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The Great All American Breakfast

Updated on September 19, 2014

American Breakfasts ARE AMAZING!!!

I am English, but I love love love American Breakfasts!

You may ask yourself, what right does an English person have to write about American breakfasts? Well this is an appreciation page, showing the breakfast dishes from a foreigner's point of view.

If you are American you should be flattered at my obsessive greed for your delicious biscuits, your hash browns and your enormous pancakes!

If you are English, read on to discover why America does the first meal of the day soooo well!

American breakfast
American breakfast | Source

Pancakes, Waffles and French Toast

Carb loading!

All these can be served with huge lumps of butter, syrup, fruit, whipped cream and/or powdered sugar.


Not like our delicate European crepes, these are made with a raising agent so they puff up. The chocolate ones are so good!

Americans love to mix sweet with savoury, so it is entirely normal to see chocolate pancakes served with bacon! I loved this! Look at this photo - blueberries with bacon and maple syrup, sounds gross but tastes scrumptious!

American Pancakes
American Pancakes | Source


Waffles are fantastic when freshly made, the batter is ladeled onto a "waffle iron" which gives them their distinctive shape. Waffles are especially tasty with Nutella, which goes all melty inside the waffle pockets.

International Waffle Day is celebrated on 25th March and the US National Waffle day is 24 August!

Waffles | Source

French Toast

In England we call this "Eggy Bread", but the best I have eaten has been the more elegantly named American French toast.

I think it is best when made on thick slices of fresh chalé bread served with maple syrup and bacon. I did a bit of research and the dish originated from Roman times!

French Toast
French Toast | Source

Eggs Cooked to Perfection!

Cooked any way you want them

Just as with the Full English Breakfast, you definitely need eggs with your All American Breakfast! The choices are fried, scrambled, poached, or an omelette. Sometimes you will see on a menu "Huevos Rancheros", which is a Mexican breakfast dish. This is comprised of fried eggs on a warm corn tortilla, smothered in hot salsa and refried beans - absolutely delicious!

Mmm...huevos rancheros
Mmm...huevos rancheros | Source
Sunny-side up and over-easy
Sunny-side up and over-easy | Source

Americans have many different ways of cooking their fried eggs, this got very confusing for me so I always had scrambled!

If an egg is "over", this means fried on both sides. You can have this "over cooked" (crispy), "over hard" (hard yolk), "over well" (solid yolk"), "over medium" (yolk is only just solid) or easy (yolk is runny).

Egg can also be cooked "sunny side up", which is fried on one side with a runny yolk and the white is still a little clear on the top.

Bacon | Source

Bacon, Burgers, Sausages and Ham

Meat = excellent breakfast

In the US, all bacon seems to be streaky, I never saw any back bacon anywhere. I adore the way bacon in America is cooked very crispy, English bacon tends to be cooked a little too under-done for my liking but I did miss a good rasher of back bacon. As well as bacon, you could mix it up with a few sausages, burger patty or ham. I always go for the bacon, because American sausages and ham are a bit too plastic tasting and burgers are for lunch!

Corned Beef Hash and Hash Browns

Corned beef hash- this dish is a combination of corned beef, potato, onions and seasoning. "Hash" comes from the French "hachet", meaning to cut up and traditionally meant using the leftovers from previous meals.

Corned beef hash recipes have been recorded from the 18 century, but really became popular during World War II. If you want to read more about the history of the dish, check out The Old Foodie.

Corned beef hash
Corned beef hash | Source

Hash browns - these are a fried mixture of onion, shredded/julienne potatoes and seasoning. Hash browns are my favourite part of an All American Breakfast!

A great tip I saw on Simply Recipes is to use a potato ricer to squeeze as much moisture out of the potatoes as possible - this will make them extra crispy. I shall have to try this recipe out.

Mmm... hash browns for breakfast
Mmm... hash browns for breakfast | Source
Tupelo Biscuits & Gravy
Tupelo Biscuits & Gravy | Source

Biscuits and Gravy

For someone who is English and not seen or eaten this before, it sounds disgusting. Biscuits are what we call cookies in England, and to eat a cookie with gravy would be weird! The American biscuit is more like what the English call a scone, it is made from flour, butter, milk and a raising agent. The thick white gravy is made from sausage or bacon fat, milk or buttermilk and flour - a wonderful homage to gravy can be found on the blog of the Homesick Texan.

I Don't Understand Grits - Sloppy white stuff or nutritious loveliness?

