Breakfast. It’s the most important meal of the day, and breakfast in DC is no exception. We love a jam-packed omelet, avocado toast with just a bit of kick, fluffy pancakes, breakfast tacos and crispy-on-the-outside, soft on the inside French toast.
Throw in a honey latte and we are good to start the day.
Breakfast in DC
But what makes the best breakfast in DC? Well, the restaurant has to open early, and serves breakfast, not just provide weekend brunch.
The best DC restaurants also have enough options on their breakfast menu that all of our friends and family will find at least one thing they can eat on the menu.
While not everyone is a vegetarian, vegan or gluten-free, we like to have our options when we head out in the morning.
Most importantly, the breakfast spot must be in Washington, D.C., not the suburbs.
Call Your Mother
- Address: 3301 Georgia Ave NW, Washington, DC 20010
When your dad is Jewish, but your mom isn’t, you open Call Your Mother, a Jew-ish deli to share all of your favorite things. Pop in to pick up a sesame, everything, chocolate, plain or Za’atar bagel (all great with cream cheese).
Need a little more? Go all in with a breakfast sandwich. Pick from ten spreads and smears, along with extras like lox, bacon, egg, capers or tomato.
Lunch brings a few extra options, including an impossible burger, but whatever you do, don’t skip a side order of latkes.
There are also locations in Capitol Hill, O Street and Bethesda, MD.
- Address: 4706 14th St NW, Washington, DC 20011
Chicken and waffles for the win! The Highlands was one of the first spots we ever popped into for breakfast when we moved to D.C. Let me tell you, it has only gotten better.
The Brioche French toast is quite tasty if you need to load up on carbs, but the chicken and waffles is our go to on the menu. Seating is limited, especially on weekends, but grab a cup of coffee while you wait to enjoy a leisurely meal with friends.
- Address: 3315 Cady’s Alley NW, Washington, DC 20007
Modern Austrian cuisine meets breakfast when you walk into Georgetown’s Kafe Leopold. Sit in the garden to enjoy a warm day with coffee, eggs, waffles, Rosinenschnecke (raisin danish), musli, pancakes and a selection of pastries.
While you might not be able to fly to Austria right now, you can certainly enjoy a little taste of it when you are in Washington, D.C.
Sticky Fingers Bakery
- Address: 1370 Park Rd NW, Washington, DC 20010
There are a few things you need to know before you pop into Sticky Fingers. This bakery is:
- 100% vegan
- Lower in saturated fat
- Non-hydrogenated oils
There are also nut-free and gluten-free baked goods. Enjoy a smokey tempeh bacon, tofu scrambles and breakfast burritos. Just don’t go looking for any meat in this shop.
Do pick up a sweet treat though; the sticky buns are some of the best around.
Baked & Wired
- Address: 1052 Thomas Jefferson St NW, Washington, DC 20007
Baked & Wired is our go-to breakfast spot in Georgetown when we want a coffee and oatmeal to go.
Don’t be fooled though, there are loads of pastries, breakfast quiche, donut muffins, Hippie Crack (house-made granola) and other goodies to be had, including one incredible strawberry cupcakes.
While Georgetown Cupcakes gets all the publicity, Baked & Wired has been quietly making delicious cupcakes (they call them cake cups) that include real fruit (yes, there are gluten-free options too) for years.
Don’t be daunted by the line. It moves quickly and sometimes people are just there for cupcakes. The coffee counter is on the other side of the shop.
Just looking for a coffee to go? Check out our favorite D.C. Coffee Shops.
A Baked Joint
Location: 430 K St NW, Washington, DC 20001
Sister shop of Baked & Wired, you will find all the carbs here at A Baked Joint. We love that there are at least ten different ways to order toast on the menu.
Quiche, breakfast sandwiches, homemade biscuits, an assortment of pastries, sweet OR savory Oatmeal (steel cut oats, smoked ham, kale, caramelized onions, pecorino, organic poached eggs), and creme brûlée French toast are sure to satisfy your morning hangry monster.
Just don’t forget to order a Matcha Latte, Dirty Chai, Mocha, Tallat or AuLait to wash it all down.
