We always stop at the Horse & Jockey hotel, you can get proper pub grub or sit beside the fire in the cafe/bakery and have a lighter snack. It’s great because it’s pretty much halfway and no more than a minute off motorway.
I turn off before portlaoise for durrow and abbeyleix and stop there for lunch . A couple of nice spots particularly the Gallic kitchen . It is shorter distance wise than the toll road. Takes about 10 mins longer and you save paying the toll. It's also a break from motorway.