This blog post was originally posted on November 7, 2018 and was updated on October 16, 2020.
The best breakfast in Lisbon isn’t particularly flashy, but it is undeniably comforting and delicious.
When it comes to breakfast, the Portuguese do it right.
Until the last couple of years, the best breakfast in Lisbon generally consisted of the simple trifecta of coffee, orange juice, and a baked good, like toasted bread or a pastry. Now, it’s normal for locals to shake up their first meal of the day with extras like granola, muesli, pancakes, and/or fruit with yogurt. No matter which option you choose, you’re sure to start your day off on a delicious note.
The following are a few different places where you can enjoy a wonderful breakfast in Lisbon and tips on what to order when you get there.
What to drink while having breakfast in Lisbon
Just a quick tip: coffee is practically a must with breakfast (but tea or juice is okay too). During the day, you’ll see the locals sitting at a terrace or a café counter and sipping a black espresso (café). Breakfast, however, is when they’re likely to drink coffee with milk.
The two most popular combinations are a galão (espresso in a tall glass that’s filled with hot, foamed milk) or a meia de leite (served in a smaller glass with equal portions of coffee and milk).
READ MORE: How to Order Coffee in Portugal Like a Local
Where to find the best breakfast in Lisbon
1. Pastelaria Batalha
This cozy spot adds a few twists to traditional Portuguese breakfast with options for practically everyone. We suggest trying the toasted ham & cheese sandwich (tosta mista), a croissant, or a bean tart (pastel de feijão) with your coffee for a classic way to start the day.
Local tip: If you want to learn how to make pastéis de nata at home (and who doesn’t?), Pastelaria Batalha hosts a workshop class available in Portuguese, English, Spanish and French.
2. Maria Limão Brunches, Crepes, e Limonadas
Compared to the centuries-old pastry shops and cafes throughout the city, relative newcomer Maria Limão is a toddler in Lisbon’s breakfast scene. But the bright, cheery café in Graça—which started as a lemonade cart at one of Lisbon’s many miradouros—is quickly giving the age-old standbys a run for their money.
The cafe is designed entirely around its famous lemonades, and they have a few different kinds made with several delicious fruits. But their breakfast and brunch options are the unexpected show-stealers here. Their homemade crepes (with your choice of sweet or savory toppings) are just the beginning, and their poffertjes (Dutch-style mini pancakes) make for a perfectly delicious—and Instagrammable—start to your day.
The menu includes gluten-free and vegetarian options, which we love—and then there’s the view. Maria Limão is perched halfway up one of Lisbon’s hills, offering fantastic views of the Tagus River as you eat.
3. Pastelaria Alfama Doce
Next up, we have the hidden gem that is Pastelaria Alfama Doce (Rua da Regueira, 39) tucked away in Alfama‘s maze of alleyways.
Don’t be deterred by its small and unassuming facade, or the group of local regulars milling about by the entrance. Inside, you’ll find a traditional Portuguese café with a glass-covered counter filled with mouthwatering pastries and bread.
Not sure what you’re looking at? The Portuguese love their pastries but don’t always label them, so feel free to ask the staff for help.
4. Confeitaria Nacional
How do you like a side of history and charm with breakfast? Not only is Confeitaria Nacional one of the best spots in town for pastéis de nata, but it is also one of Lisbon’s oldest and most beautiful pastry shops.
Visit during the week for a chance to sit down inside, and sink your teeth into a medley of Portuguese pastries. It is located in the bustling Praça da Figueira, so you’ll be ready to jump into sightseeing right after savoring the last delicious crumb.
5. Early Birds Lisbon
Ironically, Early Birds Lisbon is not only a place for early risers because it’s open well into the afternoon from Wednesday through Sunday.
Avocado toast, banana bread, French toast, and three fantastic brunch options are just a few of the many treats on the menu. It’s also a great place for families, with a special kids’ menu (what kid wouldn’t want to order the “Peppa Pig set”?) and a play corner for the little ones.
Early Birds Lisbon is also pet friendly. Why not bring your fur baby and sit in their secret garden while enjoying a delicious breakfast?
Start your day with a hearty, delicious traditional Portuguese breakfast when you join us on our Tastes & Traditions of Lisbon Tour. That’s just stop #1 on a morning full of gastronomic delights that will take you off the beaten path and into the cafes, shops, bars and restaurants locals know and love!
Nina is an American-Portuguese travel writer who bounces between Madrid, Lisbon, and central Portugal. When she isn’t writing or adventuring, she likes to visit local restaurants and snack on as many Portuguese and Spanish treats as she can.