If you’ve got an empty stomach and empty wallet, it’s usually a pretty dire situation. Particularly in Bath, where there are a lot of high-end fine-dining restaurants. At Wriggle, we love a good bargain and we want to prove that a tight budget doesn’t mean you need to stray from your favourite independents. Here are our top picks for a budget-friendly belly-filling meal.

Follow your nose once you’re in Bath and you’ll end up at Chaiwalla, the only West Country Indian to be voted one of Top 5 Vegan Curry Houses in the UK by Vegan Life Magazine. Keep your eyes peeled though, if it wasn’t for the ah-mazing smelling food and colourful sign you’d be forgiven for walking past the tiny green door. Takeaway-only, we recommend sitting under the Kingsmead Square’s 20 metres tall London Plane tree with your order or walking 5 minutes to sit by the river at Green Park. Chaiwalla’s owner Niraj Gadher was taught by his mum (aw) and everything on offer is modestly priced too. With an authentic Indian street-food lunch costing roughly £5, what’s not to like?

Read more about Chaiwalla

Sticking with the street food theme, JC’s Kitchen’s is usually based just off Pierrepont Street and serve home comforts at your convenience. Their menu consists of bubble and squeak, BBQ belly pork, BBQ chicken and more in sourdough wraps or rice boxes. Each meal is served with a salad and sauces so you can build your dream lunch. Prices are around £7 for lunch so let your nose lead you down the BBQ scent rail to discover deliciousness that’ll your stomach and your bank balance will thank you for.

Read more about JC's Kitchen

If you’re mad about meats you’ve got to try LJ Hugs, Bath’s Cajun cuisine specialists. Chicken thighs, beef chilli, sweet potato fries and classic fries are all available with a combination of sauces (one of the choices is maple syrup, er, YUM). Everything’s priced between £2 - £7 and each meal is served with fries and salad. If you prefer your food to blow your head off or would rather have it mild, you can select your seasoning too. Fresh, succulent and just so damn tasty, LJ Hugs is a brilliant budget-friendly option if you’re hungry in the centre of town.

Read more about LJ Hugs

Brought to Bath by the same people as Yak Yeti Yak, Phat Yaks is a small Nepalese cafe and takeaway on Kingsmead Square. Although the cafe decor is fairly monochromatic, the menu is as colourful as ever. You’ll be hard pushed to find a better pakora in town - they’re mildly spiced in either buckwheat or chickpea batter and served in wraps with homemade sauces and a load of house salads. The full menu includes curries, kebabs and snacks and prices begin at the modest price of approximately £5. With some of the friendliest staff around, don’t miss out on Phat Yaks - particularly if they’re serving their homemade limeade. It’s actually pretty darn incredible.

Read more about Phat Yaks

No points for guessing that this isn’t just a regular cafe! Oh no, The Grocer Cafe is, of course, a grocery too. This means their ingredients are super fresh and local and if you particularly enjoy one of their dishes, you can purchase the ingredients from them too. Prices for a fresh sandwich made with Hobbs House bread start at £4.25 and fillings include crayfish, Wiltshire ham, rare roast beef and tuna mayo amongst many others. It’s also a few minutes walk from Victoria Park so if you’re thinking of picking up some picnic food, this is your go-to.

Read more about The Grocer Cafe

Don’t underestimate this little hut within Green Park Station. Small but mighty, they only serve ‘Good Mood Food’ with aromatic flavours to knock your socks straight off. Owner Tim and his wife’s menu is full of Thai treats at tiny prices. With pork or chicken BBQ skewers served with sweet and sticky mango rice starting at £4.50, your lunch won’t be the only thing to put you in a good mood. Pair it with a freshly squeezed lime juice or a traditional Thai tea and you’re good to go!

Read more about Thai Hut

Ever get that feeling when you’re just craving a good old slice of pizza? Of course, you’re only human… Well, you’ll be pleased to know that pizza from Juno Bar & Kitchen is just £5 at lunchtime and oh goodness, their pizza is darn good. Their sandwiches (served with chips) are also exceptional value at £4.50. All freshly cooked, served by a lovely team in a quirky setting. With prices like that, you’ve got enough left over for a slushie cocktail and a game of pool upstairs!

Read more about Juno Bar & Kitchen

The newest and hottest vegan joint in town is Roots & Shoots, cutely nestled within the Brunel Square vaults. If you’ve got time to sit-in, they’ve got a handful of outdoor benches which are perfect for people watching from. Handily, if you’re short of time, everything can be made to go as well. Prices start at £2.50 for a slice of homemade cake but if you’re looking for something a little more filling, their Facon butties are £4.50, complete with lettuce and tomato in a soft roll.

Read more about Roots & Shoots Cafe

Published -23rd September 2019