UPDATED FEB 10, 2020
With so many killer brunch spots in Pittsburgh, each weekend brings the opportunity to check out a new restaurant or cafe. But for those of you trying to brunch guilt free, we’ve compiled the full lineup of better-for-you options.
Butler St. has become a hub for trendy restaurants and local coffee shops, many of which offer delicious brunch options. With so many eateries packed into one strip, the choices can be overwhelming. But trust us — you won't want to miss Sunday brunch at Coca Café. This Lawrenceville spot has all the basic breakfast essentials, as well as unique eats like their Avocado Omelet. And if you’re trying to keep it healthy, Coca Café accommodates anyone who is vegan, vegetarian, or gluten-free.
East Warrington Ave. has just the spot for plant-based food with a punk rock vibe. What began as a pop-up that sporadically graced the city with its vegan grub soon became home to one of the healthiest brunches in the city. Onion Maiden’s rotating menu means each visit brings a new rock-inspired creation to the table. You can’t go wrong with their gluten-free Unholy Frijoles — these chickpea “egg” tacos will take you to another world. Check their Facebook for each weekend’s spread.
A self-proclaimed vegetarian cafe, art gallery, and antique shop all rolled into one eclectic space, Zenith is known as the city’s best-kept secret in vegetarian dining. With an ever-changing menu, you never quite know what to expect at this South Side spot. But here’s what you can count on — staples like seitan, tofu, vegan pancakes, and an $11.50 price tag each and every Sunday. It doesn’t get much better than that.
The Commoner shines a light on the city’s history — and serves up high-quality brunch while doing so. With exposed steel beams and large Pittsburgh maps lining the walls, the aesthetic can only be described as, well, modern yinzer. And if you’re looking for a well-balanced meal in the heart of downtown, you’ve found the right place. Fuel up with The Commoner’s namesake breakfast for the ultimate trifecta — house-made granola, fresh fruit, and a cranberry orange muffin.
The Abbey has freshly-brewed espresso, craft beer, and a bangin’ brunch all under one roof. Spend your Sundays powering up with the Veggie Omelette or Warm Harvest Salad. Oh, and did we mention the vegan pancakes? If you’re looking for a boozy brunch, scrap the mimosa and go for a coffee cocktail instead. Nothin’ like a “Cold” Fashioned to make you forget those impending Monday blues.
Discover healthy and hearty eats at this auto-inspired South Side sports bar’s weekend brunch. For a BBQ joint, Double Wide offers a surprising number of vegan and vegetarian options. Trade in the greasy bacon for veggie sausage to get that plant-based protein into your diet. Ask for egg whites in your scrambler for an even leaner (but just as delicious) start to your day. And if venturing out to East Carson St. feels like too much work on a lazy Sunday, you can hit up their Irwin/North Huntingdon location instead.
Head to the corner where Butler meets 52nd St. in Upper Lawrenceville to find a cafe named after the very spot it’s built on. This vegan-friendly coffee shop/restaurant/bakery concept will be your new go-to for food with Mediterranean flare. And the most exciting part? The brunch, of course! Fill up on their Thick Cut Toasts (you’ll drool over the nut butter toppings), or try a variety of goods on the Mezze sampler platter. Come hungry, because they’re also serving a bunch of baked goods, espresso, and cold brew on tap. Want to plan ahead? You can check out all their offerings on Facebook.
Fuel your weekend with some wholesome grub at The Porch in Schenley Plaza. Serving up local ingredients (many grown in their very own rooftop garden) until 3pm every weekend, this brunch is perfect for any nearby college student just rolling out of bed. Their seasonal menu and daily specials change regularly, but no matter what’s on the table, you can bet that it’s fresh. For a change of scenery with the same great bites, check out The Porch’s second shop in Upper St. Clair for all the same goodness in a different neighborhood.
If you’re looking for a healthy brunch any day of the week, look no further than Polish Hill’s Kaibur Coffee & Cafe. Tucked away high on the hill, this eatery serves vegan and vegetarian breakfasts each day until 2pm. Try the Punk Toast, their spin on avocado toast, or sample from the rotating selection of vegan pastries that changes daily. Most dishes can be customized to meet your dietary needs, like swapping eggs out for a tofu scramble or whole wheat toast for a gluten-free substitute.
Smallman Galley’s food court-style cafe offers four restaurant concepts and two bars (one coffee, one liquor) under the same roof. Feeling indecisive? You’re in for the brunch challenge of a lifetime. Just when you thought you memorized the lineup, this restaurant incubator turns everything on its head by introducing a new class of chefs to the Strip District — each with a fresh menu. Spend a Sunday at Federal Galley to sample four new concepts at this North Shore sister site.
There’s no place better than Bitter Ends for a farm-fresh brunch that satisfies. This Bloomfield cafe is whipping up sandwiches, salads, and, yes, even scratch-made donuts on their ever-evolving menu. Expect hyper-local ingredients in your dishes — the eatery sources ingredients from their half-acre farm just outside the city. The end result? Drool-worthy bites in a cozy setting. Get your Sunday started with clean eats and bottomless coffee on Liberty Ave. before the luncheonette closes its doors at 2pm. Fitt Tip: arrive early because once they’re out of an ingredient, they ax the dish from the menu. Check out their Instagram for daily updates.
Located inside Lawrenceville’s Engine House 25, Lola’s Eatery serves up a unique fusion of Filipino and Mexican flavors. With a mix of breakfast staples like huevos rancheros and fresh additions such as Beet Hummus Toast, Lola’s array of options, including vegetarian and vegan choices, makes it a crowd-pleaser for just about anyone. Fitt Tip: it’s only open Friday through Monday and doesn’t take reservations, so set the alarm!
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