We moved into the San Fernando Valley (Lake Balboa/ Los Angeles) about a year ago and have been looking for good cheap eating since. We didn't end up liking most of the restaurants chowhound users recommended.
So here are GREAT restaurants that we love - and you can get a meal for less than $10 at many of them. World class cheap eats.
(best Thai food outside of Thailand-- and I spent two months in the country)
16045 Sherman Way #D in a strip mall on Sherman Way and Woodley near the Van Nuys Airport.
Red Zone Lounge / Golden State Pizzeria
7131 Balboa Blvd., near the southwest corner of Balboa & Sherman Way, Van Nuys, CA
or (818) 442 0900
This place is such a treasure. The pizza is just YUMMMMM. The crust is like pastry - they use the best flour from Canada. And the people are SO nice.
Best Philly Cheese Steak (the one I love is called the "Steak Special" -- it's not the "Philly Cheese Steak" on the menu) that I've had outside of Philadelphia itself.
Firehouse Restaurant ( Greek)
18450 Victory Blvd., Reseda, CA 91335
What we love at the Firehouse are the gyros, and the Greek salad. We've had less luck with other menu items, but that could be just us.
It's a family run place and the people are VERY nice!
Pine Tree Inn (Korean)
8322 Reseda Blvd. (Roscoe)
Great! And the lunch specials are under $10