Chile and Eggs: Breakfast the Santa Fe Way

No visit to Santa Fe is complete without eating a traditional northern New Mexico breakfast. If you like heat, order something with chile. It’s the official state vegetable and much beloved all around the state. Try the local version of the breakfast burrito: a concoction of eggs, breakfast meat, potatoes and cheese smothered in either red or green chile. Want to sample them both? Ask for Christmas. Always ask to taste the chile before ordering it. Most restaurants won’t take your food back if you complain it’s too hot. You can also order local favorites such as huevos rancheros or an original offering such as Eggs Consuelo at The Pantry. Most eateries have at least one signature dish. Don’t want spicy? Most places have pancakes, French toast, waffles and the old American staple, bacon (or sausage) and eggs. You can find breakfast options from the downtown to the south side of town and beyond such as Harry’s Roadhouse or Café San Marcos. If you need something on the run, grab a handheld breakfast burrito at El Parasol. In the mood for delicious and healthy? Try Café Pasqual’s where organic reigns. If you want to go 180 degrees, try one of the many bakeries around the city where you can enjoy freshly baked breakfast pastries with a cup of good, strong coffee or an interesting tea.

Sweetwater Harvest Kitchen
Photo courtesy of Sweet Water Harvest Kitchen


You have to go looking for Sweetwater Harvest Kitchen to find it. Tucked onto Pacheco Street in the up and coming Midtown district, the contemporary space attracts food-conscious locals and tourists who want to eat fresh and local. The eatery is...  Read More

Horseman's Haven Cafe
Photo courtesy of Horseman's Haven


Horseman's Haven is a local legend known for killer-hot green chile. Old timers will tell you they miss the original rustic café, opened in 1960, with its seven booths and community table in the middle. In 2003, they built a larger eatery when...  Read More

Greater Santa Fe
San Marcos Cafe
Photo courtesy of Steve Collins


San Marcos Café shares space with a feed store on NM 14 south of Santa Fe. The homey eatery draws mostly locals and a smattering of tourists including folks filming at the nearby Santa Fe Studios. Start breakfast with a big and gooey cinnamon...  Read More

Clafoutis French Bakery & Restaurant
Photo courtesy of Clafoutis


Clafoutis, a pastry shop and café, will take you to Paris. Owners Anne-Laure and Philippe Ligier run this bustling boulangerie/patisserie. She runs the front of the house greeting customers with a cheery "Bonjour!" while he's in the kitchen...  Read More

Greater Santa Fe
Harry's Roadhouse
Photo courtesy of Harry's Roadhouse


Harry's Roadhouse, a ten-minute drive from downtown, is busy no matter when you go. Be prepared to wait for a table unless you arrive early in the morning. On weekends, the crowds never seem to ebb. The quirky joint offers four indoor dining...  Read More

The Plaza Cafe
Photo courtesy of Steve Collins


The Plaza Café, on the west side of the historic Santa Fe Plaza, claims to be the oldest restaurant in town. Originally opened in 1905, it's been owned by the Razatos family since 1947. Décor is 50s diner and you can see the original 50s...  Read More

La Plazuela at La Fonda Hotel
Photo courtesy of La Fonda on the Plaza


Looking for a more upscale breakfast with classic Santa Fe ambiance? Head for La Plazuela at La Fonda on the Plaza. The former Harvey House hotel is loaded with history. Recent renovations to the hotel and restaurant were true to original...  Read More

Tia Sophia's
Photo courtesy of Tia Sophia's


Tia Sophia's, a few blocks from the Plaza, has been luring locals since 1975. It's a popular destination for local business people and politicians when the State Legislature is in session. Many a deal has been struck over a power breakfast here....  Read More

The Pantry Restaurant
Photo courtesy of The Pantry Restaurant


The Pantry is a local fixture. Hungry Santa Feans have been starting their day here since 1948. The breakfast burrito smothered in your favorite chile is a winner. Their red is one of the best in town. The breakfast sandwich, a tortilla filled...  Read More

Café Pasqual's
Photo courtesy of Steve Collins


Breakfast at Café Pasqual's is a local tradition. Because they've garnered a lot of national press, you'll also encounter lots of tourists. James Beard Award-winning chef/owner Katherine Kagel has long supported organic, fresh and local and...  Read More


Meet Billie Frank

Billie Frank is a freelance travel, food and feature writer based in Santa Fe New Mexico. Her blog, Santa Fe Travelers, is a treasure trove of information on the oldest capital city in the...  More About Billie