Ridiculously cheap foods you need to try before you die

While there isn't a shortage of food options in the United States, it can be difficult to track down prepared food that isn't either overpriced or simply too bland to enjoy. You can find cheap food and you can find tasty food — finding food that is both cheap and tasty is what's difficult. Luckily for you, the heavy lifting has been completed, as the following list contains  a ton of foods that fit the bill.

Over 80 million adults eat fast food each day in America. It's no secret that Americans love their fast food and other forms of prepared food they can eat away from their home. If you're going to partake, you should at least know where your dollar would best be spent. Otherwise, you'll be wasting time and money.

Without further ado, here is the list of cheap food (that is also ridiculously good) you should try at least once during your lifetime.

Prices listed in this article vary based on date and location.

Hot dog combo from Costco

When it comes to ridiculously cheap food, it's difficult to top the hot dog combo you can find at Costco. For $1.50, you receive a quarter-pound hot dog and a refillable 20 ounce soda. The hot dog is not only big and fully capable of filling you up, it's absolutely yummy. Costco actually loses money each time they sell a hot dog, however they have found that it's worth it in order to keep their loyal customers happy and to increase traffic in their stores. The next time you're hungry but don't want to spend much, head to Costco's food court for this amazing deal.

McDouble from McDonald's

For less than two bucks, you can go to McDonald's and get your hands on a McDouble. If you've never had one before, a McDouble features two beef patties, American cheese, onions, pickles, mustard, and ketchup. It tastes really good, the quality from restaurant to restaurant is consistent, and you get 390 calories to power you through the rest of your busy day. McDonald's Double Cheeseburger is the same except it has two slices of American cheese. Unless you really like cheese, save a few cents and go with the McDouble.

Hot-N-Ready pepperoni pizza from Little Caesars Pizza

In colleges across America, there are students who are living off of Hot-N-Ready pizzas from Little Caesars. Admittedly, these aren't the best pizzas you can find but for $5, it's a cheap food you should try at least once. In return for your five bucks, you get eight slices of pizza that total more than 2,200 calories — enough food to last you a whole day. For a dollar more, you can upgrade to a ExtraMostBestest pepperoni pizza that includes both extra pepperoni and extra cheese. You can never have too much pepperoni or too much cheese, so get the upgrade if you can afford it.

Breakfast tacos from Buc-ee's

Buc-ee's is a chain of gas stations primarily located in Texas that is known for having clean bathrooms and gigantic stores that sell an assortment of goodies. What stands out among all their food options is their breakfast tacos. At Buc-ee's, you can hop in and grab a couple of these Tex-Mex favorites and you won't be out much money at all. While they have a variety of options, the two best are the sausage and egg breakfast taco and the brisket breakfast taco. Don't forget some salsa on your way out the door. The green salsa is spectacular.

Mini Cakes from Ling's Sweet Mini Cakes

Ling's Sweet Mini Cakes is one of the most popular street vendors in all of New York City — and for good reason. Found in Chinatown, the Mini Cakes you can buy here are a delectable delight that you need to try at least once before you die. At this food stand, you can get 15 Mini Cakes for only $1.50. For 50 more cents, you can get them filled with chocolate or with extra toppings ranging from honey coconut, to Nutella, to peanut butter. This is seriously a good buy. Don't be surprised if you end up coming to this food stand on a daily basis — or at least every time you're in New York City.

Small Frosty from Wendy's

A Frosty from Wendy's is a filling dessert (or afternoon snack, if you're being honest), even if you order the small. Not only will your sweet tooth be completely thrilled, a small Frosty will only put you back 99 cents — with regular promotions dropping the price even further. It's up to you to decide whether to go with chocolate or vanilla. However, either way you decide to go, your Frosty will have some vanilla in it as even their chocolate Frosty is actually a mix of chocolate and vanilla.

Texas toast at Raising Cane's

While Raising Cane's is primarily known for their chicken tenders, don't you dare miss out on their Texas toast. If you pass on your chance to try it, you'll never forgive yourself. The Texas toast at Raising Cane's isn't from pre-sliced bread. Instead, they take pull-apart bread topped with sesame seeds, and then coat it with a combination of garlic and butter. Finally, the bread is grilled to make it crispy but never burnt. The result is a piece of Texas toast that you'll remember for the rest of your living days.

