Encacahuatadas and Lonche de Pancita at PalReal

17 Best Breakfasts in Guadalajara: Breakfast & Brunch Restaurants

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Finding great breakfasts in Guadalajara is not that hard. The city has a great mix of classic Mexican fare as well as some excellent international options.

Just be aware that actually getting a great breakfast can be chaotic. It is important to remember that Guadalajara is a huge metropolitan area and many of the best breakfast restaurants are small businesses with limited capacity.

It isn’t as bad as Mexico City but if you get up late on the weekend you will find yourself waiting for hours at the hottest restaurants. Try to get an early start or send someone to put your name on the list and see what the wait is like.

These restaurants are hot and serve some of the best breakfasts in Guadalajara.

I am always down to try a new restaurant so I’d love to hear about your favorite breakfasts in Guadalajara.

Best Breakfast Restaurants In Guadalajara

This is what I consider to be the best breakfast in Guadalajara from hip & trendy to downhome Mexican cooking like grandma used to make.

1. palReal Café

Encacahuatadas and Lonche de Pancita at PalReal
Encacahuatadas and Lonche de Pancita at PalReal

palReal isn’t just the best breakfast in Guadalajara it is one of the best restaurants in Mexico. Between the innovative kitchen, amazing coffee program, and stylish decor, everyone comes to love palReal.

Chef Fabian Delgado has also built one of Guadalajara’s favorite kitchens. What started out as a breakfast-only endeavor has grown into an exciting lunch and dinner affair.

More than anything, I love the community of people that hang out at palReal. The managers and servers are awesome people. I have met famous chefs and really interesting pillars of Guadalajara society just waiting for a table on a Saturday morning. Even the purveyors are treated like partners and throw their holiday parties at the restaurant.

Expect well-educated servers, carefully sourced ingredients, and baristas who compete in the national competitions; it is a well-balanced experience. There are a few things that you absolutely have to try. The lonche de pancita is arguably the best sandwich in town. The encacahuatadas breakfast dish is to die for, and the taco menu tacos is EXCELLENT! Make sure to go a couple of times and buy a couple of bags of coffee to take home.

2. RinTinTin Café

RinTinTin is a cult favorite that is kind of under the radar. The owner has one of the best social media presences in Guadalajara and I constantly run into publications of major celebrities like Gael Garcia Bernal and Alan Estrada (Alan X El Mundo) raving about the place.

Besides the design and marketing, the food is designed for foodies. Everything is delicious and there is a level of nostalgia in the homemade pop-tarts. The cinnamon rolls are some of the best in the city and the chilaquiles are one of my staples. Oh yeah, and there is seriously delicious coffee.

3. Mercado de Abastos

Birria, menudo, carne asadas; under one roof you have a concentration of small vendors that represent local ingredients and recipes of Jalisco.

The decor may be a little rough around the edges but the food is exceptional and there is always something new to try.

Mercado San Juan de Dios is for the tourists and Mercado de Abastos is for the chefs. Every time I go to Mercado de Abastos early in the morning I run into someone heavy in the Guadalajara food scene buying food for their restaurant and getting something to eat. Chef Paco Ruano’s Instagram profile picture for two years was taken a Menudería Chela’s place.

It is hard to go wrong so take a lap and see what looks good. Don’t be intimidated by a long line. That is actually a good sign.

4. Los Yuntaites

Los Yunaites Restaurant in the Centenario Market, Guadalajara

Chef Fabian Delgado of palReal fame opened Los Yunaites in the Centenario Market just blocks from where he grew up.

His business partner, a close personal friend, is from the town of San José de Gracia on the far side of Lake Chapala right where the State of Michoacan begins. The area is famous for cheeses and migrant farmworkers who would seasonally travel to the United States. Those migrants are affectionately called Los Yunaites.

The name of the restaurant roughly translates to concoctions from the villages. They are looking for unique and gourmet experiences that don’t often make it into the city. People in the country have access to different types of foods and flavors that industrial agriculture overlooks.

Eating at Los Yunaites is like taking a trip to the pueblos without leaving the city. There are country-style, artisanal ingredients, and recipes that people in the city don’t see very often.

The cumin-flavored mole is a family recipe from Tequila, Jalisco. The tortillas come from a Mazahua community that grows heirloom varietals. The encotijada with huitlacoche is like an enchilada but with a salty and creamy Cotija cheese sauce rather than a chile sauce. I

t is typical of the pueblos around, you guessed it, Cotija, Michoacán, the place that’s famous for cheese.

Los Yuntaites is an absolutely quintessential Mexican culinary experience that you have to check out while in the area.

5. Boulangerie Central

As the name would suggest, Boulangerie Central is a French-style bistro with excellent wheat flour bread and French sauces.

The French toast is exceptional, there are a couple of exciting hollandaise dishes and your staple Mexican breakfasts.

Make sure to come early on the weekends because this place is busy.

