Everybody knows that weekend brunch cures the weekday blues, so head to one of these local greasy spoons the next chance you get.
Tucking into a steaming pile of pancakes is the best way to cure a hangover, celebrate a special occasion, or just make the most of those precious weekend hours. So whether you call western Michigan home or are planning to venture to the area soon, having a few top-notch breakfast and brunch spots in the back of your head is an absolute must.
Each of these 20 restaurants is considered the cream of the crop when it comes to breakfast foods in West Michigan. For your convenience, we divided the list into four regions: Traverse City, down the lakeshore (i.e., Ludington, Saugatuck, and South Haven), Grand Rapids, and Kalamazoo.
The Omelette Shoppe
What to Order: Eggs Benedict or cinnamon roll French toast
Address: 1209 E. Front St. & 124 Cass St.
With its yellow and green exterior nestled along Traverse City’s main street, The Omelette Shoppe is as charming as local gems get. Their meats are “never processed, antibiotic-free, hormone-free, all-natural, whole muscle, and slow roasted in house,” and they use local dairy, eggs, and produce. It can definitely get busy on weekends, but you can join the waitlist online. Plus, there are additional locations on Cass Street (in Traverse City) and in northeast Grand Rapids.
Red Spire Brunch House
What to Order: Salmon Benedict or apple cinnamon streusel French toast
Address: 800 Cottageview Drive, Suite 30
Red Spire Brunch House is all about “Classic American meals uniquely prepared with elegant simplicity,” according to its website, and the chefs have certainly mastered the delicate art of brunch. The cozy little place, located in a fancy and historic hospital that’s no longer in use, is quite popular, so reservations are recommended.
The Towne Plaza
What to Order: Eggs Benedict or pork belly
More than one Yelp reviewer claims The Towne Plaza has the best eggs Benedict they’ve ever tasted, and plenty of others say the food is more than worth the price. These folks take brunch seriously, as it’s the only meal they serve. (Note: They do not take reservations).
Cast Iron Kitchen
What to Order: Full House breakfast or corned beef hash
Address: 273 US 31 S.
Cast Iron Kitchen’s Traverse City location is praised for its excellent and friendly service, large portions, and cozy atmosphere. The Full House Breakfast—which includes three eggs, two pieces of bacon, two pieces of sausage, hash browns, and pancakes or toast—costs just $13.99, so this is the place to go if you want both your belly and wallet to be full afterward.
What to Order: Breakfast sandwiches or Boursin cheese omelet
Have you ever heard of a breakfast food truck? Well, now you have. Cracked is a mobile restaurant that serves the simple classics, like breakfast sandwiches, pancakes, and omelets. Because it’s often parked by the Traverse City Marina, it’s the perfect way to start your day outside. Follow their Facebook page to find out where they’re heading next.
Down the Lakeshore
Toast ‘N Jams
What to Order: Cinnamon roll pancakes or German omelet
Address: 211 Seminole Road, Norton Shores
Toast ‘N Jams in Norton Shores offers much more than just the ingredients in its name, but its menu is sweet and simple (with an entire gluten-free menu to match). Visitors love the creative, mid-century modern decor and little to no wait time.
Mr. B’s Pancake House
What to Order: Stuffed French toast or pancakes
Address: 1910 E Apple Ave., Muskegon
If you’re a fan of pancakes at any time of day, Mr. B’s Pancake House in Muskegon is where you’ll want to spend your Sunday. Although there are tons of classics on the menu, this restaurant is known for its build-your-own pancakes, with five types of batter (including gluten-free), six flavors, and four deluxe fillings to choose from.
What to Order: Breakfast tacos and/or mimosa flights
Address: 3065 Henry St., Muskegon
According to one Yelp reviewer, “The Brunch House is like having a little bit of the city’s fine dining in a small, coastal town.” The Muskegon spot offers trendy drinks (lavender hibiscus latte, anyone?), unique flavor pairings, and vegetarian and gluten-free options. There’s really something for everyone.
What to Order: Chicken biscuit sandwich
Address: 880 Holland St., Saugatuck
If you ever get a hankering for a Southern soul food breakfast, head to The Southerner in Saugatuck pronto. Serving the best fried chicken around, this beautifully decorated space with a view of the water is sure to impress any visitor. Come early, though, because it gets super busy.
