Photography Provided By: James Tran
Photography Provided By: James Tran

Our 22 Favorite Places for Breakfast in San Diego in 2021

The Mimosas, Marys and Maple Syrup Are Calling Your Name!

While we know there’s no shortage of hotspot eateries in San Diego, it’s time to take a look at ones that feature the most important meal of the day: breakfast! Whether you’re into savory bacon and eggs or sweet Belgian waffles, there’s surely something for every breakfaster to enjoy—even those who claim they don’t eat breakfast (crazy, we know). It’s time to wake up and smell the pancakes; these amazing breakfast spots in San Diego are calling your name. And if the food isn’t enough to grab your attention, there are always mimosas! Best Breakfast San Diego

 

Brian’s 24

Must-Order: Chicken and Waffles

Brian’s 24, a newly revamped restaurant in the heart of San Diego’s buzzing Gaslamp Quarter, brings all the brunch favorites with a side of #attitude. After being closed for eight months, this funky, pink-walled restaurant has reopened with a new look and refreshed menu, including novelties like vegan matcha pancakes and much-loved favorites like their chicken and waffles, which come finished with a housemade blackberry drizzle. The bright and trendy decor offers art deco touches with a glimpse into the lobby of the historic St. James Hotel. Belly up to the handcrafted mahogany bar (purchased from Joan Crawford’s estate), and sip on spunky concoctions like the Blue Eyed Baby, made with ceremonial-grade matcha, housemade vanilla syrup and blue spirulina.

Brian’s 24
Location: Gaslamp Quarter
@brians24sd 

Best Breakfast San Diego

Ranch 45

Must-Order: Avocado Toast

Head to Ranch 45 for local farm-to-table bites! A modern take on casual dining, all of the menu items are locally sourced and high-quality—just what we like to hear. Their avocado toast is a fan favorite; it features heirloom tomato relish, lemon zest and sea salt on grilled country levain. Pro tip: add a fried egg to kick it up a notch. The breakfast power bowl with scrambled Eben-Haezar egg whites, quinoa, spinach and seasonal vegetables will leave you fueled and ready to go. As for drinks, you can’t go wrong with the white mocha or raspberry lemonade kombucha.

Ranch 45
Location: Solana Beach
@ranch.45

 

Flap Your Jacks

Must-Order: Leonardo Benedict 

While the tabletop griddles that Flap Your Jacks will grab your attention, there is much more to their menu than the Flip Your Own pancakes! This daytime eatery brings lots of breakfast favorites to North Park, from French toast to huevos rancheros. Try the Leonardo Benedict, which tops toasted whole-wheat bread with poached eggs, mornay sauce, sautéed spinach and green chile-avocado hollandaise, served with breakfast potatoes and a roasted tomato. 

Flap Your Jacks
Location: North Park
@flapyourjacks 

 

Breakfast & Bubbles

Must-Order: Oreo-Stuffed French Toast

Breakfast & Bubbles brings an over-the-top dining experience to Park Blvd with an all-day champagne brunch and lots of pink. Your squad will love the cheeky drink names and photo-worthy presentations, along with the luxurious sweet or savory “towers.” Check out the cinnamon French toast topped with chocolate and ricotta and delight in the whole Oreo hidden inside! If you’re looking for something to put some pep in your step, try the “best part of waking up”—bourbon and bourbon cream with espresso and a coffee cube, topped with a graham cracker rim and roasted marshmallows.

Breakfast & Bubbles
Location: Hillcrest
@breakfastandbubbles 

Best Breakfast San Diego

Cody’s La Jolla

Must-Order: Awesome French Toast

The ocean view at Cody’s La Jolla should be enough to get you up and at ‘em. With more than just comfort food, the menu is chock-full of favorites like the Awesome French Toast with candied walnuts and strawberries. On the savory side, the chilaquiles are also a must-try, all set with tortilla chips, housemade Mexican tomato sauce, medium eggs, black beans, queso fresco and crème fraiche. Yum!

Cody’s La Jolla
Location: La Jolla
@codyslajolla

 

MetlBar Creamery & Café

Must-Order: Vegan Frittata

While MetlBar Creamery & Café is best known for their boozy ice cream, their breakfast menu boasts everything from sinful Southern dishes to vegan and gluten-free options. Sit out on their patio or head inside for a touch of rock ‘n’ roll with your meal. Try the vegan frittata, loaded with veggies and vegan versions of eggs, breakfast sausage and cheese, for the flavor of a traditional breakfast in a plant-based option. 

