Dining on a Budget on the Amalfi Coast
Where can I eat out on the Amalfi Coast without spending a fortune? Here are our picks for enjoying a lunch or dinner out on a budget, but with quality food and authentic dishes. We live on this stretch of coast, so know the best low-cost options: trattorias, pizzerias, bars, take-away delis, and snack bars of the beach...but no tourist trap restaurants with fixed menus!
Start with Sorrento: Where to Have Lunch
First you'll want to spend a few hours visiting Sorrento, which is an excellent idea as this resort town is perfectly positioned to then set off and explore the Amalfi Coast. There is both beautiful scenery and historic monuments to take in, and the center of town is thick with restaurants, take-away delis, and bars that are both inexpensive and good quality. Here's where to eat in Sorrento without breaking the bank, and without wasting precious touring time.
Inexpensive Pizza in Sorrento
The best way to eat well for less in Sorrento is by choosing pizza, and southern Italy's iconic Margherita never gets old. Our favorites:
Il Leone Rosso: located on Via Marziale near Corso Italia in the center of town, just a few minutes from the Circumvesuviana station. There is a wide variety of pizzas from the classic Margherita to dessert pizza with Nutella. In addition, clients are given a warm focaccia as a welcome and a glass of traditional limoncello to end the meal.
Prices: between EUR 10 and 20.
This pizzeria in Sorrento is an institution. Located just a few steps from Piazza Lauro in the heart of the city the dining room is very old-style with wooden tables and prosciutto hams hanging fro the ceiling. The cutlery and plates are plastic, and service is quick. Though the vibe may be bare-bones, the rich flavors and aromas more than make up for it.
Our suggestions: try the prosciutto crudo (Parma or San Daniele) served sliced with fiordilatte di Agerola mozzarella cheese and grilled smoked scamorza cheese with black olives and chili pepper. Don't leave without sampling the "pizza al metro", or pizza by the meter, served with a number of toppings and surprisingly light. This restaurant is a great choice for large families.
Prices: from around EUR 18.
Inexpensive Restaurants in Sorrento
Trattoria Chantecler on Via Santa Maria della Pietà that runs parallel Corso Italia in the town center. Homestyle cooking, with flavorful dishes and large portions...all at a great price. The décor is rustic and service is fast. There are also outdoor tables set up along the pedestrian lane that is very quiet for those who want to dine al fresco.
Our suggestions: eggplant parmesan, lasagna, and fish, usually very fresh.
Avoid dining here on Sundays, when the restaurant can be packed.
If you're in a hurry, they also offer take away meals.
Prices: from EUR 6 to 20.
La Cantinaccia del Popolo is where you can dine in Sorrento for very little while feeling like part of the family. The restaurant is located just steps from Corso Italia, and the décor is traditional and simple, but the dishes are generously portioned and deliciously prepared with excellent quality ingredients. If you want to try classic recipes from the Sorrentine Peninsula, this is the right spot. The restaurant also produces its own wine and liqueurs.
Our suggestions: the prosciutto and cheese antipasto, as well as the meat dishes.
Prices: from EUR 5 to 30.
For sweets like gelato, crepes, and frozen yogurt, try the gelateria Davide Augusto, a family-run gelateria with a large assortment of flavors from the classic seasonal fruits (strawberry, peach, cherry, and melon) to local specialties like Sorrento lemon, Giffoni hazelnut, and Bronte pistachio. If you are looking for something new to try, order a savory gelato made with milk and cream mixed with vegetable or cheese and topped with fresh fruit. They also serve crepes, frozen yogurt, and Belgian waffles. All this just a few minutes from the Circumvesuviana and Corso Italia.
Price per gelato: from EUR 2.50.
If you would like a quick, savory snack, stop for a sandwich in Sorrento at A’Marenna
This tiny spot on Piazza Tasso in the center of Sorrento is easy to spot, with its window crowded with delicacies, its food cart, and its contagious lively vibe. The sandwiches are delicious, made with quality ingredients and not too heavy. They also prepare classic hot dogs, gourmet sandwiches, and vegetarian options. There is a wide variety of choices and you can tuck in to your sandwich on the go while you decide what to see in Sorrento.
Prices: from EUR 4.
Inexpensive Places to Eat in Positano
If you are visiting Positano and suddenly get hungry, it's good to know where to stop for a bite without breaking the bank. You'll be surprised to find that there are a number of budget options that prepare delicious dishes based on the quality ingredients found along the coast, and that you can dine in one of the most beautiful (and notoriously expensive) places in the world without spending a fortune. That said, you need to know where to look to find these budget gems, so here are our tips for eating well while spending less in Positano!
Beach Bars: Bagni da Ferdinando
This family-run beach bar is located in Fornillo, one of the beaches in Positano that is set a bit outside the center of town. Here, you can relax under an umbrella and enjoy one of the classic dishes from the Amalfi Coast at a reasonable price. They offer interesting salads, delicious cold and hot appetizers, and first and second courses with fish, meat, or vegetables.
We suggest the lemon ravioli with ricotta and lobster, but the baked and grilled fish is also excellent.
This is one of the most inexpensive restaurants in Positano that combines quality and authenticity, and you can also order their pizza and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere far from the crowds in the center of town.
Price: from EUR 6 to 17.
