The old saying goes that breakfast is the most important dish of the day, so it’s only right to give this mealtime the respect it deserves. Heading out for breakfast always feels like a treat, so why not start your day off on the right foot at one of these delicious breakfast spots in Edinburgh? Our guide below has all sorts of restaurant inspo, ranging from cute cafes to fuss-free greasy spoons.
Why: With a menu that consists of all-day breakfast, brunch and lunch staples, starting your day at Greenwoods seems like a no-brainer. There are plenty of options for those who prefer a savoury start to their day, including eggs royale and a full Scottish breakfast (veggie and vegan versions available too). Sweet-toothed guests meanwhile, can tuck into the likes of homemade chia pudding or toasted banana bread topped with homemade white chocolate mascarpone, fresh fruit and a drizzle of maple syrup.
Where: 61 Frederick Street, EH2 1LH
The Ivy on the Square
Why: Once only found in London’s Covent Garden, world-famous The Ivy now has more than 30 offshoots operating around the UK. The Edinburgh location is found on St Andrew’s Square and serves the group’s famously varied menu. Stop by here at breakfast time to enjoy the decadent likes of a full Scottish (bacon, sausage, eggs, black pudding, haggis, tomatoes, mushroom, baked beans and potato scone) or stick to the lighter options, such as dairy-free coconut yoghurt topped with berries.
Where: 6 St. Andrew Square, EH2 2BD
Why: The most famous item on the breakfast menu at Dishoom is undoubtedly its signature bacon-stuffed naan which is finished off with a slick of chilli tomato jam (a double-stuffed version is available for a small extra cost). There’s more to breakfast here than just naans though, with other top shouts including a three-egg ‘Parsi’ omelette that is filled with chopped tomato, onion, coriander and green chilli, and spiced chicken livers on toast.
Where: 3a St. Andrew Square, EH2 2BD
What: With two locations in the city, Loudon’s is a firm favourite amongst Edinburgh’s foodies. The restaurant serves a wide-ranging breakfast menu which features everything from poached eggs and avocado on homemade raisin soda bread, to American-style pancakes layered with bacon and baked banana, and drizzled with maple syrup. There are vegan options too, including a vegan take on eggs Benedict, all served alongside tea, coffee and freshly squeezed orange juice.
Where: 94B Fountainbridge, EH3 9QA; 2 Sibbald Walk, New Waverley, EH8 8FT
What: Open for breakfast (and brunch) seven days a week, Urban Angel is a popular spot to start your day. The menu sticks to the classics, so that means you can expect to see the likes of French toast topped with bacon and maple syrup, avocado on sourdough toast, and organic porridge with plum compote, yoghurt and seed crumble. On the drinks side of things, we’d recommend trying Urban Angel’s Super Mango smoothie which blends spinach, mango, coconut water and spirulina.
Where: 121 Hanover Street, EH2 1DJ
The Scran & Scallie
What: This gastropub may be the brainchild of Michelin-starred chef Tom Kitchin, but breakfast here isn’t served with any unnecessary airs and graces. Head to The Scran & Scallie to tuck into dishes such as eggs royale, drop scones or yoghurt and granola. Wash it all down with grapefruit or orange juice, or give yourself a much-needed bout of energy with one of Scran & Scallie’s coffees, made with 100 per cent Arabica beans.
Where: 1 Comely Bank Road, EH4 1DT
Blue Bear Café
What: Accessible to both kids and well-behaved dogs, Blue Bear Cafe is a great shout for breakfast with the whole family. The breakfast menu is a catch-all affair which ranges from savoury croissants filled with ham and cheese, to a breakfast burrito stuffed with scrambled eggs, peppers and onions. To pair with your food, you can indulge in a Bloody Mary or Breakfast Martini, while those looking to be sensible can opt for coffee and fresh juices.
