American writer and journalist John Gunther said, "All happiness depends on a leisurely breakfast." And for those of us who wake up dreaming of griddled goodness like crispy strips of bacon or a perfectly poached egg, we couldn't agree more.
That's why we've put together a list of our top ten spots in greater Phoenix to order up the most important meal of the day. These are the day-in and day-out spots (weekend brunches to come later, because lists), so grab that cup of Joe and settle in for some tasty a.m. eats.
Nested into a small house with a courtyard and off the beaten path in downtown Chandler, this cheery breakfast and lunch spot hits the morning mark with familiar dishes like breakfast sandwiches, burritos, omelets, and skillet creations. Try the homemade cheddar biscuit and gravy or the "Mornin Monte," with egg whites, turkey, bacon, and Havarti cheese served on Hawaiian French toast with a spicy marmalade.
This sweet and simple breakfast, lunch, and dinner spot tucked into a strip mall in north Phoenix features favorites made with natural and organic ingredients and plenty of options for vegetarians and those eating gluten-free. Start with an organic mimosa or Bloody Mary, then move on to Belgian waffles smothered in bananas foster, strawberry cheesecake, or candied walnuts, addictive sweet potato tots, or a standout Hawaiian breakfast with smoked kalua pork.
Chef Elizabeth Meinz dishes up top-notch a.m. faves at this cheerful neighborhood spot practically hidden away in the Scottsdale Civic Center Plaza. Don't miss standouts like the jalapeño and pecan pancakes, bananas Foster French toast, and red flannel hash with corned beef, roasted beets, and potatoes. Along with caffeinated specialties, like an amazing Mexican chocolate latte, there's also a selection of boozy breakfast cocktails.
From restaurateur Joe Johnston (Joe's Real BBQ, Joe's Farm Grill), this breakfast, lunch, and dinner spot in Gilbert combines vintage Americana with an urban vibe. The casual breakfast menu includes hearty dishes like fresh pastries, griddled bread pudding with espresso syrup, and for a unique bacon substitute, grilled flattened meatballs. Don't miss coffee creations like the cortadito, a "Cuban micro-latte," and weekly a.m. specials.
This fun, family-owned healthy eating spot in Ahwatukee offers an all-vegetarian and "very vegan" menu with gluten-free and raw options as well. Open for breakfast all day, dishes include French toast topped with vegan whipped cream, a breakfast burrito with egg or tofu, or the tasty Lumberjack Sandwich with egg or tofu, tempeh bacon, tomato, avocado, and cheddar or vegan cheese on Kamut bread.
Aside from a few lunch items, this bright, contemporary spot in north Phoenix is all breakfast, all the time, with dishes ordered up at the counter. The a.m. fare includes omelets, homemade cinnamon rolls, and a selection of "Brizzas" (breakfast pizzas), with "French French Toast" dipped in custard and a spicy Sante Fe eggs Benedict with jalapeño corn bread leading the bunch. Vegan options are also available.
Located at the Farm at South Mountain, this pretty and pleasing outdoor eatery is all about breakfast. Check out top-notch seasonal omelets, house-baked muffins and pastries, and locally made sausages, or sidle up to the sweet stuff like buttery French toast, Belgian waffles, and the syrup-drenched Monte Cristo sandwich. (Note the restaurant's special hours for the summer.)
This cheerful, family-owned breakfast and lunch spot in a strip mall off Greenway Parkway features homemade staples of solid American favorites with a few unique twists. You could start and stop with the light and delicately sweet pancakes with a whisper of vanilla (some of the best in the Valley) or hit up other a.m. favorites like homemade corned beef, the Fancy Pants Scramble, and potato pancakes with applesauce, sour cream, or a little of both.
This small, unassuming Central Phoenix restaurant has developed a reputation as a neighborhood hangout. And its mostly Mexican clientele appreciates the affordable, authentic food of the country plus a few good ol' American classics -- especially for breakfast. Along with pancakes, bacon, and eggs try Mexican favorites like chilaquiles, huevos rancheros, eggs alongside nopales or machaca or scrambled with serrano chili, tomato, and onion.
Sure, this small, Central Phoenix breakfast nook regularly has lines out the door, but once inside, owner Matt Poole's house of homemade breakfast dishes made with top-notch ingredients satisfies. Along with the day's specials scribbled on a chalkboard behind the counter, there's fluffy, from-scratch pancakes, a heaping plate of Hog & Chick, and (of course) fresh-squeezed orange juice to sip while you gaze out the window and watch the rest of the suckers still waiting to get a table.
This adorable little eatery in the Coronado neighborhood serving breakfast, lunch, and evening nibbles opened in April, right next door to its sister restaurant, the Tuck Shop. The morning menu brings a tidy selection of breakfast offerings, including Biscuits & Grillades (Southern beef gravy over buttermilk biscuits), Red Flannel Hash (beet, potato, and root vegetables with egg), and Apple Boxty (grated apple and potato pancakes with a dollop of mascarpone). Delicious.
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After a fire closed down this popular, small-town-feel chow house in east Phoenix in 2010, fans had to wait nearly a year-and-a-half before the rebuilt restaurant opened its doors again this April. Now, folks are returning to order up their favorite breakfast fare, served all day, like heapin' helpins' of Southwestern country fried steak smothered in a dreamy spicy pork chili verde, huevos rancheros, and giant biscuits with sausage gravy.
All our favorites lists also are available on our Best Of app -- see it in action here.
And check out our other lists: 10 Favorite Spots for Crepes in Greater Phoenix 11 Favorite Phoenix Beers 10 Favorite Spots for Seafood in Greater Phoenix 10 Favorite Gelato Spots 10 Favorite Burrito Joints in Metro Phoenix 10 Favorite Spots for Wings in Metro Phoenix 11 Things to Eat and Drink Before You Leave Phoenix Ten Favorite Phoenix Hot Sauces and Salsas Top Ten Spots for Mac 'n' Cheese in the Valley Three Favorite Espresso Shots in Metro Phoenix Ten Favorite Metro Phoenix Farmers' Markets Ten Favorite Metro Phoenix Grilled Cheese Sandwiches Eleven Favorite Favorite Places for Sushi in the Valley Ten Favorite Metro Phoenix Cupcakes Eleven Favorite Barbecue Joints in Greater Phoenix Ten Favorite Metro Phoenix Wine Bars Ten Favorite Phoenix Irish Restaurant & Pubs Six Favorite Specialty Cocktails in Phoenix Ten Favorite Metro Phoenix Craft Beer Bars Ten Favorite Gourmet Pizza Shops in the Valley Five Favorite Japanese Restaurants in Phoenix Ten Favorite Margaritas in Metro Phoenix Ten Favorite Coffee Shops in Phoenix Five Favorite Thai Restaurants in Metro Phoenix Eleven Favorite Ice Cream Shops in Greater Phoenix Ten Favorite Phoenix Happy Hours Five Favorite Sonoran Dogs in the Valley Ten Favorite Hot Dogs in Greater Phoenix Ten Favorite Desserts in Phoenix Ten Favorite First Date Restaurants Ten Favorite Burgers in Greater Phoenix Ten Favorite Downtown Phoenix Restaurants for Late Night Dining Ten Favorite Vegetarian Entrees in Metro Phoenix Ten Favorite Chinese Restaurants in Greater Phoenix