Staff Picks | Pittsburgh’s best breakfast spots


Amaya Lobato | Staff Photographer

Gussy’s Bagels & Deli on Fifth Avenue.

By The Pitt News Staff

Maybe breakfast is not the most important meal of the day, especially when you have a 9 a.m. lecture you need to get to. Pancakes and OJ can wait when you’re trying to book it across Forbes to get to Cathy. But it’s nice to have some fluffy pastries and sweet fruit juice every now and then.

Pittsburgh, luckily, has plenty of breakfast spots and lovely coffee shops that students can visit to get their breakfast fix. We have plenty of suggestions, for whatever kind of day you’re having.

My lovely apartment // Diana Velasquez, Culture Editor 

Y’all, I can barely get out of bed some days to go to class, so it’s rare that I haul myself down to the local diner or the nearest Dunkin’ for breakfast. Most of my morning meals take place on my garishly red couch in my living room, or curled up in the sheets on my bed, doing my best not to spill PopTart crumbs everywhere.

There’s nothing that says “college student” like sleeping past noon and slumbering over to your fridge to pull out three-day leftovers to have those as breakfast. I’m an avid baker, and a couple days of the week I can get it together to make some muffins or lemon bars or some other sweet concoction made the night before so I have pastries for breakfast. But some days, I’m eating Cheez-Its out of a dented cardboard box. Days when I’ve, ahem, partied a little too hard the night before, it’s simply a trial to drink water. So yes, visit Pamela’s, and get together your cozy little hot chocolate and Einstein’s Bagel, but remember, too, the days when a graham cracker or the questionable tupperware pasta also suffice for a morning meal. 

Butterjoint // Julia DiPietro, Staff Writer

It’s time to talk about an underrated part of campus and what it brings to the table — North Oakland. While students are out and about on Forbes and Fifth, they walk around unaware of some amazing food places up yonder. Specifically, Butterjoint, located on North Craig Street. Here you will find some of the best breakfast sandwiches of your life — they’re made hot and ready to eat, along with vegetarian options. The coffee list is extensive, and I personally can vouch for their dirty chai lattes.

Besides the basic cafe offerings, there’s daily pastries, biscottis, cakes and pies available for those with a sweet tooth. While this isn’t a “breakfast” item, I’d eat their tiramisu cheesecake any day with my coffee. Not only is the food great, but the atmosphere alone is enough to pay a visit. Stop in during the morning and sit by the windows with your cup of coffee. It’s also a great spot to do homework and grab a bite in between classes. Not to mention the staff is always super sweet and the music played throughout the room never misses.

Butterjoint might be a little out of your way from the heart of campus, but it is definitely worth the trip if you love local coffee shops.

Einstein Bros. Bagels // Katelyn Kruszewski, Staff Writer

Some may call it basic, but there is nothing that can top a solid bagel. As a full-time student, I’m absolutely obsessed with bagels — they’re easily my favorite breakfast food. Bagels are quick, filling and tasty. If I’m not in class, you’ll find me at Einstein Bros. Bagels on my second bagel, studying all afternoon. It’s a nice on-campus dining option if you have a meal exchange, too, because you can use it to get a bagel and a medium drink or a breakfast sandwich with a medium drink.

My go-to is an everything bagel with onion and chive cream cheese and an iced coffee. The Einsteins on campus are fast, filling and super convenient if you have classes in Posvar or Benedum. It’s the perfect meal when you’re running late to an exam or you just don’t feel like cooking. Not an everything bagel person? The beautiful thing about Einstein is that the bagel possibilities are endless. I haven’t even mentioned coffee. If you need a good semi-sweet coffee fix in the afternoon try a hot vanilla coffee at Einstein for a nice pick me up. Einstein also offers a nice list of cold brews for cold coffee drinkers that are strong and sweet. 

Kaibur Coffee // Anoushka Parnerkar, For The Pitt News

There are few things in life better than a steamy breakfast sandwich and robust latte. Well, except for fluffy, house-made vegan donuts. Thankfully, Kaibur Coffee, a tiny brick-lined coffee shop on the corner of Dobson and Hancock in Polish Hill, regularly slings out both! At first glance, Kaibur Coffee appears as another one of the many homes lining the practically vertical street. But don’t be fooled — inside, this unassuming coffee shop hosts friendly faces, bright house plants and quirky Star Wars memorabilia. Besides their eccentric silver tables and cozy outdoor patio, Kaibur Coffee boasts a delicious breakfast that can be enjoyed by vegans and non-vegans alike.

From vegan breakfast sandwiches to homemade bagels, and donuts for those with a sweet tooth, there’s truly something for everyone. Their vegan donuts — especially the key lime pie flavor — hold a special place in my heart, but their vegan breakfast sandwich is out of this world. If you’re a coffee lover, don’t fret because they also hold some of the best sips in the ‘burgh. They source their beans from the award-winning Elixr Coffee roasters in Philadelphia and you can pair it with homemade syrups like honey cinnamon — my personal favorite — blueberry and lavender, among many others.