While the heat outside might not feel like a blessing, Houstonians are blessed with something else: world-class food at cheaper prices than those of New York or Paris. But “cheap” high class food for college students usually entails ordering an appetizer and filling up at Whataburger later. Enter Houston Restaurant Week, or rather, month. From Aug. 1 to Sept. 3, over 280 Houston restaurants that you and I might call “way too fancy for Saturday dinner” open their menus for set prices. $20 brunch, $20 lunch, and $35 to $45 dinner means a more affordable way to tickle the taste buds. To top it off? All restaurants donate some portion of your bill to the Houston Food Bank to help fight hunger through food pantries, soup kitchens, and other organizations. These set prices mean restaurants in a wide range of caliber serve you their food at the same price of their neighbor. They also mean that partaking in Houston Restaurant Week requires careful research and planning (basically, please don’t order a Caesar salad if you’re coughing up money for these dinners). Behold our 2018 recommendations:

BRUNCH ($20)

Backstreet Cafe

  • 1103 S. Shepherd Drive
  • Yelp rating: 4/5 stars with 1159 reviews
  • Vegetarian and vegan options available
  • Food in a phrase: New American brunch with delicious mimosas
  • Best bang for your buck: house-cured salmon bagel entrée

Courtesy Oporto Fooding House & Wine

Oporto Fooding House & Wine

  • 125 W. Gray St.
  • Yelp rating: 4.5/5 stars with 688 reviews
  • Food in a phrase: Small but unique bites of Portuguese flavor
  • Best bang for your buck: shakshuka, migas portuguesa

LUNCH ($20)

Hugo’s

  • 1600 Westheimer Road
  • Yelp rating: 4/5 stars with 1079 reviews
  • Vegetarian and vegan options available
  • Food in a phrase: A Houston classic serving lunch, Mexican-style
  • Best bang for your buck: huarache de res

Courtesy Houston Chronicle.

Xochi

  • 1777 Walker St.
  • Yelp rating: 4/5 stars with 388 reviews
  • Food in a phrase: James Beard chef curates incredible Mexican food
  • Best bang for your buck: cachetes de res

DINNER ($35 or $45)

Ambrosia ($35)

  • 2003 Lexington St.
  • Yelp rating: 4/5 stars with 705 reviews
  • Vegetarian options available
  • Food in a phrase: Asian fusion, but in a way that makes sense
  • Best bang for your buck: five spice bulgogi marinated fillet

Fung’s Kitchen ($35)

  • 7320 Southwest Freeway
  • Yelp rating: 3.5/5 stars with 637 reviews
  • Vegetarian options available
  • Food in a phrase: Probably low-rated for the service, but known for solid dim sum
  • Best bang for your buck: Fung Pao Maine lobster (an entire lobster!)

Peli Peli Galleria ($45)

  • 5085 Westheimer Road
  • Yelp rating: 4.5/5 stars with 1247 reviews
  • Food in a phrase: Unique decor to match unique South African dishes
  • Best bang for your buck: flavors of South Africa steak