When you think of Memphis, you probably think of Elvis, taking in some blues on Beale Street, and enjoying some world-class barbeque.
You can do all that and more, but you should eat a good breakfast first. Here are some places where you can get one.
Read on to find out the best places for breakfast in Memphis Tennessee!
The Nine Best Spots for Breakfast in Memphis, Tennessee
496 Tennessee Street, Memphis, TN 38130 // 901-310-4341
By the Brewery is located at the corner of Tennessee and Butler Streets, across from the former Tennessee Brewing Company.
It serves full breakfasts, biscuits, muffins, fresh juices, and J Brooks coffee, which many say is the best in Memphis. There are several vegetarian and gluten-free items, and other menu items can be modified as either.
I enjoyed the Yogurt Bowl, which consists of Greek yogurt topped with locally made granola, fresh berries, and honey.
My friend had the Avocado Toasted “Egg in the Hole,” a sandwich melt with sauteed fresh spinach, mozzarella, tomato, avocado, and goat cheese on whole grain bread. I had a taste and it was as good as it sounds.
By the Brewery is open Tuesday through Sunday from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm. There’s limited street parking available, but the Main Street Trolley is only a block away. There’s indoor and patio seating and dogs are welcome on the patio.
Pro Tip: Walk across the street for an amazing view of Riverside Drive and the Mississippi River.
477 South Main Street, Memphis, TN 38103 // 901-701-7577
Hustle & Dough and Vice & Virtue are located in the lobby of the ARRIVE Memphis Hotel. Hustle & Dough serves breakfast items, and Vice & Virtue is a local artisan coffee roaster.
I tried the Avocado Toast because several regulars recommended it. It was a thick slice of sourdough bread with a large helping of avocado laced with chili-lemon butter and topped with fermented jalapenos and garlic pepitas.
It was every bit as tasty as everyone said it’d be. Try the Pistachio Raspberry Pastry or a muffin if you want something smaller.
All the coffees are excellent, but if you want to try something unusual, order a Bourbon Mocha. Vice & Virtue partnered with Blue Note Bourbon to create Bourbon Barrel-Aged Coffee by aging specialty-grade green coffee in Blue Note’s freshly emptied barrels. They combine it with steamed milk and mocha that they make in-house.
Hustle & Dough and Vice & Virtue are open daily from 7:00 am to 4:00 pm. There’s a small parking lot in the back of the hotel and limited parking on the street, but the Main Street Trolley stops just outside the hotel. Seating is available indoors and dogs are welcome in outdoor seating areas.
540 South Main Street, Memphis, TN 38103 // 901-526-5757
The Arcade is Memphis’ oldest café and was one of Elvis’ favorite hangouts. Arrive early, and you may be able to sit at his favorite table.
The original restaurant looks like a diner straight out of the 1950s. The restaurant expanded a few years ago, and the addition includes more seating and espresso and liquor bars.
You’ll find hearty breakfasts like Chicken & Waffles, Biscuits & Gravy, and signature dishes such as Sweet Potato and Chocolate Mudslide Pancakes.
For an extra kick to get your morning started, try a spiked milkshake like the Strawboozy, (Old Dominick Vodka, Smirnoff Iced Cake, and strawberry ice cream topped with cherry drizzle) or the Shake it Like the King (Irish cream, Blue Chair Bay Banana Rum, vanilla ice cream, and peanut butter).
The Arcade is open daily from 7:00 am to 3:00 pm. There’s no outside seating, but there are plenty of booths and tables indoors. Street parking is available and the Main Street Trolley stops nearby.
505 South Main Street, Memphis, TN 38103 // 901-405-4399
Bluff City Coffee & Bakery is in the South Main Arts District near the National Civil Rights Museum. It’s known for its freshly made espresso drinks, made with a combination of finely ground coffee beans from Central America, Indonesia, and South America.
Whether you order a Dark Roast, Americano, or one of their specialty blends, you’ll get a fresh cup of coffee instead of one poured from a pot sitting on a burner. They also offer many teas, fruit smoothies, and iced drinks.
Bluff City Coffee & Bakery serves freshly prepared breakfast sandwiches made with fluffy biscuits and a combination of sausage, chicken, ham, cheese, and egg. Healthy alternatives such as veggie and turkey sausage and egg whites are available for a small upcharge.
They also bake pastries such as chocolate and carrot cake muffins, cheese and cinnamon raisin bagels, and sun-dried tomato and feta croissants daily from scratch. Talk about the best breakfast in Memphis, Tennessee!
Bluff City Coffee & Bakery is open Monday through Saturday from 6:30 am to 1:00 pm and Sunday from 8:00 am to 1:00 pm. Indoor and outdoor seating is available and dogs are welcome. Parking is available in a lot beside the building and along the street. The Main Street Trolley also stops nearby.
492 South Main Street, Memphis, TN 38103 // (615) 891-1217
The Garden Brunch Café is new to the Memphis restaurant scene. It opened in early 2023 on South Main Street next to the National Civil Rights Museum.
The owners operated the café on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays in Nashville for many years, and it became so popular with residents that there was normally a two-hour wait to be seated.
They closed the Nashville location in 2020 due to COVID and storm damage, but Nashville’s loss is Memphis’s gain.
The new location is becoming popular with locals through word of mouth, and Nashville residents who were repeat customers also stop by when they visit Memphis.
Everything on the menu gets rave reviews from regulars. However, the standouts are the Banana Foster Pancakes, Butter Pecan Pancakes, Cinnamon Bun French Toast, and the Germantown, two sunny side up eggs topped with smoked salmon, sautéed organic spinach, cherry tomatoes, onions, homemade hollandaise sauce, and capers on an English muffin.
