Kid-Friendly Brunch Ideas for Guests of All Ages

Challah French Toast

Julia Hartbeck

Brunch can be a family-friendly affair, and that doesn't have to downgrade the food. From sweet cinnamon streusel-topped coffee cake and classic Belgian waffles to savory breakfast sliders and super-creamy mac and cheese, we have a variety of tasty brunch ideas that are sure to please guests of all ages. Your kid-friendly brunch menu planning starts here.

01 of 21

Chilaquiles Rojos with Fried Eggs and Cotija

Chilaquiles Rojo Recipe
Greg Dupree

Charring the tomato and onion before adding them to the red chile sauce is a quick way to create rich, slow-cooked flavor. Don't worry — the seeded chiles here impart a bit of smoky flavor without the heat. Thick-cut fresh tortilla chips soak up the sauce and runny egg yolks without getting soggy.

02 of 21

Cinnamon-Apple Babka

Cinnamon-Apple Babka
Cinnamon-Apple Babka.

Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Ali Ramee / Prop Styling by Christina Daley

Imagine a gooey, buttery cinnamon bun twisted together with the flavors of apple pie — that’s what you get with this utterly decadent babka. Make sure to slice the apples very thinly here; the thinner they are, the easier it will be to roll your bread. The final glaze is extra and worth it.

03 of 21

Challah French Toast

Challah French Toast

Julia Hartbeck

This decadent challah bread French toast is delicately flavored with vanilla, cinnamon, and freshly grated nutmeg. The key to making perfect French toast is to thoroughly soak the thick slices of bread in the egg mixture, then cook them over medium-low heat so the edges don't burn before the centers cook through.

04 of 21

Potatoes Benedict with Make-Ahead Poached Eggs

Potatoes Benedict with Make-Ahead Poached Eggs
Jennifer Causey

"In this take on eggs Benedict, crispy potato rounds are a fun, gluten-free substitute for the everyday English muffins," F&W culinary director at large Justin Chapple writes. "A combination of extra-virgin olive oil and butter gives the potatoes incredible flavor and a golden, crunchy crust that provides the best-ever canvas for poached eggs."

05 of 21

Polenta Dutch Baby with Ham and Swiss

Polenta Dutch Baby with Ham and Swiss Recipe
Gregory DuPree

A large-format pancake with a light, airy interior and rich, savory toppings, this Dutch baby is perfect for brunch. Add the toppings around the edges, leaving the center clear to allow it to rise properly. Preheating the pan is also crucial to a beautiful rise; the batter should begin to puff immediately after you pour it into the pan.

06 of 21

Corn Biscuits with Savory Herb Streusel

Corn Biscuits with Savory Herb Streusel
Photo by Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Torie Cox

2021 F&W Best New Chef Thessa Diadem's streusel-topped corn biscuits star a trio of corn — cornmeal for texture, creamed corn for moisture, and freeze-dried sweet corn for its intense flavor. The savory streusel combines Parmesan, chives, parsley, and thyme with butter, adding extra interest to each bite.

07 of 21

Cinnamon Streusel Coffee Cake

Coffee Cake

Jennifer Causey / Food Styling by Emily Nabors Hall / Prop Styling by Julia Bayless

This streamlined coffee cake recipe layers the streusel in the center of the cake and on top, eliminating the need to make a separate mixture for the filling. And it's any kid's dream: cake for breakfast.

08 of 21

Carrot Cake Marmalade with Yogurt and Fresh Fruit

Carrot Cake Marmalade with Yogurt and Fresh Fruit
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Chelsea Zimmer / Prop Styling by Prissy Lee

This take on chef Mason Hereford's marmalade, from Molly's Rise and Shine in New Orleans, gets big flavor from stewing carrots and apple with cinnamon, cardamom, and star anise for a warmly spiced, brightly colored result.

09 of 21

Blueberry-Banana Pancakes

© John Kernick

Chef Tyler Florence made these pancakes at home one weekend morning with his son Hayden. They’re a slight variation on a recipe from his book, Tyler Florence Family Meal.