Pennyroyal Cafe & Provisions
What to Order: Johnnycakes or smoked whitefish croissant
Address: 3319 Blue Star Highway, Saugatuck
Pennyroyal Cafe & Provisions is another Saugatuck breakfast gem. Its extensive menu includes produce from 13 local farms and vendors. Visitors say the food and ambiance (especially on the patio) are so good that it’s worth the long wait. However, there’s also a to-go window where you can get a delicious latte and baked goods in a jiffy.
What to Order: Creston scramble or breakfast pot pie
Address: 1747 Plainfield Ave.
When you’re hangry on a Sunday morning, why wait in a long line for brunch when you can join an online waitlist? That’s an option at Lucy’s, a popular brunch spot in Grand Rapids. Visitors say you can’t go wrong with anything on the menu, which includes plenty of vegan options.
What to Order: Brunch wrap and/or seasonal latte
Address: 570 Cesar E. Chavez Ave. SW
MudPenny is the ideal spot for Grand Rapids brunchers who also happen to be low-key coffee snobs. The trendy joint actually started as a coffee business and now has its own roastery in Boston Square, so the caffeinated beverages just might outshine some of the delicious food.
What to Order: Overnight oats and bread pudding French toast
Address: 95 Monroe Center St. NW
If you’re wandering around downtown Grand Rapids, you can’t miss the charming Littlebird restaurant with its bright orange patio seating and inviting atmosphere. The simple menu, which changes seasonally, includes vegan and gluten-free options and house-made ingredients.
What to Order: Love Me Tender or Teen Spirit waffles
Address: 43 Fulton St. W
Social Misfits is a welcoming and inclusive spot with a menu that’s divided into two sections: waffles and not waffles. Suffice it to say, this place makes some mean (and delightfully creative) waffles, but its coffee menu is also extensive, and all the syrups are crafted in-house.
Real Food Cafe
What to Order: French toast or eggs Benedict
Address: 3514 Plainfield Ave. & 2419 Eastern Ave.
Real Food Cafe definitely gives off that all-American diner feel, offering up all of the classic breakfast foods. Note: This is a cash-only restaurant and there is a split fee of $1 if you want to share your meal with your bestie.
76th Street Truck Stop Diner
What to Order: 2×4 Breakfast or blueberry pancakes
Address: 460 76th St. SW, Byron Center
The 76th Street Truck Stop Diner, which now has a second location nicknamed 76 West in Coopersville, was among Michigan’s Best’s “Top 10 Diners in all of Michigan,” so the word is out about this unassuming spot. Regulars praise the low prices, large space, and huge portions.
What to Order: Breakfast burrito and Master-at-Arms Scramble
Address: 816 South Westnedge Ave.
When you search Yelp for the best breakfast restaurants in Kalamazoo, Crow’s Nest comes in first place. People praise the eclectic decor, unique flavors, and vegan selections. Keep up with the restaurant’s Instagram to hear its monthly specials.
What to Order: Veggie black bean burger or vegan pancakes
Address: 312 W. Michigan Ave.
Studio Grill is consistently listed in the top lists for burgers and breakfasts in West Michigan, and it’s no surprise why. They offer unique burgers (including a blueberry burger), legitimately good vegan options, cheap food, and quick service.
Uncle Ernie’s Pancake House
What to Order: Country-fried steak or corned beef hash
Address: 4005 Portage Road
Uncle Ernie’s Pancake House has all your breakfast faves and more for an unbeatable price, and it’s conveniently located on the same exit as the airport—so it’s perfect for a pre-flight bite or your first visit upon arrival in Kalamazoo. Visitors go absolutely wild for the country-fried steak, so don’t even think about getting anything else.
LaRue’s Family Restaurant
What to Order: Hot turkey sandwich or classic breakfast
Address: 6375 Stadium Drive
The biggest pro to LaRue’s Family Restaurant is that it serves breakfast all day long, while the biggest con is that it’s cash-only. It’s a cozy diner that offers all the classics and has a host of devoted regulars.
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