Wake up and smell the bacon.
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Breakfast isn't just the most important meal of the day, it's also the best meal of the day. (And if you don't agree, I'm sorry but you're wrong.) I'll eat breakfast for breakfast, breakfast for lunch, and breakfast for dinner. Basically, there is no limit to the eggs, toast, and waffles that I can—and will—consume.
I'm not alone in my love of a.m. eats, either. A recent survey revealed the 10 most popular breakfast foods in the U.S., from the crispiest bacon to the fluffiest pancakes. Here are the winners, plus our tips on how to make them all yourself.
There are people who like doughnuts—and then there are people who obviously just don't have good taste. Because who can deny the fluffy, sugary, warm goodness that is a fresh-baked doughnut on a cool morning? Pro tip: You can even make your own in the air fryer in under 10 minutes.
Call them home fries, call them hash browns, call them breakfast potatoes... no matter the name, they're all mouthwateringly good. The trick to the perfect diner-style potatoes—which are crispy on the outside but soft on the inside—toss your potatoes (with the skins on, of course!) in a cast-iron skillet until they're browned.
Oatmeal is like the Taylor Swift of breakfast foods: It was always good but kind of flew under-the-radar until it reinvented itself (hello, insane Instagram oatmeal bowls) and completely blew up. While that metaphor might be a stretch, you get the point—oatmeal isn't just for your grandma anymore. Not only is it one of the most popular make-ahead breakfast recipes on Pinterest, it's also delicious, filling, and most importantly, healthy.
I love fruit as much as the next person but a single banana does not a filling breakfast make. Our kitchen and cooking writer, Valerie Li, loves packing fresh fruit (like strawberries, blueberries, or raspberries) with yogurt and granola in these OXO Good Grips containers.
With the exception of Corn Flakes (sorry not sorry), I don't think you can go wrong with any cereal, especially the sugary kinds that yield that deliciously sweet milk for drinking at the end. When the Reviewed staff ranked the 50 best cereals, though, we named Cap’n Crunch Sprinkled Donut Crunch the number one choice. After all, it's basically like eating a bowl of mini donuts!
PSA: You're probably making your bacon wrong. After we tried three popular methods (oven, stovetop, and microwave), we found that making bacon in the oven is the best. However, our kitchen and cooking editor, Cassidy Olsen, explains that she still sticks to the stove when she's cooking for a crowd: "My perfect bacon method is getting a huge cast iron skillet, placing the bacon in while the pan's still cold, and then cooking low and slow until crispy and browned on both sides, flipping throughout."
Sweet or savory, plain or chocolate chip, dusted with powdered sugar or swimming in syrup—no matter how you make them, pancakes will always have my heart. You can whip them up on a Saturday morning on one of our favorite electric griddles or try your hand at the "jiggly pancakes" that Valerie is a big fan of lately. "It's a little bit of work but it's worth it," she says of these fluffy soufflé-style pancakes.
Toast is—and always has been—my favorite food. In fact, one of my mom's favorite stories to tell is how I once ate 10 pieces for breakfast when I was 5 years old. And while I use a toaster (setting #4, please) our editor-in-chief, David Kender, does not. Instead, he makes his toast in the oven using the broiler.
Everyone knows that a good breakfast has the perfect balance of carbs, protein, and fats. Get the second two with some sausage, which is as tasty as it is filling. If you have a stand mixer (like the cult-favorite KitchenAid), you can even make your own sausage at home using a food grinder attachment.
There are so many ways to eat eggs, from scrambled to over easy to fried to hard-boiled. One of my favorite hacks for the best scrambled eggs is one that I stole from Gordon Ramsay: Add a dash of crème fraîche and butter for richness and top them with chopped chives for flavor.