Denmark,  Europe,  Food

Cheap Eats in Copenhagen

Looking for cheap eats in Copenhagen? Then we’ve got you covered.

Copenhagen is renowned as a foodie hub and in particular is known for Noma, which has taken the title of best restaurant in the world four times (it’s in the no 2 spot this year), and is also the place where the new Nordic cuisine movement began.

Michelin star restaurants abound, but for those who can’t or don’t want to spend £500 on a top-end taster menu, Copenhagen also has a great selection of restaurants that won’t break the bank.

Where to eat in Copenhagen – without breaking the bank

Now, disclaimer here – cheap is relative, and some of the prices below might not be considered particularly low cost by UK standards. However, the eateries I’ve highlighted are reasonably priced by Copenhagen standards, and the food is really good. Why not see if there’s anything here that takes your fancy?

mother

Cheap eats in Copenhagen

mother is found in the heart of hipster Vesterbro, the meatpacking district. This gentrified area is now home to a variety of cool bars and eateries including this tasty pizzeria, which has integrated the old industrial vibe into its design.

Here you can enjoy deliciously gooey pizzas, freshly made using organic sourdough and seawater. I went with the prosciutto pizza, which was topped with rocket, pesto and Parma ham and I can honestly say it was one of the best pizzas I’ve ever had. Worth going back to Copenhagen for – but even better, I’ve just discovered that there’s mother pizzeria in London, so I’ll be heading there very soon!

Pizzas cost between 78-125Kr. At time of writing this is approximately £9.50-15.50. A filling option for dinner.

Gorm’s Pizza

Another good option for pizza is Gorm’s, which has several branches around Copenhagen’s city centre.

Offering a selection of reasonably priced ‘gourmet’ pizzas with quirky names like Gorm’s Hottie, each restaurant also offers a couple of its own unique pizzas, served only there. Pizza prices are around 100-140DKR (£12-17).

Halifax Burgers

Cheap eats in Copenhagen

Halifax Burgers are so popular that there are now 12 restaurants all across the city. Eat in or takeaway, there’s a selection of 10 juicy burgers on offer here, again with quirky names. Pick your poison then add your sides (fries need to be ordered as an extra) and wait for these tasty burgers to arrive.

Be aware that the prices can add up here as you’ll need to order your fries, sides and drinks separately – I personally recommend heading here for lunch as they do an epic deal between 11.30am and 4pm of 75DKR (£9) for any burger – usual prices range from 95-120DKR (£11.50-15).

Gasoline Grill

We didn’t manage to make it here during our short visit to the city, but Gasoline Grill is a popular choice for burger lovers. A petrol station-themed takeaway restaurant, there’s a small choice of freshly made burgers on offer, all served in a brioche bun and very well priced.

According to the Copenhagen Lonely Planet guide it’s a good idea to get here early in the day as the Gasoline Grill closes when the burgers run out and this could be as early as 6pm!

Here burgers cost 75DKR each (£9) and fries 25DKR (£2.50).

Bastard Café

For something a little different I highly recommend a trip to the Bastard café. This is a huge, highly popular board game café in the heart of the city. Order yourself a drink and hot snack and then trawl through over 3,000 board games on offer for you to play. Personally I can’t think of a better way to while away a rainy afternoon!

Sure, they’ve got those popular Christmas favourites like Monopoly and Cluedo, but why not try out some real games? Personal favourites of mine include Dead of Winter, Seven Wonders, Settlers of Catan and Lords of Waterdeep. Both Emma and I are big gamers, so if you’re ever interested in some board game recommendations for your travels (or at home) please ask away!

Cheap eats in Copenhagen

During our visit, Justin and I couldn’t overlook a game called Copenhagen, where you had to build yourself a colourful Nyhavn house, Tetris style. It was quite good fun.

Food-wise it’s more snacks and fast food here, but the portions are filling as we discovered. The menu includes nachos, fries, lasagne and epic-named dishes like the Cthulhu rings (squid rings) and the Big Bastard Toast Of Doom, Chicken Minion Toast or Cheese Toast. Food prices range from around 40-90DKR  (£5-11) for the larger meal options.

Torvehallerne

Copenhagen’s food halls are chock full of independent vendors selling a huge range of foodie delights. I think I enjoyed wandering up and down all the aisles checking out all my options as much as I did the food I finally choose!

Here you’ll find everything from fresh pasta, Korean dishes and empanadillas through to cakes, pastries and Italian ice cream. It’s the perfect place to grab a light lunch, or pick up some supplies for a picnic in the park, and the prices aren’t too bad.

Reffen Street Food Market

Another similar spot to Torvehallerne is the Reffen Street Food Market. Located in what was once the city’s old shipyard, this is the open air equivalent to Torvehallerne’s covered halls and in Scandinavia’s largest street food market.