They recently opened a second location in Chapalita that is killing it as well.

6. Pata de Elefante

Pata de Elefante has taken Guadalajara by storm. They find older houses and remodel them into comfortable medium-sized restaurants with indoor/outdoor seating. As the name would imply, there are lots of plants including elephant’s ears.

The menu is hipster/healthy with plenty of smoothie bowls, oatmeals, and waffles. I will order the chilaquiles without hesitation.

I think that Pata de Elefante is a really good option when you have friends coming in from out of town and there are a lot of people eating. It is easy for everyone to find something they love and you won’t have to wait 2 hours for a table for 8 people.

7. Cafeto & Jardin Cafeto

Cafeto and Jardín Cafeto both come from the same place but have grown into very different concepts. You can find them all over town in both high-end neighborhoods and middle-class enclaves.

The first time I wrote this article I forgot to include them. The last time I went there I remembered what a great breakfast concept they have. The food is really good and they hire nice people.

I love chilaquiles and Cafeto has some of my favorite sauces. I get a half-and-half order of the chipotle and poblano sauces with an extra of the salsa Jalisco. The salsa Jalisco is so spicy that I can’t eat an entire order of it but I love it as a compliment.

My wife always gets the molletes and they have dozens of different options and are willing to mix and match.

I have been to three different locations and find the food and service to always be good.

8. Ohlala! Panaderia Bistrot

Ohlala is another one of Guadalajara’s favorite institutions that started out as a humble bakery. If you have spent any time in Guadalajara at all, it is likely you have eaten the bread served at many of the top restaurants. Most of their restaurants also have a small to-go shop where they just sell bread and jams.

I really love the locations they have moved into. Guadalajara has lovely weather and they always take advantage of the outdoor patio.

The other thing that I love about Ohlala! is the way they mix Mexican flavors with French techniques. They make good omelets but the chile verde really makes it great.

Flor de calabasa chilaquiles and red xoconostle chileaquiles show that the whole franco-mexicano concept really works.

My parents absolutely adore the Chapalita location.

9. Neretta Café & Gelato

For the longest time, I just thought of Neretta as a coffee shop. Their original location in the Colonia Americana has one of the best espressos in Guadalajara and some darn good gelato.

When they moved into Chapalita I realized that they found an excellent chef to bring the experience full circle. I’m not sure if you have noticed but my best breakfast recommendations usually have some top-notch coffee. I think it is an integral part of the first meal of the day.

The breakfast menu has the standard classics but there is also some adventure waiting to happen. Smoked trout from Michoacan with skillet eggs, what??!!

I will always stop here for an espresso and a flat white but I was thrilled to actually eat here for the first time. I think you are going to enjoy it.

10. Café Tenango

I have known the owner of Tenango for close to ten years now and it has been a pleasure to watch him develop his own culinary style. He is one of the few certified coffee tasters in town but he is also a sommelier and Mexican food lover.

The menu at Tenango is homestyle Mexican and the specials change every week. This is one of the best places to go for authentic Mexican dishes like your grandmother used to make.

You can expect exceptional coffee in all the different methods in a cozy atmosphere. I think that Tenango is a quintessential Colonia Americana option that you should check out.

Menudo is a dish that I did not eat often in the United States because I didn’t know where to buy it. A friend would make homemade menudo for special occasions like birthdays and baptisms but every time I would order it in a restaurant I was left feeling unsatisfied. Now that I have been living in Mexico for a significant period of time, I know the difference between a spectacular bowl of menudo and an average one.

The dish may be difficult for many people to try because of preconceived notions about ingredients they have never tasted. It is made with the intestinal tract of the animal and the texture is soft. I think that one of the defining characteristics of Mexican food is the ability to take what many developed countries consider to be less-than-desirable ingredients and make something absolutely delicious.

If you are a little hesitant to eat intestine, try ordering just a broth and fixing it up with onion, chile, and lime. There is a good chance you will fall in love and order it again and again.

A hot bowl of menudo in Mercado de Abastos, Guadalajara

Calle 2 4-202, Mercado de Abastos, Guadalajara // Instagram

The sign reads, “Traveler who came to Guadalajara and didn’t come to Chela, didn’t come to Guadalajara”.

This humble restaurant hidden inside Mercado de Abastos is iconic and has served some of Mexico’s most famous people.

It is decorated with pictures of the matriarch with presidents, musicians, and pillars of industry. And not just your average run-of-the-mill musicians. I’m talking about the one and only Don Vicente Fernandez. Not only is that man one of Mexico’s most treasured recording artists but he knows how to eat.

She is pictured with former president and middle-aged heartthrob Enrique Peña Nieto. Then there is Emilio Azcárraga, owner of Televisa and backer of one of San Diego’s favorite restaurant groups. These people, pillars of society, know good food and Doña Chela is the godmother of menudo in Guadalajara.

