, known as the heart of Scotland
, is the second most-visited city
in the United Kingdom
. It’s no wonder, considering its rich cultural and historical heritage, stunning architecture and breathtaking natural spaces in the middle of the city. These ten eateries are the best to visit for your morning meal in Edinburgh.
Edinburgh Larder Café
Cafe, European, British, Soup, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten-free, Coffee, Tea , $$$
Edinburgh Larder Café
Situated next to the famous Greyfriars Bobby statue, Edinburgh Larder Café is the perfect breakfast and brunch place when you’re on your way to see other Old Town sights. Start your day with one of their healthy meals such as homemade granola, porridge cooked to order with a selection of toppings, or wedges of toast with homemade jam. For a more filling option go for their full breakfast or scrambled eggs with salmon, bacon or sausage. The managers will make sure your hot drink to accompany the meal is top-notch. They use the popular coffee beans roasted in Edinburgh by Artisan Roast and offer locally blended teas by Edinburgh-based Eteaket. For a sweet treat, try one of their delicious light scones served with clotted cream and homemade jam, or their renowned cakes. The cafe also has a plethora of brunch/lunch choices including soups, sandwiches and salads.
Opening hours: Mon to Fri 8am-5pm, Sat and Sun 9am-5pm
Address: Edinburgh Larder Café, 15 Blackfriars Street, Edinburgh, Scotland, +44 1315566922
This beautiful Italian cafeteria, situated very close to the Royal Mile and easily recognizable from its stunning turquoise-painted façade, has a friendly and relaxed vibe. It is a great place to eat at any time of day or just to have a cup of aromatic Italian coffee. Their breakfast options include full English/Scottish breakfast, eggs benedict with smoked salmon or ham, and a variety of freshly baked pastries and scones. The brunch menu offers soups, salads, sandwiches, and pizzette – little Italian-style pizzas. Next time you visit, try their healthy and delicious spinach and nutmeg soup.
Opening hours: Mon to Fri 7am-10pm, Sat 8am-10pm, Sun 9am-8pm
Address: Caffe Lucano, 37-39 George IV Bridge, Edinburgh, Scotland, +44 131 225 6690
Eggs benedict | © Katherine Lim/Flickr | © Katherine Lim/Flickr
Union of Genius
Cafe, Restaurant, British, Healthy, Soup, Vegetarian, Gluten-free, Vegan, Coffee, Tea , $$$
Union of Genius
Situated close to George IV Bridge, Union of Genius is Scotland’s first soup cafe, offering six different types of soup every day, all served with flavor-matched artisan bread, a range of healthy salads and stromboli. The cafe has 80 soup recipes so the soup menu is changed daily. There are many vegan and vegetarian soup options available, and they also have gluten-free and vegan cakes, artisan coffee and hot chocolate from the Chocolate Tree, a renowned chocolate-themed cafe in the Brunstfield area. The cafe has some breakfast options which include homemade granola (gluten-free and vegan options available) and homemade porridge with various toppings.
Opening hours: Mon to Fri 8.45am-4pm, Sat 12-4pm
Address: Union of Genius, 8 Forrest Road, Edinburgh, Scotland, +44 131 226 4436
Porridge topped with fresh fruit | ©Denna Jones / Flickr
Cafe, British, Vegetarian, Vegan, Coffee, Tea , $$$
Situated right in the heart of the Old Town, Southern Cross is a cosy and friendly cafe with an exceptional range of breakfast options. Whether you want to go for full Scottish breakfast (haggis and black pudding included), freshly made pancakes with strawberries and cream or perhaps a bit of bacon, eggs Florentine, they have it all. Their pancakes with a variety of toppings are among the best in the city.
