Why settle for grabbing coffee and a croissant from a neighborhood bakery when there are so many options for a satisfying, sit-down brunch in Amsterdam?
Six Spots for a Super Brunch in the Dutch Capital
While Dutchies may start the day with havermout (oatmeal), hagelslag (chocolate sprinkles) on buttered toast, or a few slices of ontbijtkoeken (a gingerbread-like cake), there are plenty of options for hearty breakfast fare in Amsterdam. Numerous restaurants offer all-day brunch menus. Some take reservations, others have a first-come, first-served policy that can entail a significant wait if you arrive on a weekend at a popular time.
On most menus, you’ll find the usual suspects: eggs served poached, scrambled, fried and Benedict-style, offered with smoked salmon, bacon and sausage. Many include American pancakes—thicker and fluffier than pannekoken, their Dutch counterparts, which are typically eaten for lunch or dinner in the Netherlands.
Boozy pancakes! For those with a sweet tooth, G’s serves fluffy, American-style chocolate-chip pancakes dripping with chocolate sauce, alongside shots of syrup and Baileys.
As brunch has gained popularity in Amsterdam, some restaurants are taking a global approach. On numerous menus, international classics like American chicken and waffles, Israeli Shakshuka and Mexican Huevos Rancheros make an appearance. Alongside traditional egg dishes and granola bowls, exotic salads and inventive sandwiches also compete for menu space.
Alas, like many restaurants in the Dutch capital, brunch venues tend to be small, with dubious acoustics and mediocre service. So adjust your expectations, add a few Bloody Marys and Mimosas to the mix, and you have a recipe for a gezellig experience with friends. Whatever you’re craving for brunch, here are a half-dozen devilishly good spots to savor it in Amsterdam.
G’s Really Nice Place: A Boozy Brunch
G’s Bloody Selection includes the Bloody Limp, “a big ass Bloody Mary with tons of Ketel One vodka, garnished with shrimp.”
Self-described as “an eclectic hot mess of love, lust, hunger and thirst” with a not-so-secret love affair with brunch and Bloody Marys, G’s has two landlocked locations, in the Jordaan and De Pijp. Both are open Thursday through Sunday for limited hours; check the website for specific times. Reservations are highly recommended, but walk-ins are welcome.
G’s in the Jordaan is a cheery spot for a boozy brunch with friends. There’s also a G’s in De Pijp.
At both venues, tablecloths adorned with old-style comics set the stage for “Foreplay.” On this starter menu, choose from a classic poutine with French fries, melted cheese curds and gravy; fresh-shucked oysters; or G’s signature “brunch dip on crack,” a creamy blend of avocado, bacon and goat cheese, served warm with crunchy bread.
Move on to “The Main Act,” where brunch mainstays get a new twist. Along with classics like Eggs Benedict, Challah French Toast, and Caesar Salad topped with bacon and a poached egg, find such inventive dishes as Seoulful Eggs—two fried eggs with sticky Korean fried chicken, sesame mushrooms, spinach and kimchi—and the Dirty South, fried chicken and bacon atop cheddar waffles, served with sour cream and hot sauce.
G’s takes Eggs Benedict to the next level with a mound of smoked salmon and avocado.
The stars of G ‘s show are on the “Tipsy” menu, featuring more than a dozen Bloody Mary variations, including the “Bloody Ridiculous,” with such ludicrous toppings as fried chicken and bacon. Stay safer with a glass of Pimms or a Peach Mimosa. If calories don’t count, go for broke with G’s Bourbon-Peanut Butter Milkshake.
Combine brunch with a cruise on G’s Brunch Boat, a heated craft with a retractable roof that sails every weekend, rain or shine. The 90-minute adventures have no fixed route, so you’ll never know what you’ll see as the boat “goes with the flow” along Amsterdam’s canals. Food options are more limited than at G’s other locations, but your fare includes one tipsy drink and one sober one. Boarding is across from the Homomonument on the Keizersgracht.
