Instead of settling for burnt toast or microwaved porridge, launch yourself into post-dawn endeavours that won't leave you disappointed.
We've lined up the best spots for breakfast in Brisbane right now (after much deliberation and arguing in the office). By no means is this list exhaustive—if you want more, you can check out our list of the 50 best cafes in Brisbane.
Petrichor & Co
If you’ve never sampled a Colombian or Latin American-style brunch, then you need to head to Petrichor & Co. These guys dish up epic feasts inspired by the flavours of South America—think empanadas de Mama with spiced pulled beef, garlic, onion and potato empanadas served with aji. Of course, you can still get more familiar feeds, including spiced pumpkin pancakes, corn and zucchini fritters and avocado on sourdough.
They’ll take care of you in the morning and well into the afternoon. A typical brunch date at Morning After usually includes their iconic breakfast carbonara (pasta for brunch is always a good time, trust us) and a fancy-ass MaMuffin from the all-day menu, or maybe a panko prawn roll with chips for more of a brunch feast. Their cabinet of sweets always provides the temptation for breakfast dessert, too.
With a whole new menu every season, Miss Jones just keeps us coming back again and again and again (and again). Take a seat in their cute, pastel interiors and feast your eyes on their epic hotcakes, loaded smashed avo and stacked brekky burgers—and keep an eye out for their weekly specials too.
Cafe O Mai
For something a bit further afield than your stock-standard bacon and eggs, Cafe O Mai's incredible Vietnamese flavours can't be skipped. Start your day with fragrant pho (even the vegan option is good), wholesome eggs baked in clay pots, and banh mis served on house-baked baguette. Wash it all down with a Vietnamese coffee for a sugar hit to start the day.
They may be tucked away in a random cross street in the Valley, but Halo Ground is worth hunting down a parking spot for. This unassuming cafe dishes up seriously epic feeds, from their infamous cock waffle, a bougie twist on the classic chicken and waffles. If the weekend crowds are anything to go by, they’re doing something very right.
Woollongabba fave Pawpaw knows a thing or two about putting on a killer breakfast in a stylish space. Our go-to dishes include the croissant eggs benedict, piling bacon and hollandaise sauce on a flaky croissant, or whatever insane sweet brekky they've cooked up for the season—this season a favourite is definitely the kalamansi meringue pancake with pistachio crumble, Earl Grey ice cream, strawberries, and kalamansi and elderflower cremeux.
No need to trudge halfway to the city for breakfast, there’s plenty of tastiness on offer out in the ‘burbs, especially in the bay. Banter’s weekly specials honestly have us travelling the other way—we’d go out of our way for their inventive feeds any day of the week. But even their regular menu is delish—strawberry shortcake French toast? Chicken katsu benedict? Yes to all of the above.
Managing to give off serious country barn vibes despite being located in a quiet suburban street in Kedron, Farmhouse usually has a line snaking down the street on Sunday mornings—but if you can hang in there, it’s worth the wait. Maintain your position and be rewarded with breakfast gnocchi in chilli sauce with thick-cut bacon, parmesan and free-range poached egg or their iconic one pan ricotta hotcake.
A familiar favourite, My Mistress has been going strong in Albion for over six years now, dishing up their tongue in cheek breakfasts to the masses on a weekly basis. Personally, we’re big fans of the ‘Oh My Geisha,’ a Japanese-style okonomiyaki pancake topped with a fried egg, but you might prefer the ‘Rendezvous,’ a classic smashed avo on sourdough with labneh, dukkah, beetroot hummus and grilled halloumi.
This relaxed cafe in an old Queenslander cottage does breakfasts with a difference—they make all their preserves, pickles, ferments and condiments in house, and use them to full advantage in every dish. Drop in for bunch and you can tuck into the likes of their mussels on toast with pickled mussles, almond cream, piquillo peppers, parsley, lardo all atop toasted sourdough.