MetlBar Creamery & Café
Location: North Park
@metlcreamery

Best Breakfast San Diego

Piper at The Seabird Resort

Must-Order: Everything But The Bagel Smoked Salmon Flatbread

Photography Provided By: The Seabird

Piper, located at the all-new Seabird Resort in Oceanside, relies on culinary talent to create farm-fresh plates. Executive Chef Kurtis Habecker curates his menu to reflect the freshest ingredients of the season, sourced from the farmers market and nearby purveyors in North San Diego. Try the flavorful Everything But The Bagel Smoked Salmon Flatbread—it’s salmon (smoked in house) on scratch-made flatbread with cream cheese, smoked onions, capers and dill.

Piper at The Seabird Resort
Location: Oceanside
@piperoceanside

 

Adelaide

Must-Order: The Breakfast Bone Broth

Adelaide offers both unique breakfast dishes as well as the classics, so you can try something new or order an old favorite. Set between the newly renovated lobby area at L’Auberge Del Mar and the Pacific Ocean, the restaurant features beautiful scenery that befits its delicious menu. A twist on a health-centric ingredient, Executive Chef Nick Green’s breakfast bone broth is prepared with lemongrass, turmeric, kombu, coriander and poached egg. The dish offers an innovative take on the way bone broth is traditionally served, combining it with complementary flavor profiles to create a nourishing, one-of-a-kind breakfast dish. 

Adelaide
Location: Del Mar
@laubergedelmar

Farmer’s Table

Must-Order: Short-Rib Benedict 

Farmer’s Table has four locations across San Diego: Bay Park, Chula Vista, La Mesa and Little Italy. At each, you’ll find charming vintage decor (like a 1940s tractor!) and farm-to-fork cuisine. Using a base of family recipes with Sicilian roots, their menus offer fresh flights made with locally sourced ingredients. For breakfast, try the short-rib benedict, featuring tender short rib that is braised for over 12 hours, served with a unique lemongrass polenta.

Farmer’s Table
Locations: Bay Park, Chula Vista, La Mesa, Little Italy
@farmerstablesd 

Best Breakfast San Diego

PB Shore Club

Must-Order: Chorizo Plate

A local beachfront hotspot, PB Shore Club should not be skipped for breakfast (or the view!). Aside from serving all the breakfast classics, you won’t want to miss out on the chorizo plate with Mexican chorizo, scrambled eggs, Spanish rice, beans, mixed cheeses and corn or flour tortillas. Cue stomach grumbling.

PB Shore Club
Location: Pacific Beach
@pbshoreclub

 

Waverly Restaurant & Lounge

Must-Order: Crème Brûlée French Toast 

Waverly, in beautiful Cardiff-by-the-Sea, serves up what they describe as “progressive American cuisine with a European influence.” Chef Brian Redzikowski’s delicious all-day menu shines while the boho-chic design created by Encinitas-based sibling duo, the Sisters of Design 4 Corners, captures the laid-back vibe of Cardiff. For a sweet treat, try the crème brûlée French toast that’s topped with fruit, whipped cream and maple syrup.

Waverly Restaurant & Lounge
Location: Cardiff by-the-Sea
@waverlycardiff 

Best Breakfast San Diego

Breakfast Bitch

Must-Order: Boujee Bitch

Breakfast Bitch is your saucy and sassy brunch spot in Hillcrest, extending into late-night hours on weekends. Choose from “Main Bitch” dishes like croissant-based breakfast sandwiches or “Skinny Bitch” favorites like avocado toast and fruit salad. For an “extra” take on breakfast, try the Boujee Bitch with succulent North Atlantic lobster and a basted egg over a bed of fresh spinach on a flaky croissant, served with a choice of hollandaise or cilantro lime sauce.

Breakfast Bitch
Location: Hillcrest
@breakfastbitch_sd

 

Madison on Park

Must-Order: Waffle Churro Sticks

Madison on Park brings a highly tailored brunch to University Heights with a chic atmosphere and inviting options like white bean shakshuka, skirt steak Benedict and craft cocktails like the orange pineapple kale mimosa. Order the waffle churro sticks for the table—four sticks coated in cinnamon and sugar and served two signature dipping sauces: maple cream cheese and jalapeno blackberry jam. 

Madison on Park
Location: University Heights
@madisononpark 

 

Verbena Kitchen

Must-Order: Verbena Kitchen Chilaquiles

The charming Verbena Kitchen sets the stage with exposed brick and brass fixtures that make it a true North Park gem. Most ingredients are sourced locally from the North Park Farmers’ Market, so you know your food is fresh. Try their unique take on chilaquiles, the sauce made with charred guajillo peppers, emulsified with Oaxaca cheese and finished with a splash of red wine vinegar, cinnamon, cloves and the chef’s secret ingredient: tajin. The chilaquiles are topped with black beans, red onion, cilantro, spicy crema and poached eggs.

