By Joshua Palmes

It is often said that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but you are not always able to eat it at home. However, on days you have to eat out you shouldn’t just settle for a doughnut. Connecticut has plenty of restaurants that provide healthier options that will give you the energy you need to last the whole day. Here are the best places to begin your morning.

Harvest Cafe and Bakery
1390 Hopmeadow St.
Simsbury, CT 06070
(203) 658-5000
www.harvestcafebakery.com

Simsbury’s Harvest Cafe and Bakery serves breakfast all day, so even late risers don’t have to miss out on its delicious and nutritious creations. For instance, there is the garden omelet made with sauteed spinach, mushrooms, peppers, and asparagus or the May Day frittata prepared with three eggs, Boursin cheese, red pepper, and asparagus. Then there is the California Melt: sourdough bread filled with scrambled eggs, Swiss and cheddar cheese, avocado, spinach and tomatoes. And don’t miss Harvest Cafe’s twist on the banana split, which is Greek yogurt, granola, and berries inside a sliced banana.

Claire’s Corner Copia
1000 Chapel St.
New Haven, CT 06510
(203) 562-3888
www.clairescornercopia.com

Claire and Frank Criscuolo have been serving up tasty vegan and organic dishes at their New Haven location for over four decades. Morning specialties include vegan whole grain pancakes; a tofu scramble that comes with a choice of kale, baby spinach, tomatoes, onions and avocado; and an Irish Breakfast made with eggs and organic roasted vegetables and potatoes. Items like fruit and nut granola and avocado toast are available all day. And on the weekend you may order whole grain French toast with fruit and a side of soy bacon or sausage.

The Granola Bar
275 Post Road East
Westport, CT 06880
(203) 349-5202
www.thegranolabarct.com

This Westport cafe opened in 2013 and became such a hit that new locations have since opened in Greenwich and Stamford. Patrons from across Fairfield County love starting their day with one of the Bar’s teas, lattes, or smoothies. Of course there is plenty of granola – try it in a parfait like the Crunchy Elvis which combines vanilla almond granola, almond butter, honey, and banana. Also recommended are egg sandwiches like the Dana: a whole wheat wrap filled with egg whites, avocado, spinach, and turkey bacon.

Related:  Ask a Connecticut Expert: Easy Breakfast Meals For Kids

Estia’s Back Porch Cafe
1020 Post Road
Darien, CT 06820
(203) 202-7052
www.estiascafe.com

You can enjoy a satisfying weekend breakfast without without having to brave an overcrowded IHOP by instead visiting Estia’s Back Porch Cafe in Darien. Besides top-notch pancakes and French toast, Eddie’s offers healthy platters like Isabelle’s Request: poached eggs, goat cheese, spinach, and tomato over Tuscan toast. Or try A’s Pop Bowl, which combines chili chicken, egg whites, organic quinoa, and avocado. Finally, there is a tempting selection of breakfast tacos and burritos.

Heirloom Food Company
630 N. Main St.
Danielson, CT 06239
(860) 779-3373
www.eatheirloomfood.com

At Heirloom Food Company you can start your day with breakfast made from organic, locally-grown and produced ingredients. That includes the Portobello and kale tofu scramble served with onions, tomatoes, and melted cheddar over sprouted wheat toast. Or try the vegan breakfast sandwich: scrambled tofu, pesto, tomato, and cheese on grilled ciabatta. If you prefer to keep it simple order the gluten-free oatmeal garnished with walnuts and currants.

Related: Best Bagels and Lox In Connecticut

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