This is not meant to be a post knocking the food at Pancake Pantry in Gatlinburg. From visits 2 through 6, we made this a stop for breakfast at least once. Since then, however, we haven’t come back, and what’s shocking is it really wasn’t anything they did wrong. For those of you wondering what’s wrong with us, I will try to explain this away the best I can. Maybe you will agree, or maybe you’ll just tell me it’s about time I went back. Well, here goes with my 5 reasons we’ve been missing in action from this legendary pancake house.

1. Competition

This is easily the biggest reason for us avoiding Pancake Pantry in Gatlinburg for this long. Starting with a visit to Crockett’s Breakfast Camp not long after they opened, it’s been tough sledding for this proud pancake place in regards to our interests. Since then, we’ve also rediscovered Log Cabin Pancake House, and made our first visit to Little House of Pancakes last year—a glowing recommendation followed. Throw in The incomparable Donut Friar, and you have a crowded field and just not enough mornings.

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Butterscotch Pancakes from Log Cabin Pancake House
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The Donut Friar CANNOT be skipped!

2. Prioritizing Healthy Eating

It’s taken me way too long to make this adjustment, but there have been a few life events that have lead me down this path. You see, I’ve all but given up pancakes—at least ordering them all for myself. I’m finding out there is actually more than I originally thought that I could eat in Gatlinburg without giving in to gluttonous delights, which is still difficult at times. I know there are other options at Pancake Pantry that are worthy of my attention, but pancakes are what made them famous, so I feel I’m missing out on the best they have to offer.

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A quick salad for lunch makes me just as happy sometimes. This is from Old Dad’s General Store.

3. Prices

Sometimes it’s just not worth it to shell out extra dollars when you find other places that provide equally great—if not better—food at a higher value. Prices seem to be going up here more so than other restaurants in town. That’s evident even when we come twice a year a see a higher price on each set of delicious pancakes. While it IS vacation, it’s still important that we not spend more than we have to. Plus, we’ve found great meals at the previously mentioned establishments at a better value.

4. Timing

We’ve reduced the amount of times we eat out for breakfast to allow others to sleep in, most notably my wife and son. I like to take advantage of the morning peacefulness that blankets the tourist town while on vacation, so no sleeping in for me:) There’s only so much time (5 mornings to be exact) to do what we want to do, so we’ve reluctantly had to make sacrifices when drawing up our itinerary for vacation.

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I’m ready for my walk!

5. Lack of Huge Morning Appetite

We’ve all never been really big on eating a super big meal to begin the day—although I’ve never had much of a problem in the past. The thought of eating a big breakfast every day in Gatlinburg, even at the Pancake Pantry, doesn’t appeal to us like it once might have. With the exception of our hiking day, it’s not desirable for us to eat a large breakfast anymore, especially since we bring food and snacks with us, not to mention whatever leftovers we bring back to our condo from other delicious dinners in Gatlinburg.

I hope I’ve been able to explain why we haven’t been to Pancake Pantry in Gatlinburg for years now. I think we will return sometime, but it will definitely be tough not indulging in their unbelievably fantastic pancakes. Thanks for reading, and I look forward to giving you more thoughts, tips, and updates regarding Gatlinburg!

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