Best Brunch Recipes, Cocktails and Ideas
This amazing round-up of brunch recipes from fellow bloggers includes drinks, dishes and nibbles for a late breakfast or leisurely lunch. You’ll find tips for setting the perfect brunch buffet. There are classic brunch menu items as well as new favorites that are a balance of sweet and savory. And don’t forget the sips including cocktails, mocktails and drinks for kids.
Brunch Bites and Appetizers
I’m kinda all about the appetizers! In fact, my family often does a Sunday afternoon appetizer brunch after church. We set out mixed nuts, dried fruit, a variety of cheeses with crackers alongside grapes and sliced apples. Choose to serve only appetizers at the brunch or as the starter before the main course.
Blueberry White Chocolate Scones from Erhardt’s Eat deserve to be paired with equally light and breezy brunch bites. Consider a fresh fruit salad and cucumber sandwiches. A variety of hot tea is a must-do!
Teensy Ham Cheddar Quiche from Cooking on the Front Burners are an ideal pass-around appetizer at a light brunch, with a nice balance of protein to satisfy.
Beyond the Chicken Coop Puff Pastry Pinwheels are a buttery bite-sized treat, made easy with pre-made puff pastry dough.
- Air Fryer Egg Cups from Recipe This include mix-in ideas that will satisfy all.
- Easy and Delish shares these yummy Mango Coconut Streusel Muffins that will give satisfy your sweet tooth.
- Italian Potato Croquettes by She Loves Biscotti are a savory pan-fried appetizer.
- Profusion Curry shares tips on creating a savory and unique Mediterranean Appetizer Platter with hummus, olives and marinated vegetables.
- Hold a spoonful of yogurt or fruit in these delicious and practical bite-sized Granola Cups from Art From My Table.
- Pastries are my breakfast splurge and these Apricot and Almond Kringle from Fusion Craftiness look heavenly!
- Serve up my Banana Walnut Bread muffins, sliced in half so that guests can nibble before the main course.
Savory Brunch Foods
These savory and filling dishes will pair well with other more lunch-type foods, including salad. Choose to serve a sweet dish or a fruity treat afterwards, to substitute as “dessert”.
If you’re looking for a showstopping dish, this Eggs Benedict Breakfast Casserole from Grits and Pinecones is awesome. Best part is that it’s actually pretty easy to put together!
Savory French Toast from the Greedy Gourmet is topped with mushrooms and a creamy mustard sauce.
Cutefetti shares how to create a savory Bagel Bar Board with toppings ideas including avocado and peppers.
- Sausage and Egg Breakfast Pinwheels from Drugstore Divas offers small bites of protein that kids will enjoy.
- This rich and custardy No-Fail Quiche Lorraine from West Via Midwest can use either a store-bought or handmade pie crust.
- Easy Cheesy Broccoli Scrambled Eggs from Hint of Healthy is a family-friendly dish that can be whipped up on a weekday.
- Sausage Bread from Grits and Pinecones only has three ingredients and goes together fast.
- Pair this creamy Lemon Butter Chicken from Whisk Affair with a light salad and fresh fruit platter for a hearty brunch.
Sweet Brunch Foods
A little savory, a little sweet, these dessert-type treats are a welcome addition to your brunch buffet! Serve these sweet brunch recipes along with sausage, bacon and eggs or as the finishing touch to a savory meal.
This easy Baked French Toast Casserole from Play Party Plan combines bread with cream cheese and pecans for the ultimate brunch dish!
Take a virtual trip to the islands with this Hawaiian Banana Bread Recipe from Hawaii Travel with Kids (then plan your next Hawaiian family vacation using all of the trip planning advice!)
Carrot Cake Overnight French Toast by Food Meanderings looks over-the-top delish (and only takes about 10 minutes to assemble the night before!).
- Pound Cake Petit Fours from Kiss My Tulle are a sweet treat that also goes together quickly.
- Decadent Baked French Toast Casserole from Recipes from a Pantry lets you enjoy the eggy, bready goodness of traditional French Toast with minimal effort. Have breakfast ready in an hour or assemble overnight for breakfast, brunch, special occasions, and when feeding a crowd.
- Cinnamon Sugar Donuts from Well If She Can Do It include a bourbon glaze recipe that she says is optional (I say, it’s a must!).
Fruity Brunch Treats
Fruit is always a welcome choice to a buffet brunch, offering a sweet alternative to those avoiding sugar. Choose seasonal fruits in one of these colorful dishes.
This fruit-studded Challah Bread Pudding from OMG! Yummy is the ideal way to use up leftover bread, blueberries and peaches.
This stunning addition of Strawberry Cake from Whisk Affair to the brunch table is made all the better when you taste the berries in this moist, handmade cake.
Fusion Craftiness brings us this decadent French Apricot Tart that adds bold color and flavor to the brunch menu.
- It’s all berry goodness with these Strawberry Cheesecake Stuffed French Toast from Live Eat Learn.
- Banana Nut Muffins like these from A Bride on a Budget are always a welcome addition to any brunch buffet.
