Skip to main content

5 Examples of Classic Diner Food

Diner food has a long history of being hot, delicious, and heartwarming. Ever since the original “diner cars” sprung up in big cities, Americans have flocked to diners for dependably flavorful, filling meals.

But, of all the classic diner food, what are people’s top picks? What are the truest, tastiest examples of this historically American cuisine?

Depending on who you ask, you’ll get a different top five. Here are Metro Diner’s humble suggestions for your review.

Examples of Classic Diner Food

The Hamburger

The American hamburger is practically synonymous with the diner experience and has been for many generations. For example, you can see diner burgers depicted in the earliest black-and-white Popeye cartoons from the 1930s.

Traditional diners are centered around a flattop grill, and the delicious hamburger is still one of the most satisfying creations of that era. Metro Diner’s aptly named classic burger is cooked to order with 100% Angus beef, cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato and red onions and served with a pickle and fries. Dig in and enjoy this top-notch diner food option!

The Club Sandwich

With fresh ingredients balanced perfectly and stacked high, the club sandwich is an icon of diner culture. The Metro Club is our faithful take on this favorite, with a meaty trio of ham, turkey and bacon layered with Swiss, cheddar, lettuce and tomato. It’s paired with fries and delectable to the last bite.

Closely related to the club is the even simpler bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich. This flavor combination is so well-known, its acronym is universally recognized. Whenever you’re craving diner fare, our double decker BLT is equally happy in the spotlight.


With roots in Germany, meatloaf was once made with pork and veal. In American diner food, however, meatloaf is typically ground beef and onions — two flavors that come out beautifully when blended and baked.

Our Iron City meatloaf is a Metro Diner fan favorite, and for good reason. This wonderfully hearty recipe contains both beef and pork with onions. Uniquely, we slice and griddle-sear our meat loaf before smothering it with gravy. Mashed potatoes and steamed green beans round out this wholesome, filling dish.

Egg Breakfast

From the beginning of diner culture, breakfast has consisted of two eggs, buttered toast, your choice of meat and some fried potatoes. Pair this with coffee and a stack of pancakes, and the scene is set for ideal morning sustenance.

Metro Diner’s Bissell breakfast will always set your morning right. Our version of the traditional egg breakfast goes the extra mile to stand apart. Cooked your way, the eggs go perfectly with your choice of bacon, sausage patties, sausage links, turkey sausage or Canadian bacon — plus toast, hashbrowns, and pancakes.

Steak Tips

This is a New England staple. Flavorfully seasoned sirloin steak tips and mushrooms are marinated, then smothered in a rich brown gravy. Mashed potatoes and green beans provide a contrast in texture, taste, and color.

When you try Metro Diner’s steak tips meal, you won’t walk away hungry. Our hearty portion and perfect blend of flavors are a delicious homage to this quintessential comfort food.

But Wait… There’s More

You might not see your top choices of diner food on this short list, but don’t worry! Thankfully, Metro Diner has many diner dishes covered — with every recipe cooked to satisfy.

Metro Diner always leaves you feeling nice and full, so we’re going to go a little beyond five examples. Here are a few more menu items you won’t want to miss on your next visit:

Enjoy Diner Food Cooked Fresh for You

We hope this quick trip down memory lane reminded you of a dish you once loved … or have always wanted to taste.

If you’re undecided about your favorite, our recommendation is simple: find a Metro Diner location near you and look at the menu. You’ll also see what other people have ordered, which may help you decide.

Whatever dish you order, you’ll agree that diner food is alive and well in 2024.


Be the first to know about specials and promotions, and get exclusive access to members-only offers and events.

  • In signing up, I acknowledge that I am 18 years of age or older, want to receive email offers from Metro Diner and agree to the terms and conditions. *Offer sent via email to new e-club members and valid for 30 days from sign up. Offer not valid with any other offers, promotions or discounts.

In signing up, I acknowledge that I am 18 years of age or older, want to receive email offers from Metro Diner and agree to the terms and conditions. *Offer sent via email to new e-club members and valid for 30 days from sign up.