Two tacos from Jack in the Box

The tacos at Jack in the Box are ridiculously cheap, and while they aren't authentic Mexican food, they are better than you may be imagining. This popular deal can usually get you two tacos for a total of 99 cents (not 99 tacos for 2 cents, of course). These tacos have a crunchy shell that contains taco meat along with American cheese and shredded lettuce. Don't skip the taco sauce, as it adds a much needed kick to take this pair of tacos to the next level.

Cookies from Subway

While people usually head to Subway for their sandwiches, their cookies are the sweet treat you should try at least once in your life. One cookie costs less than a dollar and you can save even more by purchasing three cookies, or even a dozen. The cookies at Subway are impossibly soft and melt in your mouth, but they don't crumble in your hands. While they offer a variety of flavors, go with either the Double Chocolate Cookie or the White Chip Macadamia Nut Cookie.

$5 Fill Ups from KFC

If you have a $5 bill burning a hole in your pocket and you're in the mood for a scrumptious meal, drive on over to KFC. Their $5 Fill Ups do just what the name suggests: it will fill you up to the brim for only $5. The best $5 Fill Up gives you a drumstick, thigh, biscuit, mashed potatoes, cookie, and medium drink. If you prefer white meat, you can opt for a chicken breast instead of the drumstick and thigh.

Swedish meatballs at IKEA

Eating food at a furniture store? Absolutely! Don't knock it until you try it. IKEA's food court serves an amazing platter of Swedish meatballs for just $5.99. In addition to the meatballs, each platter comes with lingonberry jam and mashed potatoes. To top things off, a layer of gravy is added to titillate your taste buds... and get you in the mood to purchase furniture. Even if you have no need for another piece of furniture, you owe it to yourself to go to IKEA and get a cheap order of Swedish meatballs.

Chicken nuggets from Burger King

Sure, Burger King is known for their burgers, but they have other items worth ordering. When it comes to cheap foods, their chicken nuggets are an unbelievable deal. The nuggets at Burger King go on sale often and are sometimes only $1 for 10. While these aren't the best tasting nuggets on the globe, you can't beat their price tag. Plus, Burger King has a number of yummy sauces to dip your nuggets in including Buffalo, BBQ, and Ranch.

Pretzel hot dogs from Sheetz

If you've never been to a Sheetz, you're missing out. Sheetz a chain of corner stores that sell gasoline, coffee, and a host of prepared food. Of all the food you can find at a Sheetz, the one you should try while you can is their pretzel hot dog. The quality of the hot dog itself is high, while the soft, salty pretzel holds it in place and makes it even tastier. Unfortunately, you can only find Sheetz in six states: Ohio, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina.

Chips and guacamole from Chipotle Mexican Grill

While Chipotle Mexican Grill has a lot of fairly priced items on their menu, it's difficult to beat the bang for your buck you get when you order their chips and guacamole. To start with, Chipotle's tortilla chips are glorious. They are fried in the restaurant and then topped with salt and a dash of lime juice. Chipotle's guacamole is also made fresh every day, and has a variety of fresh ingredients including jalapenos, cilantro, onion, and of course avocados. Dipping a still-warm tortilla chip to get a scoop of their made from scratch guacamole is heaven on earth.

Skewers from Dollar Hits

If you're looking for the best cheap street food in the Los Angeles area, you can't go wrong with Dollar Hits. They sell grilled skewers for $1 each, with options ranging from chicken thighs (and intestines) to pork butt, to fried quail eggs. After you've made your selection, you head to the grill to finish cooking the skewers. Dollar Hits is located in Historic Filipinotown and it's a place that deserves a spot on your bucket list. While the choices may be intimidating on your first visit, the price is right and your taste buds will thank you for your bravery.

McChicken from McDonald's

Though prices vary by location, buying a McChicken at McDonald's for a dollar or two definitely qualifies as ridiculously cheap. If you've never had a McChicken, you're missing out. These sandwiches come with a fillet of crispy chicken, a toasted bun, shredded lettuce, and mayo. If you like your food spicy, you'll love the Hot 'n Spicy McChicken. While you can taste the heat, it's not overpowering. Instead, it just adds to the joyous occasion. Whether you go the spicy or regular route, you'd be wise to order two because you'll be begging for more once your first one is gone.

