The Best Lunches Under $15 at Queen Victoria Market

Queen Victoria Market is a Melbourne icon. After being struck down by the pandemic last year, the Market is back buzzing in 2021 and we’re here to share some of the hidden foodie gems that you can find right on our doorstep. Whether you are looking for a quick bite like a Turkish borek or a delectable, melted cheese sandwich – we’ve got you covered.

Here are some of our top lunches that you can find right here in the Market for under $15!

Meet Sando

Craving a trip to Japan? Meet Sando is one of the newer establishments at the Market. Based on the popular ‘sandos’ or sandwiches from Japan, Harsono, the owner creates both breakfast and lunch katsu sandwiches. Choose from fillings like mushroom, egg, pork, chicken (pictured), or prawn for just under $15. It also comes with a small salad. If you have a couple of dollars to spare, they also serve up Proud Mary coffee until 3pm.

Find Meet Sando at 507 Elizabeth Street. They are open every day from 7am until 3pm.

Drums Cafe

Sri Lankan street food to locals since 1996, the menu can seem overwhelming at first glance – just because there are so many amazing options! Piping hot (and fiery) curry is served up with roti and rice; however, don’t go past the Chicken Kotthu – a lunchtime special for just $12. Grilled  with shredded roti, onion, leeks, scrambled egg and carrot – this large serving is enough for two. Don’t forget to ask for extra sambal on the side!

Find Drums Cafe at 71 Victoria Street (entrance also via the Food Court). They are open every Market day from 9.30am until 9pm.

Cafe Gilli

A great one for groups, Café Gilli are known for their porchetta panini topped with thick, crispy crackling. Or try their Eggplant Sicilian Scaccia – a stuffed flatbread, thinly rolled and folded onto itself and ribboned with eggplant and roasted veggies ($9, pictured). All of their hearty sandwiches come in under the $15 mark.

Find Cafe Gilli at 76 Therry Street. They are open Tuesday – Sunday from 6am until 3pm.

Ripe Cheese

Tucked away in the Dairy Produce Hall, Ripe Cheese serves up a full array of Australian-only cheeses. If you want something to munch on while you do the rounds of the Market, we recommend their Triple Cheese Toastie which is filled with a mixture of blue and mozzarella cheese, champagne leeks and mini pickles – all on buttered sourdough. Be quick – they only make limited batches and once they’re sold out, they’re gone!

Find Ripe Cheese in the Dairy Produce Hall every Market day.

The Borek Shop

Another Queen Vic Market classic, The Borek Shop is exactly how it sounds. Serving up hot borek (stuffed flatbreads) with various fillings, there is something for everyone. We love their spicy lamb, roasted veggies, spicy potato and the classic spinach and cheese varieties.

Find the Borek Shop in the Dairy Produce Hall. They are open every Market day from 7am until 3pm.

DIY Picnic from Woodfrog, The Corner Larder & Bill’s Farm

Everyone loves a Do-It-Yourself Picnic, and luckily for you, we have some great options for under $15! Head to Woodfrog Bakery for a freshly baked spelt loaf, some prosciutto and honey-glazed ham from Bill’s Farm and a variety of cheeses at The Corner Larder for $15. Hot tip – set a price for the staff (eg: $10 worth of cheeses) to stay within your budget.

Find Woodfrog Bakery, Bill’s Farm and The Corner Larder in the Dairy Produce Hall. They are open every Market day from 6am until 3pm.

Market Espresso

Located in the fresh air, Market Espresso may just seem like a coffee van, but it is so much more than that. This hidden gem serves up a variety of yummy pies and sausage rolls – perfect for people on-the-go. From Mac & Cheese, Beef Brisket with Burgundy Jus or Mushroom, Cheddar Cheese and Thyme on the menu, it’s great for larger groups. Plus, one pie will set you back $7 – such a steal – you can leave room in your budget for a cheeky cappuccino too.

Find Market Espresso at the bottom of String Bean Alley. They are open every day from 7am until 3pm, and you can find their van on Queen Street on Sundays.

Market Kebab Cafe

Wander down F Shed and discover Market Kebab Café  – an unassuming kebab shop located at the entrance along Peel Street – just look for the red sign. Usually, one would stop off for a cheeky kebab after a night out, but don’t pass up on their grilled chicken shish kebab filled with tomato, lettuce, onion and your sauce of choice for only $12 during the lunchtime rush. You can also choose to have it stuffed with falafel or beef – they also have an HSP option for under $15.

Find Market Kebab Café  at Shop 4 in F Shed (Peel Street end) every Market day.

Alex Canteen

A newcomer to Queen Vic Market is Alex Canteen – a small Vietnamese eatery serving up piping hot pho (perfect for the winter months), crispy banh-mi, or our favourite ­– a vermicelli rice noodle salad served with warm chargrilled chicken. The salad is filled with soft rice noodles and topped with cucumber, carrots, purple cabbage, lettuce, peanuts and chilli sauce, as well as your choice of chicken, tofu or pork for only $11.

Find Alex Canteen at 157 Victoria Street every Market day.

Have some extra cash? Head to…

American Doughnut Kitchen 

Don’t let the line fool you, the American Doughnut Kitchen serves up five delectable hot jam donuts for just $7.50. A great stop-off for a sweet treat once you’re done eating lunch.

Find the American Doughnut Van on Queen Street outside of H Shed.

Little League

Need a coffee hit? Head down String Bean Alley to Little League – a boutique coffee shop serving up their own brew, as well as sweet treats and smaller bites. Great for a post-produce stop.

Find Little League at the top of String Bean Alley (Peel Street end).

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