17 Excellent Spots For Weekday Breakfasts
Where to eat a weekday breakfast that’s better than cereal.
Weekday mornings in Seattle can be painful, even if you work from home. Some months, the sun wakes up later than you do, sometimes it’s wet and gray outside, rush hour traffic sucks, and the only shred of joy in your daily routine might come from a morning latte before descending into spreadsheets, meetings, emails, and meetings that could have totally been emails.
But it doesn’t have to be like that. Grabbing a real breakfast will, at the very least, improve your morning—and could potentially make you feel more productive. Here are the 18 best places for a weekday breakfast in Seattle, all of which are worth getting up early for.
Rachel's Bagels & Burritos
Porkchop & Co. is now Rachel’s Bagels & Burritos, and if you’re a Libra or just struggle with indecision, getting breakfast here is a great way to work through that and eat something fantastic in the process. The name says it all—they serve bagels and burritos, but these are certainly some excellent bagels and burritos. The bagels have a great doughy chew, a crackly crust, and are perfect vehicles for lox and globs of black truffle cream cheese. The burritos are loaded with big chunks of roasted potatoes and other things, like celery root “al pastor” and maitake mushrooms. And while we know that it’s not called “Rachel’s Bagels, Burritos, & Biscuits,” their biscuit sandwiches are excellent, too—especially if you loved the ones at Porkchop & Co.
B-Side is a little Capitol Hill corner cafe currently operating out of Analog Coffee. They also happen to serve the greatest breakfast sandwich in town, a.k.a. a toasty english muffin stuffed with scallion-folded egg, Beecher’s cheese, country ham, pickled daikon, and charred onion aioli which you can (and should) doctor up with hot sauce. There are other non-breakfast items like cashew butter-topped toast and grain bowls, but be real—you're here for this sandwich. Picking up something before a WFH session here will almost make the day feel like it’s a weekend.
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photo credit: Chona Kasinger
Sabine Café & Market
Seattle doesn’t have too many weekday breakfast places that’ll also work well to impress an out-of-towner or a date, but that’s where Sabine Cafe in Ballard comes in. This counter-service operation serves everything from avocado toast and griddled pastrami egg sandwiches to shakshuka and apple butter oat pancakes with hazelnut dukkah. As for drinks, they range from fresh-pressed green juice to one of the best espresso martinis in town. It’s all done in a bright and airy space complete with a covered patio, high-end pantry staples for sale, and a surplus of calming sky-blue paint. And yes, they’re open for weekend brunch too, but good luck getting a table.
photo credit: Nate Watters
When the best bakery in town starts making bagels, it turns out those bagels are going to be really damn good. Oxbow is a new Montlake breakfast operation from the team behind Sea Wolf, and their boiled and baked circles might just be as good as their bread. Fresh from the oven at 7am, the bagels have a crackly, Magic Shell-like exterior, complete with a dense chew and slightly sour tang. Our favorite combination of the bunch is a garlic bagel, crunchy charred dehydrated flakes and all, spread with spicy calabrian chili cream cheese. They often sell out around 11am, but they’re absolutely worth getting up early for. If you show up too late, an orange-glazed poppyseed scone is a good consolation prize.
Burrito Express is the best thing to happen to a parking lot since the parking lot was first invented. This spot on South Cloverdale in South Park exclusively serves Mexican breakfast from 7am-11am, and we’re huge fans. The tortillas are tightly wrapped like a swaddled newborn baby, the eggs have pristine curds without being overcooked or runny, and their salsas (get the smoky) have a tremendous acidity-to-spice ratio. You’re in great hands with anything involving their tangy chorizo, but the best burrito on the truck is their Sauced Pig, complete with pork bits simmered in salsa verde, perfectly-salted creamy pinto beans, tiny fried potato cubes, and the option to add cheese (do it). While they’re preparing your order, run across the street for a latte at Resistencia.
Kitanda Espresso & Açaí
Perhaps you endured a 7am jog around Green Lake because endorphins are supposed to make you happy. Kitanda serves the post-workout breakfast of our dreams. It’s a Brazilian cafe just east of the lake, and is our favorite spot for what is essentially sorbet that is socially acceptable to eat in the morning. Their açaí mix is particularly refreshing on a hot day, and their pepita granola is crunchy, not overpoweringly sweet, and delicious in the same bite as a rogue banana slice and spoonable smoothie.
On Saturday mornings, the lines at this boathouse-turned-bakery look like a game of Snake played by somebody who’s really good at Snake. To avoid the big groups of people, we endorse swinging by Saint Bread on a weekday instead. Among the excellent lineup of buns and loaves in the pastry case, there are more substantial breakfasts available, like olive oiled za’atar avocado toast, an Okonomiyaki-style tortilla with sweet potato and bulldog sauce, and a sweet-and-salty BEC on sugared Japanese melonpan that easily beats anything heated in a turbo oven at your corner coffee chain.
