After nearly six years exploring Copenhagen’s budget eateries, this list highlights some of my favorites. The rules are simple – that the food is good, the portions are large, and that the price for your meal is less than 100 DKK and ideally significantly cheaper than that. Prices change, as do quality so I make no guarantees that the information in this post is up to date but I make every effort possible to keep it accurate and reliable. This list is also divided into two sections: The City Center and Nørrebro. While people often talk about Vesterbro, it isn’t an are I focus on or turn to for cheap eats.
See Part I, “This is How You Eat in Copenhagen For Less Than 100 DKK” where I discuss different genres of budget friendly food in Copenhagen.
Where To Eat
Smagsløget – I’m not normally a sandwich guy, but this place is an exception for all the right reasons. First, the sandwiches are enough to fill just about anyone up. If you’ve got a moderate appetite, it’ll be possible to split one of the sandwiches without major issue, especially if you opt for one of their meatier options. My personal go-tos are the grilled chicken (#5) and laks sandwiches, both of which I’ve been very happy with. As with a lot of the places on this list, you’ll be a smudge skeptical when you step through the doorway, but see it through. The other good news is they’re open quite late by Danish standards so sandwiches are a viable option for lunch or dinner. Sandwiches run about 75 DKK a piece.
L’Appetit – Situated on Fredriksborggade just north of Norreport station this tiny salad place has a number of delicious salad options and is obviously vegetarian friendly with heaping portions, great menu items, and delicious samosas. Even if you’re not a salad person (I’m normally not) this is well worth the visit. Prices vary based on what you get, but items such as samosas can be purchased individually or as part of a meal. Expect to pay between 30-70 DKK.
Dalle Valle – Home to the nicest budget budget buffet in Copenhagen, Dalle Valle has a lunch buffet ~79 DKK and dinner buffet ~119 DKK. The buffet is large, fresh, has a variety of local Danish dishes, and is immensely popular with locals. The restaurant also offers a 50% off all entrees special part of the week (typically Saturday-Tuesday). This requires you purchase a drink (20 DKK for a tap water works) and means that you can pick up most items on their regular menu for between 45-60 DKK+drink. This makes it one of the cheapest traditional restaurant experiences in Copenhagen. Dalle Valle has been widely popular and now has several locations, with the most popular being the one in the city center. Be warned that drinks are quite expensive. *EDIT* I have left Dalle Valle on this list but they have now repeatedly raised the prices of their buffet (updated above) and are quickly counteracting all of the positives that made them so attractive to begin with. The buffet is still a nice buffet, but technically their dinner pricing is now outside the range of this post with lunch prices nearing what their dinner prices once were.
Scurry Hub – Despite having one of the most dreadful names imaginable, this little Thai place offers fresh ingredients and tasty curries that aren’t over cooked. A green curry with chicken and rice will run you 65 DKK.
Samos Greek – With a lunch buffet that costs just 50 DKK and a dinner buffet that runs 79 DKK the food selection, and quality isn’t amazing but is definitely tolerable. If you need to re-fuel on a tight budget and enjoy Mediterranean food, this is a good spot for you.
Magasin Cafe – Situated right off Nyhavn and Kongens Nytov the large department store Magasin has a cafe located on the top floor. While still slightly pricey, you’ll be able to find a good selection of traditional Danish foods for less than 100 DKK.
Tria Deli – (CURRENTLY BEING REMODELED – MAY HAVE CLOSED) This bagel and salad shop makes fantastic sandwiches at very reasonable prices (typically less than 45 DKK) and is located just next to the 7/11 on Gothersgade making it one of the best budget friendly options in the immediate vicinity of Nyhavn.
Nørrebro and Nordvest
Rita’s Smørrebrød – This is my favorite smørrebrød shop in Copenhagen. With a wide assortment of “budget” options starting at 12 DKK, Rita’s is always fresh, tasty, and is very popular with local Danes. With just enough room for three people to eat in (or two tables outside if the weather is nice) this is usually a good spot to order the smørrebrød to go. On a nice day, take it to the nearby bridge across the lakes and join Danes for sunbathing and good eats. Rita’s is open roughly from 10am-2pm Monday-Friday.
