Fast-food Meals for $5 and Below Every Budget-conscious Diner Will Love

The fast-food industry in the United States continues to thrive on its thrust to provide its customers with affordable yet delicious meals. These include hamburgers and cheeseburgers, fried and grilled chicken including tenders, wedges, and popcorns, salads and sides, and desserts including soft-serve ice cream, sundaes, and milkshakes, as well as a wide range of drinks. And the best news: You can actually enjoy a full meal with just $5, perhaps even less in many fast-food restaurants, with the Taco Bell 5 Buck Box as among the best choice.  

Here are a few of the best picks that you can get for $5 in the most popular fast-food chains. The best thing about it is that you can choose from several themed food ideas, such as Mexican for Taco Bell and American for McDonald’s, for your cravings.  

Taco Bell

For $5, you can enjoy a filling meal at Taco Bell, not to mention that you can mix and match several options to suit your mood for the day. You can build your own Taco Bell 5 Buck Box by combining these food items:

  • Pick 2 of hard taco, the soft taco, the bean burrito, and the beef burrito
  • Pick 1 of either the nacho and cheese or the regular fries
  • Pick 1 of either the cinnamon twists or the caramel apple empanada
  • Pick 1 of Dr. Pepper’s or Pepsi 20-ounce drink

Each time you come to Taco Bell, you can try a different combination. You will find that matching the bean burrito and soft taco with the caramel apple empanada gives a different flavor combo than the hard taco, beef burrito and cinnamon twists combo.  

Since Taco Bell also has a wide range of food items on its menu with prices ranging from under a dollar to $5 and up, you can combine the tacos, burritos, and desserts, as well as the drinks to get a filling meal for $5 and below. You may even want to share the costs as Taco Bell’s portions are generous, which allows for sharing between two people.  


With several types of hamburgers and sandwiches; chicken and fish combos; breakfast items; salads, snacks, and sides; and beverages as well as desserts and shakes, you can go nuts eating at McDonald’s. Its comprehensive fast-food menu is one of the reasons that it is the world’s largest fast-food chain with most countries worldwide having several outlets regardless of their culinary heritage.  

And for $5, you can get a full meal with a chicken dish, a hamburger, and sides as well as a beverage and dessert. Keep in mind that McDonald’s invented the Dollar Menu, which means more opportunities to choose your $5 meal with a good example being:

  • 2 Cheeseburgers with either salad or fries and drink $4.89
  • Premium McWrap Chicken and Ranch, either grilled or crispy $4.39
  • Chicken McNuggets 20 pieces $5
  • Grilled or crispy chicken with either a southwest salad ($4.79) or a bacon ranch salad ($4.59)
  • Combo of the $1+ single food items, such as grilled onion cheddar burger ($1.00); parfait ($1.00); and side salad ($1.59)

Jack in the Box

If you live in the Western or Midwest United States, you have probably discovered that Jack in the Box is among the best places to find budget-friendly, tummy-filling fast-food comfort food. You will be able to buy a filling snack for under $2, which means you will still have $3 left for your next meal.  You can order single-order items or combo meals for $5 and below, such as these examples:

  • Classic Buttery Jack $4.79
  • Bacon & Swiss Buttery Jack $5.09
  • Sourdough Jack $4.69
  • Ultimate Cheeseburger $4.69
  • Bacon Ultimate Cheeseburger $5.09
  • Jumbo Jack Cheeseburger $3.19

You can also order homestyle ranch chicken club; Jack’s spicy chicken; crispy chicken strips; and chicken nuggets, among others. Be sure to try the 2 for $1 taco as well as the $1 egg rolls, both of which can become filling snacks or as additions to your combo meals.  


The girl in pigtails certainly knows how to cater to budget-conscious diners, too. With its comprehensive dollar menu, Wendy’s is a haven for diners who want to eat as much food as possible to provide them with energy for the day while also spending as little as $5 for each meal.  You can mix and match these food items for a $5 and under meal:

  • Jr. Cheeseburger Deluxe $1.89
  • 6 pieces Chicken Nuggets $1.79
  • Jr. Bacon Cheeseburger $1.99
  • Double Stack $2.09
  • Caesar or Garden Side Salad $1.49
  • Chicken Go Wrap $1.79
  • Chili Small $2.09
  • Bacon & Cheese Baked Potato or Broccoli & Cheese Baked Potato $2.89

You will love the $0.99 items on the menu, too. These include the Jr. Cheeseburger; Crispy Chicken Sandwich; 4 pieces of either regular or spicy chicken nuggets; natural cut-fries, and soft drink.

Who says that eating out is expensive? With these $5 options in fast-food restaurants, you should have no problem eating out as many times as you can with your family and friends.

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