Sometimes a Pop Tart and a cup of coffee just isn't enough to start the day. Fortunately, getting a quality breakfast — quick and on the go — around the D.C. area isn’t too difficult a task. A step above the fast-food game, these fast-casual restaurants serve up a wide variety of first-meal options ranging from omelets, muffins and yogurt bars to cheese-and-egg-stuffed tacos, breakfast calzones, doughnut sandwiches and more.Read More
Grab a Quick Breakfast at These Fast-Casual Destinations
Not everyone has time to sit down and linger.
1. Astro Doughnuts & Fried Chicken
VA 22043, Virginia
Breakfast is exclusive to the Falls Church location of this doughnut and fried chicken fast-casual restaurant. Served until 11 a.m. during the week and 3 p.m. on weekends, Astro’s breakfast consists of egg or fried chicken sandwiches served on potato rolls, savory doughnuts and now biscuits. The fried chicken breakfast option can be dressed up with hot sauce and honey butter, sausage gravy or one of five other sauces.
2. Best Buns Bread Company
The Shirlington bakery offers amusingly-named, made-to-order breakfast sandwiches every day until 11 a.m. Popular picks include the egg, ham and cheese Jen’s Rising Sun Croissant, David’s A.M. Drumroll with turkey sausage, fried egg and cheese and the Willing-No-Ham filled with bacon, cheese and a fried egg. Housemade steel cut oatmeal is also served all day.
3. Cava Grill
Arlington, VA 22202
A plane ticket is required to score Cava Grill’s breakfast as the area chain’s sole location serving morning meals is at Terminal B of Reagan National. The airport Cava features a yogurt bar, build-your-own-breakfast bowls and, of course, plenty of coffee.
4. Centrolina (Market)
The casual, market side of the Italian restaurant at CityCenterDC serves up a varied breakfast menu daily starting at 8 a.m. With traditional dishes like sausage and eggs, bagels and cream cheese and an oatmeal bar, Centrolina also features chocolate-espresso chia pudding and daily breakfast muffins including an olive oil option stuffed with a whole hard boiled egg.
5. District Taco (Multiple Locations)
With egg-, cheese- and potato-stuffed tacos and burritos along with huevos rancheros, District Taco keeps it going from open to close with all-day breakfast at all of its D.C. and Virginia locations. For those looking for lighter or meat-free options, egg white and veggie taco options are available, too.
The health-focused Hälsa offers a small breakfast menu featuring a variety of cuisines ranging from standard dishes like an egg sandwich, yogurt bowl and omelet to more global options like pho served with a poached egg and a huevos rancheros burrito.
7. Momofuku Milk Bar
Christina Tosi’s CityCenter bakery offers up three types of breakfast-suitable balls of stuffed dough called “bombs,” perfect for grab-and-go eating. Potato gratin, caramelized onion, pancetta, bacon and gruyere come together for the Volcano Bomb, a bagel version stuffs everything bagel-spiced dough with smoky bacon scallion cream cheese and finally, an egg and cheddar ball wraps more bagel dough around sriracha cream cheese and an egg omelet before getting topped with cheddar and Spanish onion.
8. Red Apron Butchery (Multiple Locations)
Washington, D.C. 20002
Both D.C. locations of the Neighborhood Restaurant Group butcher serve up the English muffin-like breakfast sandwiches called tigelle on the weekends but only on D Street are they available Monday through Friday as well. In addition to daily breakfast and an expanded tigelle lineup, the Penn Quarter Red Apron also offers pastries, yogurt and scrapple served with maple hot sauce.
9. Rito Loco
Two words: breakfast pupusas. Stuffed with peppers, onions, pork and cheese, Rito Loco’s pupusas are the star of the morning menu but the AM Rito – a burrito packed with seasoned scrambled eggs, cheesy pasta shells and pico – isn’t far behind.
10. Shake Shack
Shake Shack debuted its breakfast operation at Union Station last year with a trio of breakfast sandwiches. Served Monday through Friday, the morning menu consists of the traditional options of bacon, egg and sausage, the latter of which uses a special pork blend from famed New York City butcher Pat LaFrieda. A Shack-exclusive blend of Stumptown coffee is also available as well as Stumptown cold brew.
In keeping with the sandwich shop’s global concept, Sundevich’s all-day breakfast sandwiches are an international affair. Egg-filled options include the Mexico City with ham, avocado, tomato and chipotle butter, the Milan with pancetta, gorgonzola, arugula and garlic mayo and the Zurich with arugula, gruyere and apple compote. The eggless Oslo features smoked salmon, cream cheese, capers, red onion and tomato.
12. Taco Bamba
Rather than serve tacos, Victor Albisu’s street-style taqueria skips over its namesake with a small menu of other Mexican breakfast options. Available all day at Taco Bamba are egg-and-cheese stuffed enchiladas, chilaquiles, chorizo sopes, huevos rancheros and a tostada topped with chicken tinga, cheese and a fried egg.
13. The Brown Bag (Multiple Locations)
With no weekend service, Brown Bag’s breakfast is strictly for the work week. Its lineup includes a wide variety of sandwiches from panini and wraps to bagels and croissants. Also on the menu: a bacon, egg and homefries breakfast as well as five different omelets.
Even day-old, cold pizza at breakfast is still pretty good. But hot breakfast pizza is always better. Pizzeria Paradiso’ fast-casual spot, Veloce, knows this and serves up a trio of personal-sized, scrambled egg-topped breakfast pies plus the option to custom build a pizza. Bonus: two calzones and a smoked salmon “pocket” are also available.