Banana Joe’s – My favorite budget burger shop in Copenhagen. I discovered Banana Joe’s a couple years ago and am thrilled that people are starting to catch on to it. With an extremely affordable menu, this little hole in the wall cranks out some of the best burgers in town. The Banana Joe special burger is particularly good and consists of a hulking burger with an egg on top. It may not look like the type of place you should try fish from but, Banana Joe’s also has the best fish burger (real salmon fillets, perfectly cooked) in town. “Joe” is also a fantastic host – so make sure you try and grab one of the small tables and stay for a chat. Prices range from 35-75 DKK.
Harry’s Place – It doesn’t get more Danish than this tiny place. This shop is just wide enough for one person, and embodies everything you want in a tiny undiscovered local’s eatery. Prices are good, and they’ve got some of the best hot dogs and traditional Danish eats in Copenhagen. If you’re itching to try a traditional Danish Flæskesteg sandwich, this is definitely the place to do it.
Torvets Kebab – Nothing fancy or complicated about this place. Just one of the best kebabs in Nørrebro. Good prices, and fresh meat with a high turnover. The kebab place next door may look more promising, but this is where you want to go. Also, as a fun quirk check the place’s counter out – it is decorated with verses from Machiavelli’s The Prince. I strongly suggest opting for the mixed pita or durum, especially if you’re hungry, but they’ve also got tasty falafel. Pitas and Durums range from 20-33 DKK.
La Centrale – **I no longer suggest this place as they’ve started consistently doing shady stuff with how they bill you. If you order a pita, you’ll likely get an extra 5kr+ added to your bill for an unasked for “home made pita”** While the majority of what these guys do focuses around kebab and pizza, they have recently diversified into a wide assortment of middle eastern food. This includes rotisserie chicken, a wide selection of middle eastern dishes, and other tasty eats. They have good daily specials and make a tasty chicken burger (about 60 DKK for a meal/drink).
Maed Ethiopian – One of Copenhagen’s only Ethiopian restaurants, this place also has a decent menu. It’s not the best Ethiopian you’ll ever try, but it is definitely good enough to return to repeatedly and some of the best in Copenhagen. With a very authentic vibe, the best bet for folks on a budget is to visit for their lunch special which will serve up a hearty portion with a couple flavors for about 59 DKK. If ordering off the regular menu expect to pay between 60-90 DKK for a filling meal.
Kosk Kebab – Quite possibly the most popular kebab shop in Copenhagen. While a little ways from the city center (lines 350S, 5A both drop you off nearby at Norrebro station) it is usually worth the trip. With large servings and addictive rice, their plates are well priced and the quality is quite high. Expect to pay between 60-70 DKK for a plate which includes two skewers, rice, and salad.
Føtex, Kvickly & Super Brugsen – All typically have Deli sections. As with any Deli freshness varies widely. However, these provide a super cheap and convenient opportunity to get access to and sample some traditional Danish food on the cheap.
Green Mango Thai (Christianshavn) – With a weekday lunch special that drops the price of a main to 59 DKK, this is some of the cheapest and best Thai Food in Copenhagen. I always opt for the Pad Thai which is super fresh, a hearty portion, and has great flavor and presentation. The location makes it a super convenient stop on the way to Christiania or the city center.
Magasasa Chinese – If you ask Chinese folks in Copenhagen where to go for budget friendly semi-authentic Chinese food, they’ll almost all tell you Magasasa. It is located right next to the central station and has a large menu. Prices vary but mains usually start around 60 DKK with the bulk falling in the 70-80 DKK range.
Have your own suggestions? Post them in a comment and I’ll add the best to the list!
Don’t forget to check out the first part of this post, “This is How You Eat in Copenhagen For Less Than 100 DKK“, where I talk about eating out in Copenhagen on a budget in more general terms.