30 best breakfasts in the Twin Cities

Categories: Breakfast, Lists

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Editor's Note: We have painstakingly researched breakfast across the Twin Cities one bite at a time for the past few months and have compiled our findings here for you.

Breakfast. Most days it's just cereal, a piece of fruit, or one of those sad grab-and-go muffins at the gas station. But when you get up early enough or make plans to meet friends, breakfast becomes an event. Instead of chancing your poached eggs on an amateur, wasting calories on anything less than the best baked goods, or getting fancy when you really want no-frills (or vice versa), consult this, our handy guide to the best breakfasts in the Twin Cities. (Note: We selected only places that serve daily breakfast. Weekend brunch is another list entirely.)

Minneapolis

10. Milda's

You'll find nothing but breakfast basics at Milda's in the Near North area of Minneapolis. But everything is done with the pancake-flipping confidence of a place that's been around for decades. Grits are creamy, French toast is lacy at the edges and custardy in the center, and Kielbasa is one of the side sausage options, which really should be available at more restaurants. You might walk in thinking you're the first to discover Milda's, but regulars keep lining up for the affordable prices, enormous, fluffy-soft caramel and iced cinnamon rolls, and general lack of pretense. If you don't fill up on eggs and hash browns at breakfast, come back at dinner for simple, well-seasoned broasted chicken and Milda's famous Iron Range-style pasties. 1720 Glenwood Ave. N.

9. Al's Breakfast

Is Al's still worth the wait and the cramped conditions? Devotees will tell you it's all part of the charm. There are times when the environment is a hindrance, but we do tend to agree that when you're hankering for an Al's pancake (get the blueberry or blackberry ones when they're available), there is truly no substitute. To maximize your chances of having an ideal Al's experience, come early on a weekday, with an empty bladder (no bathroom), cash in hand, and know what you're going to order as soon as a seat frees up. If it sounds like a lot of work, just repeat this mantra to yourself: bacon waffle bacon waffle bacon waffle bacon waffle.... 413 14th Ave. SE

8. Modern Times Cafe

Going out for breakfast with a mixed bag of dietary needs? Make a beeline for Modern Times Cafe in Powderhorn. This grungy but great breakfast and lunch spot accommodates the needs of carnivores, omnivores, locavores, and the gluten-averse with a whole host of delicious dishes like the Mexican migas with textured vegetable protein chorizo and poblano sour cream; an earthy hash of roasted beets, goat cheese, eggs, and bacon called the Beet Up; and a couple of hearty, savory fried brown rice bowls loaded with veggies, eggs, herbs, and all kinds of satisfying textures. Lest you think this is only a place for the virtuous to dine, there is the Croque John Paul, essentially a Frankenstein's monster of eggs Benedict and a Croque Monsieur sandwich. 3200 Chicago Ave. S.

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E. Katie Holm
Mango pancakes at Victor's

7. Victor's 1959 Cafe

We've said it before and we'll probably say it again: God bless Victor's for making the concept of breakfast happy hour socially acceptable. If you can snag a spot outside on the lovely patio and manage to decide between the mango pancakes or the weird-sounding but totally delicious Cuban hash with olives, raisins, capers, and sweet plantains, you'll be feeling about as tropical as one can in the middle of Minneapolis. On the more Gringo side of the menu, the pressed breakfast sandwich and wild rice porridge are also top-notch. 3756 Grand Ave. S.

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Benjamin Carter Grimes
Braised Beef hash from The Mill NE

6. The Mill NE

Looking for more than the same old standards at breakfast? The Mill NE's daily brunch will not disappoint. Their wild rice pancakes and "biscones," a buttery, crumbly biscuit and scone hybrid that is incredible with their peppery mushroom gravy, both have a well-deserved cult following. But on a recent visit we discovered the shirred egg bake, made with cubes of perfumey caraway and mild, melty halloumi cheese on top. If you plan to hang out awhile, consider getting the BYO Bubbly — a sort of mini bottle service featuring cava and a bunch of fresh fruit purees, juices, and a glass of creme de cassis. 1851 Central Ave. NE

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26 comments
tishkinoyzer
tishkinoyzer

You want a deal on two big Italian sausages or Brautwursts? Go the Holiday station in Uptown. Two for a little less than $3. But pop them in the microwave first for about 15 seconds to make sure they're cooked thoroughly.

tishkinoyzer
tishkinoyzer

My breakfast consists of two sausages without the bun and scrambled egg whites at McDs in Uptown. I avoid as much carbohydrates as possible. Plus Uptown McDs is like being in seedy adventure/thriller movie or novel. It has the world's great collection of utterly strange people. There''s tobacco man, who rolls his own cigarettes and carries a huge bag. Gary the Bookman continually cuts out articles from papers and gives away books. You will hear more Spanish spoken here than in Mexico. Check out the suit and tie owners to meet at the place but never eat McDs food.

tishkinoyzer
tishkinoyzer

If you want to lose weight and prevent diabetes, don't eat out.

Jenn Katkin
Jenn Katkin

I nominate Mayslack's and Ideal Diner as two glorious places where you can just walk in and get a burger at 9 am on a Saturday.

Jenn Katkin
Jenn Katkin

Ugh. As someone who just is NOT into "breakfast" foods, I'm far more interested in a list of places that serve non-breakfast foods before 11 am.

luke107
luke107

The Artesian Bistro in Prior Lake (Hwy 13 by the new Lunds) is awesome.

For sure should have made this list if it was closer to the cities.

If you're south of the river, give it a shot for sure,

You will not be disappointed.


Eric Schoenhard
Eric Schoenhard

Hoagie's in Hopkins.Keys.Hell's Kitchen,Cuzzy's......cmon guys Its like you don't even live in the Cities

Lisa Pineda
Lisa Pineda

Good list CP and thank God NO Key's on the list!

breakfast_number1
breakfast_number1

I don't believe the Copper Dome is the "Copper Dome" anymore...  new management. and it has a new name. I'm not sure if the food has changed though. 

Jessie Kraemer
Jessie Kraemer

Ashley - For the next time you come into town :)

Jill Remer
Jill Remer

Maybe RJ Riches has good food, but they do not have a good track record with the health dept...

Louie Lu Lettuce
Louie Lu Lettuce

How about breakfast at home....? Then again, you could just list every damn place in the area and win the support of someone.

John Bunch
John Bunch

Breakfast being the "most important meal of the day" is right out of Big Agra PR. I don't buy it.

Ron Williams
Ron Williams

If you list 30 places in the Twin Cities to have breakfast and Keys isn't on the list, you've sort of lost your credibility.

Nik Barkve
Nik Barkve

Bummed that 'Our Kitchen' didn't make this list.

tishkinoyzer
tishkinoyzer

All of these are yuppy wuss hangouts. Total waste of money.

mingtran
mingtran topcommenter

Keys is only slightly better than Perkins. How many places have you actually been to on the list?

cyphasamurai
cyphasamurai

@mingtran  Don't know what planet you live on but Perkins is garbage and Key's is top of the list. I've never been more disappointed in a breakfast than at Perkins and I'm never disappointed with Keys.

mingtran
mingtran topcommenter

@cyphasamurai Same question: how many spots on the list have you been to? 

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