Fricase cerdo in Havana

Havana Cuban Food on a Budget: Eat for $3 a Day

In Cuba, Food & Drink by SheenaLeave a Comment

Havana cuban food on a budget is harder to find & more expensive than anywhere else in Cuba – we’ll show you where to find some of the cheapest eats in the city!

We here at DIY Travel HQ spent 5 days in Havana without setting foot in a tourist restaurant!

There’s lots of peso street food but we also ate at a couple of government & private restaurants.

These were at least 3 times cheaper than tourist restaurants but the quality & quantity of Havana cuban food seemed the same.

* Don’t forget to purchase travel insurance before any trip to Cuba. We’ve been using World Nomads for over 10 years – it’s the best-value provider we’ve found but there are important things to consider. Check out our post & find out which of our claims were successful or denied.

 

Keep reading for all the places where we found Havana cuban food on a budget!

Peso menu in Havana

A typical peso menu of Havana cuban food

Where to Find Havana Cuban Food on a Budget

  • El Bulevar (Calle San Rafael)

This pedestrianized part of Calle San Rafael (near Hotel Inglaterra) & the streets around it in Centro Havana is peso Havana cuban food central.

Here you can get a glass of refresco for the standard price of 1 peso / $0.04!

*Budget Havana Cuban Food Top Tip: buy a 1.5L bottle of local soft drink for 25 pesos / $1.00 & refill this bottle time & time again,with refresco for 7 pesos / $0.28! You can also refill it with juice or beer for the equivalent of 7 glasses!

Check out our guide to Cuba’s dual currency system for an overview of the difference between CUC & CUP.

El Bulevar in Havana

El Bulevar is the place to find all Havana cuban food on a budget

Other Havana cuban food street classics cost more in the capital  than in other places in Cuba:

  • Pizza con queso (with cheese) – 10 pesos / 40 cents
  • Spaghetti con queso – 10 pesos / 40 cents
  • Sandwich – 10 pesos / 40 cents
  • Jugo (juice) – 2-5 pesos / 8-20 cents

There are a couple of government & private restaurants on & around El Bulevar.

Our favourite had dishes like:

  • Filete de pescado (30 pesos / $1.20)
  • Fricase credo (30 pesos / $1.20)
  • Fajitas de pollo (35 pesos $1.40)

All of these Havana cuban food dishes came with rice & beans and salad.

Havana cuban food Fajitas

Fajitas de pollo for 35 pesos

  • Paseo de Marti (Paseo del Prado)

There are several peso food stalls serving Havana cuban food on Paseo de Marti, between San Jose & Brasil (Teniente Rey) streets, opposite El Capitolio & next to the classic American cars parked near the Jose Marti statue

Here, you can find the following snacks:

  • Popcorn – 5 pesos / 20 cents
  • Ice cream – 1 peso / 4 cents
  • Hamburger – 8 peso / 32 cents
  • Croqueta – 1 peso / 4 cents
Havana cuban food Hamburgers

Hamburgers on the grill for 8 pesos each – that’s 32 cents!

  • Plaza Vieja

Just off Plaza de Armas on Calle Brasil, you can find more Havana cuban food on a budget – here, there’s a small shop that sells decent peso food:

  • Sandwich – 10 pesos / 40 cents
  • Big glass of juice – 5 pesos / 20 cents
  • Coffee – 1 peso / 4 cents
Havana cuban food

Toasted sandwich for 10 pesos

  • Plaza de Armas

There’s a peso restaurant on the south side of Plaza de Armas with:

  • Spaghetti – 12 pesos / 48 cents
  • Refresco – 2 pesos / 8 cents
Havana cuban food Spaghetti

Spaghetti con queso is usually 5 pesos but the cheapest you’ll get in Havana is 10-12 pesos

  • Vedado market

There’s a fruit & vegetable market around Calles 17 & K in Vedado with cheap peso Havana cuban food & even a restaurant.

We ate at this restaurant – fish & pork dishes with rice & beans, salad & fried plantains for 40 pesos / $1.60.

Pineapple refresco was 3 pesos / 12 cents.

Havana cuban food Vedado

This huge & delicious dish was just 40 pesos – a relative bargain for budget food in Havana!

  • Calle Obispo

Don’t miss the best ice cream in Cuba on Calle Obispo! Just 1-2 pesos / 4-8 cents each!

The best flavours to choose from are chocolate, coconut & strawberry.

Ice cream in Old Havana

Ice cream is so cheap, why not have two?!

  • Coppelia

The legendary state-run Coppelia ice cream parlor is located on the corner of Calles 23 & L. in Vedado – you can’t miss the big sign & huge queues outside.

It’s incredible that Cubans will wait all day for ice cream but then again, lining-up has been well-ingrained in their lives (eg. at shops, banks, etc).

Ice cream costs 1 or 2 pesos a scoop but if you haven’t got hours to spare, you can join a shorter queue for CUC$ paying customers & tourists.

There’s a peso Havana cuban food stall with hamburgers & hotdogs on the street opposite Coppelia.

Coppelia Ice Cream Havana

Cubans are dedicated to lining up for the best ice cream in town!

  • Calle Desamparados

South of the market on Calle Desamparados (Centro Cultural Antiguos almacenes de Deposito San Jose) is a beer dispensary selling glasses of beer in a bar for 6 pesos / 24 cents.

It ran out of beer while we were there – we hope you have better luck!

Now that you have an idea of where to find Havana cuban food on a budget, check out our Cuba budget travel guide for more information on travelling to the island nation!

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Budget food in Havana is harder to find & more expensive than anywhere else in Cuba but you can still find bargain peso food - pizza & spaghetti for 40 cents, hamburgers for 25 cents and ice-cream for 4 cents! You can also eat at government & private restaurants for less than $2! Let us show you where to find the cheapest food in Havana!

 

*** The Final Word – You can easily eat 3 meals, snacks & drinks in Havana for less than $3 a day! ***

What was your favourite Havana cuban food?

5 Shovels-2

Super easy DIY travel around city centres

Visited in May-June 2016

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