Hot dogs

All over the city you’ll find stalls selling tasty and cheap hot dogs. At around £3 for a bacon-wrapped hot dog (frankfurter rather than sausage style for the UK readers) we took advantage of these and often had them for our lunches during our stay.

If you’re after an ‘artisan’ hot dog experience then I recommend heading to one of the DØP stalls in the city centre. Basically selling posh hotdogs here you can choose from a selection of different bread rolls and there’s a very different selection of hot dogs on offer, including spicy beef and goat sausages through to vegan tofu and seasoned pork with wild garlic options. The prices are a little more expensive, starting at around £4, but you do get better quality ingredients.

As an aside though, I personally enjoyed the classic hot dogs more than the posh DØP versions, but that’s just down to personal taste. Sometimes a little bit of trashy food is jus what you need!  

A ‘little less’ cheap eats in Copenhagen – somewhere special

For those that are looking for somewhere to have a special meal in Copenhagen I wanted to offer a couple of more expensive options that wouldn’t be considered cheap but still moderately priced compared to the big restaurant names in the city.

Here are two special meals I had during my visit to Copenhagen that I would highly recommend. 

Nimb

afternoon tea in copenhagen nimb bar

I do love a good afternoon tea when I visit a new city, some of the settings can be spectacular and Nimb definitely doesn’t disappoint. Afternoon tea is served in the Nimb Bar, which is situated in what was the old ballroom of Tivoli Garden’s Moorish-inspired palace. A truly elegant space, its high ceilings and chandeliers ooze class.

The afternoon tea is served in three ‘courses’, first savoury dishes with a Scandi twist, second an iced tea and lastly a three-tier tray filled with decadent sweets. I enjoyed it immensely and if you’d like to find out more you can read my full review here.

The Nimb afternoon tea costs 325Kr (£40).

Uformel

If you’d like to experience new Nordic cuisine but somewhere like Noma’s out of your budget then I highly recommend booking a table at Uformel.

Uformel (which in English translates to informal) is the younger, more relaxed brother of Michelin-starred restaurant formel B, so you can get a high-end dining experience at a slightly more reasonable price.

Its menu regularly changes to encompass fresh, local seasonal ingredients and you can choose from a set taster menu or choose from a selection of a la carte dishes to make your own.

We were invited to try Uformel’s four-course taster menu during our visit, which includes wines paired with each course. 

The food was pretty ‘out there’ by my own standards, but throwing caution to the wind I dived in and gave everything a good try – and most of it went down a treat.  One of my highlights was the beef tartar, which came out looking something like a little brain. This was a ball of finely cut Danish beef (not mince, which is what we’d had in the past) filed with croutons and black pepper mayonnaise and wrapped in oven-baked tomatoes.

Not the usual type of dish I’d order, once I got my head around the concept of raw meat and the crazy combinations of soft and crunchy textures I thought this tasted amazing. It was full of flavour, particularly from the tomatoes and the pepper gave it a kick.

Another stand out was the guinea fowl, which was served with fermented artichoke, blanched asparagus and the most amazing baba ganoush, which was like nothing I’d ever tasted before. I usually play it quite safe with my food choices, so much of what I tried that evening was new to me, but even with my untrained palate, I could tell how much work had been given to pairing flavours and textures to give an enhanced dining experience.

Plus the wine pairings were also very impressive. With each new course came a different type of wine, chosen to bring out the best in each dish. Again I’m not knowledgeable in wines, but could tell how the flavours complemented each course. I’ve now discovered a white wine that I love for the first time – a piesporter, and also, oddly, loved the overly sweet dessert wine we were served.

If you want to experience Michelin-star quality food at a slightly lower price this is a very good option. The perfect restaurant for a special occasion meal, our four-course menu, including wines, costs 800DKR (£99) per person.

Tips for eating cheap in Copenhagen

  • Make lunch your main meal. Lots of restaurants offer really good lunchtime deals.
  •  Don’t eat in the main tourist areas like Nyhavn as the prices will be a lot higher and the food probably not as good. You just need to walk a few streets away from the tourist hubs to find better quality food at lower prices.

More posts about Copenhagen

Things to do in Copenhagen when it rains

Christmas in Copenhagen

Afternoon tea in Copenhagen – Nimb Bar

The Andersen – a Boutique Hotel in Copenhagen

A stay at The Absalon, a Boutique Hotel in Copenhagen

Visiting Copenhagen? Why not pick up a Lonely Planet Pocket Copenhagen Guide?

lonely planet pocket copenhagen guide

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By day Co-Editor Keri is a freelance journalist and copywriter, but spends most of her free time either travelling or planning her next trip!  A complete travel fanatic, she has a love of tropical climates, wildlife and afternoon tea (hence the creation of her Global Afternoon Tea Challenge!)

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