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By Nina Derham in London—
Exploring the streets of London can be hungry work and a tasty, filling lunch can be exactly what you need to refuel and keep going. Aside from being one of the city’s most popular neighborhoods, London’s Soho is bursting with places to grab a delicious meal.
Here are four of my favorites that will fill you up without eating away at too much of your budget.
58 Dean Street, W1D 6AL
Tube: Leicester Square
I buy my lunch from this simple Vietnamese café very often and I can’t recommend it highly enough. The menu is straightforward, with a choice of fragrant noodle soup or salad topped with tasty beef, pork, chicken, prawns or tofu. The soups either come as Pho, with flat rice noodles or as Mien, with mung bean noodles. Each delicious dish costs just £4.90 and the servings are really generous. Summer rolls are also on the menu at just £2.90 a portion.
Grab a seat at one of the shared tables or take away to nearby Soho Square if the sun is shining.
19 New Row, WC2N 4LA
Tube: Covent Garden
There are plenty of choices when it comes to munching on Mexican street food in London, but Benito’s Hat is especially good at what it does. Head down this pretty street and escape the bustle of Covent Garden after a busy morning of shopping or for an early pre-theater dinner.
Benito’s Hat offers freshly prepared, massively filling burritos, tacos and salads stuffed with spiced beans or rice. Team with marinated chicken, braised pork, grilled steak or vegetables before topping with all the salsas your heart could desire. For a lighter option go for the soup of the day or just drop in to sample the extensive Mexican beer and cocktail menu (the Pomegranate Margaritas are not to be missed).
50 Frith Street, W1D 4SQ
Tube: Leicester Square
Opt for Moolis if you’re looking for a quick, tasty lunch packed with Indian spices. This colorful little eatery serves up rotis and salad boxes bursting with flavor. Choose from Punjabi goat, Goan pork, chicken and fenugreek, Keralan beef, paneer or chickpea fillings from just £4.80 each. For something more warming, the daily daal and the chicken malabar soup served with roti will not disappoint.
1 Green’s Court, W1F 0HA
Tube: Leicester Square / Piccadilly Circus
Straddling the boundary between tourist-heavy Leicester Square and the sultry backstreets of Soho proper, Yalla Yalla is a hidden gem that rewards anyone who stumbles across it.
Serving up delicious Lebanese street food day and night, this is the perfect choice for lunch on the run or a more relaxed eat-in affair if you’re lucky enough to bag one of the little wooden tables. Mezze such as spicy sausages and batata harra (spicy potatoes with pepper and chilli) or traditional wraps filled with falafel, chicken or spiced lamb make for a truly tasty lunch stop and prices start from just £6.
Also in our guide: If you’re planning a trip to London and in the market for affordable, central accommodation, be sure to read our reviews of our recommended budget hotels. All of our picks have been visited and inspected by one of our editors. Read more in our guide to London.