Nothing beats a big plate of comforting Italian food. When it’s paired with a low price, it tastes even better. These are the 8 greatest places Phantom has found for Affordable Italian.

Jack’s
Malden

Jack’s in Malden is a come-as-you-are spot named after its legendary owner, Jack Colangeli. The only thing more tasteful than his signature red boots, is his red sauce used to top everything from their mouthwatering eggplant veal combo, to their massive mound of lasagna, to their slow-cooked meatballs that have been perfected for generations.

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Mom & Rico’s
Springfield

Mom & Rico’s is a throwback spot that has been a fixture in Springfield since 1976. The shelves are packed with wine bottles, coffee beans, imported specialty products, and pastas. But the best way to sample it all is to grab a plate and help yourself to Mom & Rico’s mouthwatering buffet of Italian classics.

Comella’s
Various locations

Another Great 8 winner is Comella’s. Since 1988 this family run spot has been serving big plates of Italian for very little money. Now with more than a dozen locations, you can get your fork on all of that fabulous fare from Hingham to Bedford. Whether you want to eat in, take-out, or pick up a party platter, the menu offers incredibly affordable prices. There is Caprese salads with fresh mozzarella, fully stacked Italian sandwiches, chicken broccoli and ziti, and homemade sausages. Out of everything on Comella’s menu, the item that gets the biggest buzz, because it’s by far the best value, is the classic, hand-tossed, 16-inch cheese pizza that costs less than seven bucks.

Kitty’s
Reading

For over 65 years, Kitty’s in Reading has been giving families loads of Italian bang for their buck. This no-frills spot offers over the top portions of all your favorite dishes, from shareable plates of antipasto served with plenty of their drinkable Kitty’s dressing, to inexpensive pizzas everyone loves, to plate tipping chicken parm that’s so big you’ll have to take half home for later.

Bella’s
Rockland

For over 40 years, Bella’s in Rockland has been serving massive portions of all your favorite Italian dishes. Center cut pork chops are over an inch thick, and weigh over a pound. Cocktail shrimp are plump and crisp. The lasagna is stacked with so many layers, it’s a miracle it can stand up straight, and the hot antipasti platter with stuffed mushrooms, clams casino, sausage, and shrimp scampi, is almost too big for its own good.

Lui Lui
West Lebanon, Nashua

With locations in West Lebanon and Nashua, New Hampshire, Lui Lui is an upbeat spot with Italian movie posters lining the walls, pizza and calzones cooked right before your eyes, and some over-the-top portions making their way through the dining room and into your stomach. Nothing busts the belly quite like Lui Lui’s legendary homemade lasagna, a dish so large it leaves customers dumbfounded.

Raso’s
Medford

Raso’s in Medford is the kind of place you go to for old school Italian perfected for generations. The neighborhood nook is the where locals come for big city eats at small town prices. There is hearty pasta Bolognese, and loads of pizzas, perfect for sharing. But the biggest value on Raso’s menu has to be their Black Angus New York Sirloin.

AJ’s Kitchen
Wilmington

Rounding out the Great 8 is AJ’s Kitchen in Wilmington. This spot may be small from the outside, but inside they are making giant subs that burst at the seams, extra-large pizzas, and calzones bigger than a baseball bat. But the must order menu item at this sub shop is the mouthwatering meatballs, slow cooked in AJ’s own marinara. When they are slapped inside a sub roll, you can fill your belly without emptying your wallet.

Watch Phantom Gourmet on Saturdays and Sundays at 10:30 and 11 a.m. on myTV38.

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