A traditional Israeli breakfast is varied and substantial, and something that is loved by tourists and locals alike. Breakfast/brunch happens to be one of my favorite meals, day or night, so here is a selection of my favorite brunch spots in and around Jerusalem. While hotel breakfast buffets offer the most variety, they are often very costly and the setting lacks intimacy, so I prefer to go for more interesting locations.
Here is a list of my top 10 favorite places for breakfast in and around Jerusalem:
- Atalya (Not Kosher)
If you are looking for a unique culinary experience, Friday brunch at Atalya in Ein Kerem takes things to a whole new level. Atalya Ein Mor hosts brunch from her family home with breath-taking views. The buffet changes each week but normally includes fresh bread, shakshuka, quiche, cheeses, dips and salads, as well as a wonderful selection of her famous cakes. The brunch is limited to 20 people each week and requires booking several weeks in advance. Atalya’s home is not kosher but the brunch is entirely dairy, click here for a full review.
Atalya, 9 Ein Kerem Street, +972 52 475 5167, NIS 165 per person
- Villa Brown (Tzohar)
Part of the charm of sitting in the beautiful courtyard at Villa Brown is how quiet it is so close to the city center. The brunch menu was created by Chef Meir Adoni and includes a choice of one main dish (omelette, burekas, green shakshuka) and unlimited refills on the delicious dips, unique salads, fresh pastries and drinks.
- Derech Hagefen
Hidden inside scenic Moshav Beit Zeit, 20 minutes outside of Jerusalem, Derech Hagefen is set in a picturesque garden center surrounded by tranquil fish ponds and beautiful foliage. The breakfast menu includes a variety of dishes, including shakshuka, French toast, Eggs Benedict, vegan breakfast and more. Breakfast is only served until 12 noon (even on Friday) and on Fridays, they only allow advance booking for groups of four and over. Derech Hagefen is also a wonderful place for lunch and dinners, with a varied dairy menu.
Derech Hagefen, 1 Derech Hagefen Street, Moshav Beit Zeit, +972 2 650 2044
- Cafe Hamamat HaSachlavim (Tzohar)
Cafe Hamamat HaSachlavim is a beautiful café housed inside an orchid greenhouse, close to the entrance of Kibbutz Ma’ale HaHamisha. The breakfast menu includes traditional dishes like shakshuka and croissant sandwiches, but also more unique dishes from the taboon oven, including my favorite dish, Egg in the Nest, fried eggs served on top of focaccia bread, covered with a mushroom, coconut milk and pecorino sauce.
CafeHamamat HaSachlavim, Kibbutz Ma’ale HaHamisha, +972 2 534 7500
- Meshek Ofaimme (Tzohar)
Meshek Ofaimme is a farm-to-table café with food from Ofaimme farm, an organic farm for sustainable agriculture in the Negev Desert. The breakfast menu includes a choice of three shakshuka, baked eggplant, muesli and a traditional Israeli breakfast for two. My favorite is the Farmer’s Breakfast which is two fried eggs served with roasted potatoes, onions, spinach and tomato, along with fresh cheese and mild harissa.
The café is located inside Hansen House, a former leper colony that is now a center for art and design. The adjacent farm shop sells cheeses, eggs, vegetables, sourdough, olive oil, honey, spreads, jams, pastries and other farm produce.
Meshek Ofaimme, 14 Gedalyahu Alon Street, +972 2 940 8980
- Cafe Naadi
One of the most popular cafes in Jerusalem, Cafe Naadi is known for its fresh and creative salads, as well as various breakfast options. I particularly love the Yum Salad, made from bulgur wheat, lettuce, cranberries, sprouts, sauteed mushrooms and Parmesan, served with harissa and yogurt on the side.
The café is located in the city center, on the corner of a pedestrian street, allowing for a large area of outdoor seating, although it will soon be relocating to a larger site at the bottom of Hillel Street.
- Menza (Not Kosher)
Although Menza is popular in the evening, I personally prefer the daytime menu including classic dishes like Eggs Benedict and Croque Monsieur. The restaurant has a diner-style décor, as well as outdoor seating.
Menza, 10 Bezalel Street, +972 2 625 5222
- Cafe Bezalel (Not Kosher)
During the week this tiny café is filled with students from the nearby Bezalel art school and at the weekend it is a popular café for locals to while away the day. The limited menu at Cafe Bezalel offers traditional Israeli breakfast and shakshuka, as well as more unusual breakfast options like a croissant filled with Gouda and Croque Madame (served with smoked goose instead of bacon). The coffee is also really nice and strong!
Cafe Bezalel, 8 Bezalel Street, +972 2 625 9164
- Grand Cafe
A cross between a French patisserie and a high-end New York diner, Grand Cafe, in the heart of the Baka neighborhood, has a varied selection of breakfast and brunch options, including pancakes, Eggs Benedict, shakshuka and traditional Israeli breakfast.
- Cafe Nocturno
The inside seating area at Cafe Nocturno is surrounded by artist’s studios and workshops and the large outdoor seating area is on the pavement at the top of Rehov Bezalel. The breakfast menu includes traditional Israeli and French-style breakfast, as well as a selection of shakshuka, croissant sandwiches, various vegan and gluten-free options.
Here are some other places that didn’t quite make the cut but are worth mentioning:
- Waffle Factory – great family-friendly breakfast option
- Zuni (Not Kosher) – a 24/7 American style diner
Locals and tourists always seem to be looking for good places to have breakfast in Jerusalem, on Friday and during the week, so I hope that this list is helpful. I plan to follow this up with a post about hotel buffets in Jerusalem and unique cafes all around Israel.
If you are specifically looking for breakfast in Jerusalem on Shabbat, here is a list of cafes open on Shabbat.