Breakfast burritos are glorious – and LA has almost too many of them. Someone has to sacrifice their health for the incredibly important Breakfast Burrito Quest, so once again, I’ve sorted the great ones from not-as-great ones (because, let’s be honest, all breakfast burritos are pretty good). You’re welcome.
Here are my obvious and inarguable criteria for the perfect breakfast burrito:
- It needs to taste breakfast-y, which means eggs. A top tier breakfast burrito can’t taste like lunch – that would be anarchy.
- It needs proper ingredient distribution. The first bite is crucial – don’t give me a mouthful of just beans or guac.
- The corollary to this rule is that the flavors need to work in harmony. Seventeen separate tastes is equally disqualifying.
- The texture should have a little variation. Hashbrowns, bacon, something to give it a little crunch. Which leads to…
- The tortilla shouldn’t be an afterthought. My favorites have usually taken a trip back to the griddle for crunch and heat. Ideally, I’m losing my fingerprints trying to hold it. And unlike most breakfast options, a breakfast burrito gets better with a slight delay (looking at you, breakfast sandwich)
- It shouldn’t cost too much. I have loved breakfast burritos that are over ten bucks – but deep down, I judge them for not being egalitarian. Breakfast burritos should be for everyone.
- Finally, it needs to be a guilty pleasure. You can’t eat an entire breakfast burrito and feel like you made a good decision for your body. (Although one time, a trainer told me that the best time to eat something unhealthy is early in the morning, so #healthychoices. Enjoy one of these carb/calorie bombs for breakfast and sacrifice on later meals. It’s worth it!)
I’ve really tried to find my favorite in the city, or at least a top three, but it’s too hard… there are too many good choices.
Here’s my list of the best breakfast burritos in LA broken down into Gold, Silver, and Bronze categories:
LA’s Gold Medal Breakfast Burritos:
1. Tacos Villa Corona — Atwater Village
Hail to the King: The Chorizo and Spinach Papas Breakfast Burrito at Tacos Villa Corona. This unassuming walk-up window in Atwater serves the classic breakfast burrito that you dream about when someone utters those two perfect words.
2. The Rooster — Pico-Robertson
Oh my god. The Rico Suave at The Rooster. Perfect sauce, consistency, ingredients, and gluttony factor. The Rooster sends burritos to other spots, like Alfred Coffee, but they can’t beat the ones at their brick-and-mortar, or their truck. I like to sub chicken chorizo for bacon.
3. Cilantro Mexican Grill — North Hollywood
Can the best breakfast burrito in LA be served in a Chevron? Hard to argue against the Cilantro Mexican Grill burrito. Their Meat Lovers and Steak and Eggs burritos are both amazing and pretty cheap.
4. La Azteca Tortilleria — East Los Angeles
Their Chicken Chorizo Breakfast Burrito blew my mind. Made me want to just stay for lunch to try their Chile Relleno Burrito.
5. Lowkey Burritos — all over LA
This mobile operation is amazing – track them down on IG. These guys are on top of their burrito game.
6. Cassell’s Hamburgers — Koreatown
Pro tip for the Cassell’s breakfast burrito – sub in hash browns and sausage. I loved this one!
7. Tacos Tu Madre — all over LA
The secret is to sub their Queso Panelo for the American cheese – but otherwise, it’s perfect!
8. Electric Owl — West Hollywood
Holy Moly. The Big Ass Burrito at Electric Owl has eggs, cheese, chorizo, tater tots, elote, shishito, and avocado.
9. Lucky Boy — Pasadena
They’re justifiably famous for serving up the quintessential Breakfast Burrito. Love their chorizo and their bacon & sausage.
10. Great White — Venice
This is the move on the Westside – bacon, tater tots, etc!
Silver Medal Breakfast Burritos:
1. Sibling Rival — Downtown LA
Great combo of flank guisado, tater tots, eggs, and pickled red onions.
2. The Griddle Cafe — West Hollywood
The only “wet” burrito on this list. Feels odd not ordering pancakes or waffles here, but you’ll be rewarded. Go weekdays to avoid the lines!
3. Atrium — Los Feliz
Caramelized kimchi for the win!
4. Guerilla Tacos — Downtown
I was expecting their Bacon and Avocado to be my favorite, but their simple bean burrito might have been the winner.
5. Sweet Chick — Fairfax District
If you can pass up their great waffles, their Fried Chicken Breakfast Burrito is delicious.
6. Huckleberry Bakery & Cafe — Santa Monica
One of Santa Monica’s best Breakfast Burritos. Bacon, caramelized onions, and potatoes.
7. The Oaks Gourmet — Hollywood Hills
Their Bacon Breakfast Burrito has over-medium eggs, sharp cheddar, bacon, scallion, and a grilled jalepeno cilantro tortilla — good stuff!
8. Rose Cafe — Venice
This delicious contender has bacon, eggs, potatoes, avocado, and a great salsa Rioja.
9. Burrito Bomba — North Hollywood
Another mobile operation dedicated to the art of the breakfast burrito – and they have serious skills. Excited to go back!
10. Joan’s on Third — Los Angeles and the Valley
Love the hash browns and guac on this contender – on the rare occasions I can pass up the Joan’s New York Breakfast Sandwich.
Bronze Medal Breakfast Burritos:
1. Doubting Thomas — Westlake
Really liked the Braised Pork Shoulder with sunny eggs and white cheddar burrito.
2. Blu Jam Cafe — Melrose District
No surprise that this brunch champion delivers on the burrito front.
3. Cofax — Fairfax
The chorizo is good – their bacon breakfast burrito is great.
4. Escuela Taqueria — Fairfax District
The Breakfast Burrito at Escuela Taqueria: egg, pancetta, refried beans, avocado, pico de gallo, and salsa verde.
5. Paper or Plastik — Mid-City
Awesome Breakfast Burrito — eggs, queso fresco, potatos, salsa, turkey chorizo, and spinach. Worth the wait.
6. Interstellar — Santa Monica
A nicely balanced, top-notch breakfast burrito by the beach.
7. Poppy + Rose — Downtown LA
Love their Rib Tips Breakfast Burrito with brick hash, creme fraiche, and BBQ sauce.
8. Magnolia Grille — Toluca Lake
A standard tasty iteration – super satisfying!
9. All Time — Los Feliz
Another quality contender from a top-notch cafe.
10. Bondi Harvest — Santa Monica & Culver City
Two great places to pick up a quality breakfast burrito!
I tried another 50 or so on my quest, but I expect to be called out for missing some clear contenders. What are your favorites? What did I get wrong? And where do I need to head next?