- Raspberry Lemon Scones from Food Meanderings are stuffed with the tangy fruit.
- From It’s Not Complicated Recipes, the Gluten-Free Pear and Raspberry Cake is a treat for even those on a GF diet!
Hearty Brunch Dishes
Fill up your brunch guests with one of these amazingly hearty dishes. These heavier meal items pair nicely with a light side of freshly cut fruit or a salad.
Wow. That’s all I can muster up about these incredible looking Bacon Blackberry French Toast Sandwiches from Erhardt’s Eat. I mean, look at that. It’s making my mouth water!
Where’s my margarita? Add some spice to your brunch menu with these Huevos Rancheros Toasts from Mama Latina Tips.
These showstopping Baked French Toast Cups from Family Spice can be filled with whatever your heart desires (personally, my heart desires berries and whipped cream!).
- Breakfast Strata with Sausage and Cranberry from Girl Heart Food is a hearty egg and bread casserole with a savory twist.
- A Baking Journey offers up this savory Spinach and Feta Quiche recipe with a beautiful pastry crust.
- Nutella Stuffed French Toast from Spice Cravings will give your brunch guests the sweet touch.
- This vegetarian Shakshuka with Chickpeas from The Petite Cook goes together in less than 30 minutes.
Healthier Brunch Foods
When inviting guests, always check on special dietary concerns to ensure they’ll have something available to eat. Brunch recipes like these are a healthier option but still offer flavor and color to the table.
With a minimal amount of cheese but still packed with flavorful ingredients, the Asparagus Frittata from She Loves Biscotti is a bright and healthier brunch dish.
Chia Pudding with Coconut Milk from Two Healthy Kitchens is power-packed with nutritious ingredients that satisfy.
Dishing Out Health offers the beautifully presented Bloody Mary Panzanella Salad, perfect for those with a garden bounty of fresh tomatoes!
- Cinnamon rolls that can be made healthier? I’m on-board to try these Sweet Potato Cinnamon Rolls from Live Eat Learn.
- The Greedy Gourmet shares Mushrooms on Toast, with tips on cooking the fungi.
- Create a low-carb cocktail like the Low-Carb Mimosa from Our Crafty Mom.
Veggie Inspired Brunch Bites
I do love a great salad bar, so why not create your own? Let guests put together their own brunch salad by providing all the toppings. A salad bar brunch is also a great pot luck type of meal, where each guest can bring a topping to share.
These beautiful Spring Crudite Toasts from Urban Bliss Life really speak to the season, with hard-boiled eggs, radishes, cucumbers and peas.
Super-easy and also a healthy brunch option, the 5-Minute Healthy Avocado Toasts from Two Healthy Kitchens includes a bed of sliced avocado with tomatoes, spinach and smoked salmon.
The rich Hollandaise sauce on the Red Pepper Eggs Benedict from Food Meanderings includes jarred artichokes and roasted red peppers along with an English muffin, spinach, poached egg and prosciutto.
- Madhu’s Everyday Indian Masala Cheese Corn Toast is a veggie-packed appetizer.
- Zucchini Pie from Venturists includes an impressive blend of cheeses.
- Perfect for a light meal, these easy Vietnamese Vegetable Spring Rolls from Profusion Curry are so refreshing for a warm day.
Easy Brunch Ideas
We could ALL use a little easy in our lives! See what dishes you can prepare ahead of time to minimize how much time you’re away from your guests, cooking. These simple brunch ideas allow you to escape the kitchen by offering up make-ahead dishes or meals that are quick.
This Biscuit Bar from Sweet Pea Lifestyle is brunch made simple! You only have to make the biscuit recipe and then serve it alongside basic additions like honey or preserves. I’m thinking sweet tea and coffee is a must during this brunch!
Light and flavorful, this Asparagus Pasta from Bacon is Magic is not only tasty it’s also a quick dish on a warm day.
- Made in a single bowl and without a mixer, this decadent Swedish Almond Cake from Itsy Bitsy Kitchen will have a sweet treat done in a hurry.
- Apple French Toast Casserole from Joyous Apron can be made ahead and put in the fridge overnight.
- Instant Pot Breakfast Casserole from This Ole Mom is a savory egg dish that’s prepared in a silicone mold and baked fast in your Instant Pot.
- Yummy and easy, this dramatically dark Chocolate Walnut Banana Bread from Delightful Plate is a winner!
Kid-Pleasing Brunch Foods
My kids are personally always happen when pancakes or waffles are on the brunch menu! My brunch recipe for Fluffy Pancakes includes ideas for mix-ins and toppings including blueberries, banana-walnut and apple-cinnamon.
Cake for breakfast? Yes, please! No kid will turn down this delightful cinnamon and pecan-studded Breakfast Bundt Cake from Blackberry Babe.
- Why not have a Disney-themed brunch with the kids in mind? My Disney-loving heart would love to serve these easy-to-assemble Mickey Mouse Cinnamon Rolls from Well If She Can Do It!