Pretzel from Sam's Club

While Costco usually gets all the attention for their food court, the food court at Sam's Club shouldn't be ignored. For about a dollar, you can get a pretzel that you will be reminiscing about for days on end. While the pretzels are the perfect texture and taste great, what you will remember most is the size. These things are huge — you won't believe that all it cost you was some spare change. Wash the pretzel down with a cheap fountain drink at Sam's Club and you'll have a full meal at an outrageously low price.

Original Glazed Donut at Krispy Kreme

When you see the hot light turned on at your local Krispy Kreme, don't hesitate to go in and purchase an Original Glazed Donut. It only costs around a buck and you can't beat the quality — especially when it's still warm. If looking out for the hot light is too much work, download their app and you'll get an alert on your phone when the donuts at your favorite Krispy Kreme location are ready for you to devour. While they have many different types of donuts that are worth falling in love with, start with the Original Glazed Donut before you branch out.

Large Tots from Sonic Drive-In

You were probably bored with tater tots back in elementary school. Those tots were a mushy mess that lacked much taste at all. However, don't give up on them until you try what Sonic Drive-In has to offer. Their tots are amazing. They're crispy with the perfect amount of oil and salt. Additionally, they taste fresh and a large order is all you need for a meal on the run. Before it's time to meet your maker, be sure to go to Sonic to give these tots a try.

Buffalo chicken slider at Arby's

Did you know Arby's has sliders? If you didn't, you're missing one of the best values in the fast food world. Typically, the sliders at Arby's cost $1.29, however the location near you may have a slider happy hour in which the price decreases to $1 between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. While a lot of their sliders are good, their Buffalo chicken slider is the best. You get a crispy chicken tender smothered with buffalo sauce. To counter the spiciness from the buffalo sauce, Arby's adds a little bit of Parmesan peppercorn ranch — and the result is delicious.

Sizzli from Wawa

Wawa is a chain of convenience stores on the East Coast with more than 800 locations. You can find hoagies, soups, and snacks at Wawa but what really stands out is something they call a Sizzli. A Sizzli is basically a breakfast sandwich that comes in a range of flavor combinations. If you have time to only eat one Sizzli at Wawa, go with the one with sausage, egg, and cheese. You can find these hearty sandwiches near the register and they are hot and ready for you to eat in exchange for only a few dollars.

Rotisserie chicken from Costco

If you're feeding a family and you're looking for ridiculously cheap food, the answer to your prayers can be found at Costco. For an amazingly low price of $4.99, you can get a plump and juicy rotisserie chicken that will please even the pickiest of taste buds. Not only is this a great deal, the rotisserie chicken from Costco is actually the best rotisserie chicken you can find at any grocery store. If you buy this bird often enough, you could even justify the annual membership cost for Costco with this one item alone.

Beefy Fritos burrito from Taco Bell

For just a buck, you can get a Beefy Fritos burrito from Taco Bell that will leave you wondering why you waste your time eating anything else. This burrito comes stuffed with seasoned beef, yellow rice, nacho cheese, and a generous serving of Fritos. The corn flavor from the Fritos and the added texture really makes the Beefy Fritos burrito shine. A word of warning: don't let these burritos sit around too long. If you do, the Fritos can get soft and you'll miss out on part of what makes this burrito taste so good.

Corn on the cob from Corn Man

Corn Man is a legendary street vendor in Los Angeles who is an expert when it comes to corn. For $1.50, you can get the best corn on the cob of your life. Corn on the cob from Corn Man features mayo, butter, and Parmesan cheese. You can also get lime and chile powder if you wish. The result may sound questionable but it's something you need to try. It's cheap and it tastes so good that you'll be attempting to replicate it at home.

Bagels from Panera Bread

If you're craving a bagel that won't break your budget, Panera Bread is the place you should visit. From their cinnamon swirl and raisin bagel to their Asiago cheese bagel, Panera Bread is sure to have a bagel that is calling your name. And while their bagels are fancy and are of the highest quality, they only cost about a dollar. If you buy 6, 13, or 18, the price you pay per bagel drops precipitously. The best advice is to go ahead and purchase 18 of them and share them with your friends and coworkers. Everyone will thank you. You can get unlimited coffee at Panera too, making it a great place for cheap breakfast.