- Address: 801 Wharf St SW, Washington, DC 20024
Kith/Kin draws its menu inspiration from James Beard Rising Star Winner Executive Chef, Kwame Onwuachi’s diverse background. Having lived, worked or been raised in several places, including Nigeria, Jamaica, West Africa, the Caribbean, New Orleans and New York, you will never bite into the expected, as each flavor is a marriage of his journey to the Wharf in DC.
You’ll find jerk bacon and Curried Crab Benedict on the menu, but a few classics like smoked salmon bagel sandwiches, scrambled eggs, omelets, hot cakes and crispy waffles as well.
Astro Doughnuts & Fried Chicken
- Location: 1308 G St NW, Washington, DC 20005
Chicken sandwiches made with a donut bun? Oh, yes! It is even better than it sounds.
The sweet and salty combo at Astro Donuts and Fried Chicken is sure to fix any hangover or sweet craving. If you are just looking for donuts, they have those too.
Check the seasonal selection, especially during the Cherry Blossom Festival, but the creme brûlée is always our favorite.
- Address: 1739 N St NW, Washington, DC 20036
On the first floor of a beautiful townhouse/inn, you will find a cozy restaurant that serves up some incredible donut appetizers. Donuts aren’t usually our go to when having breakfast with friends, but Tabard Inn makes the lightest, fluffiest donuts around.
Breakfast sandwiches, Churro French toast, and the usual staples of fried eggs, bacon, oatmeal and yogurt are all on the menu too. Order your coffee beverage of choice and hunker down for a meal with friends or family whenever you pop through D.C.
Tip- ask to be seated in the back room by the windows. The light is lovely in the morning.
- Address: 1443 P St NW, Washington, DC 20005
The Commissary is a staple of Logan Square, where locals hang out and sip coffee and cocktails throughout the day. Breakfast comes in the form of eggs, pancakes (with a gluten-free option!), omelets, grain bowls, avocado or smoked salmon toast, breakfast sandwiches (including ones for vegans) and smoothies.
Coffee is served hot and fresh alongside a slew of mimosas and Bloody Mary options. Grab a friend and enjoy the “Breakfast Package,” which includes 2 coffees, two breakfast entrees and a pitcher of Bloody Mary or Mimosas.
- Address: 501 Florida Ave NW, Washington, DC 20001
This LeDroit Park neighborhood hot spot is a coffee shop and a bar/kitchen at night. Food runs the gamet from classic America breakfast staples like eggs, bacon and avocado toast, but it’s the Latin flavored offerings you will want to test out during your first visit.
Arepas Rancheros, calentado and Guava pastries compliment the more extensive lunch and dinner menu that really shows off its latin roots.
Need more Breakfast Spots in DC?
- Big Bear Cafe
- Blue Duck Tavern (better known for brunch)
- Bread Furst
- Bullfrog Bagels
- The Diner
- Ellē (one of our favorite D.C. coffee shops!)
- Florida Avenue Grill
- Keren Restaurant & Coffee Shop (an Adams Morgan favorite)
- Levain Bakery
- Lincoln’s Waffle Shop
- Osman Joe’s Steak ‘n Egg Kitchen
- Red Apron Butchery
- Republic Cantina
- The Roost DC
- Smoked and Stacked
- Tony’s Place (multiple locations)
- Ted’s Bulletin (a chain, but decent food)
- The Market Lunch
- Unconventional Diner
- Union Market
- The Roost DC
- Wicked Waffle
Looking for a Washington DC Hotel?
- Hotel Hive – Affordable, trendy, pet-friendly hotel
- Eaton Hotel – Stay in the heart of DC
- Four Seasons Hotel Washington DC – DC luxury at it’s best
- Kimpton Hotel George – Great for families and pets
- Willard InterContinental Washington – Historic hotel right near the White House
Need a car? Get the best rental car rates HERE.
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This post was published by Keryn Means, a Washington DC travel expert, and the editor and publisher of DC Travel Magazine. Our articles may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking one of those links we will receive a small commission.