How to Taste St. Louis for Under $30 a Person

The hubs and I love to explore new countries and fun cities, and we like to do it on a budget. Because, really, who doesn’t like to get the most out of their money? So when our one year anniversary came rolling around, we began planning a long weekend trip to St. Louis, Missouri. I spent a while researching romantic restaurants, when I realized spending time and money on a three-course meal at a sit-down restaurant didn’t sound very much like us. Instead, we gave ourselves $30 a piece to try whatever, wherever to celebrate the one-year mark. Here’s the best of what we tried so you, too, can taste St. Louis for under $30 a person.

Note: Everything below was tried over the course of three days, and they are all listed as options for you to mix-and-match for your own delicious budget taste experience.

Morning Coffee

Northwest Coffee Roasting Company

Central West End
We tried: Iced Whole Milk Macchiato, Iced Bianca Mocha

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A fun and funky atmosphere, Northwest Coffee Roasting Company is a shop located inside an old garage and made complete by a hand painted mural on the outside. My husband, who has a sweet tooth and is still learning to love coffee, (I think he really likes me), enjoyed his iced bianca mocha made with Ghirardelli chocolate. Yes, I should hear an “oooh” in the back for that one.  

Expect to spend: $5 a drink

Blueprint Coffee

Delmar Loop
I tried: Iced Cappuccino

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This is the spot for those coffee connoisseurs. While some shops are for those who love a range of flavored syrups, Blueprint Coffee boasts multiple espressos, cold brews,  and a range of origin beans that are roasted right in the back. A very minimalist atmosphere where I sat and savored every sip in a sleek, tall glass. When you’re done here, take a walk around the loop – there’s so much to see!

Expect to spend: $5 a drink

RISE Coffee House

The Grove
We tried: Lavender Latte, Iced Vanilla Latte

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SCORE. I am such a sucker for lavender, and pretty much anything else with a floral or herbal twist. RISE Coffee House is the place if you like a latte with just a touch of flavor. I even thought my husband’s vanilla latte was great, even though I’m not much for sweet coffee. The shop is colorful, vibrant, and has that unique charm that makes you want to stick around a while. We didn’t get a chance to walk around the Grove more, but I would if you have time!

Expect to spend: $5 a drink

Doughnut Stop

Vincent Van Doughnut

We tried: Lemon Lavender Yeast Doughnut, Chocolate on Chocolate Cake Doughnut

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My husband and I didn’t have wedding cake – we had wedding donuts. So it was only fitting to have our anniversary breakfast at a local doughnut shop. I would so be lying if I wasn’t drawn to this place simply because it’s called Vincent Van Doughnut. We went for the pun and stayed for the face-sized, square-shaped donuts that came in a range of gourmet and traditional flavors. Plus, the clean, minimal aesthetics made my photographer heart happy.

Expect to spend: $2-$4 a doughnut (they’re big enough to share!)

Something Savory


Sure, you can get a full meal including meat and two sides for about $12 at Taze, but the real star here is the hummus, so that’s what I’m going to talk about. You can get a small flavored hummus – we recommend the caramelized onion or the jalapeno cilantro – and a carton of pita for $6. Super tasty and filling for when you need a little bit of substance.

Expect to spend: $6-$12

Seoul Taco

Korean-Mexican Fusion
Allow me to put your skepticism to rest. Because oh. My. Gosh. Seoul Taco is what all foodie dreams are made of. Packed with flavor, I highly recommend the spicy pork quesadilla if you want a little more food – it comes in at $7. If you just want a taste, tacos are $3, and are also quite delightful.

Expect to spend: $3-$8

Sweet Treat

St. Louis Bubble Tea

If you’ve yet to try the famed boba tea, St. Louis Bubble Tea is the spot to go. It was the best one I’ve had to date: sweet and flavorful while still refreshing, which was necessary as we visited in early August. They have a crazy long list of flavors – everything from jasmine to grape and peach, but if you’re new to it, I’d go with the classic boba milk tea.

Expect to spend: $4

Snow Factory Roll Ice Cream


It took my husband and I at least 10 minutes to decide. There are so many flavor combinations at Snow Factory, plus you get three toppings. We went with the Sunset St. Louis: a vanilla base with nutella and banana, and added dark chocolate syrup, Japanese mochi, and strawberries. I recommend sharing unless you have lots of room left.

Expect to spend: $7 (big enough to share!)

Bonus Stop

On our way back home, we stopped at Two Dudes Bar-B-Que in Warrenton, MO, right of the I-70. It’s about 50 minutes from downtown St. Louis, a true local eatery with amazing smoked meats and some of the best cornbread I’ve ever had. I got a whole sit-down meal for $7 and would highly recommend it, if you happen to be heading that way!

There you have it: how to taste St. Louis for under $30 a person. Did I miss anything? Drop a comment below with budget spots you love that I need to try, in St. Louis or anywhere else!

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