How often have you heard, “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day”? More times than you've tucked into a steaming bowl of congee, probably.
There's only one more nourishing than breakfast, and that's traveling, so today, on the blog, we're combining the two to deliver one of the most fulfilling experiences your brain has ever eaten.
We tapped our Travel Experts from across the world and got the low down on some of the world's most hunger-busting, taste-bud tingling, mind-bending breakfasts you've probably never even heard of.
Unless you've been there or your friend has. Or you saw them on the Discovery Channel.
Hungry for more? Come on then, sleepy, let's get stuck in.
Table of Contents
Discover the world's most important meals
Remember, breakfast is a social occasion — don't go hiding in the shadows with a bowl of cheap cornflakes.
Not only do we want to hear what you think about these inspired breakfast choices, but we want to hear about your first-hand experience and learn what you like to start the perfect day with for your breakfast.
1. Century Eggs, China
These ancient beauties are eggs preserved in a mixture of clay, salt ash, and lime for a few months until the concoction turns the yolk a lovely shade of green and the white turns black. The whole thing has a strong and somewhat off-putting smell — not exactly an inviting wake-up in the morning!
2. Huitlacoche, Mexico
Okay, this is a rather strange one: Huitlacoche is a type of fungus that grows on corn and is then removed and served as a delicacy for a Mexican breakfast. It's grey and smooth in texture and is added to omelets and stews. Corn gunk, anyone?
3. Kimchi, Korea
Kimchi is a dish of fermented vegetables, often served with rice or in a soup as part of a traditional Korean breakfast. It's the national dish, and wide varieties are available, each with different seasoning and spices or served with an extra main ingredient, including radish, cucumber, or napa cabbage. It's got a kick, but once you get a taste for it, there's no going back to sugar puffs.
5. Crab Porridge, Hong Kong
Congee porridge, or crab porridge, is a regular breakfast in Hong Kong and surrounding areas. The rice is cooked for an extended period until it takes on a thick and creamy. It's finished off with its defining ingredients, a handful of seasoning, and a bunch of crab meat.
6. Haleem, Iran
Stewed in a big cooking pot, haleem is a mixture of boiled meat, cinnamon, sugar, butter, and wheat, which can eat hot or cold. It's usually topped with a handful of fresh herbs and served with flatbread.
7. Pan a la Catalana, Spain
In Spain, Pan a la Catalana (or Pan con Tomate) is tomatoes on toast with a twist: garlic, salt, and olive oil are added for a bit of extra flavor. Well, they are Spanish, after all.
8. Longganisa, Philippines
You would probably expect the most popular breakfasts in the Philippines to follow the usual Southeast Asian noodle route. Still, longganisas are mini sausages made from minced meat, garlic, and salt. Whack in some eggs and fruit, and there's your traditional Filipino breakfast — you could almost be in Barnsley.
9. Perogies, Canada
For our neighbors to the north, perogies are one of the breakfast options of choice. Small boiled dumplings contain a mixture of potato, cabbage, diced meat, cheese, or — in some cases — fruit. They're readily available in supermarkets and cafes throughout the nation, but for the best perogies in the land, challenge a Canadian grandma.
10. Oladi, Russia
They might look like Yorkshire puddings, but oladi's are more like pancakes as they are served sweet with sugar or honey and fruit. A popular, yummy, and slightly calorific way to start the day in Russia. Oh well, you're probably wrapped up warm anyway.
11. Saltenas, Bolivia
They look like little British pasties, but this type of empanada packs a bit more punch. Deep filled with meat, including chicken, beef, and pork, and then topped up with vegetables, potatoes, and a whole load of chili. Saltenas are sold on the streets in the early mornings by street vendors.
12. Ful Medames, Egypt
Also spelled ‘Foul Madamas,' the name doesn't sound particularly appealing, and to be honest, it doesn't look great either. Still, ful medames is a popular breakfast choice in Egypt. Made from mashed, slow cooked, fava beans, parsley, olive oil, onion, garlic, and lemon. Served with a side of vegetables and bread for dipping.
13. Mee, Malaysia
With a national cuisine this good, it's no surprise Malaysians enjoy eating this dish at most times of the day, every day, every week! A simple bowl of mee — a bowl of noodle soup with lashings of egg, vegetables, spices, and often prawns, or other seafood or meat, is a typical breakfast in Malaysia.
14. Pogácsa, Hungary
Pogácsa is a staple of Hungarian breakfasts. They're thick, heavy, and can be customized into a million different flavors, with some of the most popular being cheese, cabbage (excellent), paprika, pork, and garlic. You'll find pogácsa shaped into various shapes, but the most common are small scone-shaped circles.
15. Aloo Paratha, India
My absolute favorite on this list, aloo paratha, is a fried Indian flatbread stuffed with potato, fried in butter or ghee with spices thrown in for good measure (of course). To embrace the Indian breakfast tradition, order yourself a masala chai tea or lassi to wash it down.
16. Empenadas Venezuela
Similar in size and shape to Bolivian saltenas, Venezuelan empanadas are slightly different, as they contain beans and the meat is minced. You can also find them stuffed with fruit if you've got a sweet tooth.
17. Changua, Colombia
A tasty soup made from milt, salt, scallions, and cheese. But, this is a soup with a difference. After boiling, an egg is cracked into the mixture and left to burn in the pot. Once cooked, the milky egg and soup are spooned into a bowl and served to hungry breakfasters.
18. Waakye, Ghana
A hugely popular breakfast choice in Ghana, the main ingredients for waakye are rice and beans, but other ingredients are added for variety. Expect to find tomatoes, chili, prawns, and different types of meat lurking in various versions.
19. Katogo, Uganda
Bananas and meat stew. A very simplistic way of describing katogo, a breakfast dish from Uganda. Green bananas are chopped and added to a stew, usually made from beef and vegetables. If you're a bit funny/fussy about meat, go careful with this dish — the meat is usually offal.
20. Gallo Pinto, Costa Rica
Gallo Pinto is a popular dish across Costa Rica and Central American and Caribbean countries, such as Cuba, Mexico, and Nicaragua. It's a mixture of black beans and rice, often served with tortillas, avocado, and plantain.
21. Vegemite, Australia
Okay, so you may have tried Vegemite before, but when talking about breakfasts from around the world, it feels a bit wrong to leave Vegemite out. It's a dark brown paste from yeast extract, vegetables, salt, and spices. I think it's disgusting, but don't let me put it off.
22. Natto on Rice with Miso soup, Japan
A large portion of natto (fermented soya beans) on white rice with miso soup goes down a treat at breakfast time in Japan. It's a bit gooey, but if you can get it down, very filling!