Best Lunch in Myrtle Beach

Looking for Lunch in All the Right Places in Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach is famous for its abundance of pancake houses and fine-dining restaurants, but often hidden in between is a diverse selection of lunch options. From the traditional beach burger stands and the old-school mom-and-pop country cafes and from Northern-style delis to Southern soul food, visitors of all walks of life and taste buds can find what they're hungry for in Myrtle Beach.

Of course, the close proximity to the Atlantic Ocean makes seafood a viable lunch option, and the town's Southern roots mean barbecue can't be far away. Mr. Fish, a dinner-time favorite in Myrtle Beach, also serves one of the best-kept secrets in town with a daily fresh catch lunch special. For those more in to "landfood", Prosser's BBQ in Murrells Inlet puts out an amazing spread of barbecue and country-cooking comfort food.

Those with simpler tastes should check out Dagwood's Deli for sandwiches piled higher than the waves at the nearby beach. Just across the street is Mammy's Kitchen, another home-style cooking classic that packs them in for three meals a day. But the lunch buffet will insure that you go back to the beach with a full belly and plenty of energy to make it through another day in paradise.


Prosser's Bar-B-Q
Photo courtesy of Prosser's Bar-B-Q

This family-owned and operated eatery has been serving sweet barbecue and country cooking since 1953, and for good reason. Not only does Prosser's do barbecue the good ol' Southern way - slow smoked over hickory coals to perfection - it also serves some of the best country cooking on the Grand Strand. Fried chicken, country-fried steak and the Lowcountry favorite dish of chicken bog join barbecue and ribs on the buffet amid a sea of home-style vegetables. Breads and desserts are also available on the buffet, which is quite affordable for hungry visitors. Be sure to try the mustard-based sauce even if it's against your BBQ religion.

Recommended for Lunch because: Prosser's was so popular in nearby Hemingway that it relocated to the beach.

Terry's expert tip: Forget about the menu. The multi-item country buffet is the way to go even if you are not a heavy eater.

Read more about Prosser's Bar-B-Q →

The Shack
Photo courtesy of The Shack

Known for generations as the Biscuit Shack, this North Myrtle Beach institution is under new management with the same familiar country classics. The new crew kept the spirit of the old place alive - great Southern cooking and friendly service - while updating the menu and decor a bit. The Shack specializes in South Carolina favorites and serves daily meat-and-three specials. The food is like something you can only get at your grandmother's house - true Southern cooking, especially for breakfast, which can be ordered any time of day for the late-rising lunch crowd. The sweet tea is the best on the Strand.

Recommended for Lunch because: With or without the name change, The Shack is an institution on the North Strand.

Terry's expert tip: Noon can get a bit busy so shoot for an early or late lunch.

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Bummz Beach Cafe
Photo courtesy of Bummz Beach Cafe

The name says it all for this casual, come-as-you-are bar and grill, where patrons often stroll up from the beach with sand on their feet for a bite to eat and a cold one. Ocean views, frozen concoctions, live music and great food is what it's all about at Bummz Beach Cafe, which offers all these and more in a fun-filled and family-friendly atmosphere just steps away from the ocean. Situated in a 1930's beach house setting, guests can sip on a cocktail while lounging in beach chairs and hammocks on the back patio deck, or get their grub on via a host of tasty burgers, sandwiches and salads.

Recommended for Lunch because: Bummz's excellent location and view come with excellent food and drinks to match.

Terry's expert tip: The menu is loaded with can't-miss classics, but the Bummz Burger, which is loaded with bacon, cole slaw, mushrooms and two kinds of cheese, is a unique and filling fixture.

Read more about Bummz Beach Cafe →

Mammy's Kitchen
Photo courtesy of Mammy's Kitchen

This downtown Myrtle Beach institution has been serving locals and tourists hot, home-style meals for 60 years, Mammy's is famous for its breakfast, lunch and dinner buffets. From freshly prepared pancakes, eggs, fried potatoes, sausage and bacon for breakfast to a wide selection of meats and vegetables for lunch and dinner, Mammy's has it all. But the main draw is the first meal of the day, perfect for filling up before a long day at the beach. Mammy's puts out a spread for breakfast, including fresh fruit that goes well over French toast and hot grits with all the fixings.

Recommended for Lunch because: Mammy's Kitchen has been serving several generations of tourists and locals since 1953.

Terry's expert tip: Don't be fooled by a new restaurant by the same name a few blocks away on Ocean Boulevard. The real Mammy's has been at the same location, on the corner of Kings Highway and Mr. Joe White Avenue, for decades.

Read more about Mammy's Kitchen →

Hamburger Joe's
Photo courtesy of Terry Massey

Hamburger Joe's is the perfect lunch spot if you're on a tight vacation budget. In fact, you can probably afford to splurge and get some wings and a beer along with your cheeseburger, which comes heaped with cole slaw, chili, onions, lettuce, tomato, pickles, or whatever combination you'd prefer. Kids enjoy the fried bologna sandwich, hot dog, or grilled cheese; grown-ups appreciate the onion rings - and the fact that they can get a rum and coke or a Long Island Iced Tea with their burger or BLT. The screen-in back porch also offers spectacular views of the salt marsh.

Recommended for Lunch because: Hamburger Joe's offers the best bang per buck of any lunch spot in town.

Terry's expert tip: Hamburger Joe's has $1 domestic drafts ALL THE TIME! Big parties can save money buying discounted pitchers.

Read more about Hamburger Joe's →

Magnolia's at 26th
Photo courtesy of Magnolias at 26th

Located on the ground floor of a hotel convention center, this restaurant draws lots of locals who only venture downtown in the summer months if there's something really good waiting for them. This buffet-style eatery serves three hots a day, but breakfast may be its best offering. Hot grits, gravy and biscuits along with eggs, bacon, sausage give guests a true taste of the South to start their days. Fresh fruit and French toast are available for those with a morning sweet tooth. The friendly service and neighborly atmosphere make this place well worth waking up to on your vacation.

Recommended for Lunch because: It's hard to find home cooking as good as Magnolia's this close to the beach.

Terry's expert tip: Magnolia's leaves the breakfast bar open later on the weekends so an early afternoon brunch yields the bonus of both breakfast and lunch served simultaneously.

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Mr. Fish has relocated to a new, more spacious location but still features the same great food thousands have come to know and love. The new, multi-room establishment is the latest creation of Mr. Fish, aka Ted Hammerman, and daughter Sheina. He is a famous fisherman among locals while her background is in the restaurant industry, so they make a great team in providing quality seafood in a casual and comfortable environment. The restaurant expanded due to popular demand, and now separate rooms serve as a sushi station and full bar bar. But you can order off the same delicious menu in any room, and the shrimp and grits, fish tacos and crab cakes are popular items. The sushi and she-crab soup are also top-selling items.

Recommended for Lunch because: Mr. Fish may be most popular for dinner, but the lunch specials are excellent.

Terry's expert tip: Although the menu is filled with excellent choices, we recommend ordering off the large dry-erase board that keeps track of fresh catches and daily specials.

Read more about Mr. Fish Seafood Market & Grill →

Big Mike's

Soul food doesn't get much more soulful than a Big Mike's, which features classic Southern cooking mixed with Southern hospitality to create a special place for locals and tourists alike. Named for owner and Myrtle Beach City Councilman Mike Chestnut, this place is packed with movers and shakers from the city rubbing elbows with everyday lunch lovers. For a mere $7.95, diners get their choice of one meat (fried pork chops or chicken, meat loaf, etc.) , three veggies (mashed potatoes, collard greens, macaroni and cheese, etc.) and a drink. Belly up to the lunch counter or bring a big party and grab a table for an enjoyable experience and some of the best food this side of the Mason-Dixon Line.

Recommended for Lunch because: You won't find better soul food this close to the beach.

Terry's expert tip: Forget the menu and order off the dry-erase board featuring the daily specials.

Read more about Big Mike's →

Dagwood's Deli
Photo courtesy of Dagwood's Deli

Named after the famous cartoon character with an affinity for sandwiches stacked to the ceiling, Dagwood's Deli follows the same recipe for a longtime, lunch-time favorite that has patrons lined up out the door. Beat the rush by calling ahead and picking up a picnic package that won't leave you hungry. Offering deli meats that are sliced on site, fresh deli bread big enough to hold a skyscraper and all the veggies and fixings, Dagwood's keeps them coming back for more by being more than generous with the ingredients. Grab some chips, fries or pasta salad to go with it and enjoy the feast. Wash it all down with a cold drink or beer.

Recommended for Lunch because: The combination of its downtown location and famous sandwiches makes it a must-visit.

Terry's expert tip: If you have time to dine in, be sure to check out the adjoining Bumstead's Pub.

Read more about Dagwood's Deli →


Meet Terry Massey

It's no surprise that journalist Terry Massey is credited with creating the word 'stay-cation.'  He considers the past 18 years in Myrtle Beach a vacation.

He and his wife Stephanie were...  More About Terry