What Do Italians Eat for Breakfast?

When traveling to Italy, one of the most interesting and enjoyable aspects of the cuisine is exploring what Italians eat for breakfast. A traditional Italian breakfast often consists of a light snack that is both healthy and filling.

Many Italians start their day with an espresso or cappuccino accompanied by fresh fruit, pastries, cheese-filled focaccia, or crostini topped with prosciutto and local cheeses.

Whether it’s served in a cafe or a convivial home setting, a typical Italian breakfast will excite the palate and provide energy until lunchtime.

What Do Italians Eat for Breakfast?

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and it’s no wonder Italians are some of the best breakfast eaters in the world. On this list, you’ll find some of the most traditional Italian breakfast dishes that are sure to set your morning off right.

Most of these dishes include eggs or some form of sausage, toast is a popular choice, and Italy is known for its hearty breakfasts. If you’re looking to try out a traditional Italian breakfast, start with one of these dishes! 

As you know, breakfast is the most important meal of the day in the United States, but it’s not the only country that holds this belief. Breakfast is a big deal in Italy too.

Breakfast in Italy can range from simple favorites like oatmeal to more elaborate dishes like quiche. If you’re looking for something specific to eat in Italy, be sure to check out our comprehensive list. This will help you find the perfect breakfast for your taste and needs! 

Traditional Italian Breakfast 

1. Cornetto 


If you’re in the mood for something sweet and classic, why not try a Cornetto? This type of sandwich is made with two slices of toast – one filled with Nutella and the other with ham, cheese, and tomato.

It can be found in many cafes and bakeries all around Italy, so it’s worth checking it out! If breakfast isn’t your thing, but want to give an Italian meal a go anyway, then you should include a Cornetto on your list! 

2. Maritozzi 


Maritozzi is classic Italian sweet buns that are cut in half and filled with whipped cream. They have their origins in ancient Rome. Maritozzi is a common item in Rome’s pastry shops. They are typically purchased for breakfast and served with coffee.

Yeast, flour, eggs, sugar, butter, salt, fresh cream, and optional additions such as candied orange peel, raisins, and pine nuts are used to make them.

These sweet buns were given to their fiancées by young grooms-to-be, hence the term maritozzi, which means almost-husband. In the past, the only candies that could be eaten during Lent were maritozzi.

3. Biscotti 


The Latin term biscottus, which means twice baked or cooked, is the source of the English word biscotti. The dough is fashioned into logs, baked, chilled, and then baked again. Americans regard “biscotti” as a single long, crisp, twice-baked Italian cookie, although Italians use the phrase to refer to a variety of cookies.

Biscotti is the perfect breakfast or snack food – it’s delicious and versatile. There are so many variations of biscotti available on shelves, each with its unique flavor and texture. Best enjoyed as a snack or breakfast item, biscotti is perfect for any time of day.

Whether you’re in the mood for something sweet or savory, biscuits will hit the spot! Dip them into chocolate or coffee to enjoy a warm and satisfying treat that satisfies your cravings both physically and mentally. 

4. Fresh Bread 

Fresh Bread

For Italians, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. That’s why it’s no wonder that they love bread so much! Rolls and croissants are some of their favorite breakfast foods, but pastries and jams can also be a big hit.

Italian toast lovers will devour cereal just as much as bakers enjoy brioche or challah bread! So when it comes to breakfast in Italy, don’t forget about fresh bread – it’ll make you start on the right foot and set you up for an energizing morning full of good food memories! 

5. Bread With Cheese 

Bread With Cheese

If you’re looking for a delicious and hearty breakfast that can be enjoyed by all, bread with cheese is the way to go! This Italian breakfast staple is loved by people of all ages, as it’s one of the most popular foods in Italy.

Bread with cheese is usually served as toast or paired with different types of cheeses for a more pronounced flavor. It makes an excellent meal on its own or can be part of a larger breakfast buffet. 

6. Brioche 


Bread-like elements including yeast, flour, butter, and eggs are used to make brioche. But unlike regular sandwich bread, brioche requires a lot of eggs and butter to prepare.

As a baked item produced from leavened yeast dough, like a croissant, brioche is commonly referred to as a viennoiserie.

Brioche requires two proofs, or rests so that the yeast can work its magic and cause the dough to rise (this is only necessary if you’re baking it in a loaf pan, though).

Italians buy brioches from bakeries and cafes and eat them with their morning espresso. The filling for brioches can range from almond paste to vanilla cream and jam.

Popular Traditional Breakfast 

If you’re planning a trip to Italy, it’s important to know what Italians typically eat for breakfast! Some variations of this traditional breakfast include pastries and croissants.

There are also many savory breakfasts that Italians enjoy like eggs benedict or waffles with syrup or bananas foster French toast! So, be sure to check out our comprehensive guide to see what’s popular in this breakfast category! Remember, breakfast is a great way to start the day and it’s always a pleasure to eat something delicious from Italy! 

7. Bread, butter, and jam

Bread butter and jam

Bread, butter and jam is a delicious traditional breakfast in Italy that many people love. It can be a quick and easy meal to make if you have all the ingredients ready and waiting.

A traditional breakfast in Italy usually consists of bread, butter, or cheese (either as a starter or main course), jam, and milk or coffee as a drink. It can be enjoyed either warm or cold, depending on your preference! 

The routine for a nice start to the day, whether alone or with someone else, is breakfast with bread, butter, and jam, accompanied by a cup of tea, coffee, or a glass of orange juice. And if you were worried that a classic breakfast of bread, butter, and jam could get old, you’ll be surprised to learn that there are a variety of ways to make it.

8. Italian breakfast biscuits 

Italian breakfast biscuits

If you’re a fan of hearty breakfasts, then you must try out Italian breakfast biscuits! Made from a mixture of flour, butter, milk, and salt, these biscuit-like pastries are not your average biscuit.

