Not Just Pies

Over the past couple of years, the City of McAllen has seen its fair share of growth. One area in particular would be the corner of Dove and McColl where Doctors Hospital at Renaissance is located. Local eateries around the area have been benefiting because of this growth. One eatery in particular is PJ Pies. I’d heard great things about this place and finally decided to try it myself for lunch.
Small eateries such as this can get lost in the crowd with the high volume traffic around the area, but if good food is what you’re looking for, then PJ Pies does not disappoint. A place known for their popular selection of pies was surely a place I was eager to try.
Even with the busy intersection at the corner, PJ Pies is not hard to find. Parking is limited, but there’s plenty of space outside and inside for anyone. They have an outdoor patio for customers wanting to enjoy their food during a nice day. Walk in and you get a feel of the cozy atmosphere, and looking at those delicious pies opened my appetite. The inside has two seating areas with a small section where you order and another in the back for bigger parties. As soon as I walked in, a friendly and welcoming staff greeted me. I was also asked if it was my first time at PJ and if I needed help with the menu. I asked what they recommended for lunch and they geared me toward their selection of sandwiches.
Upon their recommendation, I ordered the PJ’s Fave sandwich. This sandwich comes with turkey, lettuce, tomato and pepper jack cheese on grilled wheat. You also have the option to order the sandwich by itself or with a combo that comes with a ½ sandwich and the choice of a soup or salad. I went for the combo and combined my sandwich with a cup of broccoli and cheese soup. The soup was creamy and warm, perfect for a chilly day. The sandwich did not disappoint either. It had the perfect amount of turkey and was seasoned to perfection. It was well worth savoring every bite.
My other order was also a ½ sandwich, but with a side salad. I needed help choosing this one and asked which sandwich was popular. The Bear was their suggestion. Before diving into the entrée, I enjoyed the fresh side salad, which came with cheese, tomato and croutons.
The bear is a creative combination of roast beef, lettuce, tomato and Dijon mustard on sourdough. I then added avocado with bacon upon their suggestion. This, by far, has been one of the best sandwiches I’ve ever had. It had me at the first bite. The first thing that my taste buds got a hold of was the creamy Dijon mustard. The tender roast beef and provolone made for a perfect combination.
The added bacon and avocado gives you the satisfaction one would want when biting into a sandwich. Believe me, this is what you’re looking for in this type of meal. You almost want to eat it as slow as possible to savor every different taste that comes with it. All of those ingredients along with the perfectly toasted sourdough made for one good sandwich.
If what you’re looking for is a cozy atmosphere accompanied by mouthwatering food, then PJ Pies should be at the top of your list. This eatery will definitely be a new go-to place for me at lunchtime.

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A Valley man to the core, I was born and raised in a small town near Rio Grande City. I obtained my Bachelors of Science in Dietetics from UTPA and am now a Registered Dietitian in the RGV working to change the public’s perception of preventative healthcare and healthy living. Health and fitness have always been my passion. Though the popular route to take in this field of health is physical fitness, I went for the nutrition route. Deciding to do so was easy for me. I believe that when it comes to getting healthier or losing weight, nutrition makes up 80% of the health goals while fitness makes up just 20%. Though the majority of my peers went on to become personal trainers or fitness specialists, I took the longer and more important route: nutrition.