About this special series: While we ask our readers to pick the best of the best each year in more than 100 Best of New Hampshire categories, there are many other worthy and outstanding favorites for each category, ranging from pizza and cupcakes to garden centers and home décor shops. New Hampshire Magazine wants to make sure these reader favorites get their own moment in the spotlight and we encourage you to check them out.
Wake up this morning with a hankering for a sit-down breakfast? Or maybe just too lazy to chef yourself but want to start the day with a full stomach? Here’s where our readers recommend for the Granite State’s best breakfast spots, including flapjack connoisseurs, egg experts, omelet oligarchs and the most delicious a.m. spreads this side of the Mississippi (or at least the Connecticut).
Polly’s Pancake Parlor
672 Route 117, Sugar Hill
Polly’s is a Granite State must. With a winding, breathtaking drive up NH-117, the White Mountains looming in the background and that red-roofed barn inviting you in, the experience starts before you step in the door. And once inside, you better be ready to eat: stacks of flapjacks with an array of batters (including buckwheat, gingerbread, cornmeal and more) and add-ins (choco chips, blueberries, walnuts, coconut, etc.) have made Polly’s a beloved NH breakfast spot — but their menu doesn’t stop there. Also featuring waffles, French toast, eggs, sandwiches and other stick-to-your-ribs classics, eating at Polly’s feels like stopping at your grandma’s house for a homemade meal. Go get the real Granite State breakfast experience at Polly’s Pancake Parlor.
Locations in Bedford, Concord, Dover, Hooksett, Merrimack and New London
Looking for a quirky regional chain with locally-sourced ingredients? Look no further than Tucker’s. With six locations scattered across the state, you can find them in every corner of NH. Their menu strikes a fun, inventive balance; bennies and bowls chock-full of quinoa, sweet potatoes, avocado and other unexpected-but-delicious ingredients, and breakfast-lunch staples like French toast, pancakes, hashbrowns and BLTs, Tucker’s has a little something for everybody. Plus their green-and-white modern aesthetic puts out a good vibe, no matter what location you drop in.
More great NH stops for breakfast food:
Lou’s Restaurant & Bakery
30 S. Main St., Hanover
Nestled among the White Mountains, Lou’s has been holding down Hanover for over 75 years. With a beloved bakery serving up crullers and pastries and a menu offering brunch classics and Mexican-inspired fare alike, there’s a reason Lou’s is a western NH icon. Yogurt bowls, overnight oats, breakfast burritos, chicken and waffles, eggplant pesto sammies, salads up the wazoo and much more, you can’t go wrong stopping by Lou’s.
The Farmer’s Kitchen
444 NH-11, Farmington
The Farmer’s Kitchen doesn’t mess around. As their website states, the Farmington breakfast joint “boasts a hearty home cooked breakfast” pioneered by Duane White, a former Cheesecake Factory manager. Their homestyle cooking includes corn-cobb-smoked bacon, home-baked muffins, three-pepper sausage gravy, corned beef hash, baked beans and more. They also do sandwiches, burgers, salads and other classic lunch options. The Farmer’s Kitchen does it just like mom used to — for her sake, just don’t tell mom.
76 Lowell Rd., Hudson
A classic diner, Suzie’s interior deploys black-and-white checkered floors and swiveling bar seats. But they don’t settle for an average, everyday breakfast — Suzie’s takes the classics a step further. Steakhouse tips and eggs, lobster benedict, cinanmmon bun French toast, cannoli pancakes and more, their menu is an impressive smorgasbord expanding on tried-and-true staples. Stop by Suzie’s for a diner experience that takes things a step further.
The Sunrise Shack
644 White Mountain Highway, Glen
A laid-back roadside outpost first opened in the 1950s, the Sunrise Shack serves what they call “creative comfort food…proving that everything old is new again!” While just a drive-up window without indoor seating, the Shack now features outdoor biergarten seating for breakfast. They’ve got classic staples like loaded omelets, sandwiches and griddle foodstuffs, and innovative inventions like breakfast bowls and stuffed French toast. Breakfast fare meets street food, the Shack is a White Mountains gem.
The Red Arrow Diner
Locations in Concord, Londonderry, Manchester and Nashua
What hasn’t been said about the Red Arrow? If you’re from New Hampshire, you know the ins and outs by now — and if you’re from out of town, odds are you’ve heard of ’em anyways. The Red Arrow is a New Hampshire institution. With four locations now scattered across the Granite State, their original, 101-year-old, 24-hour diner sits on Elm Street in Manchester, host to countless coffees and conversations through the ages. While you can’t go wrong with breakfast — and there’s a lot to choose from — their chicken tenders are pretty revered, too. Pro tip: Get them with the house honey mustard to really knock your socks off.
240 N. Broadway, Salem
This Salem brunch spot sports a huge menu — with everything from eggs on breads and muffins and scones to scrambles and bennies and French toasts to salads and wraps and fritters, Maddie’s focuses on light, fresh breakfasts to start the day with a spring. Serving Salem the goods since 2007, Maddie’s is a locally-beloved spot with something for everyone.