What Is a Breakfast Sandwich?

P.M. Willers

A breakfast sandwich is a tasty meal option that has many varieties. While they may have come into popularity through fast food restaurants, many cafes have begun to serve creative takes on the morning meal. Making a breakfast sandwich at home is an option for people as well.

Breakfast sandwich with egg, cheese, and bacon on a bagel.
Breakfast sandwich with egg, cheese, and bacon on a bagel.

The flexibility of the breakfast sandwich is substantial, but it nearly always starts with an egg or two. Eggs can be prepared in nearly any manner, but are usually fried, over easy, soft or hard boiled, or cooked like an omelet. Most anything can be added to the breakfast sandwich, leaving room for creativity.

Bacon may be included on a breakfast sandwich.
Bacon may be included on a breakfast sandwich.

Common additions are breakfast meats and cheese. Breakfast meats such as bacon, sausage, and ham are all used. Cheddar and pepper jack are the most popular cheeses used. Breakfast sandwiches with egg, meat, and cheese does not usually feature any greens or other vegetables, though a spicy sauce may be added.

Sausage may be included in a breakfast sandwich.
Sausage may be included in a breakfast sandwich.

Many cafes have begun offering their own versions of this dish. Cooks experiment with a wide variety of ingredients in an attempt to attract new customers. Salmon, for instance, garnished with cream cheese, onions, and capers, is a popular lighter breakfast sandwich.

Pepper jack cheese is a popular addition to a breakfast sandwich.
Pepper jack cheese is a popular addition to a breakfast sandwich.

Vegetarians are often able to find many meatless breakfast sandwiches. Egg, pesto, and tomato make a satisfying combination. For guacamole lovers, the combination of egg, avocado, tomato, and hot peppers comprise a fresh and filling sandwich. Some cafes will smother an egg with loads of greens, such as arugula, and dress it up with aioli.

A vegetarian might enjoy a breakfast sandwich that contains avocado.
A vegetarian might enjoy a breakfast sandwich that contains avocado.

There is also a wide variety of breads that are used for this dish. Fast food restaurants typically use an English muffin. Bagels are also popular, and many bagel shops sell breakfast sandwiches featuring various fillings and seasoned bagels.

Eggs are frequently used on a breakfast sandwich.
Eggs are frequently used on a breakfast sandwich.

Specialty breads are often used to complement flavors on more unconventional breakfast sandwiches. Hearty country breads go well when there are a lot of greens and vegetables on the sandwich. Jalapeno cheddar focaccia bread can complement any sandwich with eggs and avocado.

A breakfast bagel can be toasted, spread with cream cheese, and then eaten on the run.
A breakfast bagel can be toasted, spread with cream cheese, and then eaten on the run.

A fat rascal, which is a sweet or savory teacake similar to the scone, is often used as a base for breakfast sandwiches in the United Kingdom. In the eastern United States, a hard roll is most commonly used. Biscuits are also popular for sandwiches that are designed to be filling and greasy. Breakfast wraps are also becoming increasingly popular.

Flour tortillas can be used to make breakfast BLT wrap sandwiches with bacon, lettuce, and tomato.
Flour tortillas can be used to make breakfast BLT wrap sandwiches with bacon, lettuce, and tomato.

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