The Garden Brunch Café is open Friday through Sunday from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm, and the owners are considering adding Thursday. Seating is indoors only at tables or at the bar. There’s no parking, but the Main Street Trolley stops nearby.
Pro Tip: The Garden Brunch Café doesn’t take reservations. So, arrive early to minimize waiting time to be seated.
327 South Main Street, Memphis, TN 38103 // 901-512-5374
If you love waffles but eat a gluten-free diet, Bedrock Eats & Sweets is your “happy place.” You can order eggs, omelets, pancakes, French Toast, and Sammies, which are breakfast sandwiches made with biscuits. However, Bedrock Eats & Sweets is particularly known for its sweet and savory waffles and waffle sandwiches.
All items on the menu are gluten-free, and many are also vegan or dairy-free.
If you have a sweet tooth, try the Chocolate Peanut Butter, Crème Brulee, or Banana Pudding Waffles, or the S’Mores Waffle Sliders.
If savory is more to your liking, try the Brisket Waffle Benedict, Smokehouse Waffle, or a Monte Cristo Waffle Sandwich.
Bedrock Eats & Sweets is on South Main Street, a few blocks north of the Blues Hall of Fame Museum. It’s open Monday through Friday from 7:00 am to 3:00 pm and Saturday and Sunday from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm.
Indoor and outdoor seating is available. Parking is only available along the street, but the Main Street Trolley stops nearby.
Pro Tip: Bedrock Eats & Sweets makes many items with nuts and nut flour. So, alert the staff if you have a nut allergy.
670 Jefferson Avenue, Memphis, TN 38105 // 901-552-3168
Sunrise Memphis is known for its Sammies and serves breakfast bowls, omelets, French toast, pancakes, and breakfast tacos.
Regulars rave about their King Biscuit Bowl, an open-face biscuit topped with fried chicken, ham, and an over-easy egg smothered in gravy.
I enjoyed the McBetter, a sausage, egg, and American cheese Sammy, and my friend ordered the Rocky Mountain Omelet. Definitely one of the best breakfasts in Memphis, Tennessee.
It was chock full of ham, cheddar cheese, onions, mushrooms, and green peppers and topped with scallions. If you indulged too much the night before, order a Bloody Mary, and they’ll build it exactly how you like it.
Sunrise Memphis is open daily from 7:00 am to 2:00 pm. There’s a small parking lot and limited parking on the street.
Indoor and outdoor seating is available and dogs are welcome outside. Arrive early! The line was long when we arrived and was out the door when we left.
Peabody Hotel, 149 Union Avenue, Memphis, TN 38103 // 901-529-4000
If you want to splurge, make a brunch reservation at the Capriccio Grill in the Peabody Hotel. Appetizers include delicacies such as Sautéed Crab Cakes with Portabella and Cabbage Slaw and Fried Green Tomatoes with Deviled Pimento Eggs. Here’s why it has one of the best breakfasts in Memphis Tennessee.
Then you can select entrees such as a Crab and Crawfish Omelet with Onions and Peppers, Seared Shrimp with Grits, or Eggs Benedict With Smoked Salmon and Hollandaise Sauce.
The Capriccio Grill serves brunch from 11:30 am to 3:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday. The Peabody Hotel parking garage is reserved for guests, but there’s a public parking garage at 105 South 2nd Street. You may also get lucky and find a parking space along the street.
Pro Tip: The Peabody is famous for its ducks that swim in the lobby fountain during the day. They march from their “palace” on the hotel roof to the fountain at 11:00 am each morning.
If you want to watch them make their grand entrance, schedule your brunch reservation for 11:30 am or later and plan to arrive around 10:30 am to get a good seat.
966 South Cooper, Memphis, TN 38104 // 901-272-7111
The Beauty Shop looks like a ’50s-style beauty shop because it used to be one. One of their claims to fame is Priscilla Presley had her hair cut and styled here. There are hair-washing sinks at the bar, and the dining area has glass block dividers, stylist chairs, and beehive hairdryers that still work. Definitely one of the quirkiest spots for breakfast in Memphis Tennessee.
The Saturday brunch menu features Sammies, breakfast dishes, and a variety of sandwiches, burgers, and salads. Sunday’s brunch menu features a more extensive variety of breakfast items, such as Chicken and Waffles, Steak and Eggs, and Omelets.
I thoroughly enjoyed a stack of lemon ricotta pancakes with bacon and orange juice at one of the hair dryer tables. My other choice would have been the Challah Cinnamon French Toast. It was a difficult choice!
The Beauty Shop serves brunch from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm on Saturday and from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm on Sunday, and it always attracts a crowd. A line of people was waiting when we arrived, and every table was occupied when we left. So, reservations are strongly suggested.
Pro Tip: The Beauty Shop automatically adds a 20% service/gratuity fee to your bill regardless of the size of your party. So, be aware of that when you pay your bill.
Conclusion About the Best Breakfast in Memphis, Tennessee
You won’t be tempted to skip the best breakfast in Memphis, Tennessee, because there are many fabulous restaurants to try. Whether you want to start your day with a Southern favorite such as Biscuits and Gravy or Chicken & Waffles, try an innovative pancake, French toast, or waffle dish, or keep it healthy with yogurt, fruit, and granola, you’ll find it at these Memphis restaurants. Happy eating!
Visiting other destinations in Tennessee? Check out our other delicious guides:
Marni Patterson is a travel writer, photographer and videographer in Phoenix, AZ. She has lived and traveled extensively in the U.S. and Europe and is gradually making it to all the destinations on her “bucket list” in Asia/Pacific, Africa and South America. After years of writing web content and marketing materials in the high-tech industry, she’s applying her experience writing about software, cloud computing and cybersecurity services to promote destinations and provide travel tips.