You can find them in most supermarkets and convenience stores around the country. So if breakfast is on your agenda this morning (or any other day), be sure to give these delicious pastries a try! 

9. Breakfast cereals in Italy 

Breakfast cereals

When it comes to breakfast cereal in Italy, it is usually something light and healthy like oatmeal or muesli. Most cereals are made with whole grains and low sugar levels for health benefits.

Then they might have an espresso, cappuccino, or caffe latte for breakfast. Italians typically start their day with a cup of coffee or black tea. 

10. Milk in Italy 


In Italy, milk is commonly consumed in the morning as a light breakfast. It can either be enjoyed fresh or put into coffee or pastries. Italians also enjoy various café drinks for breakfast such as espresso, cappuccino etcetera.

Some people like to add fresh fruits or jams to their breakfast as well. Most Italians start their day with a leisurely morning walk in the city or countryside! 

11. Bombolone 


An Italian-filled doughnut known as a bombolone is consumed as a snack and dessert. The name of the pastry is etymologically related to bomba, and in some parts of Italy, the same kind of pastry is also known by the name bomba.

Bombolone is a type of doughnut that is made from flour, yeast, and milk. They are boiled in water and then baked. Popular variations include chocolate bombolone and strawberry bombolone.

Bombolone shops can be found all over the country – they are especially popular during the Christmas season. Italians enjoy them because they are easy to make and go well with coffee! 

12. Frittata 


A frittata is an Italian egg-based dish that can include a variety of ingredients such as cheese, vegetables, and meats. It’s usually served hot but also tastes great cold.

Frittata is a great way to start the day, especially when you’re in a rush. You can cook it up in one skillet and serve it with toast or a side salad.

13. Sfogliatella 


One of the most well-known Italian desserts is the sfogliatella, with variations from various locations. Although it is frequently linked to Naples, it is thought that the first sfogliatella was created by nuns from the Santa Rosa monastery in the Amalfi Coast region of Italy around 1700.

If you’re looking for a traditional Italian breakfast, try sfogliatella! This type of pastry is typically filled with ricotta cheese and sugar. It can also be made with different types of fruits, such as strawberries or bananas, or even Nutella.

Sfogliatella is usually served for breakfast in Italy, but can also be found at various cafes around the world. So why not give it a try this weekend? You might just love it! 

14. Muesli And Cereal 

Muesli And Cereal

There’s a reason why muesli and cereal are so popular in Italy – they’re both jam-packed with nutrients that will give you sustained energy all morning long. Muesli is made of oats, dried fruits, nuts, and seeds which make it high in fiber.

This combination provides your body with the essential building blocks it needs to start the day off right. Cereal on the other hand is just breakfast cereal – but it’s one of the most traditional breakfasts there is!

Italians usually enjoy cereal as their breakfast because it’s easy to digest and has a lot of potassium which helps regulate blood pressure levels throughout the day. 

15. Cannoli 


Italian pastries known as cannoli are made of fried pastry dough tubes that are tube-shaped and filled with a sweet, creamy filling made with ricotta, a common ingredient in Sicilian cooking. They are between 9 and 20 centimeters in size. They are frequently referred to as “cannoli siciliani” in mainland Italy.

Ricotta and mascarpone cheese are combined to create a rich, creamy, and sweet cannoli filling. It can be used as a filling for cakes and sandwich cookies in addition to being used to produce the Italian treat known as cannoli. 

Cannoli have a mildly sweet flavor. The filling has a mild cheese flavor and is smooth, creamy, and rich. The shell is lightly sweet and crispy, but it’s also thick enough to hold the contents in place.

16. Panino Con la Mortadella 

Panino Con la Mortadella

If you love Italian food, you need to try out Panino Con la Mortadella. This sandwich is made of mortadella, a type of sausage, and bread that is toasted. It typically serves as a breakfast or lunch option in Italy and can be substituted with any other meat for the same result.

What’s great about it is that it can be served with garden salad and tomato sauce on top – making it an ideal meal choice for anybody looking for something different from their usual palate. 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the typical Italian breakfast? 

For Italians, coffee or espresso is often served for breakfast. Omelets, toast, croissants with jam or honey, and pancakes are some additional breakfast favorites.

2. What is the most popular Italian breakfast? 

Bread with butter and jam, or pane, burro e marmellata in Italian, is the most consumed food in Italy. Every household has a preferred variety of bread, which varies from location to region.

3. What do Italians eat for breakfast in Rome? 

Breakfast in Rome is usually light and consists of fruit, yogurt, cereal, or bread. Croissants, pancakes, cappuccino, and pastries are all typical breakfast dishes in Italy because the country’s population generally enjoys carb-heavy meals in the morning.

4. How do Italians eat eggs? 

The preferred way to start the day for Italians is with something baked and a cup of coffee or cappuccino. Instead, fried eggs are viewed as a casual lunch and are frequently made into a frittata (from the Italian word for “fried,” which generally refers to a dish in which eggs are cooked in a skillet atop a layer of fat).


Thank you for reading! In this blog, I have covered everything you need to know about Italian breakfast foods. From traditional foods to popular breakfast items, I have covered it all! I hope that the guide has helped you choose the perfect breakfast food for your next Italian trip. Don’t forget to share this blog with your friends and family!

I’m a passionate food blogger on a journey to become a go-to person who can help others prepare delicious foods. I share recipes, food substitutes, and other cooking tips. Read more about my journey...

2 thoughts on “What Do Italians Eat for Breakfast?”

  1. Italians do not eat spaghetti for breakfast!!! Also, we do not serve spaghetti with espresso! This sounds like an insult to our traditions!!!


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