Pal’s Sudden Service is a legendary Southern drive-in chain known for its speedy service, consistent menu, and devoted customer base. Since 1956, Pal’s has been serving up its signature burgers, hot dogs, and fries to loyal fans throughout Tennessee and Virginia. While many fast food chains constantly revamp their menus, Pal’s has stuck to the basics, focusing on quality ingredients and getting customers their food in under 20 seconds on average.
One of the lesser-known aspects of Pal’s is its breakfast menu, served daily from 6 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. This blog post will provide an in-depth guide to Pal’s breakfast hours and offerings.
From biscuits to burritos and milkshakes to hashbrowns, we’ll cover the full Pal’s breakfast menu. You’ll learn insider tips on the best times to visit to beat the morning rush, popular items to try, and how to customize your order.
Let’s get ready to experience Pal’s legendary speedy service all over again in the AM!
Pal’s Sudden Service Breakfast Hours
|Monday||7:00 AM – 10:30 AM|
|Tuesday||6:00 AM – 10:30 AM|
|Wednesday||6:00 AM – 10:30 AM|
|Thursday||6:00 AM – 10:30 AM|
|Friday||6:00 AM – 10:30 AM|
|Saturday||6:00 AM – 10:30 AM|
|Sunday||7:00 AM – 11:00 AM|
Pal’s Sudden Service starts serving breakfast bright and early at 6 a.m. Monday through Sunday. Breakfast is available until 10:30 AM daily before the menu switches over to the signature burgers, hot dogs, and fries.
The morning hours, especially between 7-9 AM, tend to be the busiest time at Pal’s. Customers stopping in on their morning commute or grabbing a quick bite before work leads to longer lines and wait times of upwards of 2–3 minutes during the breakfast rush. Arriving closer to 10 a.m. is your best bet for a speedier experience.
Breakfast accounts for 25–30% of Pal’s daily sales, though lunch and dinner remain the highest-volume dayparts. Still, the breakfast menu has its dedicated fans, with familiar faces coming through the drive-thru each morning to fuel up on biscuits and gravy.
Behind the scenes, the Pal’s staff arrives before dawn to prep for the breakfast shift. Fresh biscuits are baking, potatoes are frying for hashbrowns, and coffee is brewing by 5 AM. The kitchen goes into overdrive to have hot, made-to-order breakfast sandwiches ready as soon as the first customers start rolling through right at 6 AM.
All About the Pal’s Breakfast Menu
The Pal’s breakfast menu includes all the classics you’d expect at a Southern drive-in. Biscuits take center stage, either on their own with butter and jelly or as the foundation for breakfast sandwiches.
Popular biscuit sandwiches feature a fried egg, cheese, and your choice of bacon, ham, or sausage patties stacked between a freshly baked biscuit. You can also opt for a sausage or bacon egg and cheese biscuit without the meat.
Beyond biscuits, breakfast platters offer traditional fare like bacon, eggs, hashbrowns, or sausage gravy over biscuits with a side of eggs. Breakfast is served with a hashbrown side standard, which you can upgrade to grits for a small charge.
While the core menu remains consistent, Pal’s mixes things up with limited-time breakfast offerings as well. Recent specials have included breakfast burritos, loaded hashbrown bowls with sausage gravy, and chicken biscuits.
No Pal’s meal is complete without a drink, and their breakfast beverages help wake you up. Choose from coffee, milk, chocolate milk, or orange juice. One signature option is the breakfast milkshake, a thick, creamy milkshake made with real ice cream and your choice of chocolate, strawberry, or vanilla flavoring.
Breakfast sandwiches cost around $3–4 depending on meat choice, and biscuit combo prices range from $1.50 for a basic biscuit up to $5 for a loaded biscuit platter. Combo meals add hashbrowns and a drink for just a couple dollars more. Pal’s breakfast remains very reasonably priced, especially compared to many major fast food chains.
Pal’s Origins and History
Pal Barger opened the first Pal’s Sudden Service in 1956 in Kingsport, TN. The original location started as a hamburger stand before Pal switched to a drive-in model with call-in ordering in the early 1980s. This drive-thru model focused on speedy service and high quality became the blueprint for Pal’s continued expansion over the coming decades.
Sticking to its roots in eastern Tennessee, Pal’s gradually added more locations throughout the Tri-Cities region. The menu remained consistent, centered around the burgers, hot dogs, and french fries that built its reputation. Pal’s did eventually expand beyond Tennessee, with a few locations in southwest Virginia.
Today, there are 31 Pal’s locations across northeast Tennessee and Virginia. Under the leadership of second-generation owner Thom Crosby, Pal’s has maintained its dedication to quality ingredients, customer service, and getting customers their food fast.
Average wait times still clock in around 15-20 seconds in the drive-thru, a remarkable feat that keeps loyal customers coming back. Pal’s homemade-style food and emphasis on hospitality make it a local favorite.
The Pal’s Drive-Thru Experience
One of the keys to Pal’s ongoing success is the unique drive-thru experience. While many fast food drive-thrus have moved to speaker boxes and screens, Pal’s has stuck to face-to-face ordering at the drive-thru window.
As you pull up to the window, a friendly team member takes your order in person. This personal interaction enhances the guest experience and allows customers to ask questions or customize their order. The cashier enters the order details into a point-of-sale system that prints tickets for the kitchen staff to prepare.
Employees are thoroughly trained on the menu, recipes, and procedures before being certified to work the drive-thru window. This ensures accuracy and speed; most cars receive their food within 20 seconds thanks to seamless coordination between the cashier, kitchen, and expeditor roles.
Inside the kitchen, staff are continuously cooking burgers, frying fries, and assembling orders to stay ahead of demand. The expeditor positions orders at the drive-thru window in precise order based on ticket times. As soon as your car pulls up, your hot, fresh order is waiting for you.
This streamlined process allows Pal’s to maintain speed while still delivering high-quality, made-to-order meals. Even during busy rushes, the longest you’ll likely wait is 2–3 minutes. It’s an unmatched drive-thru experience that diners have come to expect from Pal’s.
Tips and Recommendations
To get the most out of your next visit to Pal’s during breakfast hours, keep these tips in mind:
- Arrive closer to 10 AM to beat the morning breakfast rush
- Try the sausage egg and cheese biscuit; it’s a long-time customer favorite
- Customize your biscuit or sandwich with extra bacon, egg, or cheese for a small charge
- Pair your breakfast with Pal’s famous fries or a burger to sample the full menu
- Ask for a breakfast milkshake if you have a sweet tooth; they’re delicious
- Know what you want before you pull up—the line moves quickly!
- Have cash on hand. Pal’s accepts cash only at most locations
- Request extra napkins and packets of signature Pal’s sauce
First-timers should go for a biscuit sandwich combo to experience the classics done right. Veterans can try limited-time specials or customize a platter to their preferences. No matter what you order, it will be hot, fresh, and ready in a flash at Pal’s.
Pal’s Sudden Service has built a reputation for speedy service and quality comfort food in the South for over 60 years. While known for burgers and fries, Pal’s also offers a tasty breakfast menu worth getting up early to try. From fluffy biscuits to crispy hashbrowns and breakfast milkshakes, they’ve got the morning classics covered.
This guide provides an in-depth look at Pal’s breakfast hours, menu, history, and service model. By following the tips and recommendations, you can make the most of your next biscuit run to Pal’s.
So set that alarm and make a breakfast date with this iconic Southern drive-in chain for a fast, affordable, and delicious way to start your day.