Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so why not spice things up a bit? Go out for a plate of pancakes and it will just make the rest of your day that much better. The San Diego area is home to a great variety of local cafes that serve hand-crafted espresso drinks with hearty breakfasts, and some are even conveniently located right along the beach.
These local favorites whip up everything from buttery slices of toast to waffles, omelettes, and fresh egg scrambles – and their gorgeous oceanside views just top it all off. Plus, you’ll get to take a break from cooking and let someone else bring you the coffee and food. That’s what I call a great morning!
1. Kono’s Café
If you love pancakes no matter what time of day it is, Kono’s Cafe is the place to go. On the north side of Crystal Pier, the café is a local favorite for all-day breakfasts and up-front ocean views. Grab a spot inside the surf-themed café, or head out and enjoy your grub on their patio, overlooking the big blue Pacific.
You can usually count on a line here, but with such delicious food in a prime location, the crowd is pretty understandable. Their light and fluffy pancakes, crispy bacon, and massive breakfast burritos, combined with front-row ocean views don’t even compare to the McDonald’s breakfast menu.
2. Olive Café
Olive Café is a gem for both breakfast and lunch, just minutes north of Mission Beach. They serve hearty scrambles with golden toast, grab-and-go sandwiches, salads, as well as espresso drinks and pastries.
Try their Breakfast Quesadilla if you’re craving something new for a change. Or if you like things a little more classic, pair your coffee with one of their Bacon, Egg, and Cheese Croissants as pictured, or one of their scrambles. Really, you can’t go wrong with anything at this place.
3. The Mission
The Mission Restaurant is not only San Diego’s premier spot to get breakfast, but they’ve been nationally recognized as one of the best in the country. They have three locations throughout SD, one of which is only a short walk from Mission Beach.
On the menu, there’s a variety of dishes for every kind of taste. Their pancakes are thick and fluffy, and come topped with berry puree and powdered sugar. They also serve Latino-inspired dishes like soy chorizo dishes, breakfast burritos, and by lunch, quesadillas, salads and classic sandwiches.
4. Better Buzz Coffee
Better Buzz is more known for their handcrafted espresso drinks, but they recently threw in some delectable food options to pair with. Their coffee shops are dotted throughout the city, including one in Encinitas off the Pacific Coast Highway, as well as one in Mission Beach (known as “The Lab”).
Not sure what to try? We’re still drooling over their ham and cheese croissant, hearty avocado toast, and breakfast sandwiches made with cage free eggs. bacon, muenster cheese, and spicy chipotle aioli on ciabatta. Mmmmm.
5. Fig Tree Café
Yelp/Fig Tree Café
With three locations across San Diego, Fig Tree Café is the place to go for a creative breakfast when you’re tired of the same old waffles and OJ. They serve everything from omelets (like the Windansea Omelet, named after the local beach) to delicious takes on Eggs Benedict, pancakes and other breakfast dishes (like Cinnamon and Brown Sugar Sauteed Apples French Toast).
If you’re hungry for something new, try an order of their own Breakfast Sushi. They come with three bacon-wrapped rolls, stuffed with rice, scrambled eggs, scallions, and plum sauce for dipping.
6. Woody’s Breakfast and Burgers
The best thing about Woody’s – aside from the fact they’re right in front of the ocean – is that you can fill up on a warm breakfast here, and then come back later for great burgers and fries. Located on the Pacific Beach Boardwalk, the restaurant has a patio out front where you can dine overlooking the waves, or just lay back, people watch, and admire the local surfers.
For breakfast, they make egg dishes, stacks of pancakes, stuffed burritos, and if you’re dreaming of a burger but think it might be too early, they’ve got you covered, too. The Breakfast Woody is their signature breakfast burg – with egg, bacon, and a side of rosemary potatoes. Plus, they have café offerings, so you can pair it with more than just a cup of regular drip coffee.
I’m getting so hungry just looking at these photos! So, did we miss your favorite beach café? Where do you love getting breakfast near the beach in San Diego?