For tourists in Madrid, being able to grab food on the go is critical. How else are you supposed to hop from one major attraction to another? However, finding food that’s fast, authentic, and affordable can be harder than you think. For a culture working to preserve the art of the sit-down meal, it can appear as though finding cheap takeaway is an impossibility. But there are actually several opportunities for food on the go—as long as you know where to look.
La Clueca, a taste of Spain
A casual dining eatery with upscale options, La Clueca is perfect for tourists who are looking for classic Spanish dishes with flair. Putting modern twists on standards such as the Spanish omelet and croquettes, this menu gives its customers the tastes of Spain at its finest. Their menu contains sections featuring chicken and tortillas, in addition to several sweet treats for after dinner. And though this cozy space doesn’t offer large, formal meals, their tapas and reasonable entrée options are sure to please any patron. La Clueca also offers several drinks—including various beers and wines—to go with your meal. Thankfully, everything on their menu is totally takeaway friendly, so enjoy your meal wherever you choose.
Rodilla, famous cold sandwiches
A world-famous chain that originated in Madrid, you can’t get more authentic than Rodilla. Ana Gómez, a franchisee at the restaurant, explained that the chain was created about 75 years ago, by a family called the Rodillas. “Their cold sandwiches are what made them famous locally, and then they just kept opening more and more stores.” The stores are bright and open, with premade sandwiches and sides to sit and enjoy or grab to go. They also have fresh coffee, juices, and sweet treats to enjoy with your meal. And, because it originated in Madrid, it’s always packed full of friendly locals to meet in its several locations across Madrid.
Mums Madrid, home-made meals
If you don’t feel like waiting around for a takeaway order, never fear—with Mums Madrid, customers can grab pre-prepared meals on the go with little to no wait time. The cafeteria-style spread has everything from pasta to chicken and veggies. Though the prepared food isn’t specific to Spain, the comforting, flavorful meals are perfect for travelers looking for something both unique and familiar. And the best part: these relatively large meals come at a reasonably cheap price tag. Food that’s easy on the eyes, the stomach, and the wallet. Food just like Mum used to make.
La Antigua Churreria, the sweetest breakfast
Tourists looking for a quick, authentic breakfast will not be disappointed with La Antigua Churreria. The small, intimate café—with several locations across Madrid—is perfect for takeaway breakfast. Feel free to sit down and enjoy coffee, tea, or fresh juice, though the employees are more than happy to make your meal para llevar. La Antigua Churreria is most well-known for its churros con chocolate, a classic morning snack in Madrid. But if you’re looking for something sweet a little later in the day, their ice cream is conveniently facing the street, so you can grab a scoop without even stepping inside.
Nostrum, try the popular Spanish cold soup, Gazpacho
With several locations across Madrid, Nostrum makes it easy for citizens and tourists alike to grab affordable food on the go. With most of their food already prepared in portable containers, you can carry out entire meals with no fuss. Though Nostrum does sell typical lunch items such as salads and sandwiches, they also offer several traditional Spanish dishes, like croquettes and gazpacho—a cold soup made of tomatoes, peppers, and other veggies. Sides are also abundant, with options like fresh fruit for house-made chips. If you’re looking for an early morning pick-me-up, Nostrum also has juice, coffee, and an assortment of pastries.
La Clueca; Avenida Menéndez Pelayo, 45; Open from 9 am to 12 pm; Metro Ibiza or Sáinz de Baranda.
Rodilla; Plaza de Callao 5 and all over Madrid; Open from 8 am – 10:30 pm all over Madrid; Metro Callao.
Mums Madrid; Calle de Zurbano, 84; Open from 12:30 pm to 4:30 pm during the week; Metro Gregorio Marañón.
La Antigua Churreria; Calle del Conde de Peñalver, 32; Open for breakfast (between 8 am – 1 pm) and the late afternoon (5 pm – 9pm); Metro Lista.
Nostrum; Open from 8 am – 10 pm every day, with several locations across Madrid.