The 14 Absolute Best Brunches in Houston Right Now
Celebrate the weekend with Sunday buffets, oysters, and all the bloody marys you can handle.
Houstonians love to have a good time, so it comes as absolutely no surprise that the local brunch game is poppin’. We have Sunday buffets stacked with ceviches, huevos, tostadas and live bands; hangover-curing Bloody Marys, badass fried chicken & waffles, and greasy-in-a-good-way brunch burgers; and one spot that’s crafted the morning-pick-me-up you never knew you needed: a spaghetti sandwich. Plus, patios! Gulf oysters! and Champagne! Make your weekend exponentially better with a visit to these damn good Houston brunch spots.
After a brief hiatus, Hugo’s legendary buffet brunch is back in action. The Sunday offering is a cult favorite for a reason, and that reason is actually many reasons. There’s the playful atmosphere backed by live Mexican tunes and sangria, for starters. Then there’s the food. An abundant mosaic of bright ceviches, deep and complex moles, puffy masa cakes stuffed with puerco and refritos, bubbling chile relleno, seafood tostadas, fall-apart lamb barbacoa, and classic platos de desayuno, from chilaquiles to huevos rancheros. And please do not take this advice lightly, SAVE ROOM FOR DESSERT.
How to book: Reserve via SevenRooms or order directly.
There’s a three-course, family-style brunch that needs to make its way to your radar, and it’s stacked with seasonal pastas, seasonal pizzas, and chef Travis McShane’s oh-so delightful Roasted Chicken and salsa verde. You’ll have to shell out $42 per person (designed for three or more people), but it’ll be well worth every penny, especially if you enjoy it all in the gorgeous greenhouse room and attached patio. The rotating menu is also available a la carte, with offerings from scratch-made gnocchi to frittata.
Nestled inside a once abandoned but now gorgeously restored warehouse, this elevated brunch spot is a neighborhood jewel. Rhubarb and cava kissed Rue 75s, Mimosa Carafes, and jalapeno-kicked Feelin’ Spicy tequila drinks will get the weekend juices flowing, as will PB+J Cronut Holes, Cured Salmon Quiche, and the daily butcher’s cut Steak & Eggs that comes with curly fries (because this place is awesome). For a slightly lower-key feel, try out sibling establishment Heights & Co, where you can go beast mode on a guac and chorizo topped Brunch Burger and some Fish House Punch.
You’ll want to start with a morning cocktail flight at this globe-trotting restaurant, which rocks its killer brunch service Friday - Sunday. Choose from drinks kissed with tequilas, aged rums, coffee, and all sorts of spices and syrups to pair with bites from linguiça sausage-stuffed Pão de Queijo to flaky Crab Samosas. That’s all before your mains, of course, which includes Japanese Miso Scrambles, Custard Lava French Toast, Duck Chilaquiles, and Norwegian Smoked Salmon Latkes. Oh, and the dessert. New Orleans style Bourbon Bread Pudding with a la mode, anyone?
Hometown heroes Bobby Heugel of Anvil (which, might we add, hits the mark with its frosty cocktails and classic spritzes) and Justin Yu of Theodore Rex fame are two of the masterminds behind this Heights powerhouse, which rocks both a stunning Sunday brunch and a pleasant patio to enjoy it on. In the kitchen, Mark Clayton and crew whip up scratch-made breakfast-inspired dishes like Dutch Baby Pancakes bathed in maple butter, a Wagyu Shortrib accented with creamy hollandaise and zippy salsa verde, a delightfully rich Oyster Mushroom Hash, and Lè Brunch Burger, in which a stout beef patty comes piled with cheddar, lardons, dijonaise, and an oozing fried egg.
If you’ve ever needed a reminder as to how delicious Southern fare can be, Lucille’s awaits. Here, brunchers can stroll through a tropical paradise with a cocktail including orange and lavender surprises, a classic Margarita, and an explosive Firecracker concoction that positions the heat first, citrus second. Then, dig into delights like Chicken and Sweet Potato Waffles engulfed in pecan-laced syrup and chilis, grits laden with either plump shrimp or catfish, French toast drizzled with berries, and a light Eggs Benny with all the veggies. Southern hospitality indeed.
