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Seven Eye-Opening Breakfasts at the Minnesota State Fair

Start the day right.

A large picture of the Blue Barn at the Fairgrounds
Where to stop first at the fair
The Blue Barn

The gates open at 6:00 a.m. and what waits inside is an entirely different fair experience than the blazing mid-day heat and thick crowds that come later. The 4H kids are tending animals, the lights are still just beginning to blink on and there aren’t lines for anything.

Get there early and stop in at one of these stands that open first thing in the morning.

Scotch Eggs

West side of Liggett St. between Carnes and Judson avenues

It’s all the morning protien on a stick a fair goer could ever want. A hard-cooked egg is expertly encased in slightly salty pork sausage before getting a deep fry and being skewered on the ubiquitous stick. There is a side of ranch sauce for those who want the full Midwestern experience.

One of two church halls at the fair
Hamline Dining Hall / Facebok

Eggs, Bacon and a Muffin

Hamline Church Dining Hall

North side of Dan Patch Ave. between Underwood and Cooper streets

This historic hall turns 120 this year and serves everything a loving Minnesotan grandmother might for breakfast: eggs, bacon, hash browns, pancakes, cinnamon rolls, muffins, pie and even a bowl of cereal if all the fried stuff is getting overwhelming.

Blue Barn’s French Toast
Crackle Pop Rocking French Toast
The Blue Barn / Facebook

Pop Rocks French Toast

The Blue Barn

At West End Market, south of the History and Heritage Center

Conveniently located right by where the park and ride buses drop off fair goers, the appropriately named stand run by the Blue Plate Company (the folks behind restaurants like the Highland Grill) serves a mean and easy-to-tote breakfast that’s one of the most fun things to eat at the fair. French toast is topped with strawberry sauce, whipped cream and a sprinkling of Pop Rocks candy.

The empty upstairs of Lulu’s without any people. Tons of open chairs, tables and open sides for looking down at other fairgoers
Lulu’s is like an indoor/outdoor pub with a view of the West End Market
Lulu’s Public House / Facebook

Gorilla Bread

Lulu’s Public House

At West End Market, south of the Schilling Ampitheater

One step beyond monkey bread is gorilla bread, sweetened dough is laced with cinnamon, covered in caramel sauce and topped with cream cheese frosting. This is also an ideal spot for a breakfast beer with the Brew Free! Or Die Blood Orange IPA on tap.

Like a cronut, but without the lines
Joy Summers / Eater Twin Cities


French Meadow

North side of Carnes Ave. between Nelson and Underwood streets

This stand is ground zero for breakfast pastries, but when this unholy union of croissant and doughnut is served fresh out of the fryer and pounded with powdered sugar, nothing is better.

Photo by Molly Mogren
Photo by Molly Mogren

Egg Coffee

Salem Lutheran Church

North side of Randall Ave. south of the Progress Center

Forgive the apparent egg coffee obsession, but it’s a rare treat that blends a singular love of the caffinated that unites coffee snobs and little old ladies from the Iron Range. It’s an utterly smooth, plain Jane cup of Joe that’s only available here during this glorious time of year.

A hand holds tiny, sugar covered doughnuts
Finally, an occasion for eating doughnuts by the handful
Eater file photo

Tom Thumb Donuts

2 Locations: Southwest corner of Carnes Ave. and Underwood St. and West side of Cooper St. between Wright and Dan Patch avenues, south of the Kidway

It’s not the fair without a piping hot sack of these little irresistible cinnamon, sugar covered doughnuts.

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