Chili from Wendy's

On a cold night when only a hot meal will do to satisfy your hunger, chili from Wendy's isn't an option that you should overlook. It's hot, fast, and the taste will hit the spot. Wendy's chili is made with ingredients that include fresh beef, celery, onions, green peppers, and red kidney beans. The beef in the chili is actually leftover burger meat, which explains why it tastes so good. While you can try to make Wendy's chili at home, it's easier to go to the drive-thru window, hand over a couple dollars, and drive away with a batch of ready-to-eat goodness.

Taco from Cuantos Tacos

Food trucks in Austin, Texas, that sell tacos aren't in short supply, to say the least. That said, if you want the best of the bunch, go to Cuantos Tacos. This food truck has fantastic tacos for a price that will blow your mind. What allows Cuantos Tacos to stand apart from the competition is the meat in their tacos that is always tender and amazingly juicy. Their tacos usually cost $2, while they also sell quesadillas for $5. Be warned that Cuantos Tacos only sells a limited number of tacos per day because they stop once they run out of ingredients.

Original slider from White Castle

The sliders at White Castle are a smart way to spend your fast food money. For less than a dollar, you can buy an original slider. For about 20 more cents, you can get a cheese slider. If you want an even better deal, you can purchase 20 original sliders for $10.99 if you go online or use the White Castle app. Before it's too late, taste one of these sliders with beef that was grilled on top of onions and then served with a pickle slice inside of a yummy bun.

Street Taco from Del Taco

While Del Taco has many economical choices on their menu, their Street Tacos really stand out. Not only is the value remarkable, they taste just like they were made by your abuela. The Street Tacos come with your choice of grilled chicken or carne asada. Once you pick the meat, the tacos are topped with avocado, cilantro, onions, and roasted salsa. While the chicken tastes good, it's the carne asada that really shines and will have you reminiscing about your childhood. If in doubt, buy one of each — you won't be disappointed.

Chicken fingers and fries from Steak 'n Shake

Steak 'n Shake has some cheap options available to you, with their chicken fingers leading the way. Each order comes with three chicken fingers that have been breaded and are ready to dip. While they have buffalo sauce and BBQ sauce, it's their honey mustard that pairs best with their chicken fingers. In addition to the chicken, you get a ton of french fries. If you still have some honey mustard left after dipping your three chicken fingers, start dipping your fries and don't stop until you're done. If you still have money jingling in your pocket, order one of Steak 'n Shake's famous homemade milkshakes.

Pizza slice from Costco

Sometimes you don't want to order an entire pizza. If you're by yourself or just want a slice of pizza for the road, you don't want to have to deal with a box of pizza. That's exactly when you should head to Costco. There, in their food court, you can find big slices of pizza for only $1.99 per slice. You get to pick from cheese, pepperoni, or combo. After you eat your slice, you may decide to go ahead and buy a whole pizza. If you do, it'll cost you less than $10.

Parmesan Bread Bites from Domino's

If you're looking for the best bargain on Domino's menu, their Parmesan Bread Bites are difficult to top. For around $3, you get 16 bites that you will enjoy until the last bite is no more. The Parmesan Bread Bites are sprinkled with a blend of Asiago cheese in addition to Parmesan cheese, and they have a distinct but pleasant garlic flavor. Be sure you also get some marinara sauce for dipping purposes. Although, truthfully, these Parmesan Bread Bites are good enough to eat on their own without any sauce.

Masala Aloo from Spice Waala

Seattle has some of the best street food in America, and Spice Waala is arguably the best of the best. This food stand serves authentic Indian food that will leave you licking your fingers. While Spice Waala has a variety of rolls that are definitely memorable, their Masala Aloo is what you should eat. Masala Aloo is basically perfectly spiced french fries with a green sauce for dipping. It costs only $3 but this platter of fries is big enough to serve as your entire meal.

Biscuits from Church's Chicken

While the fried chicken at Church's Chicken is middle of the pack when it comes to fast food chicken chains, their biscuits are a completely different story. In fact, it's worth it to go to a Church's Chicken just to order their biscuits. You can get one biscuit for less than a dollar, or six for about $3. Biscuits at Church's Chicken are the perfect texture — not too firm, not too flaky — but what sets them apart is the fact that they are blessed with a coating of honey butter. The honey butter is sweet but not too sweet, which makes it easy to eat one biscuit after another after another.

