All About Brunch: A New Orleans Tradition

 In Food

You’ve heard that breakfast is the most important part of the day. Still, many people don’t like eating super early in the morning. Or maybe you just love breakfast so much that you want to enjoy it again a little bit later. Either way, New Orleans has the perfect solution — brunch.

Brunch is a meal many people enjoy later in the morning, between typical breakfast and lunch times. It’s a popular meal in New Orleans, with many restaurants featuring specialized brunch menus and cocktails.

Did Brunch Originate in New Orleans?

There’s a little bit of a debate surrounding the origins of brunch. The most common belief attributes the tasty meal to an Englishman named Guy Beringer in 1895. He suggested the breakfast-lunch combination as an alternative to the early dinner served after Sunday church services. Beringer described brunch as a way for people to socialize, starting with lighter breakfast foods at the start and ending with heftier dishes toward the end.


However, roughly a year before Beringer suggested the idea of brunch in England, a woman named Madame Bégué had already started serving brunch in New Orleans. But she called it a second breakfast, served later in the morning to French Market workers.


It should come as no surprise that in a city world-renowned for its cuisine, people would find a way to squeeze another meal into the day. Plus, with nonstop entertainment, music, and nightlife continuing into the wee hours of the morning, a later breakfast sounds particularly appealing.

What Is Usually at a New Orleans Brunch?

Many brunch menus feature traditional New Orleans breakfast dishes. Typically, the biggest difference between breakfast and brunch is the time of day.


Popular options include French Toast (especially versions with a NOLA twist, like Bananas Foster French Toast), pancakes, and eggs cooked every which way. Other favorites are Eggs Benedict, fresh fruit, and a New Orleans classic — beignets.


You’ll also find shrimp and grits, seafood omelets, southern BLTs, fried chicken sandwiches, and much more. Each restaurant tends to serve up some classic New Orleans brunch items along with some unique dishes. Oh, and did we mention the cocktails? When you’re at brunch, it’s perfectly acceptable to sip on a cocktail or two at 11 AM. Try a mimosa, Bloody Mary, or an Irish coffee to accompany your meal.

What Is the Most Popular Time for Brunch?

Ask a New Orleanian when’s a good time for brunch, and they’ll likely tell you anytime. However, traditionally, restaurants serve brunch between the late morning and early afternoon hours. For example, depending on the restaurant, brunch could be available between 10:00 AM and 1:30 PM or 11:00 AM and 3:00 PM.

Best Places for Brunch in New Orleans

Many New Orleans restaurants feature comprehensive brunch menus. You’ll also find fun extras like a lively jazz brunch or bottomless mimosas. If you’re looking for some top spots to enjoy brunch in New Orleans, try one of these local favorites:

Bottomless Mimosas, Anyone?

When visiting New Orleans, enjoying brunch with friends (and a few cocktails) is a must-do. It’s a great way to wind down after a morning walking tour or perfect for easing into a new day after a long, fun-filled night.

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