Best Of Tucson®

Best Lunch Under $7

La Salsa

Readers' Pick: If you're wanting Mexican food quickly, but no quieres fast food, this is the place. Generous-and we mean generous-burritos, tacos, quesadillas (our personal favorite) and much more are prepared after you order before your very eyes. The beret-clad employees have been schooled in magical assembly-line technique that manages to crank out always-delicious meals in record time. Watch carefully and you'll notice the meticulous division of duties amongst those who prepare your food. If this doesn't entertain you enough to pass the minute or two it takes to get food, spend your time selecting among the many salsas available. As the name implies, salsa is a priority and you'll find six different versions made fresh every day, ranging from tangy to taste-bud-abusing hot.

Staff Pick: University Medical Center cafeteria, 1501 N. Campbell Ave. Not exactly the kind of place you just stumble upon, the UMC cafeteria features a stunning variety of dirt cheap eatin'. You can assemble of fine breakfast, lunch or dinner here for just a few bucks. Grab a tray and load it up with a burger (veggie or otherwise), including all the fixings; a small salad; and soft-serve ice cream. (Free toppings!) Hand the cashier a five and don't be surprised to get back a fair amount of change. Next time you're visiting an ailing relative, or helping your laboring ladyfriend with her Lamaze breathing, slip on down to the first floor and enjoy a nice little meal. Some of us have been known to go to the hospital with no other purpose than assembling an affordable, satisfying lunch.

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