Helmed by internationally trained chef Drake Leonards (whose pedigree includes NOLA hotspots like August, Domenica, and Shaya), this Cajun-Creole brasserie pairs European and Gulf Coast bites with one of the most gorgeous dining spaces in town. Experience sensory overload in the form of Hearth-Roasted Oysters, double-smoked Duck Poppers, omelets gorged with blue crab, artichokes, and creamy spinach, and Gulf Shrimp Etouffee courtesy of this lavish brunch spread.
Treat yourself to a booze-fueled brunch (sparkling options start at $7 and go all the way up to $2,000) complete with Morning Pastries and jam, a perfect Croque Madame, Eggs & Pommes Frites that take a double dip in duck fat before being finished with a daily aioli, and lunchier options like Stuffed Wild Alaskan Salmon over shrimp risotto. It’s also a people-watching favorite if you opt to dine in for Saturday and Sunday brunch.
Make your way through the playbook of Tejano classics at this Heights-area joint, a rundown that features savory staples like Chilaquiles, Migas, Delta-style Tamales and Eggs, and Egg Sandwiches on hefty slabs of Texas Toast. Those with a sweet tooth head straight for the signature Hotcakes, double or triple-stacked and finished with a dollop of whipped butter, sugar dust, and buttermilk syrup. Brunch runs Saturday and Sundays from 11 am - 3 pm, and there’s a cute patio space with plenty of shade if you feel like dining al fresco.
How to book: Join the waitlist.
Brennan's of Houston
There are times when brunch calls for inexpensive Prosecco and a plate of crispy bacon. And then, there are times when brunch calls for an epic three-course feast that makes you feel like you own an oil company—that’s where this jazzy New Orleans-bred classic comes in. Expect Snapping Turtle Soup, Premium Gulf Oysters, addictive Creole Bread Pudding, and on-theme boozy selections like Brandy Milk Punch and spicy Creole Bloody Marys; and when the season calls for it, the Big Easy-inspired courtyard is definitely something you should experience.
If you haven’t yet had everything cardamom-kissed and cinnamon-spiced from this Indo-fusion street eats spot, you’ve been brunching wrong. Remedy that by indulging in options from Pondicheri’s fast-casual cafe and upstairs bake lab. Wake-me-up treats include Everything but the Kitchen Sink Omelets, Ghee Burgers, gluten-free Dosa Waffles laced with your choice of sweet or savory toppings (fresh herbs, nuts, and citrus, just to name a few), Carrot Quinoa Muffins, and a superlative Chai Custard Pie armed with a cookie crust that definitely qualifies as brunch, no matter what the menu says.
MAX's Wine Dive
Fried chicken and the finest bottle of Champagne—it’s what’s for brunch here. Snag a bottle of bubbly or a Mimosa to pair with Jalapeño Buttermilk Fried Chicken and Waffles, thick battered Crème Brûlée Brioche French Toast, and even Chicken Fried Lobster Tail, deep-fried and served with collard greens, Texas toast, and doused in lemon butter sauce. Yes, you do deserve this.
Chef Aaron Bludorn’s namesake stunner is probably Houston’s top culinary addition of the past few years, and the always-excellent Sunday brunch makes that ring even truer. Start with the famous Oysters Everyway (i.e. raw, fried, and roasted) alongside a rotating Foie Gras selection that is sure to leave you swooning, then treat yourself to leveled up Steak & Eggs featuring short rib hash in veal jus, Smoked Salmon Benedict with everything crust, last but definitely not least, a giant Sticky Bun for the table because, well, duh. Or keep it to yourself, because also… duh.
Better Luck Tomorrow
A Spaghetti Sandwich is likely something you never knew you wanted, but trust us, you do. It’s just one of many the wonders dreamt up by Justin Yu, Bobby Heugel, and the rest of the utterly clever BLT crew. Get it along with the tastiest Bloody Mary in town—plus a tomatillo version if you’re feeling tangy; or try the equally as important MOB (mortadella on a bun with anchovy aioli, pepperoncini, and fried egg) and decadent Griddled Pancakes, hit with sweet cream cheese, streusel crumblings, and puckery pickled berry toppings. Gotta hangover? There’s beef gravy, cheesy, and pickled topped Hangover Hash Browns for that.
Brooke Viggiano is a Houston-basedwriterwho suddenly has a ton of weekend plans. Follow her journeys on IG@brookiefafaor on Twitter@brookeviggiano.