Cheese Grits
Cheese Grits | Source

I have tried grits once, and really didn't understand why this is such a big deal. I don't understand them! Reading this tongue in cheek blog post "The History of Grits" went some way in explaining their phenomen but I am still lost here. Are they meant to be sweet? Are they a bit like a corn version of oatmeal/porridge?

So, American people, please enlighten me on the why and the how of this mystery dish!

Grits are horrible! And here's why.....

Grits are horrible! And here's why.....

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    • anonymous 4 years ago

      I'm not from the south, so I don't really know. Cream of wheat is much better in my opinion.

    • anonymous 4 years ago

      Grits are nasty

    • ArtzykindofGuy 4 years ago

      I don't understand it either.

    • Normyo Yonormyo 4 years ago

      Because I do not like porridge for breakfast.

    • ismeedee 4 years ago

      Yeah, of all the things I've left behind, I've not given up on American breakfasts!! But I do eat lots of porridge too!! I miss Cream of wheat, which is far better than stodgy boring grits!

    Grits are great! And here's why....

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      • anonymous 3 years ago

        Grits are basically the American version of Italian polenta. They are delicious with cheese and if your eggs are bit runny, you can mix them if with your grits. Delicious!

      • Leah J. Hileman 3 years ago from East Berlin, PA, USA

        Grits are great. I never ate them in the northern states when growing up, but I discovered them in Arkansas while at university. They're best loaded with cracked black pepper and shredded sharp cheddar cheese.

      • Spirality 3 years ago

        I love all porridge type foods like grits, farina and oatmeal. It's hardy and filling. I prefer my grits sweet rather than cheesy or salty.

      • martingallagher 3 years ago

        You are right! Americans KNOW their food. And what a way to start the day! Awesome breakfast options. Just Yummy!

      • anonymous 3 years ago

        im from the south, i never eat grits sweet. in fact ive never heard of it. grits is just a carb staple like rice. most people eat grits in the morning but there are some dishes with grits that are suitable for other meal times, like shrimp and grits. general rule is, grits, butter, eggs for breakfast. if you don't like grits than its ok, i can't stand that oatmeal you northerners eat.

      What's On a Plate....the Hungry Man Special

      Served at Mike and Rhonda's Place, Flagstaff, AZ - so tasty!

      Choice of ham, bacon or sausages

      Three eggs

      Choice of biscuits and gravy, toast or pancakes

      All for less than $10!!

      (the portions are monster, I had 3 biscuits on my plate and a mound of bacon enough to feed an army!)

      Breakfast Burritos - Keeps you full till lunch!


      I think the breakfast burrito is the American equivalent to our breakfast sandwich in England. We have fried eggs, sausages and bacon in between two slices of bread. Americans have scrambled eggs, sausage, cheese, peppers, onion, beans and salsa wrapped up in a warm wheat tortilla. Of course there are variations on this, a fantastic looking recipe I found here on uses chorizo sausage and potatoes instead of beans.

      Breakfast burritos are popular in the South-west of America, and give a good spicy Mexican flavoured kick start to your day!


      Breakfast Wouldn't Be Complete Without Coffee! Americans love coffee

      Americans love coffee! I love the free re-fills too, we don't have that in the UK. Only problem is....American coffee is so weak. It just doesn't taste as good as European coffee. Also, I found it hard to get no fat milk or even just regular milk in some diners! It was cream or half and half (that is half milk and half cream), and asking for something else got me many a strange look.

      Do You Love an All American Breakfast?

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          Linda Lum 2 years ago from Washington State, USA

          I love breakfast--my favorite meal of the day--sometimes I eat "breakfast foods" for dinner. Give me crispy hash browns, bacon and an over easy egg any time. (By the way, I'm a Northern girl, so have to agree with you about the grits.) Thanks for a great hub.

        • Spirality profile image

          Spirality 3 years ago

          I love potatoes, whether they are home fries or hash browns it doesn't matter. Breakfast has always been my favorite meal of the day.

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          ConvenientCalendar 4 years ago

          Pancakes with chocolate chips!

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          LadyDuck 4 years ago

          I love the All American Breakfast, my favorite meal of all the day. Scrambled Eggs and French Toasts are my favorites.

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          anonymous 4 years ago

          A British correspondent at the recent Consumer Electronics Show was asked what his favorite thing at the show was replied "I Love the American Breakfast!" He's right though.

          Something you will never get in a restaurant, but is a tradition in the American South is honey and butter on hot American style biscuits. Mix equal amts together with a fork and apply liberally. So simple, but so good.

          BTW, Grits are as likely to be eaten by Americans as haggis would be by Scotts I would guess. That is, not all that likely.

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