Opening hours: Mon to Sun 8am-5pm
Address: Southern Cross, 63A Cockburn Street, Edinburgh, Scotland, +44 131 622 0622
Cafe, British, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten-free, Coffee, Tea , $$$
Wonderfully quirky and with a relaxing atmosphere, Serenity is a cafe that cares about food – and not only food – the cafe is run by volunteers and provides work opportunities for people recovering from addictions. Serenity Cafe was set up by a small group of people in recovery in 2009. Since then, it has attracted a lot of attention throughout the UK as the first recovery cafe. In 2010 it won the Scottish Charity Awards Community Action category. The cozy haunt serves honest, heart-warming food with many brunch options available including quiches, sandwiches, soups and hearty breakfast rolls. Their cakes are also known for being among the best in the city. The place is also family-friendly, with toys, high chairs and a changing table available.
Opening hours: Mon to Sun 9am-5pm
Address: Serenity Café, Jackson’s Entry, Edinburgh, Scotland, +44 131 556 8765
Cafe, British, Soup, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten-free, Coffee, Tea , $$$
Café Musa has a rather charming old-school atmosphere, created by its cosy interiors which feature many comfortable couches on which to sit and relax. The menu includes many traditional Scottish breakfast options such as filled rolls, sandwiches, scones, porridge and soups. Hearty and tasty breakfast for a very decent price – what else could you ask for? There is also free Wi-Fi available at the cafe, which is always a plus.
Opening hours: Mon and Fri 8am-6pm, Sat 10am-6pm
Address: Café Musa, 16 North Bank Street, Edinburgh, Scotland, +44 1312267809
MUMS Great Comfort Food
MUMS, another cafe situated just off the George IV Bridge, serves excellent breakfasts and brunches. As its name suggests, the place is homely and cosy, and the food is comforting. The menu is extensive so you are very likely to find exactly what you’re looking for. Try their scrambled eggs with smoked salmon or the pancakes with bacon and maple syrup for a filling late breakfast.
Opening hours: Mon to Sat 9am-10pm, Sun 10am-10pm
Address: MUMS Great Comfort Food, 4a Forrest Road, Edinburgh, Scotland, +44 131 260 9806
Cafe, Restaurant, Italian, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten-free, Coffee, Tea , $$$
Another Italian gem in Edinburgh’s Old Town, Caffe Piccolo is dedicated to catering for customers with different food intolerances (and simply different tastes). The cafe has a large variety of vegan, vegetarian, gluten free and dairy free meals available. Among their best are the Italian paninis with fresh fillings, the vegan breakfasts, gluten free soups and Sicilian cakes. You must also try their wonderful Italian coffee. The stunning view of Edinburgh castle from the cafe’s windows will certainly make your breakfast complete.
Opening hours: Mon and Tue, Thu and Fri 8.30am-4pm, Sat and Sun 9am-4.30pm
Address: Caffe Piccolo, 29 Grassmarket, Edinburgh, Scotland, +44 131 225 8387
The City Café
Cafe, Diner, Vegetarian, Vegan, Gluten-free, Coffee, Tea , $$$
The City Café
The City Café is an American-diner style cafe situated just off the Royal Mile, very close to the beautiful St Giles’ Cathedral. It is open pretty much all day and has a large menu including breakfast, brunch, lunch, dinner and drinks in the evening. The breakfast is served all day and it comes with a complimentary cup of tea or coffee. Some of the popular breakfast choices are honey roast granola served with berries and yoghurt, eggs benedict and eggs Florentine, or French toast with smoked bacon and maple syrup. Like any typical diner, the cafe serves milkshakes which are simply perfect.
Opening hours: Mon to Sun 9-1am
Address: The City Café, 19 Blair Street, Edinburgh, Scotland, +44 131 220 0127
The Baked Potato Shop
Although The Baked Potato Shop is pretty much what its name suggests – a baked potato takeaway place without much seating inside – and is definitely worth a visit. The place has 30 years of experience in baking fresh vegan/vegetarian tatties. They offer a variety of fillings including baked beans, cheese, hummus, prawn cocktail, couscous, guacamole, mixed vegetables and more. Make sure you go there on an empty stomach – their potatoes are huge.
Opening hours: Mon to Sun 9am-7pm
Address: The Baked Potato Shop, 56 Cockburn Street, Edinburgh, Scotland, +44 131 2257572