Brunch in Toronto is its own special category and, for some, a sport of its own. And we are so lucky to have so many options from around the world here in one city. With more than 100 cuisines in one city, the immense range means there is a perfect brunch place in Toronto for your first craving of the day.
There are all kinds of brunch spots here. Ones with reservations and no reservations. Grand ones for your next birthday gathering, and cozy ones for catch-ups with a friend or enjoying by yourself.
Here are 15 brunch places in Toronto to add to your weekend plans.
Owned by a husband and wife duo originally from Iran, Arch Café is this cute café with a sweet little back patio that brings a Middle Eastern touch to its food and dessert offerings.
Try it here: The Persian Omelette made with a house-made tomato sauce, Bazar Breakfast Platter for two (with house-made sangak bread, butter, feta, clotted cream, jam, cucumber and tomatoes), or an epic skillet Dutch Baby Pancake served with seasonal fruit compote.
Neighbourhood: Kensington Market
This local haunt with Aegean-inspired meze is the perfect perch to feast on brunch and feast your eyes while people-watching and watching the world go by on the Ossington strip. The venue itself is gorgeous, and you’ll find Bar Koukla putting their own spin on brunch classics with tasty hybrid dishes.
Try it here: Baklava Pancakes, Spanakopita Florentine, and Truffle Kouleri + Eggs.
Dim Sum King
Up a couple of flights of stairs and worth every step, the Dim Sum King options are seemingly endless, and groups of all sizes can be accommodated.
There is a lot of variety in the steamed baskets of dumplings and little dishes that come around on push carts, and you can request them for your table.
Try it here: You can see live renditions of the Pan-Fried Chive & Shrimp Cake and the Pan-Fried Seafood Pancake being made on the restaurant floor.
Free Times Cafe
Free Times Cafe is a 42-year-old Jewish restaurant on College Street, across from Kensington Market, that comes uniquely prepared with a Sunday brunch buffet with live Klezmer music and traditional Jewish dishes. And any day of the week, you’ll find a warm, diner-like environment and all-day breakfast.
Try it here: Bagels and lox, Latkes with sour cream and apple sauce, and matzah ball soup.
Hawker has dreamed up a delectable set 6-course menu for a reasonable $35 on the weekend with a plant-based vegan brunch made with Indian inspiration. It’s the perfect break from Pedestrian Sundays before getting back into vintage shopping, food shop exploring, and more.
Try it here: When I visited, it was charred runner beans, chole, rosemary smoked baingan bharta, ferments, roti, raita, dal with pomegranate, papadam, biryani, and plant-based ras malai ice cream but you may experience a different expression from the chef.
Neighbourhood: Kensington Market
This Taiwanese-inspired café has been a neighbourhood staple thanks to its highly delicious and photogenic food offerings. It’s easy to dine in at Light Cafe, and it’s easy to get takeout for a brunch picnic, too.
Try it here: Ube buttermilk mini pancakes with ube whipped cream, smoked salmon masago pasta and yuzu mango cream puff.
Neighbourhood: Baldwin Village in the City Centre
Who doesn’t love brunch and a show? Let the music take you away as Lula Lounge hosts their regular weekend Drag Brunch show with a rotating cast of Toronto’s best talent in Drag. As a live music venue, you’ll also find salsa and international nights here.
You’ll find something on the food menu for everyone. And the dance menu will have you out of your chair in no time!
Try it here: Huevos Rancheros and Chilaquiles, the Lula Brunch Poutine (a sweet and savoury take on a French Canadian classic with the addition of maple syrup-coated chicken fingers on top of the poutine) and Vegan Avocado Toast.
Neighbourhood: Little Portugal
This pride of the East End is beloved throughout the city and they have certainly seen the spotlight! Chef Monica competed and excelled on Top Chef Canada Season 10. And working alongside her mother at Maha’s, day after day, they exceed expectations with their lip-smacking Egyptian food.
Try it here: An astonishingly great date grilled cheese, Chef’s Appetizer (which comes with dips galore and a bit of everything!) and the lemony lentil soup will have you grabbing to take home full jars. Also, that honey cardamom latte.
For a brunch experience that feels like a vacation getaway, book the “all-inclusive brunch” at Marked for bottomless bubbly and unlimited South American tapas-style small plates for $95.
With a live DJ spinning, a kids’ price too and a bubbly-free option, choose your own adventure and leave your cares at the door.
Try it here: Indulge in bites like Manchego Biscuit Eggs Benedict, ceviche, French toast with pistachio & goji berries, and several varieties of churros.
Neighbourhood: Downtown Core in the City Centre
Try it here: Patois Eggs Benny with a Jamaican Patty and oxtail gravy, Jerk Paneer Loco Moco or the Fried Chicken & HK Style French Toast.
Neighbourhood: Dundas West in the Westside
Pomarosa is a Venezuelan restaurant with weekend brunch dishes like the oozing Guava & Cheese Empanada and arepas. They also have a great little café and grab n’ go section to take home some of their sweets and savoury goodies.
Try it here: You’d be in equally good hands if you go for the Breakfast Arepa with scrambled eggs or opt for one with 12-hour braised pork carnitas.
Neighbourhood: The Danforth
At Hotel X, down by Lake Ontario, lies a unique brunch experience at Roses Cocina. They run their typical brunch menu with Tex-Mex inspiration, and they also offer a set menu with bottomless drinks (mimosas, margaritas, mules and caesars!), and the menu features four chef-curated dishes.
Try it here: Taking you from sweet to savoury—these are perfect for sharing, from Pancakes Supreme to Huevos Rancheros.
Just off the main strip of Queen West lies Simpl Things with its jewel box of a space. The beauty of it is you’ll always find great cocktails here, and then there is a roving menu with Italian by day and Taiwanese-inspired bites by night. Fun fact: all the bread and pasta are homemade!
Try it here: For weekend brunch, there are inventive Italian-inspired specialties like breakfast bolognese pasta, an Eggs “Shak”sugo, and their homemade take on the Breakfast Sando.
Tavoos is a westside gem that invites you in with Persian dishes. Cozy, warm, and inviting, you’ll also certainly want to get a few flatbreads to upgrade your breakfasts at home.
Try it here: Guisvah with eggs, dates, apricots, walnuts and nigella seeds and Dizi Sangi—a platter which eats like a two-course meal centred by a lamb stew.
Neighbourhood: Brockton Village in the Westside
Tea N Bannock
This Indigenous restaurant has a brunch and lunch menu with traditional dishes and an Eggs/Bannock/Beverage special with your choice of bannock, fruit, and coffee. They also offer whole foods and gift options for sale, so lucky you can take home a piece of Tea N Bannock with goods like honey, wild rice, Labrador tea, cedar tea, and more.
Try it here: Navajo Tacos made with fry bread, bison Burgers, or the Northern Omelette with wild mushrooms.
Neighbourhood: Little India