The 10 Best Student Eats around Manchester
For students who have made the unfortunate mistake of not packing a lunch from home before heading out the door to lectures, it can be tricky to find affordable yet still delicious food on the go.
There’s nothing more frustrating than spending that hard earned loan on a sandwich to find out that it is massively underwhelming, or blowing £3 at Sainsbury’s on a meal deal to discover that you’re hungry just an hour later!
So, we thought here at Accommodation for Students, that we would provide a guide to finding the best eats around the city of Manchester- letting you know all the best places to head for a sandwich that will get you through four more hours of lab work!
That’s not all we’ve got lined up, we’ll also be branching out these guides to other cities across the UK, asking YOU about your favourite places to eat near campus- and even recreating some student favourites for you to try at home for pennies! You’re welcome…
Join us in a quest around the UK for the best places to eat as a student!
Located in the heart of Manchester’s Northern Quarter, Soup Kitchen is a great place to head in between lectures to grab cheap food and hot drinks. The whole set up of the café is super cosy with the menu painted on the wall- due to it being rotated and changed regularly.
There are plenty of options, from huge hot sandwiches and soups for just £5 through to dishes such as jerk chicken and goat curry, also for under a fiver. There are large jugs of water on the tables meaning you don’t have to grab expensive drinks, whilst the sandwiches are delicious and absolutely huge- filling you up much more than the average meal deal ever would!
It can be a struggle to find vegan options on a student budget; however, with veganism now becoming a new norm, there are plenty of cheap restaurants popping up around major cities all around the UK. V Rev has been in the city centre for a couple of years now, yet it feels as though it has only just been discovered. The restaurant offers up your standard fast food options such as burgers, hotdogs, macaroni and cheese and even cheese fries, yet everything on offer is vegan, delicious and affordable- with every meal coming in at under £10!
Located close to Manchester Metropolitan University Campus, the Deaf Institute is a super interesting venue- consisting of a bar, a night club and a small theatre as well! There’s also a restaurant and café in the bar, serving some bistro pub classics, from sweet potato fries, burgers and fish n chips through to a variety of vegan dishes too! If you’ve never heard of vegan chicken and waffles, then Deaf Institute is the place to head! Every single item on the menu is under £10, whilst the wraps and sandwiches are just £6, meaning that you can afford to dine out on a budget after emerging from lectures.
If you’re craving a big bowl of steaming noodles whilst sitting through your lectures, then I Am Pho is the best place to head. They offer a huge range of traditional Vietnamese food, from spring rolls through to noodles and even bottles of Hanoi Beer. For just £7.50, you can grab a huge bowl of steaming wonton noodles in chicken or vegetable broth with a selection of wonton dumplings on the side. There are always plenty of sauces available on the table to let you add what you like to your pho as well as plenty of side bowls filled with all the trimmings for you to add to the dish! Although some items on offer may seem a little strange, for example, the fermented pork isn’t really to everyone’s taste, the overall set up of the little café is cosy and the food is super quick to appear at your table, meaning you can head back to lectures as everything, fresh and affordable and quick!
If you’re looking for a cheap brunch idea between lectures, then Ezra and Gil is a great bet. Located near Dale Street in the Northern Quarter, the little café serves a great selection of brunch dishes, from avocado on toast, vegetarian fry ups with extra baked beans and salmon and boiled egg salads- they’re much nicer than they sound! All of these dishes come in at under £8, whilst the café also have a great range of smoothies to give you a pick me up during the post lectures’ exhaustion!
If you can’t decide on what you’d like- basically, if you’re going through a real disaster, then Arndale Food Market is by far your best bet! There’s everything there, from Mexican through to cheap curries, a fresh salad bar, noodles and plenty of smoothie stands! There’s also a few communal places to sit down to enjoy your food, all of which comes in at well under £10, meaning that you’ll have some change to spare for next time.
With burritos made with fresh ingredients from as little as £3.99, Pancho’s burritos definitely set the bar high when it comes to Mexican food. The burritos are actually huge! Like, they’re as big as the average persons’ fist, whilst the fillings range from grilled cheese through to mince, chicken and pork or even grilled vegetables for a vegan option! There are a wide variety of all the usual ingredients, from black beans through to freshly made salsa in a variety of different spice levels and, you guessed it- fresh sour cream and extra jalapeños! *drools*
If you’re looking for a super cheap yet really filling meal, then ‘This N That’ in the Northern Quarter is by far the best bet! Although the phrase does tend to be thrown about, ‘This N That’ really is a hidden gem and the ultimate abode for cheap and delicious food. You can grab a plate of hot steaming rice accompanied by three different curries, because no one wants just one- and a pitta for just £5! The much loved café has been home to the ‘rice and three’ for twenty years now, serving up fresh, traditional and homemade curry every day.
If the pull of cheese is calling you, then your best bet is to head to Northern Soul grilled cheese to satisfy these cravings. There are currently two Northern Soul restaurants in Manchester, with the restaurant recently bagging them a CityLife Award for the best casual city dining. Sandwiches range from only £4.5-£6.50 and usually come with incredible fillings such as mac n cheese, blue cheese, bacon and chilli, super healthy then!
Situated on Peter Street in Manchester, in the area that was formally known as ‘Little ‘Italy’, Rudy’s Neapolitan Pizza is the place to head if you’re looking for pizza, made the rustic, Neapolitan way. Rudy’s focus mainly on the tradition behind pizza, which usually means playing an incredible amount of time to making sure that the base, tastes good! You’ll usually notice that Rudy’s pizzas are sometimes lacking in the topping department because the attention needs to be placed on the base. Well, this approach works! Rudy’s has been placed as one of the best pizzas in the world! Anything in the restaurant comes in at under £10 which means it’s a perfectly affordable outing for a student lunch break.
If you’ve enjoyed our take on the cheapest places to eat around Manchester, then stay tuned to follow our food series.
We’ll be recreating student takeaway classics, chatting to students about the best places to eat in Manchester and branching out to other UK cities to find out about their favourite places to dine.