2012 Cheap Eats

Red Pepper
2641 Oswell St.

This place is known for serving up delicious Mexican cuisine with exceptional flavors. Red Pepper has been around for a while now and the appetizing dishes are a clear sign why. Join them for lunch and sate your appetite with a bowl of fresh albondiga soup for just $6.75. Or, fill up with the Merchant special, the Mexican combination, beef taco, or a cheese enchilada for a pleasing $9.95.

Prime Cut
9500 Brimhall Rd.

When you step into Prime Cut, you transport yourself to a lavish Mardi Gras festival…only it’s every day. The brightly-decorated walls and lively music deliver a great overall experience and the food is just as desirable…just bursting with Cajun flavors and savory spices. Choose from most appetizer items for under $10 but I recommend sinking your teeth into the Cheesy Bacon Fries for only $9. You won’t regret it.

Muertos Kitchen and Lounge
1514 Wall St.

This new local hotspot has definitely made its mark in the downtown community. The location is perfect, the food is simply amazing, and, despite the name “Muertos,” the atmosphere is all about celebrating life. Stop in for the popular Muertos Cheese Steak: carne asada with grilled onions, bell peppers, cheese, and a side of fries for only $9. Pair any meal with one of their savory specialty drinks like the red wine sangria. Yum!

The Cafe Shoppe Grilled chicken breast with bell peppers, tomato, grilled onion, pepperoni, and pepper jack cheese.
The Cafe Shoppe Grilled chicken breast with bell peppers, tomato, grilled onion, pepperoni, and pepper jack cheese.

Café Med (The Gourmet Shoppe)
4809 Stockdale Hwy.

If you have not wandered in to The Gourmet Shoppe during your trips to Café Med, you don’t know what you have been missing. You can find anything from delectably crafted salads, pastas, desserts, wines and delicious paninis. Sink your teeth in to the popular South of the Border Grilled Chicken Breast, it comes with bell peppers, tomato, grilled onion, pepperoni, pepper jack cheese with aioli or focaccia $7.99.

622 E 21st St.

Located in Old Town Kern, a visit to this local favorite might seem out of the way, but trust me when I say it’s worth changing your regular route for what this place is dishing up. Regulars start showing up early at this fun Bakersfield favorite spot to reserve a seat. A lunch favorite is the $5 Burger and Beer, served all week any time, but I like the Daily Pasta Special. For only $7 you choose from spaghetti or pasta with meat sauce and garlic toast. You should also stop by for their popular $10 Steak Night!

The Mark Pot Roast-tender chuck roast topped with delicious pan gravy.
The Mark Pot Roast-tender chuck roast topped with delicious pan gravy.

The Mark
1623 19th St.

The Mark is a new restaurant on the Bakersfield scene, with brick wall architecture, dim lighting, and beautiful art on the walls, this restaurant is a great place for a date night any night of the week. Although, if you are in the Downtown area during lunchtime, stop by for a flavorful meal. Favorites during lunch are the Roast Turkey Wrap, $8.95, or the Pot Roast with tender chuck roast topped with delicious pan gravy for an affordable $9.95. It also comes with a side of mashed potatoes!

El Portal
6641 Ming Ave.

The service is always great at this longtime Kern County classic. The food is simply delicious and the variety of specialty dishes won’t disappoint. You can switch up your favorite dish with every visit. The Tequila Chicken is a dish to savor for only $9.95. It comes with tender chicken marinated with fresh lime juice, and it’s sautéed with a splash of tequila to give it a perfect touch. Served with a side of vegetables and rice and garnished with pico de gallo and avocado slices.

4001 Rosedale Hwy.

Located on Rosedale right off the 99, Benji’s is a fast route to a filling Basque meal. At only $9, the lunch setup is a perfect meal. For the price, you get fresh bread, butter, salsa, soup, beans, green salad, French fries, and hot vegetables. If you find you’re still in the mood for something Basque, get your hands around the Beef or Lamb Dip for the same price.

La Costa Mariscos
716 21st St.

This is a small seafood restaurant across the street from the Bakersfield Museum of Art. While you wait for your food, dig in to the delicious chips and salsa and enjoy the nautical-themed decorations on the walls. Obviously, if you are a seafood lover, you will want to indulge in everything on the menu (not at one time, of course). Try the tender and flavorful Fish Enchilada topped with a creamy white sauce for an out-of-this-world $7.

Miyoshi Japanese Restaurant Yellow Submarine Roll
Miyoshi Japanese Restaurant Yellow Submarine Roll

Miyoshi Japanese Restaurant
8200 Stockdale Hwy.

If you are looking for fresh and delectable sushi, Miyoshi is a solid choice in Bakersfield. It’s a great spot for your sushi fix because it’s inexpensive and the service is always friendly. Plus they’ve got a great list of rolls to choose from. If you have not already tried it, the Yellow Submarine Roll is for you (and it’s only $8.95). This roll is made of shrimp tempura and avocado wrapped with soybean paper, then topped with spicy tuna and a special sauce.

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