Volunteer Park Cafe & Pantry
The reimagining of this northern Capitol Hill classic is a home run simply based on the new pastries alone. And yeah, we’d eat sugar for breakfast on the daily if we lived in the neighborhood. We’re talking about things like savory tahini caramel bars, New York-style crumb cake muffins, and buckwheat chocolate chunk cookies with a salty, dulce de leche-like texture that softly crumbles like kinetic sand. But that would be ignoring their BEC, a majestic stack of paper-thin egg folds, bacon cooked just before it gets crispy, and yellow american cheese that oozes between the layers and stretches like taffy, all on a homemade toasted poppy roll.
This is a bakery that serves pastries that are so beautiful, you almost feel bad to take a bite and destroy the artful creations. It’s hard to go wrong with their jammy caramelized shallot croissant with nutty gruyere, an also-nutty pistachio schnecken, cake donuts with campari icing, or just a handful of macarons.
Bebop Waffle Shop
Bebop Waffle Shop is, thankfully, a really great place for waffles. Their belgian-style wedges are fluffy and yeasty on the inside, with a golden crust that still stands up to maple syrup and their phenomenal salted cinnamon butter. Their breakfast sandwich, layered with a thick patty of egg, cheddar, bacon, and a zippy turmeric mustard aioli, is also a great morning meal route to take. Pair it with a cold brew banana smoothie or an iced mocha topped with Cocoa Puffs.
North Star Diner & Shanghai Room
North Star Diner & Shanghai Room is the coolest diner in the city. It’s open from 10am-10pm, and has gold glittery booth cushions as well as an entire wall dedicated to framed portraits of real astronauts. Most importantly, their food—like textbook-example buttermilk pancakes or a chimichanga stuffed with carnitas, hash browns, and scrambled eggs—is simply restorative after rolling out of bed, especially if you stayed out for hours last night having “one more drink” four times. The best part is, you could come back after work to their adjoining bar, which has karaoke four days a week as well as the full diner menu—because omelettes taste just as good when the moon’s out.
Seattle Biscuit Company
You can probably guess that everything here revolves around biscuits, and the good news is that these biscuits are terrific. You’ll find a lineup of sandwiches with fillings like fried chicken and Walla Walla sweet onion mustard, or butter and salt-topped honey, but you could also order them covered in sausage gravy. And if it’s a Wednesday morning and you’re interested in forgoing your coffee for a Bloody Mary instead, that’s within the realm of possibility.
The Fat Hen
The Fat Hen is a corner cafe with a great brunch, which naturally means it’s packed on Saturday and Sunday mornings. During the week, though, it’s actually pretty easy to get a table and eat some homemade scones, beastly ricotta toast, and/or the camicia egg skillet with tomato, fresh mozzarella, and basil, a.k.a. a crock of bubbling margherita pizza.
This coffee shop is kind of a secret, mostly because it’s located on the second floor of a QFC. But make no mistake, it’s one of our favorite places to grab a quick coffee and bite. The winner at Konvene is their excellent breakfast sandwich, with juicy sausage, a fried egg, aioli, and a slice of Beecher’s slapped on a squishy toasted brioche bun. If that wasn’t what you had in mind, our feelings are hurt, but the kiosk also serves avocado toast, breakfast burritos, and pastries.
Madison Kitchen is the perfect neighborhood cafe: everyone knows each other, there’s a big glass case with lots of salads and other delicious things on display, and they even do Thanksgiving catering. The main reason to come is for a quick granola bowl, frittata, scone, or breakfast sandwich with crunchy bacon and their incredible basil aioli. But while we’re on the subject of Thanksgiving, you’re going to want to leave with the Madison Street Special (smoked turkey, white cheddar, apples, basil aioli, cranberry sauce, and arugula on cider wheat bread) to eat for lunch later.
If you’re in the University District early enough, you’re probably either a student, professor, or you know about the excellent biscuits at Morsel. This counter spot serves their huge biscuits with spreads like strawberry balsamic jam or chocolate hazelnut butter, but also in sandwich form—the best is the Spanish Fly, which has a fried egg, prosciutto, manchego, arugula, and pickled pepper aioli. These travel well if you’re in a hurry, but you should really sit down and eat your biscuit with a cup of coffee.
Empire Roasters & Records
We are very big fans of Empire Espresso’s made-to-order belgian waffles, whether they’re topped with blueberries and powdered sugar or maple syrup and butter. You should order one of these and a homemade date-sweetened cashew milk latte at this Columbia City coffee shop. And if you’re in need of a gluten-free and/or vegan waffle, they serve those, too.