- Easy Budget Recipes shares the yummy Mom’s Lemon Lush recipe, including tips for involving kids in the preparation process.
- Nutella and Dark Chocolate French Toast by Chocolates and Chai is a rich and kid-friendly breakfast treat.
- My kids will eat almost anything if it’s on a bun! These Scrambled Egg Sandwiches by Girl Heart Food are ideal to serve when kids are at the brunch table.
- My mouth is already watering thinking about these awesome Caramel Rolls from Julie Blanner – you know kids would gobble these up!
- This Italian Cream Soda recipe from Salt and Baker is an ideal non-alcoholic special beverage for the entire family.
Delicious Egg Recipes for Brunch
Eggs are a brunch menu standard. Make them stand out with these beautiful egg dishes that include vegetables, cheese and proteins.
The beautiful crust on this Cheddar Broccoli Quiche from A Baking Journey is a showstopper, that’s perfect for an elegant brunch.
Shakshuka from OMG! Yummy is a savory tomato-based omelette dish made in a single skillet. Prep the veggies ahead of time and in minimal stove time, you’ll have a hearty brunch dish.
Talk about a good morning! The Best Breakfast Quiche from Pinch and Swirl is bacon and cheese in a deep dish pie crust, yum!
- Quiche Delights from ConservaMom use convenient, store-bought ingredients.
- Ann’s Entitled Life shares this recipe for a savory Sausage Breakfast Pie.
- Instant Pot Egg Salad from Recipe This for simple, savory sandwiches.
Brunch Drinks and Cocktails
It wouldn’t be brunch without a pretty drink! When it comes to brunch cocktails and mocktails, consider having a special “brunch drink” offering so you can make just a single drink in a large batch. Have plenty of water, tea and coffee available as well.
Sweetly refreshing, the Raspberry Bellini with Lime from Urban Bliss Life is a “cheers-worthy” drink for all special occasions (the recipe for those beautiful Spring Mini Fruit Tarts is on the site as well).
Get out the copper mugs! These Mimosa Moscow Mules from A Nerd Cooks sound like the perfect blend of two favorite cocktails.
The refreshing Pineapple and Orange Coconut Rum Cocktail from Joyous Apron deserves tropical themed brunch foods.
- Satisfy those who aren’t drinking alcohol with this pretty Blood Orange Mocktail recipe by Art From My Table.
- This make ahead easy Vodka Lemon Drop Martini cocktail from Recipes from a Pantry requires only 3 ingredients. This crowd-pleasing and refreshingly tart Lemon Drop Martini Cocktail is one you will make again and again as it is perfect for the summer, Brunches, BBQs, drinks parties and more.
- Gastronom Blog shares a Rhubarb Gimlet Cocktail that’s fast to prepare for a crowd.
- If you like your cocktail sweet and bubbly, try the Blood Orange Mimosa from Our Crafty Mama.
- My personal brunch favorite drink, this Easy White Sangria from My Everyday Table is going to be my summertime brunch go-to!
- Bubble Pineapple Mimosas from Blackberry Babe are a sweet and tart combo that pairs well with some of the tropical brunch foods.
- Meyer Lemon French 75 cocktail from Pinch and Swirl can be adjusted whether you prefer more or less sweet.
Setting a Beautiful Brunch Tabletop
Naturally you’ll want to set a brunch table that’s suitable to your guests. When planning, think about your menu, theme and party guests before committing to a table design. You’ll want a design that will showcase your standout brunch recipes. Will you be serving individual plates in the kitchen, setting out a self-serve buffet area or bringing food to the table, family-style?
Spring table setting ideas from Julie Blanner include decorating with grandma’s fine china and creating a flower basket filled with yellow tulips.
A fun brunch idea is to choose a specific color theme. White flowers are a classic, set inside vintage white milk glass vases. Or all pink, down to the cocktail served (like the refreshing Spanish Rose Sangria from Bacon is Magic that’s delightfully pink!).
When choosing your brunch menu, stick to one food theme. If serving a Latin brunch dish, pair the meal with coordinating appetizers and drinks (like a Pineapple Coconut Aqua Fresca) to continue the theme. Decorate the table in colors that will compliment your meal.
More Buffet Table Decor Ideas
I adore this Cheese Shaker Vase Craft from Sadie Seasongoods! Create your own milk-glass style vases from thrift store cheese shakers. Ask guests to bring flowers from their own garden, adding a unique and creative touch to your brunch table setting.
Consider creating a proper English tea, including making this Easy Clotted Cream from Hilda’s Kitchen Blog to spread on toast or scones. Decorate the brunch table with a mix of floral design tea cups (easy to find at a thrift store) and serve a variety of hot teas.
Adorable Earl Grey and Chocolate Shortbread Cookies from Manu’s Menu are shaped into tea bags to complete the British theme!
Chances are your brunch guests will be full and happy at the end of the meal. Send them home with a treat to remember you by, like these Chewy Authentic Italian Amaretti Cookies from Dana Vento. Bag them up with a sweet note to give when you say good-bye.