The Best Small-Town Fast Food Spots in the U.S.A.

Country Living

The Best Small-Town Fast Food Spots in the U.S.A.

PDQ named Number 1 Spot

Everyone has a favorite fast food spot in their towns and their your favorites for a reason. If not for their delicious fries or particularly tasty flautas, they wouldn't be on your list. According to the CDC, "during 2013–2016, 36.6% of adults consumed fast food on a given day." This means we're eating a lot of fast food. Sometimes small towns have the best local fast food restaurants, and we all know nothing tastes better than comfort food from your own hometown. During today's difficult times, we're staying closer to home and focusing on our local fast food spots and giving them a proper spotlight. Self-care is important and a big component of self-care is eating what you love. If endless breadsticks from Fazoli's makes you happy, then eat up.

While trying out burger recipe ideas is a good thing, there's nothing wrong with stopping by your favorite burger shop to grab one on the go. Summer's here and enjoying a good meal with your family is even better when you don't have to cook. Plus, who would be responsible for making milkshakes? We've gathered the 12 best small-town fast food spots in the U.S.A. While not every shop is on this list, we can guarantee these spots will tempt you at least once this summer.

1. PDQ
This Florida based establishment first opened in 2011 by founders Bob Basham and Nick Reader. What makes PDQ the best is their attention to detail. Every chicken tender is fried to perfection and their milkshakes are frothy enough for dairy connoisseurs. While they've expanded past their Tampa home-base, they still have kept their small-town charm.

2. Waffle House
Open since 1955, the Waffle House is more of a cultural establishment than just a local fast food spot. Its first location in Georgia is open 24 hours a day and every new shop since then has kept the same hours. You can spot them by their popular yellow-and-black sign alongside highways and roads in most southern states.

3. Tijuana Flats
Another southern native, Tijuana Flats first opened in Central Florida's Winter Park area and has since expanded to 2001 locations all throughout the south. Popular dishes include flautas and chimichangas, and we can't forget about their notorious sauce bar. Believe us, they're really good.

4. Marco's Pizza
Founded more than 42 years ago in Oregon, Ohio, by Italian immigrant Pasquale Giammarco, Marco's Pizza now has locations in more than 34 states. Known more for their company growth, we except this brand to rival bigger chains in the near future. What's better than unlimited topping pizzas for less than $7?

5. Culver's
Hospitality at Culver's rivals most local fast food spots, and this Wisconsin-based frozen custard hot spot sure knows how to keep it up. Their fan-favorite ButterBurgers are made with lightly buttered buns and a whole lot of love.

6. Fazoli's
We might be a little biased to places that serve unlimited breadsticks, but Fazoli's really lives up to the hype. Emulating Italian roots, Fazoli's is the type of place you go to if you're looking for a hearty meal. Based in Kentucky, there 215 locations nationwide, so if you find one, take advantage.

7. Luke's Lobster
Founded in New York City, Luke's Lobster is what you think of when you imagine a success story. Since opening in 2009, you can find Luke's Lobster shops as far away as Japan. Supporting the communities they source from is a huge part of what makes Luke's Lobster such a great fast-food spot. They've partnered with organizations like The Ocean Foundation, who are committed to reversing the damage done to our oceans by non-environmental factors. Their lobster rolls are pretty spot on too.

8. Jersey Mike's Subs
Since 1956, Jersey Mike's Subs has been serving us with what we consider New Jersey sub royalty. Started by a high school senior and a football coach, Jersey Mike's Subs have 1,592 locations and more coming along the way.

9. Burger Street
For 35 years, this Texas-based burger shop has been filling our bellies with standouts like their bacon cheese burger and chicken strips. What's great about Burger Street is its ability to take you back in time when burgers reined supreme.

10. Del's
If you're from New England then you know about Del's. Imported from Naples, Del's is a summertime favorite. You can usually find a truck or stand selling their famous frozen lemonade anytime from Memorial Day to Labor Day. It's the cutest way to end a summertime date by the pier.

11. Krystal
Adorable tiny cheeseburgers named Krystals are the epitome of hometown comfort food. Servicing the great state of George since 1932, Krystal has about 360 locations and specializes in sliders and chili cheese fries.

12. Whataburger
Famous for their giant burgers and A-framed locations, Whataburger has been a favorite to many since the '50s. If you run into any of their shops, make sure to order a Whatachick'n. It's worth the calories.
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