Yeerongpilly, Yeronga and Fortitude Valley
You've probably seen their creations on Insta, but Andonis ticks all the boxes for a killer start to your day, whether you're team deep-fried or lean and green. Options range from the loaded croissant packed with bacon, chorizo, poached eggs, hash browns, halloumi, rocket and truffle mayo to a granola bowl with coconut yoghurt, vegan granola, seasonal fruit and mango coulis. Get you a cafe that can do it all.
One quick scroll through Smoked Paprika’s Instagram feed and you’ll be drooling excessively, already planning your visit for their next weekly special. Last week it was a mac ‘n’ cheese scotch egg, next week, who knows? Their regular menu is pretty damn tasty too, and with their portion sizes you’ll be full until dinner.
If you eat with your eyes, then this one's for you: Willow Cafe's menu is presented pretty as a picture and ready for your Insta, and tastes incredible too. Start your day with eggs Benny on a grilled cheese, Turkish creme brulee, with fig, labneh, pashmak and pistachio, or a Singapore chilli crab omelette. Whatever you choose, prepare to be raving about it for weeks afterwards.
West End Coffee House
You know a breakfast is going to be exciting when the cuisine is unique in its own regard. One of the handful of spots in Brisbane dedicated to Isan-style Thai food, West End Coffee House is a local landmark for good reason; their fried rice with lacy-edged, wok-fried eggs is a life-changer. Other options include the King's omelette filled with rice and chicken mince and served with a fragrant herb salad, or the pan-fried leek dumplings that are seriously tasty.
If you love Mediterranean and Middle Eastern flavours, you'll love The Green. Set back off James Street, expect tasty takes on breaky classics like the Lebanese sausage and egg muffin with Roma tomatoes and toum, breakfast mezze of Turkish eggs with makanek sausages, salad, pickles, labneh and manoush, or the mega healthy Green Bowl with falafels, green tahini, tabouli, avocado, pickles and dukkah. Did we mention the lush, plant-filled setting?
Brand spankin' new spot The Cornr is working on changing the breakfast and brunch game, with insanely well done options like their grilled lobster roll, Wellington croissant (that's grilled steak with mushroom bacon and Wellington sauce on a croissy), and duck croissant with slow-cooked duck, rocket, feta and caramelised onion. The specialty coffee here is also absolutely banging, so we reckon it's a big winner for the south side.
Take every one of your favourite breakfast dishes and give it an epically tasty twist—that’s pretty much the menu at Chapter IV. Housed in an old Queenslander complete with a verandah that offers up some pretty epic views of the city, Chapter IV dishes up hearty versions of French toast, croquettes, waffles, and eggs benny, with a veggie fry up thrown in for good measure.
You know and love them for cocktails and zucchini chips, but did you know Hellenika also does a bougie Greek-influenced breaky? Think classic spanakopita (which we're obsessed with as a breakfast food), rizogalo rice pudding with blueberries and cinnamon, and the now-famous "eggs with eggs with eggs": toast topped with taramasalata, sliced boiled eggs and bottarga. A Greek coffee always starts the day with a bang, too.
Blockhouse Eat + Drink
Nundah favourite Blockhouse has a moreish and creative breakfast menu that’s all over the shop in the best possible way. Fried chicken and corn waffles. Okonomiyaki waffles with maple bacon steak. Avocado on toast with popcorn chicken. We could go on. Best of all, the Blockhouse brunch menu runs allll day.
A newbie to the list, Peach Cafe first caught our attention with their pastel pink facade—and kept it with their epic breakfasts like vegan hotcakes, halloumi hash burgers and loaded benny croissants. One mouthful of the spiced apple, oat crumble, salted dulce de leche and ice cream topped hotcakes and you too will be hooked.
Finished your Brisbane breakfast and ready for lunch? Check out the best spots for a long lunch here.
Image credit: Morning After, Halo Ground, My Mistress, Willow Cafe, The Cornr