Cheeseburger and fries are just a starting point for fast food restaurants as they update their menus in an attempt to satisfy the needs of their customers. 2011 will mark a year of more grease, more variety and slightly higher prices as well. And breakfast seems to be the latest area where restaurants are expanding.

Some of the companies new breakfast menu items:

-Dunkin’ Donuts is launching Pancake Bites, bite-sized sausage links wrapped in a maple-flavored pancake.

-Burger King will offer the Ultimate Breakfast Platter, which includes scrambled eggs, hash browns, sausage, a flaky biscuit and three pancakes with syrup.

-New items for Taco Bell include a double ham and cheddar melt, a sausage skillet burrito and items created with partner brands such as Cinnabon.

But the expanded menus in 2011 will also bring about higher prices. Leslie Kerr, an analyst with the market research firm Intellaprice, said that more chains will raise prices, partly to offset their costs and partly because an improving economy means they can.

“We typically see at least a few percentage points of price increase,” she said. “And we can expect the same in 2011.”

Many fast-casual restaurants have already begun to raise prices and some fast-food joints are doing the same.

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Photo Credit: By ebru (Flickr: fast food is the best!) [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons