Surrounded by the stark yet beautiful scenery of the Arizona-Sonora desert, Tucson’s climate, topography, and proximity to Mexico make it an interesting cultural and historical city with an old Wild West feel. As Arizona’s second-largest city, Tucson has plenty of museums, theme parks, national parks, and landmarks to summon its Wild West past, but it also has plenty of urban appeal.
Nature and fitness lovers will love the abundance of trails in Saguaro National Park and the Sabino Canyon Recreation Area. Art lovers will enjoy a stroll through the Tohono Chul Gardens and Galleries and the University of Tucson Museum of Art. Kids will have a great time playing cowboys and Indians at the Old Tucson theme park or marveling at hyper-real panoramas of ancient desert ecosystems at the International Wildlife Museum.
Along with dozens of amazing cultural, historical, and physical attractions, Tucson’s culinary bounty has amazing choices for delicious meals for every craving. If you want a hearty, leisurely brunch to fuel the day’s activities, I have compiled a list of brunch spots in Tucson that fit the bill. Whether you’re looking for trendy coffee houses or family-friendly neighborhood restaurants, you’ll find the best brunch in Tucson at the following establishments.
100 South Avenida del Convento Ste 150, Tucson, AZ 85745
Located in the Menlo Park neighborhood one block from the Santa Cruz River and the enormous Sentinel Peak Park, Agustin Kitchen is a family-friendly restaurant and bar in a wonderful indoor and outdoor dining space. They have a huge outdoor patio enclosed by a hacienda-style ranch house with terra cotta roofs that have misters cooling the space down during those hot summer days.
The menu at Agustin is refined New American food that uses locally and responsibly sourced ingredients. They have the essential brunch cocktails like mimosas and Bloody Marys, along with delicious espresso and fresh coffee selections. I recommend their continental breakfast with two eggs, toast, roasted potatoes, and choice of pork sausage, smoked bacon, steak, or market veggies.
201 N Court Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701
Located in the Old Town Artisans building in Downtown Tucson, TallBoys is a restaurant, bar, and music venue that exudes wild-west energy. The old colonial-style building has a rustic, country-chic interior that opens onto a massive, covered courtyard with a giant stage strewn with tea-lights where you can catch live music most nights.
TallBoys has a full cocktail bar and a rotating selection of local craft beers on tap for a boozy weekend brunch. The food at TallBoys is a diverse array of local Southwest flavors as well as dishes from around the world. I loved their southwestern fare, featuring everything from breakfast tacos to chile Rellenos. I had the Sonoran corn fritters with cotija and cream on top, served with avocado and tomatillo salsa.
2543 E Grant Rd, Tucson, AZ 85716
Culinary Dropout is a casual, trendy restaurant and bar, serving perfectly executed classic American bar fare and creative cocktails. Located in the Grant/Glenn neighborhood, Culinary Dropout is inside a historic property that used to be the Grant Road Lumber Yard, which has been preserved and transformed into a rustic-chic dining space with a huge outdoor patio with fire pits.
Brunch is served on the weekends, and the menu has an impressive selection of classic breakfast and lunch dishes, along with unique brunch cocktails like the Wellness Retreat, with vodka, pineapple, jalapeno, mint, and sparkling wine. I recommend the house-smoked salmon with grilled ciabatta, soft egg, vine ripe tomatoes, capers, and onion dip.
4340 N Campbell Ave Ste 100, Tucson, AZ 85718
Union Public House is Tucson’s go-to spot for the best cocktails and the widest selection of draft beers and whiskeys in the whole city. Their impressive dining space has multiple large flat-screen TVs playing every professional sports game and the large outdoor patio has wonderful views of neighboring St. Philip’s Plaza. Families and friends flock to Union Public House for daily happy hours, family dinners, and weekend brunch.
All dishes at Union Public House are scratch-made using locally sourced ingredients. As one of Tucson’s premier bars, you can expect a wonderful brunch cocktail menu and the option for free-flowing mimosas with your meal. I loved their bacon hash with sweet potatoes, but my favorite item was the waffle churros with cinnamon sugar and berry compote.
With a location in Central and East Tucson, Prep & Pastry is the pioneer restaurant concept from the owner and Chef Nathan Ares and the Ares Collective of four high-end American bistros. Chef Ares strives to make visually stunning dishes and pastries that taste as wonderful as they look. Prep and Pastry is a contemporary brunch restaurant, bar, and bakery in an airy, open space with contemporary country-chic décor.
Be sure to ask your server for the day’s fresh pastry menu, as it constantly changes. Prep and Pastry’s menu has a diverse selection of beautifully presented dishes that span America’s regions. Since they’re famous for their freshly baked goods, I recommend ordering a bread-centric dish like French toast, savory toasts, or their unique take on the Monte Cristo sandwich with pineapple-jalapeno mascarpone.
3800 W Starr Pass Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85745
Located inside the lovely JW Marriott Hotel and a short drive to the iconic Saguaro National Park, Signature Grill is a refined yet casual restaurant specializing in Native American and Mexican cuisine. Surrounded by the unfettered, mountainous countryside of Saguaro National Park, Signature Grill’s outdoor patio has the most spectacular alfresco dining in Tucson.
Along with Mexican favorites, Signature Grill offers continental breakfasts, French toast, and pancakes. I recommend their Tamales and Eggs plate with pico de gallo, queso fresco, and mole verde. They also have some of the most delicious and authentic tortillas you’ll taste.
6095 E Broadway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85711
Black Bear Diner is a family-friendly diner with rustic, old wild-west décor in Tucson’s Broadway Northeast neighborhood. Black Bear Diner is a great restaurant for locals and visitors alike to get delicious, budget-friendly diner food in a quirky atmosphere replete with wooden sculptures of caricature bears and bright, colorful murals of desert skies.
As is the beloved standard at a diner, breakfast is served all day and night, so anytime is a good time for brunch in Tucson! Their breakfast and lunch offerings are as extensive as you would hope from a diner, with everything from corned beef hash to cinnamon roll French toast.
I loved the incredibly hearty ScranBOWL, a breakfast bowl with hickory-smoked ham, smoked bacon, sausage links, eggs, bell pepper, onion, and jalapeno scrambled over red potatoes and topped with cheddar cheese, country gravy and served with a house-made biscuit.
3750 S Old Spanish Trail, Tucson, AZ 85730
Located a quick drive from the Visitor Center in Saguaro National Park, Saguaro Corners Restaurant and Bar is a Tucson institution that has been serving refined American dishes in a casual and historic dining hall since 1956. The panoramic view of mountains and desert skies is always a remarkable backdrop for a spectacular brunch in Tucson before you head into the park.
Saguaro’s menu features Mexican and Southwestern-inspired cuisine, with a long list of delicious taco platters featuring authentic Mexican favorites like carnitas and carne asada. I loved their Mini Sonoran Hot Dogs, bacon-wrapped hot dogs topped with pinto beans, grilled onions, tomato, mayo, and mustard.
756 S Stone Ave, Tucson, AZ 85701
Five Points Market and Restaurant is a neighborhood eatery, café, and specialty food and wine shop in Tucson’s Barrio Libre. The quaint industrial-chic space serves delicious espresso drinks and refined gourmet dishes, while the small grocery has a unique collection of natural wines and craft beers along with fresh organic produce, eggs, cheeses, cured meats, and condiments.
Five Points also has a bakery on site with a spectacular selection of whole loaves and pastries. Their long list of specialty coffee drinks and hot teas are well-made and decadent, with a fresh hot chocolate that’s topped with ganache. All the dishes are so colorful and use the freshest ingredients.
I chose the beautiful and delicious breakfast salad with roasted butternut squash, roasted poblanos poached eggs, melted sharp white cheddar, arugula, heirloom tomatoes, and pepitas in a tomato vinaigrette.
1 E Congress St, Tucson, AZ 85701
Nook is a classy yet comfortable New American restaurant in downtown Tucson owned and operated by local Tucsonans, Nikki and Matt Thompson and Todd and Mary Anderson. Nook is truly a Tucsonan’s gift to Tucson, showcasing local artists’ work and offering sophisticated versions of Arizona’s favorite dishes using local ingredients.
