A malfunctioning buffet heater started a fire inside the Golden Corral in north Lincoln, according to Lincoln Fire and Rescue.
Fire crews were called the restaurant just before 5:00 a.m. Thursday.
LFR Battalion Chief Jeremy Gegg said firefighters had the fire out within ten minutes of arriving on scene with help from an overhead sprinkler that helped contained the flames.
The fire caused about $50,000 in damage.
Gegg said the store will be closed until further notice.
Golden Corral is near 27th and Old Dairy in north Lincoln. The morning commute may be slow in that area.