The Early Bird Gets The Pancake

Breakfast feeds the stomach and the soul.

Once upon a time I used to be a night person.  I’m not exactly sure when it happened, but somewhere over the years I converted to a morning person. 

Sometimes I appreciate it – like those mornings where I get up and go walking or go to the gym, or those mornings where I get a little bit of work done before everyone else in the house wakes up.

Most mornings I’m disgruntled, harping back to those mornings where “ten more minutes” actually meant, “I have nowhere to go, no one to feed and I’ll face the world when I’m good and ready.”

Growing up we cooked big breakfasts on Saturdays and Sundays. Being from the south, that of course meant biscuits, usually with ham, eggs, bacon, and a big glass of orange juice. Sometimes pancakes. Sometimes French toast. 

To this day, I’m still mainly a weekend breakfast eater - a trait I have passed on to my daughters. My girls are always looking for something a little special to eat on Saturday and Sunday, and I am glad to whip together something. Most weekends I’ll make pancakes or French toast from scratch. Biscuits and cinnamon rolls mainly come from a can, but who cares.

And although we haven’t done it in a long time, sometimes we have breakfast for dinner.

As much as I like to cook, I love to go out for breakfast, too. Saturday and Sunday mornings are perfect for spending a little time together as a family, and take a break from cleaning the kitchen. Below are a few of our favorite Downers Grove spots for breakfast.

2942 S. Finley, Downers Grove, 60515
(630) 932-4260

Who wouldn’t love a place that gives you free donuts when you are seated?  You’ll get a heaping serving of the giggles with your breakfast when you start reading the crazy quotes hanging all over the walls.  Like most of the other places on this list, it can get pretty crowded during peak times, so be sure to get there early or be prepared for a little wait.  There are two other locations, Western Springs and Naperville.

5130 Main St. , Downers Grove , IL 60515
(630) 724-0900

We used to go here a lot when it was a different breakfast place, but we’ve been a couple of times since Kristina’s opened. The menu seemed pretty much the same, but that’s fine with me. Lots and lots of eggs, potatoes, pancakes and waffles. It’s just such a great downtown location, and when you add those few outdoor tables, you just can’t pass it up.

5126 Main St., Downers Grove, 60515
(630) 968-8830

While there’s no seating or hot food here, we love to walk or ride bikes over and pick up a donut or two. My neighbor has made this his regular Saturday stop and says their cinnamon rolls are the best around.

Honey Jam Café
3000 Oak Grove Rd, Downers Grove, 60515
(630) 963-2233

For a breakfast place, it is pretty big. It is decorated like a very cozy log cabin. We didn’t have a long wait and they were able to seat our larger party pretty easily. If you do have a wait, there’s a cash-and-carry coffee stand in the front so you can get your morning latte or tea before you’re seated. 

5128 Mochel St, Downers Grove, IL 60515
(630) 963-0390

With 15 locations in the Chicago area, Egg Harbor has quite a fan base. It is a mainstay for many families I know. You just can’t go wrong with anything on the menu. A free self-serve cup of coffee is waiting for you when you arrive. The inside has a very comfy-country vibe, but if you have a fear of roosters, you’re going to want to eat outside.    

1300 Ogden Ave., Downers Grove, IL 60515
(630) 963-0300

It’s hard to pass up the pastry case to have your breakfast. The post-church crowd here can cause quite a wait, so bring your newspaper in case you’re hanging outside for a while. My kids love the pancakes here because they taste like cake. You’ll probably love any breakfast item you try.

Eileen Kenah August 17, 2011 at 05:01 PM
Great article Kristin. One place I would add would be Dimitri's on Ogden just east of Omega. The environment is uch calmer than Omega, the service is great and the food is very good as well.
Kristin McCann August 18, 2011 at 02:14 AM
Thanks for the tip, Eileen. I drive by there everyday and should really check it out.


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