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At Fat Patties, it’s all about the ingredients.

The mission is to use meat from locally raised animals and locally grown produce for the menu, which features 1/3-pound burgers with lots of extras and toppings that will help make Fat Patties burgers your favorite.

The restaurant buys meat from Lick Creek Beef in Buncombe and Bison Bluff Farms in Cobden.

“We will only use local, grass-fed and finished or high-quality commercial beef,” said owner Lance Jack.

“We love that we can provide our customers with high-quality, local meat and vegetables and support our local economy at the same time,” he said. “Our customers are also assured of getting the freshest ingredients.”

The grass-fed and finished beef used at Fat Patties is very high in omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to help prevent heart disease and stroke. But that’s not the reason customers love Fat Patties burgers. It’s the taste.

“This is about providing great-tasting, quality meat,” he said. “People notice the quality right away.”

When Jack moved from the Quad Cities to Carbondale in 1992, he struggled to find a really good burger. That’s why he opened Fat Patties in 2009, to bring some really good burgers to Southern Illinois.

Still, if burgers just aren’t your thing, there are other sandwiches — try the Slim Chickens, seasoned with “Ninja Dust” — there are house or dinner salads, homemade side dishes. Try the sweet corn nuggets or the fancy battered green beans — and there’s the soup of the day, made from scratch. Top it all off with dessert, a big chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwich perhaps or a root beer float.

“At Fat Patties, we specialize in crafting mouth-watering meals and providing superb customer service,” Jack said.

The quality of the food and the variety of choices make Fat Patties a favorite of both students and “townies.” But if you need added incentive, consider the restaurant’s zero-tolerance policy on Styrofoam and limited use of disposable plastics.

“We recycle all of our solid waste and compost food scraps every day,” he said. “You will be hard-pressed to find a ‘greener’ burger joint in Southern Illinois.”

If you really don’t want the downtown dining experience, you can order online — a new service — for delivery or pickup. But to truly experience Fat Patties, you need to come by.

“Come downtown for some family time,” said Jack. “You do the talking and the eating; we’ll take care of the cooking and dishes. Relax and enjoy.”


The Top 20 Dining Card features “buy one entrée, get one free” dining at restaurants throughout Southern Illinois. Your card will be honored once at each restaurant through November and costs only $20. Go to for restaurants and to purchase.


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