They say it’s the most important meal of the day. Breakfast, which literally means to break the fast of the night before, has been posited to be immensely beneficial to your health beyond being tasty. Researchers at Harvard found evidence that links regularly eating breakfast with maintenance of a healthy weight and reducing risks of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. Logically, it makes sense that eating a well-rounded meal in the morning will help to curb hunger throughout the day, but it also can regulate your energy which helps cognitive function.

Now, to be fair, I’ve never really been one of those die-hard breakfast fans. I have been known to eat burritos or pizza upon waking in the morning, and it has taken me many years to come around to an appreciation for traditional breakfast foods. My husband, on the other hand, would eat breakfast three times a day if I didn’t fight him on it. When I mentioned that I was going to tour some of my favorite breakfast places for this article, his eyes glistened as if it was Christmas morning.

The hardest part of compiling this list is without a doubt the immense plethora of options from which to choose. I would wager that there are hundreds of places in this city where I could go to get a tasty breakfast. And Atlantans surely do love their brunch, don’t they? It’s not uncommon on the weekends to find that your favorite local restaurant might have a wait that’s an hour or more, and we all dutifully stand about until our table is ready, wistfully dreaming of fluffy pancakes and savory bacon.

For this piece, I opted to take a slightly more nuanced approach in deciding where to visit. While there are plenty of popular and impossibly hip restaurants to choose from, there are also some real gems that fly just under the radar. Listed below are five of my personal favorite – and in my opinion, underrated – diners and restaurants serving delectable breakfast foods.

Huevos Rancheros at Gato.
The Slam at Gato.

1660 McLendon Ave., NE, 30307
(404) 371-0889 or
Huevos Rancheros: Eggs, cheese, black beans, salsas, corn tortillas, cilantro and sour cream. 1/2 order $5, full order $9.50
The Slam: Duck fat potatoes, garlic confit, bacon cooked cheese eggs, ginger onion, cilantro sauce. $11.50

Scrambled Egg Pressed Panini at Sun In My Belly.

Sun in my Belly
2161 College Ave. NE, 30317
(404) 370-1088 or
Scrambled Egg Pressed Panini: Filled with hook cheddar and honey-glazed bacon on brioche. $10.95

Kav’s Omelette at Thumbs Up Diner.

Thumbs Up Diner
573 Edgewood Ave. SE, 30312
(404) 223-0690 or
Kav’s Omelette: Chopped veggie sausage, seasoned spuds, and cheddar jack cheese topped with pico de gallo & fresh herbs. $8.29

The C.B.C.B. at Rising Son.
Hashed Out at Rising Son.

Rising Son
(404) 600-5297 or
124 N. Avondale Road, Avondale Estates, 30002
Hashed Out: Sausage, bacon, onion, pickled jalapeno, pico, cheddar, sour cream. $11
C.B.C.B.: Fried chicken, bacon, cheddar, biscuit. $9

The Mediterranean Scramble at Java Jive.
Santa Fe Scramble at Java Jive.

Java Jive
(404) 876-6161 or
790 Ponce De Leon Ave. NE, 30306
Mediterranean Scramble: Portabello mushrooms, red peppers, spinach, sun dried tomatoes and feta, side of cheese grits and a biscuit. $10.50
Santa Fe Scramble: Spicy chorizo sausage, red peppers, onions, potatoes, cheddar, and a touch of salsa, biscuit on the side. $10.99

Isadora Pennington

Isadora Pennington is a freelance writer and photographer based in Atlanta. She is the editor of Sketchbook by Rough Draft, a weekly Arts newsletter.