Little Collins: Brunch with an Aussie Twist
One of Amsterdam’s most popular brunch spots started as an intimate De Pijp bistro named after Melbourne’s upscale Little Collins Street. In 2019, a second, larger venue opened in the Oud-West. Both locations offer brunch from 9am, as well as dinner on selected evenings. The original Little Collins operates with a walk-ins only policy; you can reserve a table at the Oud-West branch, which also offers small sharing plates in the afternoon.
Little Collins’ inventive Cilbir dish features a fried egg on flatbread, seasoned with chili butter, labneh and dill.
While the fare is a little different at Little Collins‘ two locations, one look at either menu might make you feel like you’ve taken a virtual trip Down Under. From the kimchi-gruyere scramble to fava bean hummus and black-bean mole with feta and corn salsa on a corn tortilla, you’ll find dishes offered nowhere else in Amsterdam.
For less adventurous eaters, Little Collins offers classic breakfast dishes like Peach Brioche Toast, a creamy bread pudding with lemon curd, goat’s cream and pecan praline, and Apple Crumble Porridge topped with apple and rhubarb compote. Add a Smoky Bloody Mary garnished with cucumber and chorizo to turn any breakfast into a boozy brunch.
Add some punch to your Little Collins brunch with a Smoky Bloody Mary, garnished with cucumber and chorizo.
Bakers & Roasters: New Zealand Meets Brazil
One of the first venues to take brunch seriously in Amsterdam has a backstory as sweet as the cakes and milkshakes it turns out: after falling for each other on a night out in West Hollywood, a Kiwi lad and a Brazilian boy conceived a restaurant that would blend their culinary cultures. The result is a New Zealand-style café serving classic brunch fare with spicy Central and South American accents.
B&R’s Huevos Rancheros: a crispy tortilla topped with Brazilian black beans, melted cheese, fried eggs, avocado, tomato salsa, jalapeños and sour cream.
Two B&R locations—in De Pijp and on Kadijksplein in Centrum—are open seven days a week, from 8:30am. Neither takes reservations, so arrive before 10am if you expect to get a seat without a wait, especially on weekends. On sunny days, the B&R on Kadijksplein is especially popular, with its large outdoor terrace, perfect for soaking up Amsterdam’s rare sun over a “Kiwi Brekkie,” Banana Nut Bread French Toast, or a stack of pancakes.
Baked aubergine stars in B&R’s Nadalisa’s Eggs, served with garlic-dill yogurt and pomegranate, pumpkin and sunflower seeds.
Both B&R venues offer the same eclectic menu, with traditional egg dishes alongside unexpected creations like Navajo Eggs, served with pulled pork, avocado, mango salsa and chipotle cream, and Nadalisa’s Eggs, starring poached eggs over aubergine purée. Granola and fruit bowls, salads sandwiches, and an array of cakes baked on-site round out the food selections. A cocktail menu includes the Feijoa Fix, made with a New Zealand fruit similar to guava or quince.
Staring at Jacob: A Big Apple Brunch
Taking its cues from the Big Apple, this New York-style brunch bar in Amsterdam’s Oud-West serves classic brunch fare in portions more typically found on the other side of the pond. Open daily from 9:30am, the spacious, canal-side venue is popular with locals, who come for hearty comfort food designed to please both carnivores and vegetarians. Staring at Jacob takes reservations, and you’ll be wise to make one if you aim to get a seat without a wait, even on a weekday.
With a nod to the Big Apple, Staring at Jacob serves that unlikely American classic: fried chicken with waffles and scrambled eggs.
The stars of the show include the Rosco, an unlikely combination of fried chicken alongside buttermilk waffles and scrambled eggs, and Banana Bread French Toast served with blueberries and maple syrup. For those who eschew animal products, the Mighty Vegan is a mighty mound of tofu scrambled with portobello mushrooms and other veggies. If you’re ready to wolf down some bacon and sausage with your pancakes, scrambled eggs and hash browns, order the All-Around Carnivore.
