We were talking just the other day in the lunch room here at the radio station about how much food prices have gone up lately.  There was a time not too long ago when you could spend $5 on lunch.  Now you're lucky to get out for much less than $10.  Any decent combo meal at McDonald's or Whataburger is going to run you at least $7 after tax.  I have made a list of some of my favorite places to eat that are a little easier on the wallet.  The list after the jump.

1) Taqueria El Lugar - With 4 locations now in the Tyler area, there is probably one near you.  Not only are the prices VERY reasonable, but the authentic Mexican food is the best you'll find north of the border.

2) Taco Bell - You can't beat Taco Bell for a cheap taco.  The original crunchy taco or bean burrito for .89 cents is decent, and fills you up fast.  Throw in a soft taco or tostada and you can get out for around $4 if you skip buying a drink.

3) Jumbo Seafood - This hole-in-the-wall restaurant doesn't look like much from the outside, but the service and seafood inside will blow your mind.  Located inside an old Hot Biscuit restaurant at Highway 69 and the Loop in Tyler, the only thing better than their food is the prices.  They have lunch specials starting at $5.50 that include my favorite, fried catfish.  The portions are generous, and the size of the fish fillets are big.  I love their fries, hush puppies, but my favorite is the tarter sauce.  I'm not sure what they put in it, but I could drink it straight out of the bottle.  Don't let the outside looks of the restaurant or the location fool you.  The best seafood in town is Jumbo Seafood.

Obviously I love Mexican food!  Two of my top 3 cheap eats restaurants serve Mexican food.  If you live in East Texas there's a Mexican food restaurant on every corner, so you better like it!

What are some of your favorite cheap eats?  Comment below!