Country DoughAddress and Info
This Pike Place Market spot from one of the best Chinese chefs in the city (he's the guy behind Seven Stars Pepper, Szechuan Chef, and more) specializes in seriously good, and seriously affordable street food, including "meat wraps" and Chinese Crepes -- none of which cost more than $7.50 -- and best of all, this "sweet & spicy" flatbread number w/ chili sauce, garlic & sugar that's made with beef, chicken, or pork will keep you (and your bank account) full.
Half Chicken Pesto
Scratch DeliAddress and Info
Started by a former Whole Foods butcher -- originally as a food truck... or trailer, actually -- this deli operation makes some of the city's best sandwiches, like our favorite, which is a chicken salad sandwich but w/ pesto, Beecher's cheese, Mama Lil's peppers, spinach & aioli, or The Godfather w/ salami, Chevre, Mama Lil's, etc. We know, it sounds too good to only be seven dollars, right? Right. But you can get half of the two we mentioned, and several others, for that price or less, and we figure since they're twice as good as most sandwiches, the math checks out.
Fat Ducks Deli & BakeryAddress and Info
This suspiciously pro-Oregon-sounding sandwich shop/bakery is located at the edge of the Ravenna in an unassuming little house where the woman who owns it turns out generously proportioned desserts, and delicious homemade sandwiches, most of which are about $9, but not the Daisy Duck (tuna or chicken salad), or the Turkey Panini -- which makes the cut due to it being smothered in gooey cheese, topped with an herb-heavy pesto spread, and served to you at just the right crunchiness.
Bakeman's RestaurantAddress and Info
Screw $7. At this utterly no frills spot below sidewalk level just north of Pioneer Square, all the sandwiches cost less than $4.50, including their signature meatloaf w/ cheddar, lettuce & tomato on fresh baked bread, which is made in-house everyday.
The Roasted Chicken Sandwich
Michou World Class DeliAddress and Info
Also in Pike Place Market, this confidently named deli (it even has it's own song!) creates 20 different sandwiches for just $6.16. There are two succulent options here: the pulled pork w/ greens & smoked gouda, and the Roasted Chicken w/ tomatoes, provolone, sun-dried tomato pesto, a whole mess-o-greens & lemon aioli. But in the end, the roasted chicken takes home the gold.
Build-Your-Own Deli Sandwich
Mel's MarketAddress and Info
This Italian grocery in the heart of downtown is popular (like, line out the door popular) in large part because they'll make you a seriously good deli-style sandwich for just $6.99. The best option is to make your own (our go-to is salami & havarti w/ pesto mayo on sourdough), but there's a plethora of options you can go with. Or there's always a bacon cheeseburger for just $6.49... and that technically counts as a sandwich, right?
George's Sausage & DelicatessenAddress and Info
Called the best deli "that you've never heard of" by the Seattle Times earlier this year, this Eastern European grocery just up the hill from Vito's, is the best place to go when you need to stock your pantry with Armenian wine or cans of beef goulash, as well as a solid pick for lunch: The sizable build-your-own sandwiches are just $6.35 and come with a drink and a side. Pro tip: you can get ham or turkey anywhere, so go with something more old world, like the Liverwurst... or the corned beef, the salami, or -- since it's in the place's name -- sausage.
Saigon DeliAddress and Info
If it weren't for teriyaki… or pho, or salmon, or Dungeness crab, or oysters, then the classic banh mi on a fresh baguette w/ shredded carrot, cucumber & cilantro, might just be Seattle's signature food item, and this UW-adjacent spot is selling them, with your choice of BBQ pork, chicken, or tofu, all for just under $4.
1. Country Dough1916 Pike Pl #14, Seattle
2. Michou World Class Deli1904 Pike Pl, Seattle
3. Scratch Deli400 NE 45th St, Seattle
4. Fat Ducks Deli & Bakery5509 University Way NE, Seattle
5. Mel's Market1001 4th Ave, Seattle
6. Bakeman's Restaurant122 Cherry St, Seattle
7. George's Sausage & Delicatessen907 Madison St, Seattle
8. Saigon Deli1237 S Jackson St., Seattle
Chef Cheng Biao Yang may have his name on renowned Sichuanese restaurants, including Seven Stars Pepper, Szechuan Chef, and Uway Malatang, but for now he’s gone simple: Country Dough serves straightforward flatbread sandwiches, Chinese crêpes, and noodle dishes from this back corner spot at Pike Place Market.
Nestled in Pike Place Market, this homey counter service spot features a robust menu of sandwiches, salads, and soups. It's revered by locals for its speedy service even during peak lunch hours, and for the affordable price point -- a bargain, considering that everything at Michou is made from scratch with locally-sourced ingredients. Pro tip: consider trying the Sierra (roasted chicken, tomatoes, smoked Gouda, sliced red onions, arugula, and house-made chipotle aioli) or the ABBLT (an upgrade to the classic BLT with apples and brie).
From a former Whole Foods butcher comes this converted taco trailer that's serving up a combination of deli staples and creative ethnic-inspired dishes. Old-school favorites run the gamut from a cheesesteak with braised chicken & bleu cheese to pulled pork.
In addition to homestyle baked goods (indecently thick lemon bars, gooey brownies, etc.), this fowl-themed eatery -- opened by an East Coast transplant who grew up in her Dad's bakery/deli -- is serving up monstrously proportioned sandos.
Mel's Market relies upon two main things: fresh, locally-sourced ingredients and a customizable "build-your-own" sandwich menu, which makes it the perfect grab and go option for those who know exactly what they want for lunch. Don't be alarmed by the line out the door (there usually is one) -- the cozy Italian deli has a loyal following of regulars, and it the queue moves pretty quickly.
Don't be put off by the bare-bones cafeteria environs -- the insanely affordable and delicious sandwiches and soups at Bakeman's are worth putting up with the fluorescent lighting. Everything is made from scratch daily for optimal freshness, but the clear standouts are the oven-roasted turkey sandwich (pro tip: opt to add homemade cranberry sauce, because it's tasty and a mere .25 cents) and the signature meatloaf on toasted wheat bread. It's one of the best lunch options in Pioneer Square, so anticipate long lines during peak lunch hours.
When a deli is pretty much off the grid but still manages to have a line down the block everyday, you know it's good. Such is the case of George's Sausage & Delicatessen, an old-school counter service joint serving some of the most delicious (and affordable!) sandwiches in First Hill. It's well-stocked with Polish cooking staples and various Eastern European pantry goods, but it's the made to order standouts like liverwurst and hot pastrami on toasted rye that attract the masses for lunch.