South Bank is a vibrant cultural district located on the southern bank of the river Thames in London, England. It stretches from Westminster Bridge to Blackfriars Bridge and is known for its rich history, cultural institutions, and lively atmosphere. Southbank has a long and varied history. In the mid-20th century, the area was largely industrial and had fallen into disrepair. However, in the 1950s and 60s, there was a movement to revitalise the area. The Festival of Britain in 1951 played a significant role in this, as it led to the construction of the Royal Festival Hall and the creation of the Southbank Centre, a complex of artistic venues. This marked the beginning of Southbank’s transformation into a cultural hub.
Today, it is home to numerous attractions loved by tourists and London locals alike, including the South Bank Centre, the Tate Modern, the Globe Theatre – and of course the food markets! One of the great things about Southbank is that you can find delicious food at a range of price points. The markets, in particular, offer a variety of budget-friendly options. You can enjoy dishes from different parts of the world without breaking the bank. It’s a perfect spot for grabbing a quick, affordable meal while enjoying the scenic views of the Thames.
So here are our top 5 picks for eating out around South Bank for under £10!
Pochi – Japanese Bowls
Here you can find some of the most mouthwatering rice bowls – with a range of toppings! Their home-cooked style of food is tasty hot or cold, so grab a box and get stuck in any time of day. Pochi, meaning shop or stall in Japanese, is also a popular dog name in Japan, which is why their logo is a cute little white dog that is easy for you to spot across the market. All dishes are served on a bed of fluffy white rice, takuwan & sakurazuke, Pickled Mooli, and takana pickled mustard leaves. Choose a mix of meat options for £9.50 or vegan options for £9. Options include minced pork cooked in soy ginger garlic sauce, minced chicken, Japanese braised pork belly, deep-fried aubergine and leek, tofu puffs and shiitake mushroom in teriyaki sauce or cauliflower with shiso furikake sprinkles. All their food is sourced locally, supporting fellow independent businesses, from their vegetables at Belle & Sons in Bermondsey and from Ted’s Veg in Borough Market, where Pochi also have a site from Monday to Saturday.
Polish Deli London
Created by husband and wife Magda and Greg, the Polish Deli was founded back in 2009 after the team saw a gap in the market for authentic dishes from their homeland. They are so proud to be found at some of the best markets in London, including the Southbank Centre, Kings Cross Real Food Market and Canopy Market, feeding hungry Londoners and tourists daily with recipes that have been passed down from their own families.
Their Polish food is hearty, filling and perfect for the colder months! Grab one of their huge pork sausage baguettes for just £8 and add salad and pickles for just £1 extra, guaranteed to fill you up on a chilly October afternoon. If the budget stretches further, be sure to grab some herby crispy roasted baby potatoes for just £5.50 too.
A Lebanese kitchen where everything on the menu is under £10! It’s fresh, colourful and healthy food that just looks so beautiful when you pass the stall – you will be desperate to try some!
Choose a rainbow of options – vibrant salads, crispy falafel that’s soft on the inside, halloumi and koftas or their famous juicy shawarma. It’s all made on the day with the highest quality ingredients, so you know every bite is going to be packed with freshness and flavour. Their chicken shish or shawarma boxes are just £10, packed with salad, mixed pickles, rice and garlic sauce. Choose a halloumi or falafel box for just £8.50 which comes with smoked aubergine dips, cabbage salad, a generous drizzle of tahini and mixed pickles. Or, grab a falafel or halloumi wrap for just £7, or a chicken shawarma wrap for £8. It’s the perfect sunshine food for a cloudy day!
Francesco and his amazing team had two restaurants in Sicily before bringing a taste of the Mediterranean to London. Visit him for some of the best cannoli and arancini in town! This little street food stall is serving up so much deliciousness, and we are here to talk about their pasta options.
Choose homemade Mac and cheese, tortellini stuffed with four cheeses and served in a rich aubergine tomato sauce, tortellini filled with ricotta and spinach and coated in the most magical buttery sage sauce – all topped off with freshly grated parmesan for just £9! And if you ask nicely they might even let you have a mixture of each pasta in your box.
For starters, be sure to choose one of their amazing arancini – go for mushrooms, mozzarella, parsley, garlic and black pepper, or spinach or their traditional beef ragu with peas. And for dessert, you can choose one of their light and delicate cannoli for a guaranteed bite of heaven.
Crepes a La Carte
Finally, you can visit this gorgeous crepe stand for something sweet or savoury! They are naturally gluten-free, and made with buckwheat flour, which is not only a lighter option (if you are planning on visiting more of these amazing stalls) but it’s great for coeliacs! Transport yourself to a little corner of France with every delicious bite, as the owners Eva and Thomas are from Brittany, you know it’s going to be a deliciously authentic experience.
They are amazing value for money, choose options like egg, Emmental cheese and ham, mushrooms, tomatoes, goat’s cheese, walnuts, honey, and rocket for just £6-£9.
Overall, Southbank in London offers a unique blend of history, culture, and culinary experiences. Whether you’re interested in exploring the arts, enjoying a leisurely stroll along the river, or indulging in diverse culinary delights, South Bank has something for everyone, to do, see and of course the most important one – eat! Although South Bank has plenty of chains which sadly take up the prime locations sometimes, we hope this list helps you find a wonderful independent eatery to support, that also won’t break the budget!
Know some delicious, affordable restaurants that you want to share? Make a Hawkker List of your favourite spots and help others find great food on the cheap!
You can also find the above spots, and many more, on our own regularly-updated list of affordable eats in London.