Dirt Cheap Eats 2008: Saints Paradise Cafeteria

The steaming silver pans lined up behind the counter of this church-basement cafeteria display soul-food favorites such as smoky-sweet barbecue ribs in a pool of sauce. The dinner ($10) comes with buttery cornbread and two sides; we recommend the collards, a balance of salty richness, and the candied yams, earthy despite a heavy dose of sugar and spice. Also worthwhile is the juicy fried chicken ($8 for a dinner with two sides and cornbread), with its well-seasoned crust. The place is cash only, but there’s an ATM just inside the door. Open daily for breakfast, lunch, and dinner (closes at 7 on weekdays, 6 on weekends).

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.