By Nick Dekker
Posted On: Jul 12, 2021
In more than a decade of experience writing about food and travel across the Buckeye State, I've been fortunate to dig into plenty of memorable breakfasts, from towering stacks of pancakes, to breakfast sandwiches oozing with bacon and cheese, to platters of corned beef hash with perfect soft eggs on top.
Local restaurants all need our support more than ever these days, so Ohio's egg and bacon farmers are celebrating the Best Buckeye Breakfasts in Ohio, showcasing the state's favorite spots for the morning meal. There are so many to choose from, I wanted to highlight a few I've had the pleasure of trying in my travels!
Cravings Cafe in Columbus
Cravings is a little family-run cafe in downtown Columbus. They bake their own brioche and use it in sandwiches like the classic breakfast roll, the BLT with egg, or the tomato and egg. I also love their omelets, and occasionally they'll do bronuts: brioche donuts!
Early Birds Breakfast in St. Louisville
Talk about a destination breakfast! We first visited Early Birds on our way to Mohican State Park. It's a little roadside stop featuring really creative breakfasts, from lemon blueberry French toast to cheesy omelets with peppers.
The Lox Bagel Shop in Columbus
Another favorite in Columbus, The Lox makes everything from scratch. This includes the crusty wood-fired bagels, the cream cheese, the house-cured lox, the pastrami. My personal favorite is the pastrami – which positively falls apart it's so tender – on an everything bagel.
Tommy's Diner in Columbus
The classic family-run diner, decked out in checkered floors, vinyl booths, 50s memorabilia. Tommy's make the best Belgian waffle. Although I don't argue with a plate of over easy eggs, home fries, and sausage patties.
Schmucker's Restaurant in Toledo
Schmucker's is a Toledo institution, a family-run diner open since 1948. It's the ultimate roadside stop for comfort foods: meatloaf, mashed potatoes, hot turkey sandwiches. But don't forget hearty breakfasts like steak and eggs, biscuits and gravy, and creamed chipped beef on toast. And no one will judge you for having a slice of house-made pie for breakfast.
Front Porch Cafe in Hartville
We encountered Front Porch Cafe on a weekend trip to Hartville. Located in the old hardware store, Front Porch features terrific coffee, from cold brew to espresso to hot chocolates. And you can't go wrong with their breakfast: sandwiches on croissants, biscuits and gravy, avocado toast, chicken and waffles.
Lucky's Cafe in Cleveland
Regularly voted one of Cleveland's best breakfasts, Lucky's Cafe in the Tremont neighborhood stacks your plate high with cheddar scallion biscuits dowsed in sausage gravy, vanilla bean waffles, and the Shipwreck: a "blissful blend," as they call it, of hash browns, eggs, bacon, veggies, and cheddar. Absolutely do not miss their pecan bacon.
Slyman's Restaurant & Deli in Cleveland
The long-running Slyman's elevates corned beef to an artform. Sure, they make omelets and hotcakes, but you should really be ordering the corn beef, whether it's in a towering sandwich with egg and cheese on rye, or sliced up into some of the state's best corned beef hash.
Casa Nueva in Athens
Casa Nueva in Athens has long been at the forefront of sourcing local ingredients for their meals, as well as offering vegan and vegetarian options. They're known for breakfast burritos and enchiladas, scrambles loaded with eggs and black beans, and huevos rancheros.
Butter Cafe in Dayton
Butter Cafe is tucked into a little house, so its collection of rooms feels eclectic yet cozy. Their creative breakfasts range from omelets with mushrooms and caramelized onions to French toast and pancakes loaded with fruit, to spicy scrambles with chorizo or steak. We've found it's a great spot to fuel up before exploring the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force!
Sleepy Bee Cafe in Cincinnati
The warm and friendly Sleepy Bee Cafe has locations in downtown Cincinnati, Oakley, and Blue Ash. Their cafes buzz with activity, which is no surprise, given the great coffee and the crave-able breakfasts like breakfast sandwiches with goetta or thick-cut bacon, scrambles, and buttermilk pancakes.
Sugar N Spice in Cincinnati
The welcoming Sugar N Spice diner lines their walls with little rubber duckies. Slip into a pastel-colored booth and order up crispy thin pancakes, giant fluffy omelets, corned beef hash. Don’t miss that Cincinnati staple: goetta. Try it as part of the Slaughterhouse Five platter, along with a sausage link, pork patty, smoked sausage, and bacon!
Learn about other great breakfasts in Ohio, share your go-to stops, and even nominate your favorite business for grants at bestbuckeyebreakfasts.com. You can keep up with my own adventures at breakfastwithnick.com!