The Best San Diego Breakfast and Brunch Spots

Breakfast — it’s the most important meal of the day. There’s just no better way to get started on an exploration adventure than to fuel up with some fantastic food. And since “America’s Finest City” has such a world-class restaurant culture, you don’t have to settle for lackluster cuisine while you’re here. So if you’re on the hunt for the best San Diego breakfast and brunch spots, here are some of our favorites.

Bali Hai (0.5 miles away)

(Photo: @balihairestaurant)

The stylish Polynesian flair and just-up-the-road location make Bali Hai an easy spot for us to recommend. Still, it’s their Sunday Brunch that makes Bali Hai a must-stop when visiting Shelter Island. Their buffet-style service of timeless breakfast favorites (with an island twist) includes classics like bacon, sausage and build-your-own omelets, plus delicious surprises like crab benedict, Korean short ribs, and bottomless Mimosas. If you’re feeling bold, sample one of their potent Mai Tais while you drink in the ocean view.

2230 Shelter Island Dr, San Diego, CA 92106


Humphreys SoCal Dining and Music

The on-site eatery at our sister property Humphreys Half Moon Inn is a full-service eatery overlooking the serene Shelter Island Marina. They serve a full menu every day, but breakfast is particularly popular (thanks to signature dishes like the chorizo and egg chilaquiles, and SoCal breakfast burrito). Afterward, be sure to stop by Humphreys Backstage LIVE music lounge, which features a fantastic happy hour, incredible water views, views and live nightly entertainment by Southern California’s best musicians.


Breakfast Republic (2.9 miles away)

(Photo: @breakfastrepublic)

Located inside nearby Liberty Station (which is a mandatory stop unto itself), Breakfast Republic offers decadently delicious twists on classic morning plates. So much so that they’ve won the Reader’s Choice award for “Best Breakfast” from San Diego Magazine. You’ll be hard-pressed to choose among tempting treats like shrimp and grits, S’Mores French toast, and breakfast bacon mac n’ cheese. You just can’t go wrong here. 

2865 Sims Road, Ste 106, San Diego, CA 92106   


Tom Ham’s Lighthouse (4.4 miles away)

(Photo: @tomhamslighthouse)

Although largely known as one of the area’s most popular seafood restaurants, Tom Ham’s on Harbor Island also has a Sunday Brunch that’s not to be missed. Fresh fruit, gourmet pastries and buttermilk waffles are just the beginning. Moroccan fried chicken, seared yellowtail with rice and tri-tip roast are also ready and waiting. And of course, the raw bar (featuring Maine lobster, ceviche and fresh oysters) is a big draw, as well. If you can, get a table by the window — the skyline and water views are also delicious. 

2150 Harbor Island Dr, San Diego, CA 92101  


Hash House A Go Go (6.2 miles away)

(Photo: @hashhouseagogo)

World-famous Hash House A Go Go has locations in five states. But the flagship (and frankly best) Hash House is the original, which has called San Diego home for more than two decades. A Midwest-inspired menu offers hearty favorites with a SoCal spin. Expect to find legendarily huge portions of goodies like oversized “Big Ol’ Pancakes,” loaded-up egg scrambles, and the signature towering sage-fried chicken and waffles.

3628 Fifth Ave, San Diego, CA 92103


Breakfast Company (6.4 miles away) 

(Photo: @breakfastcompanysd)

This scrumptious spot has quickly distinguished itself as a morning must-stop in San Diego’s trendy Gaslamp Quarter. The deep menu features traditional favorites with a twist, like shrimp enmoladas, chilaquiles suizos, chicken confit and grits, and even specialty options like a vegan Benedict and a seven-grain bowl. Of course, if you just want steak and eggs, french toast, or pancakes, you’ve also come to the right place. 

551 J Street, San Diego, CA 92101


Café Madeleine (10 miles away)

(Photo: @cafemadeleine)

Keeping it simple is the order du jour at San Diego’s favorite Parisian-style spot. Art-nouveau decor offers the ambiance of a French brasserie, and the manifique menu only deepens the immersion. When you visit, be sure not to pass up the quiche lorraine, merguez baguette (with savory Moroccan lamb sausage) or the crêpes that made them a local favorite. Naturally, you’ll also find some of the best pastries in town here, from croissants to pain au chocolat.

2850 El Cajon Blvd, San Diego, CA 92104


Harry’s Coffee Shop (13.1 miles away)

(Photo: @harryscoffeeshop)

As the awning out front proudly declares, Harry’s has been family-owned since 1960. One bite of their famous chicken fried steak and waffles, chocolate-chip pancakes, or eggs Benedict (with house-made hollandaise), and you’ll be able to taste the tradition. At Harry’s, the coffee is always hot and fresh, and the eggs crack as soon as dawn does. San Diego Magazine named Harry’s as San Diego’s Best Diner in 2018, so you know it’s great.

7545 Girard Ave, La Jolla, CA 92037


Blue Wave Bar & Grill (just steps away!)

We’d be remiss if we didn’t put in a hearty recommendation for our own Blue Wave Bar & Grill! It’s a great place to stop at any time of day, but breakfast has always been a particular draw here. Order favorites like avocado toast or short rib and eggs from our full menu, or dig into a custom omelet, always made fresh from local ingredients. Then relax and sip a little orange juice while you drink in the morning sunshine!  


Best Western Plus Island Palms is the Perfect Stay 

Best Western Plus Island Palms offers great rates, a convenient location, and lots of guest-friendly amenities for your trip to San Diego. Take a look at our Special Offers page to select the travel deal that’s right for you. And if you’re hungry, pay particular attention to our Breakfast Rate Offer. It includes complimentary morning meals for guests! 

(Top Photo: @hashhouseagogo)