You’re reading The Ultimate London Breakfast Bucket List.
Congratulations – you’ve made the first step towards eating the best eggs and bacon that London has to offer! We thought breakfast deserved a little bit of love, particularly since brunch has kind of taken over the show. After all, breakfast is, as our mums and teachers always taught us, the most important meal of the day…
1. Sweet Potato Fritters at Brother Marcus
Brother Marcus‘ breakfast is out of this world. Their menu is filled with weird and wonderful things, but the star of the show is surely what was formerly known as the Step Sister, now called simply ‘Sweet Potato Fritters’: a tasty tower of gluten free sweet potato, courgette and feta fritters served with avocado, crispy kale, turmeric yoghurt and a poached egg. Not only is it mind-blowingly toothsome, but it’s also incredibly ‘grammable – much like the restaurant itself. You should also try the Marcus Breakfast or the Veggie Marcus.
📍 Angel, Balham and Spitalfields
2. Hawksmoor Breakfast at Hawksmoor (currently not available, but set to return soon!)
Serving anything in a skillet pan and offering the option of grilled bone marrow (don’t knock it till you’ve tried it) screams splendour, but the food at Hawksmoor is also well sourced and great-tasting. Already hailed (by us) as one of the best fry ups in town, their breakfast for two includes smoked bacon chop, short rib bubble and squeak, meaty grilled bone marrow, trotter baked beans and trademark HP gravy. It’s the mightiest, meatiest brekky there is.
📍 Various locations
3. The Ostrich Egg at Florentine Restaurant (seasonal availability)
At the Florentine Restaurant in Waterloo, customers can order a sizzling, shareable brekkie where an enormous ostrich egg takes pride of place. So enormous that it’s said to be the size of twenty-two regular chicken eggs! On the side, you’ll get all the usual trimmings: portobello mushrooms, roasted tomatoes, streaky bacon, Cumberland sausages and baked beans. Note that it’s only available during ostrich breeding season, so you should check their website for availability before booking.
📍 6 Hercules Road, Lambeth, SE1 7DU
4. A Full English at The Regency Café
The Regency Café opened way back in 1946 and continues to serve proper British grub to this day. The interior is very unpretentious, with basic art deco features and pictures of Tottenham Hotspur players on the walls (sorry Arsenal). What it lacks in fanciful design it sure makes up for with the food. The fry up is a total bargain at £6, with the option to add extras (e.g. bubble and squeak, hash browns, black pudding) for an extra £1. You may have also spotted the café in various films and TV shows, including Layer Cake in 2004.
📍 17-19 Regency Street, SW1P 4BY
5. Bacon Naan at Dishoom
We’ve raved about this one a few times and, trust me, there’s a reason for it. Light puffy naan bread surrounds layers of crispy sugar-cured bacon, melted cream cheese, coriander and chilli tomato jam. The Dishoom bacon naan laughs in the face of the British bacon buttie. In fact, we’d go as far as saying you can’t call yourself a Londoner until you’ve tried one.
Alternatively, opt for the Full, erm, Indian. The Big Bombay Breakfast includes akuri (spicy scrambled eggs), char-striped smoked streaky bacon, peppery Shropshire pork bangers, masala baked beans, grilled tomato and mushroom, and buttered pau buns. Match it with a lassi or a breakfast cocktail and you’ll be set for the day.
📍 Various locations
6. Eggs Benedict at The Wolseley
Don’t be put off by the celebrity clientele; you don’t have to be rolling in it to breakfast like a king at The Wolseley. The restaurant is famous for having the best Eggs Ben in London and, at £9.75 a plate, it’s hardly got a Mayfair price tag.
📍 160 Piccadilly, W1J 9EB
7. Sweet Potato Rosti at Eggbreak
Guess what? There’s eggs on the menu at Eggbreak. And when we say eggs, we don’t just mean the ‘done any way’ kind. We mean done every way: ways that you didn’t even know were possible. Try the Sweet Potato with goat’s cheese, honey, kale, pine nuts, dill yoghurt and poached egg if you’re after something different and downright delicious, or opt for their Burrata & Truffle Scrambled Eggs. It really is an eggcellent place to start the day.
