are available in various addresses like Aipo & Aipim – Copacabana, Ipanema and Downtown; Frontera – Copacabana, Ipanema, Jardim Botanico, Leblon and Barra da Tijuca. For over 10 years in Leblon, Fellini Restaurant offers over 80 options in a varied buffet which includes salads, cold cuts, hot dishes and Japanese food ; Delírio Tropical – Fresh and healthy option, the salads are the big hit here. There are 16 varieties each day to choose from.
Eat Expensive Cheap
Cariocas can usually dine in the most expensive restaurants for half the price. They begin the meal with a couvert or bread basket. This is followed by an appetizer. If you are still hungry have dessert and coffee. You will be able to dine in upscale establishments for less.
Dining cheaply is quite easy in Rio de Janeiro. Typical prices are much cheaper than those in the United States. Diners can find some of the most delicious food at snack stands, street vendors and all-you-can eat restaurants for $3.00 to $10.00 per meal USD.