Make it a boozy brunch with a pitcher of Mimosas or Bloody Marys. If you’re craving more of the hair of the dog that bit you, other options include a full complement of G&T cocktails. While savoring it all, you might wonder about this café’s curious name. Check out its address for one clue to the mystery.
For hearty appetites, Jacob’s Benny comes sourdough toast layered with smoked bacon, poached eggs, hollandaise sauce and hash browns. Lekker!
The Breakfast Club: Breakfast All Day, Everyday
With five locations throughout Amsterdam (Bellamystraat in the Oud-West, Sloterdijk in Nieuw-West, Zuidas in South Amsterdam, Haarlemmerplein in Centrum, and Wibaustraat in Oost), The Breakfast Club has your cravings for eggs, pancakes, cereals, and killer sandwiches covered. Open daily from 8am, all locations offer all-day “City Breakfasts” from around the world: Mexican Huevos Rancheros, a full English fry-up, and an all-American stack of buttermilk pancakes slathered with berries and honeycomb butter.
Huevos Rancheros, Dutchie-style. It’s not the same dish served in Mexico, but The Breakfast Club makes an honest effort.
Meat-eaters can tuck into the Breakfast Burger topped with bacon, cheese, pickles and a fried egg, or the Breakfast Club Sandwich with pulled chicken and bacon. Other typical lunch fare includes grilled cheese sandwiches, avocado toast, and fish tacos.
All Breakfast Club locations but the one on Bellamystraat offer beer, wine and cocktails. Reservations for parties of six or more can be made by phone for the Sloterdijk and Zuidas locations; the others have a walk-in only policy.
The Avocado Show: Food Porn at its Finest
Is it art or is it food? The Avocado Show’s Mango Tango stars curry hummus and mango, with an avocado rose and black sesame seeds.
Since The Avocado Show debuted in De Pijp in 2017, visitors have been willing to wait for hours for eminently Instagrammable egg dishes, poké bowls, salads, burgers, and sweets, all starring sustainably-grown avocados. Fueled by social media buzz, the concept has expanded to a downtown branch on the Keizersgracht. There’s also a take-out boutique bordering Vondelpark with seating for a few customers on the restaurant’s signature pink velvet couches. A webshop proffers hoodies, t-shirts, and the inevitable cookbook.
All locations are open daily, but hours differ. Both the Keizersgracht branch and the take-out boutique are open in the evening. You can now book a table for The Avocado Show in De Pijp and Centrum. “We accept card payments only, so no cash. Maybe diamonds,” the website notes. You’ve been warned.
Fancy a poké bowl with an Asian twist? Order The Avocado Show’s Salamango, a ring of silky avocado filled with salmon, edamame, wakame, furikake, and sushi rice with mango or wasabi mayo.
Whether the food porn at The Avocado Show is as tasty as it looks is a subjective matter. But the camera always eats first when delicacies like the Mama Mango, a poké bowl ringed with avocado and filled with mango, edamame, pickled cucumber and sushi rice arrives at your table. For pancake lovers, the Sinner Stack comes with avocado, banana, blueberries and crispy bacon.
Green pancakes? Only at The Avocado Show, where the Sinner Stack comes with avocado, banana, blueberries and crispy bacon.
Even dessert and cocktails get a dose of the creamy green fruit at The Avocado Show. Finish your meal with peanut butter-avo ice cream, a sweet confection in a black cone. Wash it all down with an Avo-Daiquiri, Guaca-Mary or the Bravo Avo, a healthy blend of avocado, blueberries, raspberries, spinach and orange juice. Whatever your pleasure, just remember to take a picture before digging in.
With so many options for a satisfying breakfast in Amsterdam, there’s no need to settle for coffee and a croissant from a neighborhood bakery to fueI up for the day. Instead, grab a few friends and linger over your favorite egg dish, pancakes, waffles, or an international breakfast classic at any of the city’s popular brunch venues.
Brunch fare in Amsterdam includes many dishes without eggs, like this Staring at Jacob’s special with tender lamb chunks over mixed greens.
What’s your favorite spot for brunch in the Dutch capital? Share it with others in the comments below!