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NYC’s Best On-the-Go Breakfasts

april-hero-1While it’s said that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, it’s often an afterthought for on-the-go New Yorkers, who can barely set aside time to throw a granola bar in their bag, let alone commit to a houghtfully prepared feast. Thankfully, the city is saturated with awesome, quick-service eateries, whose free-range egg sandwiches, house-crafted sausages, and freshly baked pastries are just as convenient (and scarcely more expensive than) as a bodega BEC.  From Black Seed to White Gold Butchers to Daily Provisions

White Gold

White Gold
375 Amsterdam Ave
Upper West Side,New York 10024
(212) 362-8731

April Bloomfield’s early-rising egg sandwich menu — which kicks off service at her UWS-butchery and morning-through-evening eatery — will more than fortify you for the rest of the day.  The sammies are deceptively simple (over-easy eggs and American cheese on poppy seed buns), yet optional meat additions are multiple cuts above.  Hearkening to their whole animal ethos, Berkshire pigs are broken into belly (for bacon), leg (for ham) and shoulder (for sausage), all cured, smoked and prepared in house.

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Daily Provisions

Daily Provisions
103 E 19th St
Union Square,New York 10003
(212) 488-1505

Since you shouldn’t eat Shake Shack first thing in the morning (okay, can’t, because they don’t open until 11am), Danny Meyer has added an all-day café to his repertoire, assembling a dream team of chefs (Carmen Quagliata, pastry guru Daniel Alvarez, and baker extraordinaire Justin Rosengarten) to execute an incredible menu of maple-glazed French Crullers, ham and cheese-stuffed Gougeres, housemade bread with herbed ricotta or apple preserves, and hearty egg sandwiches, stacked with Berkshire bacon, smoked gouda and sausage, and spinach, peppers and provolone.

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Great Northern Food Hall

Great Northern Food Hall
89 Vanderbilt Ave
Midtown East,New York 10017
(646) 568-4020

An utter godsend for Grand Central commuters, this sprawling Scandinavian food hall boasts a wealth of unique breakfast options; so why should you bother with buttered rolls at Zaro’s?  No less than seven different concepts — all helmed by Noma co-founder, Claus Meyer — are open by 7am; which means you can alternate mornings between Meyers Bageri (true, not-too-sweet danishes), Brownsville Roasters (scrupulously sourced coffee), Open Rye (smørrebrød), Grain Bar (porridge bowls), Almanak (granola parfaits), Great Northern Deli (freshly-baked bread) and Danish Dogs (egg and handcrafted sausage sandwiches).

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Black Seed

Black Seed
170 Elizabeth St
Nolita,New York 10012
(212) 730-1950

Bagels are serious business in NYC, which means there’s no shortage of places to find a top-notch schmear.  But if you’re in or around Nolita, the East Village or FiDi areas (where there’s a kiosk located in Brookfield Place’s Hudson Eats), you’d be loathe to sleep on Black Seed.  A collaboration between Mile End’s Noah Bernamoff and Matt Kliegman of The Smile, compact, Montreal-style bagels are baked throughout the day; and crowned with quality, traditional toppings with a fresh and modern kick; we’re talking housemade beet lox with horseradish cream cheese and radish, or tobiko cream cheese, with smoked salmon, butter lettuce and sprouts.

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Lilia

Lilia
567 Union Ave
Williamsburg,New York 11222
(718) 576-3095

If you still can’t score a dinner table at Missy Robbins’ James Beard-nominated Lilia, know that its adjunct, grab-and-go café opens at 7 am. Which means you won’t need to put your name on a waitlist, for plum focaccia, prosciutto brioche, bomboloni, maritozzi (cream-filled Roman buns) and Fritelle di San Guiseppe; palm-sized Tuscan fritters, made with rice and orange zest.

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The Flying Pig

The Flying Pig
61 Lexington Ave
Murray Hill,New York 10010
No Phone

Though a popular street breakfast in China, NYC’s new string of jianbing vendors benefit commuters who can start their day on the late side — i.e., 10 or 11am.  Still, you might get away with being tardy to the office if you come equipped with a shareable stash of mung bean flour crepes from this roving truck, folded around egg, pork belly, kung pao chicken or even tuna.

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Brooklyn Kolache Co

Brooklyn Kolache Co
520 Dekalb Ave
Bedford-Stuyvesant,New York 11205
(718) 398-1111

Credit this slim, Bed Stuy bakery for bringing that Czechoslovakia-by-way-of-Texas favorite, the kolache, to Brooklyn.  Made from a yeasty sweet dough (culled from King Arthur Flour, local, cage-free eggs and fresh Battenkill Valley milk), the pillowy pastries cradle all manner of sweet and savory fillings, from blueberry, cherry, poppy seed and peanut butter and jelly, to smoked ham and cheddar, spinach and feta, and sausage, jalapeno and cheese.

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Jalapa Jar

Jalapa Jar
100 Henry St
Brooklyn Heights,New York 11201
(516) 456-5613

Brooklyn is basically ground zero when it comes to Texan-style breakfasts.  Take the branch of Jalapa Jar in the Clark Street subway station, which serves authentic breakfast tacos — corn tortillas folded around everything from bacon, jalapeno mashed potatoes and salsa-infused scrambled eggs, to avocado, chopped cilantro, shredded cheese and refried beans.

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