Quick Bites and Lazy Lunches in Edinburgh: Best Restaurants for Lunch

There are plenty of good places to grab lunch in Edinburgh. The city has a thriving restaurant scene and a huge choice of cafes. There are also many, many pubs and bars that serve food, and of course all the usual chains.

For wonderfully fresh, seasonal produce you cannot go wrong with the delightfully pastoral Gardener’s Cottage in the shadow of Calton Hill. At the other end of Princes Street you can tuck into a delicious gourmet burger at the ever popular Cambridge Bar. Bustling and welcoming, this delightful pub has become famous for the quality of food on offer and also stocks a great selection of real ales.

Manna House in Easter Road serves up a wonderful blend of the virtuous (delicious home made soups, sandwiches and salads) and the decadent (cakes and patisseries to tempt even the most confirmed ascetic) to take away or sit in.

For an indulgent treat you could check out the Michelin-starred Kitchin. While an evening meal would cost a pretty penny, you can sample their wares at lunch time without stretching your budget to breaking point.

Why pick up a limp sandwich when you can have a freshly prepared burrito? Why go to a familiar burger joint when you can get a fresh, homemade gourmet burger? Why eat in the same old chain restaurants when you can enjoy stunning Scottish seafood or sample local produce in a Michelin-starred establishment? Let’s take a closer look at some the top Edinburgh lunch spots and see if we can find something to tempt you whatever your budget and tastes. 

You'll find an interesting and eclectic menu on at Treacle on Broughton Street. Sandwiches, burgers, pies, and noodles, alongside sharing platters and small snacks, ensure that there's always something on offer to satisfy your craving. There are...  Read More

Los Cardos
Photo courtesy of Simon Hill

If you are after a spot of Mexican fast food, freshly prepared before your eyes, then Los Cardos on Leith Walk is well worth a visit. You'll find a typical Tex Mex menu with bargain prices. It is like a small cafe for sitting in and you also...  Read More

How about a Scottish hog roast? The wonderfully named Oink serves up freshly roasted and carved hogs from the Scottish borders. You can get a white or brown roll stuffed with delicious, melt-in-the-mouth, pulled pork and your choice of toppings...  Read More

Fancy a taste of history with a tasty menu in a country pub setting? The Sheep Heid Inn was first established in 1360 and it has been serving up food and drink for six centuries now so it's clearly doing something right. This traditional old pub...  Read More

Henderson's is a well-known and very popular vegetarian restaurant on Hanover Street but they also have a presence in the west end under St. John's church on the corner of Lothian Road and Princes Street. This fantastic location caters for up to...  Read More

You'll find a blend of tried and tested Indian dishes along with innovative twists and new ideas at Mithas. The best of local ingredients are combined with a range of tempting spices to create some truly gorgeous food. Located down on Dock Place...  Read More

Seasonal local produce is the name of the game at The Kitchin. Chef Patron Tom Kitchin is a well-known celebrity chef and he won a Michelin star just six months after opening The Kitchin in 2006. The restaurant has gone from strength to strength...  Read More

This stylish city center bar is well known as a gourmet burger hot spot. You can choose beef, chicken or bean burgers in a wide range of styles including Cajun, Teriyaki and Aussie. The Aussie burger has bacon, pineapple, mature cheddar,...  Read More

Manna House is a wonderful bakery, caf� and patisserie in a rather unlikely spot, close to the top of Easter Road. That they have flourished despite their inauspicious location is entirely down to the high quality of the savouries and...  Read More

The Gardener's Cottage is a wonderfully convivial restaurant located within a charming Georgian cottage in Royal Terrace Gardens. Designed by William Playfair as the home of the gardener in charge of the beautiful grounds, the cottage has been...  Read More


Meet Simon Hill

Simon has lived in various corners of Edinburgh over the last 18 years. He fell in love with the city as a small child after visiting the castle and returned to study Scottish History.

After...  More About Simon

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