Where: 9 Brandon Terrace, EH3 5EA
What: With four locations currently operating across Edinburgh, Milk serves a succinct breakfast menu which mixes the classics with the novel. If you’re looking to try something different, go for the mushroom and rosemary burrito or the vegan fried breakfast, while sticklers for tradition can tuck into eggs any style or a bacon and cheese sarnie. There’s also every type of tea and coffee available to help wash it all down, including the option to have plant-based milk.
Where: 232 Morrison Street, EH3 8EA; 21 Hawthornvale, EH6 4JT; 45 Market Street, EH1 1DF; Inverleith Park, EH3 5NZ
What: Roseleaf may be best known for its ‘pot-tails’ (cocktails served in teapots), but we’d also recommend stopping by here in the morning. To kick start your day, tuck into one of Roseleaf’s range of eggs Benedicts, which can be paired with everything from black pudding to spinach. Roseleaf is also good for anyone looking to enjoy breakfast in a venue with a difference, thanks to its Instagram-friendly interiors which include a collection of vintage furniture and lots of other random knick-knacks.
Where: 23-24 Sandport Place, EH6 6EW
What: Small and with no fuss, Papii is a very popular spot in the city, so you’ll have to make sure you get their early to secure a table. Although there’s no fried breakfast to be found here, there are plenty of other options to satisfy you, including the likes of filled breakfast rolls, paninis and bagels, as well as eggs any way you like. The main attractions though, are Papii’s indulgent buttermilk vanilla waffles and the smoothies which are made from fresh fruit.
Where: 101 Hanover Street, EH2 1DJ
What: With two locations in the city (one in the old town and one in the new) Snax Café is loved by locals for its no-nonsense approach to breakfast. Forget avocado on toast or super smoothies here, as you’ll instead be greeted by the fuss-free likes of breakfast rolls and baguettes filled with egg, sausage or black pudding. Those in need of some hangover-curing grease can opt for the hearty fry ups or even a pulled pork burger served with chips.
Where: 118 Buccleuch Street, EH8 9NQ; 15 W Register Street, EH2 2AA
What: Boasting four locations around the city, Mimi’s Bakehouse is a hit with young families and sweet-toothed locals. Mimi’s is best known for its selection of pastries and cakes, but its breakfast menu is not to be sniffed at. Swing by here in the AM to tuck into the likes of halloumi and avocado on toast, French toast topped with crème fraiche, and crunchy granola mixed with Greek yoghurt, honey and berries.
Where: 63 Shore, EH6 6RA; 277 St John's Road, EH12 7XD; 1 Market Street, EH1 1DE; 250 Canongate, EH8 8AA
What: This barbecue spot is a great shout for those looking for a hearty breakfast. Go big with the steak and eggs or the sausage, cheese and egg bap, while fans of US-style breakfasts can try the homemade waffles. Stacks of waffles here come topped with the savoury likes of buttermilk chicken and Canadian bacon, while sweet-toothed diners can instead choose a sweet waffle crowned with vanilla ice cream and lashings of Nutella.
Where: 53-55 Broughton Street, EH1 3RJ
The Little Chartroom
What: Looking for a Sunday breakfast to end your weekend on a high note? Head to this charming bistro, where you’ll find a short but considered breakfast menu. Try The Little Chartroom’s beef bavette crumpets which arrive topped with caramelised onions and poached egg, or go for the smoked fish and mussel kedgeree. Prefer a sweeter start to your day? Make sure to try one of The Little Chartroom's homemade doughnuts.
Where: 30-31 Albert Place, EH7 5HN
What: This bakery and café boasts three sites across Edinburgh (two in Leith and one in the seaside area of Portobello), and is best known for its breads and pastries. Made by a team of in-house bakers, morning pick-me-ups here include blackberry and pistachio croissants, raspberry bakewell bars and cinnamon buns. There are vegan options available too, all of which can be enjoyed alongside coffees and fresh juices.
Where: 148 Duke Street, EH6 8HU
If you’re trying out Edinburgh’s restaurant scene with a large group, why not book a private room? You’ll have plenty of venue inspiration, thanks to our guide to private dining in Edinburgh.