10 of 21

Brown Butter-Raspberry Baked Oatmeal

Baked Oatmeal with raspberries, coconut, pecans
Photo by Andrew Bui / Food Styling by Caitlin Haught Brown

In this baked oatmeal, perfectly tender spiced oats mixed with sweet and tart fruit are topped with crispy coconut and pecans. The recipe calls for raspberries — blackberries, blueberries, or sliced strawberries would work as well. Blooming the spices in the hot brown butter releases their flavors and infuses the entire dish with a nutty warmth.

11 of 21

Tater Tot Casserole

Tater Tot Casserole
© Abby Hocking

The secret to this casserole is the layer of cheesy creamed spinach in the middle. It adds elegance to the dish, as well as a nice contrast to the crispy, crunchy Tater Tot top.

12 of 21

Raspberry-Swirl Sweet Rolls

Raspberry-Swirl Sweet Rolls. Photo © Quentin Bacon
© Quentin Bacon

You can make these fruit-swirled sweet rolls any time of the year by taking advantage of frozen raspberries. They're terrific in these soft, puffy yeast rolls — a fun variation on a cinnamon bun that's perfect for brunch or a special breakfast.

13 of 21

Toasted Chocolate-Hazelnut Sandwiches

Toasted Chocolate-Hazelnut Sandwiches

Christopher Testani / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Christine Keely

The perfect brunch or late-night treat, these sweet sandwiches are piled high with a blend of sweet-tart preserves, toasty hazelnuts, and melted chocolate. The bread is crisped, lightly salty, and golden brown from the butter, while the inside of the sandwich is both gooey and delightfully crunchy.

14 of 21

Strawberry, Banana, and Almond Butter Smoothie

Strawberry, Banana and Almond Butter Smoothie
© Lucy Schaeffer

Sweet berries, creamy bananas, nutty almond butter, and a pinch of salt make this smoothie deliciously complex.

15 of 21

Chocolate Chip and Banana Muffins

Chocolate Chip and Banana Muffins

Fredrika Stjärne

Like banana bread, these especially moist muffins are a great way to use up overripe bananas. Chopped toasted pecans would be delicious in them, too.

16 of 21

Loaded Potato Waffles

Loaded Potato Waffles
© Nicole Franzen

Shredded potatoes are cooked in a waffle iron until crisp, then topped with cheddar, bacon, sour cream, and chives.

17 of 21

Classic Belgian Waffles

Classic Belgian Waffles
© Tina Rupp

Wafels & Dinges founder Thomas DeGeest went to Belgium to learn from master waffle-makers and perfect his own recipes. He came back with ideas for two styles of waffle, including this light, crispy Brussels version. Toppings can include dulce de leche, maple syrup, and fudge sauce.

18 of 21

Crêpe Monsieur

Crepe Monsieur

Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Chelsea Zimmer / Prop Styling by Christina Daley

Drawing inspiration from a croque monsieur and an egg-topped croque madame, Milwaukee chef Joe Muench’s playful crêpe pays homage to Wisconsin by sourcing local ingredients. While a nutty, rich Alpine-style cheese studded with savory pieces of ham fills the interior, the outer crêpe is garnished with a drizzling of a zippy Dijonnaise sauce and chopped dill pickles for a balancing, tangy bite.

19 of 21

Southern-Style Mac 'n' Cheese

Southern Style Mac n Cheese
Photo by Noah Fecks / Food Styling by Drew Aichele / Prop Styling by Ethan Lunkenheimer

When the brunch is closer to lunch, add this creamy, savory macaroni and cheese recipe, which gets layers of flavor from three cheeses, fresh bay leaves, and dry mustard.

20 of 21

Bacon, Tomato, and Cheddar Breakfast Bake with Eggs

Bacon, Tomato and Cheddar Breakfast Bake with Eggs

© Fredrika Stjärne

This breakfast bake topped with runny eggs develops a terrific texture as it cooks slowly in a glass dish. As one F&W editor remarked while tasting it, “I worship the crisp bottom and the chewy, moist bread.”

21 of 21

Open-Face Egg and Griddled Ham Breakfast Sandwiches

Open-Face Egg and Griddled Ham Breakfast Sandwiches
© Nicole Franzen

F&W culinary director at large Justin Chapple poaches a dozen eggs at once in a muffin pan in the oven, making his cute and tasty breakfast sliders extraordinarily easy to prepare for entertaining.

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