The Best Budget Restaurant in Positano: La Tagliata
If you'd like to sample something other than fish and seafood, where can you order meat dishes in Positano without busting your budget? Tickle your taste buds at La Tagliata in Montepertuso, set in the hills at the top of town. There are dishes to suit every budget, but the quality is guaranteed no matter what you order. Everything is made in the kitchen with local ingredients, and there are farm animals and a vegetable garden just steps from the dining room. Be sure to take in the views over the Bay of Naples fro the dining room, and see if you can spot the Faraglioni off the coast of Capri.
Our suggestions: the menu includes a number of starters featuring vegetables, legumes, and cheeses. Pasta is made fresh each day, but the restaurant is famous for its excellent meat dishes from the classic fiorentina steak to grilled beef and pork so good that you will want to come back for more. The portions are all very generous.
Prices: from EUR 20 to 40.
Latteria: Lunch on the Go
This eatery on Via Pasitea is a great spot to sample traditional food from the coast, where you can eat well on a budget in Positano. They prepare everything from pasta dishes to meat and fish, as well as desserts and sandwiches. The dining room is tiny and spartan, but there are a few tables outside under the shade trees, and the ingredients are all excellent. If you're not sure where to stop for a bite, this local gem will win you over.
Our suggestions: eggplant parmesan, meatballs, lasagna. Don't miss the crema di caffè dessert.
Prices: from EUR 7.
Casa e Bottega: Tradition and Innovation
This simple but elegant spot with its shabby chic white décor is located just outside the center of Positano on Via Pasitea e near the parking garages, and is an ideal choice for sampling traditional specialties updated with an innovative twist, often inspired by American cuisine.
Our suggestions: soup with chickpeas, spelt, and cabbage; fried egg with burrata cheese and vegetables; involtini with goat cheese; and chicken tenders.
They offer gluten free, vegetarian, and vegan options made with fresh ingredients.
Casa e Bottega also serves late breakfast, including excellent pancakes. Everything is presented very creatively on artisan ceramic dishes made locally.
Prices: from EUR 6 to 25.
Amalfi: Where to Dine on a Budget
If you are staying in Amalfi for your holiday or visiting for the day, here is where you can eat well but inexpensively.
Da Maria: Restaurant and Pizzeria
This is one of the most beloved pizzerias in Amalfi, located just a few steps from the Duomo. Here you can try traditional classics prepared with simplicity and passion. The restaurant has been run by the Pisacane family since 1968, and is a favorite with visitors and locals for its fresh fish and fantastic pizza.
Our suggestions: spaghetti with clams and anchovies.
Prices: from EUR 12 to 20.
Cuoppo d’Amalfi: Fresh Fried Fish and Seafood
If you want an unforgettable snack in Amalfi without breaking the bank, stop at Al Cuoppo, a tiny spot located in a historic church tucked in the town's tiny backstreets. Open 24 hours a day, this street food mecca serves paper cones of fried fish and seafood that is always fresh. There are places to sit and eat outside, but there is always a crowd so it's best to place your order to go and enjoy munching on the crispy battered fish and seafood while walking through town.
Our suggestions: there are a number of cone options, from calamari and shrimp, mixed fish and seafood, and even vegetables.
Prices: from EUR 5 to 12.
Pasticceria Da Leone
Need to satisfy your sweet tooth in Amalfi? Stop at the Pasticceria Leone in the center of town, a small bakery and pastry shop that would be easy to miss if not for the beautiful cakes in the window and aroma of coffee.
Our suggestions: torta caprese, pastries, granita.
Prices: from EUR 2 to 7.
Where to Eat for Less in Ravello
The last stop on our budget restaurant overview of the Amalfi Coast is Ravello set on the clifftop above the coast and famous for its villas, gardens, and scenic overlooks. This picturesque spot, famous for its music festival, is home to Villa Cimbrone and Villa Rufolo, where the world-class Ravello Festival is held each year. If you are visiting this small gem on the Amalfi Coast, where can your eat on a budget?
If you're pressed for time and want a cheap meal in Ravello, you can always opt for a sandwich.
Il Panino: Sandwich Shop and Café
Want a quick but delicious sandwich in Ravello? Stop at Il Panino, the sandwich shop in Piazza Duomo just steps from Villa Rufolo. If you're not in too much of a rush, sit down to enjoy the beauty of the town's architecture and watch the streams of visitors stroll by. The sandwiches are excellent, made with fresh ingredients and warm bread. There is no cover charge for table seating.
Our suggestions: sandwich with pancetta and provola or with eggplant and mushrooms.
Prezzo: dai 5 ai 7 euro circa.
Locanda Moresca: A Real Meal
If you're looking for a low-cost meal in Ravello, look no further than Locanda Moresca. This small restaurant is located on the medieval Piazza Fontana Moresca and serves lunch and dinner. Menus highlight traditional dishes, served in a romantic atmosphere and based on classic recipes from the Amalfi Coast prepared with a touch of contemporary style
Our suggestions: simple seafood or meat dishes made with healthy, natural ingredients.
Be sure to try their fried specialties; potato gnocchetti with peppers, clams, and cherry tomatoes; tagliata steak with arugula and parmesan cheese; and cod. The desserts and wines are also delightful.
Prices: from EUR 12 to 20.
Now you know where to dine on a budget on Italy's Amalfi Coast, with our guide to inexpensive restaurants and cheap eats!