Try a Traditional Irish Breakfast in the San Francisco Bay Area

What is an Irish Breakfast?

It is often said, “breakfast is the most important meal of the day”. Well, the Irish definitely got the memo because the hearty Irish breakfast is among the things they are known for. The most popular breakfast in Ireland is known as the “Full Irish Breakfast” and consists of bacon, sausage, eggs, potatoes, beans, soda bread or toast, tomatoes, mushrooms, and white or black pudding. Often tea and orange juice also accompany Irish Breakfast. This hearty meal was originally eaten by farm workers fueling up for work in the fields. In Northern Ireland it is called an “Ulster Fry” and sometimes contains a Boxty,i.e. potato pancake. Get in the spirit on St. Patrick’s Day by starting off with a traditional Irish Breakfast.



The type of bacon offered in a traditional Irish Breakfast is not the same crispy, thin, pork belly bacon that Americans typically eat at breakfast. Irish bacon is thicker, cut into a round shape and comes from pork loin rather than belly. The Irish do not cook their bacon crispy. It is cooked through but served soft. It is very flavorful. It is more similar to Canadian Bacon than the type of bacon eaten in the United States. In Ireland it is simply called “bacon”. In the US it is listed as “Irish Bacon” or sometimes, “Rashers” on a menu.

Soda Bread

Irish Soda Bread

Irish Soda Bread is a quick bread that uses baking soda as a leavening agent rather than yeast. Hence, the name, soda bread.

Black and White Pudding

Black Budding

Irish White Pudding is a sausage made from pork, fat and grains like barley or oats. The Black pudding is similar, with one extra ingredient. It is what we call blood pudding in the US.


Irish Beans

Typically baked beans are served in certain areas of Ireland. Not all parts of Ireland include this item, making it the one controversial component of the Irish Breakfast. Some contend it is more of an English tradition rather than Irish.

Cook and Irish Breakfast at Home

If you want to cook an Irish Breakfast at home, we suggest heading to Eezy Freezy in West Portal. This English/Irish grocer has all the things you need to successfully create the dish at home. In the frozen section they have authentic Irish Bacon, i.e. rashers and sausage. Every Friday they have delicious freshly baked Irish Brown Bread and Soda Bread from Fiddler’s Green available at the cash register. They also have a wide array of Irish, English and Scottish convenience foods, beverages and snacks. Pick up some Barry’s Tea and Irish Butter to complete your breakfast. You can stock up on other favorites for your Saint Patty’s Day celebration, including chips and snacks imported from Ireland, Chocolate imported from Ireland and of course, Guinness, Irish Whiskey and other Irish Booze.

Irish Pubs and Restaurants

CrawlSF’s Favorite Irish Restaurants to grab a traditional Irish Breakfast

O’Brien’s Irish Pub

O’Brien’s, in the Sunset has many options for Irish Breakfast on their weekend brunch menu. You can enjoy a Full Irish, a Mini Irish, and even order the items you would like to try a la carte, if you are not into all the things included in the full Irish.

O’Brien’s Irish Pub
1940 Taraval St
San Francisco, CA 94116

Durty Nelly’s Irish Pub and Restaurant

Durty Nelly’s serves delicious pub food. They are known for their burgers and fish and chips, as well as their Irish Breakfast, which is offered daily. They open their doors every day at 11 am. Beat the weekend crowds and do a mid-week breakfast at this fantastic Sunset District Irish Pub.

Durty Nelly’s
2328 Irving Street
(between 24th Ave & 25th Ave)
San Francisco, CA 94122

Fiddler’s Green Irish Pub and Restaurant

Although Fiddler’s Green is not in the city, I would be remiss not to include it. The place is family run and their breakfast selection is second to none. They offer the Northern “Ulster Fry” and the Southern, “Full Irish Breakfast”. In addition to these delicious options there are other breakfast dishes with Irish ingredients, such as omelets prepared with Irish bacon and sausage a “united” Irish Breakfast with components from the full and the ulster fry and many more. They are well known for their delicious Brown Bread and Soda Bread It is worth the treck to Milbrae.

Fiddler’s Green
333 El Camino Real
Millbrae, CA 94030


Oakland’s favorite Irish Pub, offers a full Irish Breakfast all day long. Sunday is a particularly good day to head there, as they have Sunday Seisiuns, i.e. Irish Music performances that add to the fun. Post pandemic the community pulled together to save this beloved pub from going out of business and it was re-opened in 2023.

131 Broadway
Oakland, CA 94607

Johnny Foley’s Irish Pub

Mary and Martin Connolly’s Irish Pub, Johnny Foley’s Irish House, is reason enough to head to Union Square. They offer delicious Irish Cuisine, prepared by Chef Larry Doyle. On the weekend’s, this includes a Full Irish Breakfast. The place oozes with warm, Irish hospitality. Many of the bartenders and servers are from Ireland. They offer a wide array of Irish beer and spirits. The venue is very clean and welcoming. The staff stays on for many years. Some staff members have been there for the 2 plus decades I have been going in for food, drinks and entertainment. The place has wonderful live music performances and a dueling piano bar downstairs as well. Hopefully as downtown bounces back from the pandemic, Foley’s Irish House will be able to start offering lunch daily and music nightly, like they were able to not long ago.

Johnny Foley’s
243 O’Farrell Street
San Francisco, CA 94102