Nachos BellGrande from Taco Bell

No, Taco Bell doesn't have authentic nachos on their menu. That said, Nachos BellGrande is a great deal — even though you won't really find anything like this south of the border. Nachos BellGrande comes with Taco Bell's signature seasoned beef, nacho cheese, refried beans, tomatoes, and sour cream, on top of a bed of tortilla chips. Yes, you can find better nachos, but for between $3 and $4, Nachos BellGrande are a ridiculously cheap food that makes for a tasty meal. If all you want is cheese and chips, order the Cheesy Nachos at Taco Bell for just over a dollar.

Corn dog from Sonic Drive-In

Everyone enjoys a good corn dog. At Sonic Drive-In, you can get a corn dog for between $1 and $2 that will leave your taste buds jumping for joy. If these aren't the best tasting corn dogs in the world, they are in the running. These bad boys are crispy but not so crispy that they are difficult to bite. The corn taste is pleasant and once you reach the hot dog in the middle, you'll be glad that you ate one of these hot dogs. While you can eat it plain, most people prefer to add a bit of ketchup or mustard — or both.

Cheeseburger from Burger King

Everyone loves the Whopper at Burger King. And while there's nothing wrong with ordering a Whopper, they're not exactly cheap and, if you order them regularly, eventually your bank account will be begging for mercy. Thankfully, Burger King has an often overlooked replacement on their menu: the humble Cheeseburger. While it's not exactly like a Whopper, it tastes similar enough to satisfy your cravings. Best of all, it only costs about a buck. The Cheeseburger comes with a flame-grilled patty, American cheese, pickles, ketchup, and mustard on a sesame seed bun.

Muffins at Dunkin' Donuts

Dunkin' is best known for their coffee and their donuts. But the next time you visit, take a good, hard look at their muffins. You can get one muffin for less than $2 or four muffins for about $6. While their chocolate chip muffin and their honey bran raisin muffin are good options, it's Dunkin's blueberry muffin that really takes the cake. All their muffins are soft, chewy, and packed with flavor. The blueberry muffin has a lot of fruity flavor within, and a sugary glaze on top to really steal your heart.

Hot wings from KFC

If you have a hankering for hot wings, don't forget about KFC. While their hot wings don't get a lot of publicity, they're a perfectly tasty option that come with a very reasonable price tag. Their hot wings are available in five-piece, 10-piece, or 20-piece packs. KFC hasn't been selling hot wings for a long time, but they're slowly getting the hang of it. While they offer many different flavor options, their Nashville Hot reign supreme over the rest. These wings are legitimately hot, so you'll want a drink on-hand to cool your mouth.

Honey butter chicken biscuit from Whataburger

If you're looking for an amazing breakfast option that you can get at a drive-thru restaurant, it doesn't get much better than a Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit from Whataburger. The ingredients look normal (a chicken strip topped with honey butter inside of a buttermilk biscuit) but there's nothing normal about the taste. This breakfast sandwich is something you should put in your mouth at least once in your life. It's also priced very fairly, so you won't feel bad if eating one for breakfast becomes part of your daily routine.

Apple turnover from Hardee's

Although many fast food establishments offer some sort of apple turnover, the apple turnover you can get at Hardee's puts the rest of the competition to shame. Their apple turnover is deep-fried to perfection. Just the right amount of sugar and cinnamon is added to the mix, and you will cherish each and every bite. Amazingly, the apple turnovers from Hardee's only have 270 calories each, which means you can justify eating two or three of these things.

Seasoned curly fries from Jack in the Box

If all you want is some fries at a great price, Jack in the Box has the answer. Their seasoned curly fries are reliably awesome. The seasoning can't be beat, the quality of the potatoes they use is obviously high, and these fries taste great with or without ketchup. While you can get a small order, save yourself the regret and go ahead and get the large. You deserve to bask in the glory of these seasoned curly fries at least once in your life.

Soft pinto bean burrito from Taco Time

Another place that serves inexpensive Mexican food is Taco Time. At this eatery, it's the soft pinto bean burrito that steals the show. This scrumptious burrito is overflowing with pinto beans, cheddar cheese, and hot sauce. You'll be shocked at the value, as the soft pinto bean burrito costs less than $2. If you want a dessert after eating the burrito, Taco Time has two ridiculously cheap options: cinnamon crustos and empanadas. Either one is worth your hard-earned money.