📍 30 Uxbridge Street, W8 7TA
8. The Full English at Terry’s Café
Terry’s Café is family run and the food is all top quality and locally sourced. The meats they use are from Smithfield Market – where Terry worked before opening the café – and their fresh produce comes from Borough Market. They stick to a traditional breakfast of sausage, egg, bacon, bubble and squeak, black pudding, beans, tomatoes and mushrooms. It’s a damn good breakfast.
📍 158 Great Suffolk Street, SE1 1PE
9. Baked Eggs at Caravan
No breakfast round-up is complete without a mention of Caravan and their baked eggs with spiced tomato, pepper and chickpea ragu, rose harissa, greek yoghurt, flatbread and parsley. It’s easily one of our favourite places for early morning feasting. If you haven’t been here yet, you seriously need to ask yourself what you’ve been doing with your Sunday mornings.
📍 Various locations
10. Ricotta Hotcakes at Granger & Co.
Granger and Co. make their ricotta hotcakes (that’s pancakes to you and I) thick and fluffy, with a texture as light as heavenly clouds. They’re served with banana and honeycomb butter, giving you just the right amount of sugary sweet energy to start your day.
📍 Various locations
11. Duck & Waffle at Duck & Waffle
If you’ve not yet made your way up the Heron Tower for brekky, you must get Duck & Waffle‘s signature dish when you do. The combination of crispy confit of duck leg and a fried duck egg, both served on a crisp yet fluffy waffle, is surprisingly delightful. It’s topped with a tangy mustardy maple syrup for the perfect amount of sweetness alongside the savoury. It’s not the cheapest of breakfasts, but for £20 you also get an unbeatable view of the capital.
📍 110 Bishopsgate, EC2N 4AY
12. Breakfast en Bread at The Barge House (temporarily closed)
Head to The Barge House over the weekend for their signature Breakfast en Bread. They hollow out an artisan sourdough loaf and fill the void with all your favourite breakfast foods: opt for the ‘Original’ with smokey bacon, slow-roasted tomato, leeks, oyster mushrooms, spinach, egg and cheese; the ‘Smokey Salmon’ with smoked salmon, crème fraiche, spinach, slow-roasted tomato, leeks, egg and cheese; or the ‘Hot Stuff’ with chorizo, hot beans, red peppers, chilli, spinach, egg and cheese. There are also some delicious options for vegans and vegetarians. Pair one of these with a Bloody Mary or a freshly squeezed juice and you’ve got yourself a true breakfast of champions.
📍 46a De Beauvoir Crescent, N1 5RY
13. Baked Eggs at Ask For Janice (temporarily closed)
The breakfast menu at Ask for Janice has everything you could ever want: from sweet to savoury, hot to cold. We’d recommend the baked eggs with merguez sausage, roasted peppers and yoghurt – it’s their best dish, IOO. It’s open from 8am, and is the perfect place to start your day. Not to mention the gorgeous interiors and the cracking coffee from Coleman Coffee.
📍 50-52 Long Lane, EC1A 9EJ
14. Berry Pancakes at The Breakfast Club
The Breakfast Club is loved by many, and for good reason. Their piled-high pancake stacks, topped with lick-your-plate-clean maple syrup and vanilla cream should definitely be on your breakfast bucket list. However, if you want to avoid the queues, it’s probably best to find a time during the working week to go. Nothing’s worth getting hangry about.
📍 Various locations
15. Dutch Babies at Where The Pancakes Are
The Dutch babies from Where The Pancakes Are come in a sweet and savoury variety: The ‘Apples & almonds’ Dutch babies come with native apple varieties, almond paste, fresh berries, almond flakes, plus house cream or vanilla ice cream, and the savoury version ‘Montgomery cheddar & goats cheese’ is filled with cheddar and goats cheese, roast thyme & rosemary, radiccio & greens, and a balsamic dressing.
📍 Fitzrovia and Flat Iron Square
Are you more of a brunch person? Then you must try one of these 54 brilliantly boozy bottomless brunches in London.
Also published on Medium.