The restaurant is a stunning industrial chic meets Southwest space with a lovely outdoor patio. Their weekend brunch offers southwestern takes on classic American favorites as well as many Mediterranean-inspired dishes. I loved the Shakshuka Benedict with crispy chickpea cake, spinach, poached eggs, and spiced tomato hollandaise. I also loved the southwestern biscuits and gravy with chorizo gravy and eggs.
2500 E Grant Rd Suite 182, Tucson, AZ 85716
Located in Tucson’s Garden District, Snooze an A.M. Eatery is a nationally beloved breakfast restaurant and cocktail bar that has a completely customizable brunch menu to please all
dietary preferences and particular tastes. Their all-encompassing menu features every possible variation of American breakfast classics from every region.
Since we’re in Tucson, it’s tempting to try their southwestern eggs benedict with green chili sauce, tortillas, melted cheese, barbacoa, and poached eggs with green chili salsa and cotija cheese. Still, I couldn’t pass up their awesome breakfast “sandwich I am” with a fresh pretzel roll filled with scrambled eggs, cheddar cheeses, and a sausage patty served with smoked cheddar hollandaise and a side of hashbrowns.
7131 E Broadway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85710
The Oink Café is a family-owned and run café in the Broadway Northeast neighborhood that specializes in bacon and pork products. Their bright modern dining room and massive outdoor covered patio is a great place for friends and family to dine and enjoy a breakfast cocktail or fancy coffee drink.
The Oink Café has eight different kinds of bacon, so if you go with a group, order the flight of bacon so you can sample every variation, from honey-cured to classic applewood smoked to jalapeno and more. I highly recommend the Oink Breakfast Chimi, a massive fried burrito stuffed with pork confit, home fries, scrambled eggs, and cheddar cheese topped with chorizo cheese sauce.
Denny’s needs little introduction as it’s as ubiquitous as eggs and bacon in the U.S. For students on the go or families on a budget, Denny’s has been a favorite breakfast spot for decades and has consistently good dishes served in a fast-casual, friendly atmosphere. Denny’s Tucson location is in the Palo Verde Business Park neighborhood.
Denny’s is a national diner chain opened 24-hours and serves breakfast all day and night. They’ve got everything from pancakes and crepes to hearty southern-style breakfasts like country-fried steak and eggs. I went for one of their massive sizzling breakfast skillets, which is basically a veggie and meat hash topped with over-easy eggs.
7002 E Broadway Blvd, Tucson, AZ 85710
Located in Vista Del Sahuaro near the lovely Palo Verde Park, Baja Café on Broadway is a casual and creative breakfast and lunch café in a cute dining room and outdoor patio with cactus murals. Baja Café loves the Tucson community, creating a lot of their inventive menu items from customer suggestions and using local vendors to supply their tortillas, produce, and beer offerings.
Their extensive breakfast and brunch menus have innovative takes on eggs benedict, pancakes, French toast, savory toast, and egg scrambles. I loved their light and fluffy buttermilk pancakes with blueberries, but for those who want a more creative spin, try the Caramel Apple pancakes drizzled with caramel butter and topped with cinnamon apples, house-made salted caramel, and streusel with a drizzle of vanilla bean glaze.
Originating in Georgia in the 1950s, Waffle House is one of the original breakfast diner chains that has expanded to 1900 restaurants in 25 states. It’s recently gained hipster appeal as a go-to hang-out spot for young adults to grab a cheap yet flavorful breakfast. There are four locations of Waffle House in Tucson.
Waffle House has various delicious waffles, so naturally, this makes it one of the best places to get brunch in Tucson. They also have perfectly crispy hashbrowns which are great as a side, but they also have a selection of hash brown bowls with customizable toppings like eggs, cheese, bacon, and sausage.
5501 N Hacienda Del Sol Rd, Tucson, AZ 85718
Hacienda del Sol is an incredibly picturesque and historic ranch, hotel, and spa surrounded by mountains with various activities and restaurants for guests and non-guests alike. The Grill is a fine dining New American restaurant using organic and locally sourced ingredients to create award-winning dishes for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
They offer a Sunday Brunch buffet that includes free champagne and mimosas with 25 cent refills for adults and discounted prices for kids. The buffet has a smorgasbord of the finest cuts of prime rib, seafood, smoked salmon, and cheese platters along with gourmet waffles, eggs benedict, omelets, and more.