The dough is rising at Texas Roadhouse (NASDAQ:TXRH), and I'm not talking about those sweet yeast rolls. Shares of the casual steakhouse chain opened nearly 9% higher this morning after a meaty first-quarter report.

Revenues rose 19% to hit $178.3 million. Margins were kind, with profits soaring 50% to $0.16 per share. Hungry analysts expected earnings to clock in at a leaner $0.14 a share.

Concept popularity remained strong. Comps at company-owned restaurants rose 0.9% for the quarter, stacked atop a huge 6.4% advance a year earlier. There's no looking back, either. Comps for the month of April were up an impressive 3.7%.

Texas isn't just the Lone Star State. Texas Roadhouse is gradually becoming the lone publicly traded casual-dining steakhouse following recent buyout activity in the sector.

  • Lone Star Steakhouse (no relation) went private last year.
  • CBRL Group (NASDAQ:CBRL) sold off its Logan's Roadhouse chain to concentrate on its flagship Cracker Barrel restaurants.
  • Smith & Wollensky (NASDAQ:SWRG) is currently weighing rival buyout offers.
  • OSI Restaurant Partners (NYSE:OSI) is also wrapping up its public tenure.
  • Even the lowly Roadhouse Grill was snapped up last month.

What are we down to on the casual end now? Texas Roadhouse and RARE Hospitality (NASDAQ:RARE)? That's not too shabby.

Texas Roadhouse is committed to its target of 20% bottom-line growth. It's looking to earn at least $0.53 a share this year (so don't get too spoiled with this past quarter's 50% spurt).

The emphasis at the 261-unit chain lately is to open more company-owned restaurants. Yes, they already account for nearly two-thirds of the Texas Roadhouse eateries out there, but the company is generating enough money to go the company-owned route at this point.

Well done, Texas Roadhouse. You'd better be careful, though. If you keep looking this good, you'll probably find your way onto my casual-steakhouse-buyout obituary page.

Outback Steakhouse parent OSI Restaurant Partners is an Inside Value recommendation. Discover all of Philip Durell's top value-stock picks free for 30 days.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is always on the lookout for a good steakhouse; thankfully, Miami has plenty. He does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.