*We rarely remember to take photos when we go out, especially of our food. The featured photo is the view from outside Ten3

We’ve lived here for 7 months now and have probably eaten at 10 restaurants max. We’ve really liked several of the Albuquerque restaurants we’ve been to. As you probably know from other posts, such as “5 Things to Cut Out to Save Money“, we cook most of our meals and rarely eat out. We don’t try new things too often, but when we do, it usually pays off. I don’t think there are any places we’ve tried here and disliked. So, if you happen to be feeling hungry in Albuquerque, here are our favorite places to grab some grub.

El Modelo

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This was the first of the Albuquerque restaurants we tried. We came over from California in July to look for apartments and visit because we hadn’t been to New Mexico before. We stayed at an AirBnB on the west side. El Modelo was relatively close and had good reviews on Yelp. The food was flavorful and spicy. I’m not sensitive enough to gluten anymore to have to ask about all the ingredients, but I generally go under the assumption that Mexican food is safe for me unless it’s flour tortillas or sopapillas. I got the tamale plate and Evan got the Mexican plate, which had a variety of foods. Each of them were around $8 and we had enough leftovers for another two meals. Definitely a lot of bang for your buck. We haven’t been back since our trip just because we live on the other side of the Rio Grande, but that would be our top pick the next time we’re over there.

Dickey’s Barbeque Pit

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Dickey’s isn’t strictly an Albuquerque restaurant. Although this is a chain, there weren’t any near where we lived in California, so we hadn’t tried it till we moved here. We started eating here because Evan has this app called pocket points. It basically gives you points for coupons for not using your phone. Since we’re all about saving money, we typically use coupons if we’re going out to eat. Dickey’s Barbeque Pit was one of the places he could use the points. We usually eat here once a month. They have a list of foods that are gluten-free, which makes it easy. I always get the brisket with spinach and waffle fries, which are some of my favorite foods. With pocket points, we each get a one meat plate with two sides for $13 total.

Sauce Pizza & Wine

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Like Dickey’s, this is another chain that happens to have a location in Albuquerque. The pizza is yummy. Can’t speak to whether the wine is good or not because alcohol is not my friend, and Evan is more of a beer dude. In addition to pizza, the pasta and salads are also exceptional. Gluten-free options are marked on the menu. Both of us love pizza, but sometimes it causes breakouts, which isn’t fun. So we’re pretty picky about where we go for pizza. We haven’t had any issues when eating here.

Random side note, Evan and I have the same taste in pizza. There have only been two times when we haven’t ordered the same thing and that was because Evan was deliberately getting something different than me. It’s weird. Like we can have a menu of 20 different pizzas and without talking about it, we’d still end up ordering the same toppings.

Sauce is one of the more mid-range priced Albuquerque restaurants on our list. So we’ll go there for occasions like birthdays.

Paisano’s

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If you’re gluten-free, this is the place to go. Paisano’s is an Italian restaurant with a gluten-free menu almost as large as their regular menu. It is by far the largest gluten-free menu of any restaurant I’ve been to. I don’t remember what pasta we ordered, but we both enjoyed what we ate and had one to two meals worth of leftovers. It’s a little on the pricier side, so it’s another of the Albuquerque restaurants we only go to for special occasions.

Ten 3

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If you’re looking for the highest restaurant in Albuquerque, then Ten 3 is where you want to be. It’s at the top of the Sandia Peak Tramway. The views are lovely, food was high quality, and it has a nice atmosphere. We went here for our anniversary. The website describes their menu as International, Mediterranean, New Mexican and American. If you’re gluten free, the menu on the website appears to be reversed from the actual menu. I had planned on getting the chicken because on the website it looked like it was the only gluten free option for dinner. The menus at the restaurant have a symbol next to the foods that contain gluten, so actually the chicken was the only thing I could not eat. This is the most expensive restaurant on our list, so if you’re on a budget, it’s not the place you’d want to go on a weekly basis. You also have to take the tram to get up, which adds to the cost, but for special occasions it’s worth it. It’s a fun trip up as well.

Conclusion

Out of the 10 or so places we’ve eaten here, these are the Albuquerque restaurants we’ve enjoyed the most.  This list has a range of prices and cuisine, but they’re all great places we’d go to again.

What are your favorite restaurants where you live? What characteristics do you look for when choosing where to eat?

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Maisy
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Recent graduate, blogger, girlfriend, dog-mom

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