Verbena Kitchen
Location: North Park
@verbenakitchensd

Best Breakfast San Diego

Le Papagayo

Must-Order: Breakfast Empanadas

A fixture in North County with locations in Leucadia and Carlsbad, Le Papagayo is known for its live music in addition to their New American lineup of breakfast, lunch and dinner plates. For breakfast, try their housemade breakfast empanadas filled with chorizo, green onion and scrambled eggs, alongside shredded lettuce, cotija cheese and chipotle crema.

Le Papagayo
Locations: Carlsbad, Leucadia
@lepapagayoleucadia

 

Morning Glory

Must-Order: Japanese Soufflé Pancakes

This hip, ‘80s-inspired diner is flamboyant, chic and unapologetic in it’s design. Featuring iridescent windows, glossy blush accents and a pink champagne vending machine, you’ll be hard-pressed to not whip out your phone for a pic. Indulge in the Japanese soufflé pancakes and revel in the glory of this picture-perfect brunch stop.

Morning Glory
Location: Little Italy
@pancakelordssd

 

Atypical Waffle Company

Must-Order: Jam & Brie Waffle

Hey waffle aficionados—this one’s for you. Tucked behind 30th Street Coin Laundry, this laid-back brunch spot whips up a variety of fluffy Belgian waffles, each one filled with one-of-a-kind Belgian pearl sugars. Choose among the jam and brie, cookie butter, veggie melt, parfait and many more! These waffles will blow your mind and your tastebuds.

Atypical Waffle Company
Location: North Park
@atypicalwaffle

Best Breakfast San Diego

Cafe 21

Must-Order: Short Rib Omelet

With a dreamy, urban East Coast atmosphere, Cafe 21 is one of the most innovative restaurants in San Diego. Start off with a sage Paloma, then for the main dish, go for the short rib cast-iron omelet with braised short rib, bell pepper, caramelized onions and blue cheese—that’s only after you’ve snapped a few photos for the ‘Gram first!

Cafe 21
Locations: Gaslamp Quarter, University Heights
@cafe21sandiego

 

The Henry

Must-Order: California Breakfast Bowl 

This neighborhood nook in Coronado is a place where the servers know your order by heart—a place that feels like home. Feast on light bites like the California breakfast bowl or smashed avocado toast, or go big with the caramel apple French toast.

The Henry
Location: Coronado
@thehenryrestaurant

 

The Goods

Must-Order: S’mores Doughnut

Cure your cravings with a selection of artisan doughnuts made from scratch! The Goods offers a yummy selection of fresh-baked goods, including doughnuts like the chocolate ganache, Tahitian vanilla, brown butter, s’mores, strawberry cheesecake and more. Our favorite? The Salted Crunch—a yeast-raised doughnut in a chocolate ganache topped with a chip + pretzel chocolate brittle. Oh yeah, and all of “the goods” are oh so ‘Grammable. Check out @thegoodsdoughnuts to see what goodies they’re baking this week!

The Goods
Location: Carlsbad
@thegoodsdoughnuts

Best Breakfast San Diego

Serẽa Coastal Cuisine

Must-Order: Roasted Vegetable and Ricotta Omelet

Photography Provided By: Serẽa Coastal Cuisine

Located at the stunning Hotel Del Coronado, Serẽa Coastal Cuisine overlooks the sand and sea, offering light breakfast dishes that complement the breezy beach decor. Try the roasted vegetable and ricotta omelet with seasonal produce like summer squash. If you want to offset your healthy omelet with something more decadent, start with the cinnamon and sugar cruffin served with housemade jam and honey butter.

Serẽa
Location: Coronado
@sereasandiego 

 

Richard Walker’s Pancake House

Must Order: The Dutch Baby Pancake

Since 1948, the Walker family name has polished its supreme reputation for delicious pancakes and some of the freshest coffee in Southern California. But aside from their flapjacks and rich, full-bodied brew, this eatery features an extensive menu of decadent breakfast items that are sure to please your palate. From oven-baked omelets and gourmet griddle cakes to Belgian waffles and crafty crêpes, Richard Walker’s is an established breakfast spot for San Diego locals and visitors alike.

Richard Walker’s Pancake House
Locations: Carlsbad, Del Mar, La Jolla, Downtown San Diego
@richardwalkerspancakehouse

Best Breakfast San Diego

About the author

Michelle Stansbury is a San Diego-based freelance writer who writes about travel, food, cocktails, and events. Misuse of the word ""literally"" drives her figuratively insane.

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