Only a few cities in India are up earlier than Chennai, ensuring a diverse selection of breakfast alternatives from the first rays of dawn. Beyond the city's traditional South Indian breakfast strongholds, the city's changing food scene has thrown up a broad range of breakfast options, and yes, a nice cup of coffee is always in the mix.

So here are the best breakfast places in Chennai.

Madras Pavilion

It's difficult to choose between the city's luxurious hotel breakfast buffets. From the Westin's wellness emphasis to Le Meridien's International signature breakfast, almost every hotel has stepped up its game. Madras Pavilion not only does a great job with South Indian breakfast, but they also have a signature menu with a focus on locally-produced products. Try the finger-millet and almond meal pancakes with aloe vera and black currant chutney, as well as the muesli and Berry Brulee with amaranth and jaggery brittle.



Chamiers Cafe

It's ideal for a splurge-worthy weekend breakfast. The lovely décor may transport you to a colonial Madras English tea parlour and there's a Full fry up English breakfast with bacon and sausages to suit the occasion. A vegetarian Spanish breakfast and an antioxidant power breakfast are among the all-day breakfast alternatives.




In a city where breakfast buffets in luxury hotels are alternated with South Indian breakfasts, this famous restaurant provided a refreshing difference. The weekday a-la-carte menu features delectable eggs benedict with chicken and ham and decadent chocolate chip pancakes, while the weekend buffet delivers excellent value.



Fully Local

On a Sunday morning, how about stuffed kulchas or parathas instead of masala dosas or idli sambar? Fully Local, a street food restaurant with quirky décor, serves steaming hot parathas with chole and egg bhurji, among other dishes. Then, instead of filter coffee, finish your meal with masala chai; no, not all breakfasts in Chennai must end with the city's favourite brew!

Chole Bhature


Waffles Thru the Day

This cosy eatery, as its name suggests, serves waffles at all hours of the day (or night). The brandied raisin and apple pie-style apple pie are two of their delicious waffles that are sure to give you a sugar rush. However, the savoury waffles, such as the onion and cheddar and barbequed chicken, really stand out. Waffles and other Continental breakfast staples are included in the 'All You Can Eat' Sunday brunch buffet.




Dasaprakash, Mathsya (Udupi Home), and Woodlands, all from Udupi, laid the groundwork for Chennai's vegetarian dining scene decades ago. Many of these eateries have been supplanted by newer chains, but Woodlands has a loyal following because of its old-world décor and characteristic dishes like gritty idlis, crispy Udupi-style masala dosa and rava upma. The restaurant doesn't take any chances with its coffee, sourcing coffee seeds then roasting and grinding it in-house using the optimum balance of coffee and chicory.

Masala Dosa


Hotel Saravana Bhavan

This is the spot to go at 6 a.m. for steaming hot idlis and a revitalising tumbler of filter coffee. That's one of the reasons why this restaurant (located just across the street from Marina Beach) attracts fitness buffs for a post-workout breakfast and the occasional late-night reveller on weekends. If you're not watching your weight, try the crispy Ghee Roast Dosai, which is one of the people’s favourite weekend treats.

Filter Coffee


There you have it, the best breakfast places to try out in Chennai whenever you visit the city.