Finding affordable lunch spots in Claremont is like a contact sport for me. I’ve spent many weekend afternoons walking around the village (as my second cup of coffee hangs on for dear life) wondering “Hmmm where should I go for lunch”. I can always go home for a bite but if I’m already out and about in Claremont, why not just stay and grab a bite? Luckily there are great casual lunch options that serve quality food at affordable prices; Some well below $10 a plate. You just need to know where to go and that’s what I’m here for! With that, I’d love to share with you the best places in Claremont to grab a casual lunch that serves delicious food and won’t break the bank.
Petiscos. Petiscos is my go-to lunch spot in the Village when I’m craving fish tacos, Mexican lager, and an outdoor experience. Petiscos is a little blue house hidden in plain sight on First Street. When passing it, you wouldn’t know that they make and serve incredibly tasty street tacos. They offer a variety of taco options like fish, chorizo, chicken, pork, and even veggie options (potatoes and cactus!). In addition to tacos, they serve salads, street corn, empanadas, ceviche, and the best chips and salsa! It’s also the only place in town to get the best-tasting pozole. Their outdoor seating area is the best part with trees all around, potted plants, stringed lights, picnic tables, firepits, and a suspended little plane! It certainly is a hidden gem in the Village worth checking out.
Dr. Grubb’s. Uhmmmm fresh AF is all I have to say! If you aren’t careful, you may just be eating Dr. Grubb’s several times a week because their food is that irresistible. The ordering system at Dr. Grubb’s is very straight forward. Place your order at the front, tell them the protein, sauce, and side you’d like to have, they give you a number and you sit anywhere inside or out. Their proteins are made fresh to order and are delicious like their herb chicken, blackened shrimp or salmon, flat iron steak, and blackened tofu. Choosing a sauce to go with your protein is sometimes difficult because there are so many good ones! My favorite sauce is their lemon thyme vinaigrette but other honorable mentions are garlic apple aioli, Caribbean dressing, peanut sauce, and creamy dill yogurt. They have a wide variety of sides like roasted potatoes, rice pilaf, pasta, couscous salad, roasted veggies, and more! They have several local craft beers on tap and even a great selection of wine. Dr. Grubb’s is definitely that type of place where you just keep wanting to go back to over and over again to try different combos of protein, sauces, and sides.
Euro Café. Locals go crazy for this Portuguese and Italian cafe and I really see why. I didn’t try Euro Cafe until I was already 3 years living in Claremont and boy did I miss out because the first time I had it, I was hooked! Their paninis are the absolute best. My favorite is the Philly Cheese Steak and Tuna Melt but they also have others like roast beef, ham and brie, meatball, and chicken pesto. They have quite the selection of coffee and espresso drinks, too. Since Euro Cafe specializes in Portuguese food, definitely try their specials like Bacalhau de Natas, Feijoada, or Bifana panini. Fun fact about Euro Cafe is they were one of the first Portuguese restaurants in Southern California and was voted best meal under $10 by the Inland Empire Magazine.
Saca’s Mediterranian Cuisine. Saca’s is the cutest little Mediterranean restaurant and is adored by the locals. If you’re walking on Second Ave in the Claremont Village, you can’t miss the bright blue awning and blue tables out front. I must’ve eaten Saca’s for lunch several times a week for 2 years straight! Their pita sandwiches are super fresh and are all under $10. My favorite is the falafel but their chicken, beef, and lamb shawarma are very yummy especially with the spicy feta fries! Their meat and kabob platter is very filling and satisfying and I love how there are so many veggie and vegan options. Don’t miss out on their sides like their fried cauliflower (Soooo good!), house-made hummus, stuffed grapevine leaves, rice, and lentil soup. If you’ve saved room for dessert, their pistachio baklava will make you see stars!
The Claremont Village Eatery. The Village Eatery is one of the newer places in Claremont Village serving breakfast and lunch and was a much-needed addition. The purpose of The Claremont Village Eatery is to provide people with deliciously fresh food at affordable prices which they keep improving! You can get filling sandwiches like roast beef, grilled cheese, tuna melt, turkey, or BLT for well under $10. If you’re craving breakfast for lunch they offer breakfast burritos, sandwiches, or protein bowls that are also under $10. Their coffee is $2 and they have a full espresso bar too. You really can’t beat it! The best part of all is their customer service is top-notch and the employees truly go above and beyond to make sure you have a positive and memorable experience. They’ll even wave hi to you through the window as you’re passing by! I do it all the time :)
There you have it- 5 excellent options for a satisfying lunch out in Claremont at affordable prices but there are many more like Stacks, Dia De Los Puercos, and Patty's Mexican Food! What lunch restaurants in Claremont do you know offer quality food at reasonable prices? Let’s chat about it in the comments to continue the conversation.
Thanks for reading and so long, friends!