The Finest Breakfast Sandwiches in Portsmouth, New Hampshire

Dec 11, 2023

It might be easy to look at a map an assume that anything north of Boston is the middle of nowhere and you wouldn’t be alone. Some of us thought that too before we made the Seacoast of New Hampshire and Maine our home. The reality (thank goodness) is far from that assumption. Portsmouth, NH, boasts a vibrant culinary scene, and when it comes to breakfast, the city offers a delightful array of sandwiches that cater to every palate. Among the numerous eateries in Portsmouth, NH and Kittery, ME (because, let’s be real, Kittery is Portsmouth’s Brooklyn), here are the top five breakfast sandwiches that truly stand out, in our humble opinion, elevating the morning meal experience to a whole new level.


Lil’s Cafe

Look For: One word for you. Biscuit.

Where: 7 Wallingford Square, #106, Kittery, ME 03904

Lil’s is a Seacoast favorite. It’s really hard to go in and not get starry-eyed over those crullers. But if you want something savory, order a breakfast sandwich. Served warm and melty, you’ll get egg and cheddar on the loveliest biscuit you’ll find north of the Mason-Dixon Line. Add bacon and you’ve got all you need for a savory breakfast that leaves you smiling. Add a cruller and you might wish we’d never tipped you off about this place because you’ll never be able to drive by without stopping again.


The Friendly Toast

Look For: Customizable + Vibes.

Where: 113 Congress Street, Portsmouth, NH 03801

We would be remiss if we didn’t mention The Friendly Toast here. You might try to claim that we’re biased because they’re a long-time Stout Heart client (Want to see some of our work for them? Check it out!), and maybe we are, but this joint is the GOAT when it comes to brunch and their breakfast sandwich is part of the reason. What’s great about it? Unlike the other contenders here, you can order your eggs (two of them!) any way you want. Plus, you can tinker with your add-ons, which is always nice. Make it as simple or fancy as you like (oh, and if you want a breakfast sando on a doughnut, they’ve got that too). Plus, The Friendly Toast’s vibe never disappoints.


Look For: A breakfast sammy experience you’ve never had before.

Where: 10 Commercial Alley #2, Portsmouth, NH 03801

Ever heard of a simit? We hadn’t either. It’s a Turkish-style bread with a consistency similar to a bagel, typically with sesame and/or poppy seeds on top. We thank Elephantine for introducing us to this delicacy. Now add jammy eggs, hummus, beet pistachio spread, za’atar, feta, and baby spinach and you have a work of art. It’s beautiful. It tastes delicious and wholesome. It should probably be in your belly.


Ceres Bakery

Look For: Homemade everything.

Where: 51 Penhallow Street, Portsmouth, NH 03801

Ceres Bakery offers a breakfast sandwich that is a true crowd-pleaser. We know them and love them for their amazing freshly baked bread, their daily specials (we live for their chicken tacos and the meatballs with egg noodles) but don’t sleep on this brakfeast sammy.


Bennett’s Sandwich Shop

Look For: The greasy spoon sort.

Where: 41 Congress Street, Portsmouth, NH 03801

Is this a gourmet experience? Debatable. But you’ll get excellent cheese to egg ratio and that cheese will be American in all its processed and melty glory. You can add a hashbrown to it. They don’t skimp on the bacon. AND you can order online in advance for pickup and Bennett’s is nothing if not fast. Bam.



Popovers on the Square

Look For: Just everything you really want in a great breakfast sandwich. No frills but no disappointments.

Where: 8 Congress Street, Portsmouth, NH 03801

Located in the heart of Market Square, Popovers on the Square is renowned for its delectable pastries and, of course, their breakfast sandwich. Picture this: a perfectly toasted sourdough roll embracing crispy sausage (you can get bacon or ham too but, trust us, the SAUSAGE), melted American cheese, and a fluffy, perfectly cooked egg. The harmony of flavors here is simply unbeatable. Is it fancy? No, not really. Does it have American cheese on it? Yes, but if there’s any place for American cheese, it’s a breakfast sando (or a grilled cheese, but we’ll save that argument for another post). This breakfast sandwich is the stuff dreams are made of. Whether it’s the Friday after a long week and you just need a belly-warming treat or maybe you were out at The Wilder last night and you’re a little slower than usual, this is your fix. You’ll thank us.



NOA Cafe

Look For: Deliciousness all over the menu.

Where: 82 Congress Street, Portsmouth, NH 03801

While NOA does have breakfast sandwiches on the menu, we’ve not yet tried them. But what we have tried are their Toasties, some of which come with egg on top. Their Breakfast Toastie features pesto, tomato, bacon, crumbled goat cheese, sliced avocado, a fried egg, and micro-basil all on tasty sourdough. Breakfast sandwich? Technically not. A delicious breakfast? Yes. Yes. Yes.


Each of these establishments offer a unique take on the breakfast sandwich, showcasing Portsmouth’s culinary diversity and dedication to serving exceptional morning meals. Whether you’re a local resident or a visitor exploring the city, these five eateries promise a flavorful start to your day that you won’t soon forget.