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12. Menudería y Cenaduria La Estancia

Avenida Guadalupe 5085, Jardines del Tepeyac, Zapopan // Instagram

This is a newer restaurant that has really taken the neighborhood by storm. It is popular with both locals and visitors alike. Driving by on the weekend will show a team of valet parking attendants running to fetch cars.

The architecture is kind of funny because it is a mid-century mansion with a ten-story tower on either side. They are like the last holdout on the block that hasn’t built a tower. And even though the dining area has been remodeled with a modern style, looking into the kitchen reveals some original retro details. The family never left. They just converted the ground floor into a restaurant and moved upstairs.

I was really impressed with the menudo, the pozole, and the fried blue corn quesadillas. It was my first time having beef tongue in a menudo but it was a great complement to the tripe.

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13. Menudería La Familia de Doña Jose

Avenida Xochitl 4593, Prados Tepeyac, Zapopan

Located across the street from the UNIVA university on the culinary corador that is Avenida Xotchitl, this place is packed on the weekends. They serve very affordable food including eggs, chilaquiles, and quesadillas. The fried quesadillas with squash blossoms are always a great way to start you day.

As much as I love the menudo here, I can’t finish a plate of eggs and a bowl of menudo. I usually order a plate of scrambled eggs with bacon with is served with a small order of chilaquiles and refried beans. However, I like to start with just a menudo broth that I prepare with chile, lime, and oregano.

Not always, but a big line out in front of a restaurant on a Sunday morning is a pretty good sign that the restaurant is worth a look. If you happen to be near the UNIVA than you should give Menuderia La Familia de Doña José a look.

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14. Menudería y Carnes Asadas Alfonso

Avenida Mandarina L1, Comercial Abastos, Guadalajara

This is where I fell in love with menudo. When I moved to Mexico for grad school in 2009 I lived a few blocks away in the Jardines del Bosque neighborhood. I would come walking most days. The first couple of days I went shopping in the market I was intimidated by the long lines of people at Alfonso’s place. One day, Alfonso’s nephew who was working as the manager asked me if he could find me a place at the bar. Somebody just happened to be leaving and I got a seat in front of the tortilla lady. I think those tortillas and menudo changed my life.

There are still many of the original employees who have worked there since 2009. This is a special restaurant inside a special market. People who work in the food and beverage industry from all over the region come to Mercado de Abastos to eat at Menuderia and Carne Asadas Alfonso and so should you.

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Best Birria Restaurants In Guadalajara

Birria is typically a breakfast dish and most birrierías close early in the day. The birria in Mercado de Abastos is usually sold out by 1pm on a busy Saturday or Sunday.

15. Birriería Chololo

Multiple Locations // Facebook

Birriería Chololo is an iconic Guadalajara restaurant.

One of Guadalajara’s most treasured institutions. The original brick-and-mortar location is in Tlaquepaque and the Hacienda is just past the airport on the highway to Chapala. All goat meat, nothing modern. It is awesome to see those huge clay ovens still churning out my favorite local food. Here is a list of some other great birria restaurants.

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16. Plaza de las 9 Esquinas

Plaza de las 9 Esquinas in Guadalajara

Calle Galeana 379, Zona Centro, Guadalajara // Instagram

The Plaza de las Nueva Esquinas is not a restaurant but a plaza surrounded by a number of traditional restaurants and cantinas. The plaza is famous for excellent birria and pitayas (cactus fruit). Before there was a fountain in the plaza, there was a watering hole for mules and cantinas for mule drivers. This is where they would both come to drink before and after traveling.

Birrieria de las 9 Esquinas is probably the most photogenic of the restaurants with an art deco exterior and open kitchen with Talavera tiles on the inside.

Next to the Birrieria de la 9 Esquinas is the Pilon de los Arrieros Restaurant. The name is a reference to the history of the plaza. The food at the Pilón de los Arrieros is excellent and the atmosphere is beautifully decorated with local artwork that looks like it was taken from Tlaquepaque.

The Plaza de las 9 Esquinas is in Downtown Guadalajara and a marvelous place to start a walking tour of the historic core.

17. Los Chilaquiles

Multiple Locations // Facebook

What I love about Los Chilaquiles is the emphasis that they put on ranch-style food. They buy most of their ingredients from local producers in the ranches surrounding Guadalajara.

The family that owns and operates Los Chilaquiles comes from a small town called San Miguel de Cuyutlán and many of their recipes are from that part of Jalisco. Make sure to try the nata (milk fat), some gorditas, and an order of the birria.

This birria is a mixture of beef and pork so it is a little different than most of the birria you will find in Guadalajara.

Final Thoughts On The Best Breakfasts In Guadalajara

One of the reasons that I started writing a blog was to look back and remember some great culinary experiences. Guadalajara is an exceptional place to try some exceptional food. Chances are that most travelers will be able to find something that is new and unique to them.

I hope you found something interesting on this list or maybe it just made you hungry 🙂 Buen provecho amigos.

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