Sliced bread, fluffy eggs, crisp bacon... all ingredients for a hearty breakfast sandwich. And while it's simple enough to whip one up at home, these eight San Diego restaurants prove that the breakfast sandwich doesn’t have to be boring. From lemon aioli to jalapeño cream cheese, these breakfast spots are giving swift kicks to traditional egg sandwiches. And these sandwiches are so versatile, there’s no need to relegate them to breakfast time; who would be so foolish as to eat breakfast foods only at breakfast anyway?
The Ultimate Breakfast Dip is not your typical breakfast sandwich. This delectable concoction needs a fork and a knife but the extra, civil work is well worth it. It’s packed with smoked ham, Muenster cheese, sliced tomato, lemon-thyme aioli, and spinach inside slices of sourdough. A fried egg (over easy) is served on top, since no breakfast sandwich is complete without an egg. And The District’s spicy tomato broth, made with fresh habaneros, soaks into the bread, giving the sandwich a spicy little kick.
If loving bacon is wrong, we don’t want to be right. The tender belly bacon on the B.E.A.T sandwich makes Snooze’s breakfast sandwich a standout. Served perfectly crisped atop a cage-free egg prepared to your liking, a bed of arugula, and sliced tomato, the bacon ties the sandwich together.
All of the fresh ingredients are served inside toasted ciabatta with a ridiculously tasty bacon aioli, because no breakfast sandwich is complete without some sort of mayo. It comes with a side of Snooze’s delicious hash brown patties, if it can even be classified as such (see that terrine-looking thing above?). Somehow, the chefs managed to update the classic patty so it looks more like a modern side than an afterthought.
Crown Point Coffee’s Amazing Breakfast Samich is covered in jalapeño cream cheese and peppered with sliced jalapeño. To ensure spice fiends get their fill if all that wasn't enough, it’s served on a croissant baked with jalapeño. It’s messy and delicious and hard to put down. Like literally -- if you set it down, it may be tough to pick up again. It’s also stuffed with eggs and bacon, but the jalapeño and cream cheese mix is the star of this “samich.”
The Pipes breakfast sandwich made it on this list for its dedication to simplicity -- we'll call it "clean eating." The sandwich comes with the basics: bacon, tomato, mayo, and an egg scramble, all inside an English muffin. While it's by no means the fanciest breakfast sandwich, it's absolutely satisfying. The breakfast sandwich is smothered in mayo and the freshly cut tomato slice mingles with crisp, hot bacon to create the perfectly sized sandwich that won’t put you in a food coma before 9am.
The Vesuvio breakfast sandwich is a Mediterranean twist on the morning staple. Scrambled eggs are topped with fresh basil, roasted bell peppers, and feta. The eggs-to-toppings ratio is perfection; the feta and bell peppers perfectly harmonize with the fluffy scrambled eggs. It's served with a side of fresh fruit, so you can feel good about the sandwich you just demolished. Krakatoa’s outside patio is the perfect place to start a morning, offering a secluded oasis in the heart of Downtown.
Brian's Big Breakfast Sandwich is exactly what it promises. Stacked high on three slices of grilled sourdough, it’s packed with every breakfast fixing you could ever want. It comes with four slices of melty cheese, two sausage patties, four slices of bacon, and two fried eggs. This could make a delicious morning meal, or since Brian’s 24 is open all hours (if you didn't already guess by the name), a late-night splurge.
The newest kid on the restaurant block is The Crack Shack. While it’s getting tons of (well-deserved) fanfare for its fried chicken, it also serves up a mean breakfast sandwich. The Señor Croque combines land and... land by topping a crispy chicken filet and fried egg with bacon. It comes with a slice of melted white cheddar and miso-maple butter, which brings the flavors of the pork and chicken together in perfect umami. It’s both sweet and savory, and likely the (solid) reason for the sandwich’s popularity. The restaurant sells between 100 and 150 Señor Croques every day.
The star of Breakfast Republic’s breakfast sammie is the specialty bacon, dubbed Jurassic Pork. The thick-cut applewood-smoked bacon is marinated in paprika and brown sugar before being flash baked. The bacon is served underneath a sunny side-up egg, which gets its own peek-a-boo window, framed in sourdough (the best kind of pane, if you ask us). Add a side of Brussels sprouts-laden potatoes and you’ve got yourself a breakfast.
1. The District1021 Market St, East Village
2. Snooze3940 5th Ave, San Diego
3. Crown Point Coffee3510 Ingraham St, San Diego
4. Pipes Cafe123 Liverpool Dr, Cardiff By Sea
5. Krakatoa1128 25th St, San Diego
6. Brian's 24828 6th Ave, San Diego
7. The Crack Shack2266 Kettner Blvd, San Diego
8. Breakfast Republic2730 University Avenue, San Diego
The sandwiches are handcrafted daily, the staff is almost-comatose chill and they've officially passed the one-year-of-business success test. This downtown East Village sandwich hub is a great way to convince yourself that sando's sometimes (read: always) taste better when made by a professional.
Snooze is an airy breakfast-/ brunch-ery in a high ceiling'd locale perforated by giant skylights and a front facade that rolls up. They dole out fare so groundbreakingly customizable you'll swear you cooked it yourself, as long as you don't look at and/or taste it.
This super cute, beach side coffee house offers take out or eat in on its tasty brews, smoothies, and bagel bowls (get one, stat).
There is a reason there is a big sign next to Pipes that proclaims “NO PIPES PARKING HERE.” The place is always packed with college-aged surfers, old surfers, and those people who just live in North County and kind of look like surfers by proxy. And the food they serve is perfect to satiate someone who just got off the water. Get a behemoth burrito for breakfast and, for later... still get a burrito.
This coffee shop, bar, and restaurant combination serves up cafe classics in a tiki-themed shack. If you're fighting to stay awake, rely on the Krakhead, the Krakatoa house brew with espresso shots, or, when you're moving at a more leisure pace, an Orange Blossom Latte (pair them with a sweet muffin or avocado toast for breakfast). If you're dropping by later in the day, the Pompeii (mozzarella and basil) and El Chicon (ham and oaxaca cheese) sandwiches are musts, as is the rotating menu of local craft beers.
It doesn’t matter if its 4am or 4pm, its always breakfast time at Brian’s 24. They’ve got everything from fried chicken and Belgian waffles, to Baja carne asada omelets and breakfast burgers. Brian’s is right off the lobby of the historic St. James Hotel Downtown, so you can waddle upstairs and find a place to sleep off your food coma after you polish off the Pancake Monster: three fried eggs, five hotcakes, four strips of bacon, two sausage patties, an 8oz ham steak, and an 8oz country fried steak on a bed of home fries.
It doesn't matter which came first at San Diego's The Crack Shack: both the chicken and the egg are taken to new heights via an affordable, fast-casual menu featuring chicken & egg sandwiches, fried chicken served with scratch-made sauces, and specialities like Schmaltz-fried fries, biscuits with miso maple butter, and matzo ball posole. The outdoor spot is recognizable by a giant rooster statue, surrounded by a patio filled with group-friendly tables.
True to its name, Breakfast Republic is a morning hotspot whose dishes are all united in their eccentricity. Some of the unique menu offerings include a Vietnamese chicken wing breakfast bowl and breakfast hot dogs, plus more conventional recipes like chilaquiles and shrimp & grits. If eggs are your power breakfast of choice, order the Croque Monsieur Benedict or Mashed Potato Omelet. Meanwhile, sweeter plates like s'mores French toast and Oreo cookie pancakes aren't so much a protein-packed start to the day as they are pure dessert.