Food blog

The Delightful Secrets of a Full Irish Breakfast Unveiled

This is what a full Irish breakfast really means.

In the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day, there is a very important and often overlooked element of the celebration across the country, and possibly the world – breakfast. While many may not make the connection or even consider associating breakfast with this joyous occasion, the truth is that they’re missing out on a small taste of true Irish gold and the chance to take part in the full St. Patty’s Day experience. And, of course, the food is delicious.

Experience a taste of Ireland

“Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dine like a pauper,” goes the old Irish proverb, meaning the best way to start the day is with a full Irish breakfast (via Discovering Ireland). Not to be confused with a full English breakfast, although similar, they have key differences. For example, a full Irish breakfast is an iron- and protein-packed meal known for over-easy eggs served with baked beans, black pudding, black and white pudding, Irish bacon, and sautéed mushrooms and tomatoes (via The Food Network). Toast, butter, and plenty of tea to wash it all down are also part of the feast.
If you’re feeling particularly hungry, swap the toast for Irish soda bread. Traditionally made for farm workers to eat on cold winter mornings, it’s usually saved for lazy Sunday mornings. But for those of you looking for an authentic St. Patrick’s Day experience, look no further than ordering a full Irish breakfast.

The ingredients of a full Irish breakfast

A full Irish breakfast is more than just a plate of food – it’s where history and culture come together in a delicious way. Let’s take a closer look at the key components that make up this legendary breakfast:

Over-Easy Eggs

The eggs in a full Irish breakfast are typically cooked over easy, with the yolks still runny. This gives the dish a creamy and rich texture.

Baked Beans

Baked beans are a staple of a full Irish breakfast. They add a touch of sweetness and are a hearty source of fiber and protein.

Black Pudding

Black pudding, also known as blood pudding, is a type of sausage made from pork blood, oatmeal and spices. It has a distinct flavor and adds depth to breakfast.

Black and white blood sausages

In addition to black pudding, a complete Irish breakfast often includes both black and white pudding. These sausages are made with pork blood, fat and various spices.

Irish Bacon

Irish bacon, also known as back bacon or rashers, is a lean and flavorful cut of pork that is a must-have in a full Irish breakfast. It is usually grilled or pan fried until crispy.

Sautéed Mushrooms and Tomatoes

Sautéed mushrooms and tomatoes add a burst of freshness and flavor to breakfast. They are typically cooked until tender and seasoned with herbs and spices.

Toast and Irish Soda Bread

Toast is a common accompaniment to a full Irish breakfast. But for a more authentic experience, you can swap the toast for Irish soda bread. This traditional bread is made with buttermilk and baking soda, giving it a unique flavor and texture.


No complete Irish breakfast is complete without a cup of tea. Tea is an integral part of Irish culture and is often enjoyed throughout the day.


A full Irish breakfast is a hearty and flavorful meal that embodies the rich history and culinary traditions of Ireland. With over-easy eggs, baked beans, black pudding, black and white sausage, Irish bacon, sautéed mushrooms and tomatoes, toast or Irish soda bread, and a cup of tea, it’s a feast that will satisfy both your taste buds and your hunger. Whether you’re celebrating St. Patrick’s Day or just want to indulge in an authentic Irish culinary experience, a full Irish breakfast is a must. So channel your inner Irish and start your day off right with this delicious and satisfying meal.


What is the difference between a full Irish breakfast and a full English breakfast?

The main difference is in the specific ingredients used. While both breakfasts are hearty and include similar components such as eggs, bacon and toast, a full Irish breakfast includes additional items such as black pudding, Irish bacon and sautéed mushrooms and tomatoes.

Can I substitute Irish soda bread for toast in a complete Irish breakfast?

Absolutely you can! While toast is a common choice, substituting Irish soda bread can add an authentic touch to your breakfast experience. Irish soda bread, with its unique flavor and texture, pairs beautifully with the other components of a full Irish breakfast.

Are there vegetarian options for a full Irish breakfast?

Yes, there are vegetarian variations of a full Irish breakfast. You can replace the meat items such as bacon and sausages with vegetarian alternatives such as vegetarian sausages, grilled halloumi cheese, or vegetarian rashers made from plant-based ingredients.

Is a full Irish breakfast suitable for people with dietary restrictions?

A full Irish breakfast can be adapted to suit a variety of dietary restrictions. For example, if you are gluten intolerant, you can opt for gluten-free bread or Irish soda bread. If you are on a low-carb diet, you can skip the toast or soda bread and focus on the protein-rich items like eggs and bacon.

Can I find a full Irish breakfast outside of Ireland?

While a full Irish breakfast is most commonly associated with Ireland, you can find variations of it in Irish-themed pubs or restaurants in other countries. These establishments often strive to recreate the authentic flavors and experience of a traditional Irish breakfast.

Is a full Irish breakfast only eaten in the morning?

Traditionally, a full Irish breakfast is enjoyed in the morning as a substantial and satisfying meal to start the day. However, it can also be enjoyed as a brunch or even a dinner, depending on personal preference. The key is to savor the flavors and enjoy the experience of this iconic Irish meal.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *