Food and drinks in Belgrade at a reasonable price


Food and drinks are some of the things in Serbia that always need to be both good and plentiful so that one can get lost in it and that one should allow enough time for.

We didn’t see any really pricey restaurants like the ones in other bigger cities. Keeping the cost for food and drinks low is not rocket science in Belgrade.

cheap food and drink in Belgrade

Meat. Meat everywhere.

Travellers should be prepared to increase their meat consumption in Serbia as meat is a staple food. I ordered a salad once and was immediately asked which meat dish I wanted as a main.

We went to a variety of restaurants in Belgrade and tried many different dishes. Prices were so low that we never paid more than 15€ in total for two mains and at least two drinks, even in the fancier restaurants on the Skadarlija which are swamped by tourists.

Kahvana Mali Kelemegdan

We were invited to a typical Serbian meal by the Tourist Organization of Belgrade on our first day. There is a restaurant in the Kalemegdan Park (Kahvana Mali Kalemegdan) which is not only visited by tourists but also highly valued by locals. They serve sizeable portions and prices are surprisingly low.

restaurant Belgrade

We were lucky to have found a nice little spot in the shade on a day where temperatures surpassed 30° Celcius. The glimpse that we caught of the food on the neighbouring tables already told us that this is going to be more than an ordinary meal.

cheap food and drink in Belgrade

First, we were served a starter platter. Different deli slices, sheep cheese, Ajvar (Bell pepper and aubergine mix), Kajmak (some kind of sour cream) and Tschvarci (pulled meat that looks a bit like frayed wool), as well as an overflowing salad bowl and the characteristic flatbread, were placed on the table. Good thing that we were warned that these are only the starters. It was delicious and the amount of food was easily enough to fill the three of us up. This course cost just under 10€. I am especially sold on the taste of the Tschvarci. It looks a little odd but the taste of meat is intense.

Soon after we displayed the first signs of a full stomach, the second course was served. Bowls were set out and a waiter with a tureen came to our table. He used a ladle to serve the soup directly at the table. I managed to stop him right after the first scoop otherwise I think even more of the well-seasoned meat soup would have found its way into my bowl. Only on a few occasions, I have had such a high-quality meat in a soup. It almost melted in my mouth.

cheap food and drink in Belgrade

We were granted a short breather but then they brought out the mains. We were served a platter to share between the three of us. The thought alone of filling this amount of food into our stomachs seemed like a hopeless endeavour. Ribs, pork, beef and chicken were balanced on a mountain of chips. Everything was fresh from the grill and of an impeccable quality.

Another quick glimpse over to the other tables revealed that most of the guests struggled with these quantities of food and had the leftovers packed up to take them home.

cheap food and drink in Belgrade

The finale of the meal was a characteristic Serbian coffee. The coffee grounds are doused in hot water directly in the mug. With that came a very sweet slice of cake.

After eyeballing the menu, we guesstimated that the cost of this opulent meal came to 25 – 30€ each. To me, this is a reasonable price for a very good meal in Belgrade.

Cost effective food on the go

There is another way to do it and that is even more cost effective.

We ate ¼ of a pizza with ample toppings in a little snack bar near our apartment for only 85 cents for example. The snack bar was always busy whereas another pizza place only three shops further down was practically empty. Especially the youth of Belgrade kept coming in to eat Pizza (with cold ketchup) no matter what time of the day or night it was.

There aren’t very many supermarkets in the city. Fresh produce can be found on smaller markets across the city (Green Markets).

cheap food and drink in Belgrade

One of the markets was close to our apartment so I made use of that one of course and went looking for cheap food.
One kilogram of cherries was offered for 1,20€ and raspberries (500g) were sold for 1€ on the market. We ate a salad with tomatoes, cucumber and onions for under 2€. We also bought bread for 50 cents.

A visit to one of those markets is a very justifiable bullet point on the itinerary even though communication is sometimes difficult as the old ladies on the markets often don’t speak English. It still works using hands and feet though and sometimes you are lucky enough to bump into a young vendor that explains in his finest German that he used to live in Dortmund.

Green Markets

Beer tour in Belgrade

We were invited to take part in a beer tour by the Tourist Organization of Belgrade. This experience is just the thing for us craft beer fans. A good opportunity to see a bit of Belgrade together with someone who actually is from Belgrade.

We met our guide at the Square of the Republic. We headed off together. Our destinations were three different bars, some of them with in-house breweries. They were all within a 15-minute walk from one another.

cheap food and drink in Belgrade

We sampled 7 beers in total. We had everything from pils to dark beer to wheat beer. The tastes of all the beers were distinctly different. They catered to all tastes and ranged from fruity to bitter. We had a little more beer than what I would have fancied. 7 beers, each in a 0.2l glass, is far more than what I would normally consume. The runtime of the tour is limited to 3.5h and that doesn’t leave much time to try the beers at each individual stop.

cheap food and drink in Belgrade

During the tour, we were fed many interesting facts about brewing, Serbian beer culture and the history of beer by our guide. Since we were the only ones participating in the tour we also got to have lovely conversations about the life of a student in Belgrade.

cheap food and drink in Belgrade

The tour is optimal for beer fans to discover a part of Belgrade that isn’t frequented by many tourists, the bars we went to were tourist free. We went back to one of the bars a few days later and the beer was still great!

The meal at Kahvana Mali Kalemegdan and the beer tour were sponsored as part of a cooperation with the Tourist Organization in Belgrade and free of charge for us. Thanks a lot!



  1. Sandy N Vyjay on 19. October 2018 at 9:06

    Food and Drink really seem to be flowing in Belgrade. The servings seem to be really massive. I am not sure about the proliferation of vegan and vegetarian options in Belgrade. I am sure that these would be there too. But the desserts and fresh fruits look irresistible and something to fall back on.

  2. Map Scratchers on 18. October 2018 at 20:49

    Being from Eastern Europe myself, i can really relate to the fresh veggies / salad + meat combo. It’s like a staple food!! And markets like you showed there, are definitely the best to get cheaper and fresh food! Although i can imagine that the old ladies may struggle with the language, so need a lot of hand gestures!! The food really looks delicious on your photos!

  3. Michael Hodgson on 18. October 2018 at 17:45

    Have not been to Belgrade, but it is on a VERY long list. Your meal sounded incredible … the kind of meal one should spend hours over to properly enjoy and not explode from too much food. ;-) For all you were served, 30 euro is a very good price too. Love the idea of a beer tour!!! Have to put that on our list.

  4. Yukti on 18. October 2018 at 10:31

    As I am vegetarian, I would go for the Green Markets and look out for fresh produce. I would buy some fresh raspberries, cherries which are super cheap, salads and bread too. It is good that your apartment was close to this Green Market. Beer Tour also looks interesting and I would opt for it.

  5. Wendy on 16. October 2018 at 22:35

    I love the looks of your salad. While I do like my protein, I don’t eat red meat, sugar or much carbs. It looks like I might have a food issue in Serbia. I love Pizza, but only once a week. Those cherries and veggies look fantastic.

  6. Nicola Hilditch-Short on 16. October 2018 at 19:13

    Belgrade was an interesting place for us to visit as Vegetarians, one of the places around the Balkans where we did struggle a little but when we did it was a great price! I did enjoy the bohemian quarter for eating.

  7. Lara on 15. October 2018 at 20:36

    Food is such an important part of my travels and plentiful meat dishes and a beer tour would be perfect. I don’t know much about Belgrade and its good to know that dining out is very affordable, which could be a bad thing as I’d want to try everything!

  8. Carol Colborn on 14. October 2018 at 10:17

    Your opulent meal is pricey at 30 Euros but maybe if I knew what kind of soup and what kind of cake, then I would be sold. Those are my favorite parts. That was a lot of meats!!!

  9. Cynthia on 14. October 2018 at 6:15

    Food is such a great way to learn about a city! The feast you had at Kahvana Mali Kalemegdan sounds like it was amazing and way more food than anyone could eat at one time! Local food markets are always such a great way to get the freshest foods – even if the communication leaves a little to be desired. I’m surprised the breweries hadn’t been found by other tourists yet, but how cool that you got to explore them a bit and try the different varieties. Sounds like it was a great trip!

  10. Danik on 13. October 2018 at 16:52

    I loved eating out in Belgarde and as a meat eater I love their meat dishes. Its been a while since I been to this amazing city and I think a trip back is needed.

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