Once around the world: 26 countries in an international breakfast comparison

Once around the world: 26 countries in an international breakfast comparison

Fully set breakfast table with rolls, coffee and bread
Breakfast in Germany can be so varied and sumptuous. But what’s on the table in other countries in the morning?

Breakfast should provide energy for the day, taste good and ideally be healthy too. A wide variety of breakfast cultures have evolved around the world, ranging from a simple coffee to dried fish to a hearty meal of beans and sausage.


A traditional Egyptian breakfast consists of ful, Egyptian bread, egg and falafel. Ful is an Egyptian bean porridge made with cooked broad beans, olive oil and spices.


Vegimite, a salty spread, is part of every Australian breakfast. Otherwise, the breakfast is very British: Baked beans, i.e. baked beans, eggs, grilled tomatoes, small sausages and fried ham are part of an extensive breakfast in addition to the classic toast.


In Brazil, breakfast habits can vary greatly depending on the region. In the state of São Paulo, one eats pão na chapa , a bread smeared with butter and then fried in a pan until golden brown, while in Minas Gerais it almost always includes pão de queijo , a small bun made with cassava flour, cheese, eggs, oil, milk and salt. And almost everywhere in the country, all kinds of cakes are served, for example corn, cassava, rice or banana cakes.


In China, people often have a warm breakfast, including zhou (rice soup), baozi (steamed dumplings) or youtiao (fried dough sticks). Shaomai is also popular, sticky rice with mushrooms, meat and soy sauce covered in pastry. If they want a sweet breakfast, the Chinese often use tangyuan, a dish made from sticky rice and bean paste. The Chinese dumplings, jiaozi or a wonton soup are not unusual either.

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The classic German breakfast usually consists of bread and rolls, which are topped with sweet and savory spreads, including jam, cheese, sausage and ham. In addition, muesli with milk or yoghurt, fruit and nuts is often included. In Bavaria, white sausage and pretzels are often served for breakfast.


A French breakfast traditionally consists of a croissant with butter or jam and latte. But baguettes or other sweet baked goods such as crêpes or pain au chocolat are also very popular.


In Greece, people often get together with the whole family for lunch and dinner. The breakfast, on the other hand, is rather small in international comparison and often consists only of a coffee and a sesame ring. A pastry made from puff pastry, bougatsa, is also popular.

Great Britain

The breakfast from Great Britain is internationally known. A classic English breakfast includes baked beans, toast, sausage, bacon and fried tomatoes. This is often accompanied by scrambled or fried eggs.


If you don’t want a traditional Iranian soup for breakfast, you eat flatbread with various sweet spreads or feta cheese. Olives and vegetables are also popular. It is traditionally served with tea.


In Israel, bread is eaten for breakfast, for example matzo, a Jewish unleavened bread that is also eaten during Passover. Fresh side dishes include cucumber and tomato salad, avocado, olives or yoghurt and fruit. Sweet pastries are also usually part of an Israeli breakfast.


Much like the Greeks, the Italians aren’t the biggest breakfast nation. Often just a few biscotti (cookies), croissants or Italian rusks are eaten with a morning coffee.


Cod, a dried cod eaten with akee, a tropical fruit, is particularly well-known. In addition to the salty fish, there are boiled bananas, sweet potatoes and a porridge made from cornmeal. Coconut milk is drunk alongside tea or coffee.


The traditional Japanese breakfast consists of several small dishes served in bowls. One bowl contains rice, another miso soup. Other small bowls contain tsukemono, pickled vegetables, and natto, a soybean dish. There is also fried fish and Japanese omelette. Traditionally, the Japanese drink tea for breakfast. However, many Japanese now also eat more Western breakfasts.


In Canada, breakfast is either sweet or hearty. The sweet breakfast usually consists of fluffy pancakes, which are significantly thicker and fluffier than the pancakes we know from Germany. Traditionally, these pancakes are eaten with a small portion of butter and the typical Canadian maple syrup. Meanwhile, the pancakes are also eaten with ice cream, Nutella, fruit or other sweet ingredients.


In Mexico there are often eggs in different variations with various side dishes for breakfast. Normally, locals tend to grab quick dishes like muesli or bread. On special days there are also fried eggs with chilaquiles (baked tortillas), chili sauce, avocado and cheese.


The Dutch usually start the day with bread, rolls or a yeast plait. Similar to Germany, the baked goods are eaten with jam, sausage, cheese or honey. But sugar and chocolate sprinkles, called hagelslag, are also used as bread toppings. In addition to the savory baked goods, sweet desserts are also popular – biscuits, cakes and muffins are not uncommon at Dutch breakfasts. The baked goods include yoghurt, muesli, fruit and eggs in all sorts of variations.


In international comparison, the Filipino breakfast is quite hearty: Filipinos often eat rice with bacon, fried eggs and fish in the morning. Also typical is the longanzia, a sweet-tasting Filipino sausage.


Traditionally, simple bread and butter with cheese, jam or sausage is eaten in Poland. Porridge is also a part of the Polish breakfast. However, many Poles also eat a light breakfast consisting of bread with spreads, eggs, fruit and vegetables.


A traditional Russian breakfast includes grechnevaya kasha, a porridge made from buckwheat, butter, milk and sugar. Fried potatoes, eggs and sausages are often served with this.


Bread with toppings, fish, oatmeal, eggs and the Swedish, yoghurt-like filmjölk are served by the Swedes.


On Sundays, the Swiss breakfast traditionally consists of plaited bread, which is replaced with plain bread during the week. Plaited bread or bread can be topped with jam, honey or cheese according to taste. Eggs are also part of the typical Swiss breakfast.

Senegal _

In Senegal, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It is prepared in food stalls in public squares or on the side of the road and eaten with the whole family or neighborhood. Senegalese breakfast specialties include sweet millet porridge and millet dumplings in sour milk.


Like many other southern countries, Spaniards eat a large breakfast less often. Some sweet pastries or a croissant combined with a coffee is enough for most Spaniards. On Sundays there are often churros, sticks of dough fried in fat, which are eaten with chocolate sauce or cinnamon and sugar, for example. With this recipe , churros are also easy and quick to make yourself.


A typical Turkish breakfast consists of a sesame ring, the so-called simit, olives, yoghurt and kaymak, a Turkish milk side dish. In addition, the salt sheet cheese in the most diverse variations is a part of the Turkish breakfast. There is also black tea.


In the USA, breakfasts are often hearty: bacon, hash browns, a kind of hash browns, eggs and toast are typical. Those who prefer it sweet can have pancakes for breakfast. And bagels traditionally come with cream cheese, but with peanut butter and jelly. In an international comparison, the American states are not alone with this breakfast – bacon and eggs seem to be popular everywhere.


The Vietnamese soup Phở is traditionally eaten for breakfast, but internationally it is also eaten in the evening. Phở is a noodle soup made with beef, chicken or tofu and is very hearty. In the meantime, however, breakfast is also sweet in Vietnam: pancakes with fruit or baguettes are common in western-style places.