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Aug 27, 2014 12:29 PM

Where to grab breakfast in Barcelona/Madrid/Sevilla/Granada?

Do people eat things like churros or tortilla patata as breakfast? Where can we grab traditional breakfast food in these cities?

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  1. Yes and yes. Breakfast is usually eaten at a cafe (cafetería) or a bar. You can't walk two minutes in any Spanish city or town without finding a place serving breakfast.

    1 Reply
    1. re: SnackHappy

      I was about to say the same thing. I love just wandering out and selecting somewhere that looks busy. Lots of different breakfast options to try with ham featuring quite a lot.

      That said every time I look for churros for breakfast I never find it - I always stumble over it when I am already stuffed!

    2. i cant vouch for it since i havent gone but ill be in barcelona next week and plan to visit caravelle for breakfast.

      3 Replies
      1. re: sam1

        If anglo-hipster tacos and tortas are your idea of eating in Barcelona I guess that's fine, but this place does not serve breakfast. They don't even open until 10am. Brunch is nice, but brunch isn't breakfast and not something Spaniards engage in unless they're trying to be anglo-trendy.

        1. re: SnackHappy

          i figured that was what to expect.

          what about satan's coffee corner? does that have any food?

          1. re: sam1

            I've never made it to Satan's Coffee Corner, but if their Facebbok is anything to go by, they serve breakfast and lunch stuff.


      2. Like the previous posts, breakfast is not a big deal in Spain and nobody goes out of a way to look for this or that; convenience is the number one criteria therefore, just look for an inviting place where you are staying.
        Barcelona has several cafes on c/de Petritxol serving churros and hot chocolate. I've never had much luck getting it fresh out the fryer; always fried ahead of time and kept warm. Couple of times, I got lucky and got it hot out of the fry at a small store on via Laietana off c/de Princesa; both times at around 3pm. As for tortilla patata, go to the Boqueria or any mercat around the city. If you like churros, might want to try a Catalan pastry call XUXO; great versions at Forn de Sant Jaume and Forn de Maure.
        Chocolatier San Gines just off the Puerta del Sol is the classic place for churros. From my limited experience, it is so so. La Mallorquina on the Puerta is much better for simple breakfast. Standup bar on the street level and tables upstair. No churros.
        Seville: I had good churros at several mobil trucks in the Arenal district, parked between the bullring and the cathedral. Sorry I can't remember the streets. They are there only in the mornings. Unlike the common version, it is thinner without ridges, fried fresh when ordered, served in paper cones and dusted with cinnamon sugar. They were the only times that I thought churros were worth eating.

        9 Replies
        1. re: PBSF

          "They were the only times that I thought churros were worth eating." .....other than at 4:00 am after a few sherries at the annual feria in a small town like Tarifa. Definitely a life saver.

          1. re: PBSF

            I recently read that the churros served at the granjas on Petritxol are made at Xurreria Manuel San Roman and delivered a few times a day. That explains the experiences I've had at Pallaresa and Dulcinea. So if your churros are hot, you either have very good timing or they have been reheated. I don't recommend going to granjas for churros. There are better things to be had there. And anyway, granjas aren't open for breakfast. They mostly only open outside of meal times. It's a better idea to go directly to San Roman and eat their churros fresh. They are very good.


            That being said, I recommend breakfast at Churreria Layetana. Their churros are good, but their porras are great! Personally, I prefer porrras for dipping into my morning cafe con leche.

            1. re: SnackHappy

              If you notice they do not have any equipment necessary for making churros and neither there is the typical greasy smell. And sometimes you can even see the guy bringing the churros.

              In any case I do not think churros are typically breakfast food at least in Barcelona.

              People eat tortilla but it is more of a mid morning snack? Breakfast is usually coffee and something sweet.

            2. re: PBSF

              On my above post, sorry to left out that Chocolateria San Gines and La Mallorquina are in Madrid.

              1. re: PBSF

                Thanks PBSF for introducing me to xuxo. It looks like a deep fried donut filled with custard or chocolate and dipped in cinnamon sugar.. is that what it is? Custard and chocolate fillings are my favorite! I can't find Forn de Maure online, where is it located?

                Thanks SnackHappy for suggesting porras. How are they different than churros? Google doesn't have much info on it..

                I found out that Flash Flash is quite close to where I'm staying in Barcelona. Is it open for breakfast and is their tortilla any good?

                1. re: GourmetPiggy

                  "I can't find Forn de Maure online"

                  That would be because it's actually called Pasteleria Mauri. They are at Rambla de Catalunya 103.

                  A xuxo is a fritter filled with crema catalana which is basically pastry cream. I love the ones from Forn de Sant Jaume. They are normally covered with regular sugar. I've never seen one stuffed with chocolate or covered in cinnamon sugar, but nothing is impossible.

                  As for porras, they are much larger than churros and have a different more poreous texture. They resemble Chinese fried dough.

                  Here's a picture that shows the difference well. The porras are on the top and churros on the bottom.


                  1. re: GourmetPiggy

                    Sorry, I got my forns confused. Forno de Maure is in Venice. Should be Forns del Pi in the Gotic, on Carrer de Ferran, between La Ramblas and Carrer d'Avinyo.

                    1. re: PBSF

                      Oops, sorry. I don't remember a Forn de Maure on Ferran. I apologize for second guessing you.

                      1. re: SnackHappy

                        I am the one that got confused. No Forn de Maure on Ferran. It is Forns del Pi on c/Ferran. I edit the post.

              2. Like other commenters said, breakfast is not a big meal in Spain.
                Most cafes serve coffee and bread/pastries or ham bocadillos.
                Churros seemed to be mostly available after lunch.

                In Barcelona check out Mercat de Libertat, which is a mini version of Boqueria and much less crowded.

                1. Breakfast in Barcelona? Well… we were laughing and joking about this topic on Tuesday morning at 5am. We wanted to buy 3 doughnuts from a bakery. "No, you can't have them yet," the server said. "They're still frozen." We settled for another can of Estrella instead and continued our way home along Diagonal.
                  You could try a sol i sombra — a traditional breakfast for manual workers —otherwise known as a kick from the mule or a jumpstart — anisette and brandy. You could have either sweet anisette or not so sweet anisette with a sharp brandy or a softer brandy. Sets you up for the day ahead, especially if you accompany it with a valenciano (sponge cake very like a magdalena but different shape) or a melindro (a sponge finger cake). Or, maybe, just a carijillo or cigaló.
                  A good shout for breakfast is probably Velódromo, just below Diagonal on Carrer Muntaner. Here's a link:, where you can download their breakfast offerings, which include: scrambled eggs with sausage, blood sausage, chorizo etc etc or their morning cocktails of vodka, coffee and vanilla liqueur or gin, lemon juice, violet liqueuer and orange marmalade — similar effect to a sol y sombra — which you can get in most local café-bars, but a little pricier and fruitier.
                  Enjoy your visit to Barcelona.