Create an at-home brunch experience personally customized to include your favorite items. Block off a couple of hours this upcoming Saturday, and use this guide to design your own five-star brunch no matter where you live in the Bay Area.
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Your adventure in San Francisco starts at Visitacion Valley's charming neighborhood cafe, Mission Blue. Chat with one of the friendly folks behind the counter, and learn more about the locally-made gifts for sale throughout the shop. Mission Blue's signature Lavender Latte—which can be ordered with almond or oat milk—uses beans from local San Francisco coffee roaster Saint Frank and pairs perfectly with a baked good from the chefs behind the popular vegan business Om Sabor.
Pictured: Mission Blue
After a stroll through the tree-lined walkway next to Mission Blue with latte and pastry in hand, it's time to feast by heading to Chinatown to pick up a vegan dim sum brunch at Lucky Creation Vegetarian Restaurant, a spot that’s been serving vegetarian and vegan favorites for over 30 years. From fluffy baos filled with sweet and savory BBQ vegan pork to plump veggie-packed dumplings, you will find it hard to resist the urge to order it all!
Venture to the modest window of Tōno Coffee Project in downtown Palo Alto for an extraordinary coffee experience to start your day. The window is like the gateway into a world where different coffee stories are highlighted every time your cup of joe is served. The only milk option here for your latte, cappuccino, or hot cocoa (featuring single-origin Vietnamese cacao powder!) is oat milk, and we can't complain at all!
Pictured: Tōno Coffee Project
With your morning drink secured, hustle over to Mami Cheli's in Menlo Park for a vegan take on street tacos and pupusas that can (and frankly should) be enjoyed at any time of the day. One order of the vegan tacos comes as a set of three with house-marinated vegan meat piled generously on top of corn tortillas (which are made fresh at Mami Cheli's). Every element of the pupusa—the oozing vegan cheese, the well-seasoned vegan meat, the crunchy and tangy side of curtido—is perfection.
The makings of a vegan brunch in Oakland cannot be without a stop at Timeless Coffee. This 100% plant-based bakery and roastery is paradise for every vegan fueled by caffeine and baked goods. Grab a pour-over of their house-roasted Guatemala Huehuetenango Los Arroyos #2, and enjoy the coffee's notes of browning sugar, baked apple, and orange peel. Redefine acceptable brunch sweets by picking up a slice of birthday cake—two layers of white cake covered in vanilla frosting and sprinkles—and a twinkie (you read correctly, vegan twinkies!).
Pictured: Timeless Coffee
Gay4U Vegan Eats is your next destination. Get the Lucid Cream Chicken & Waffles—crispy soy-based fried chicken sitting on top of thick cornmeal waffles with a side of maple syrup and pickles. Need to get your breakfast burrito fix in? Gay4U has you covered with their New Magic Breakfast Burrito packed with tater tots, yam, red pepper coconut cashew crema, and kraut with the option to also add fried chicken and avocado.
Nirvana Soul Coffee in San Jose is the beginning point for your brunch in the South Bay. Entering the coffee shop, you immediately take in the celebratory, fun environment created by their ceiling painted bright pink and walls decorated with art by local BIPOC artists. Order a coffee brewed using Nirvana Soul's own beans—also available for purchase by the bag—or the beet latte with oat milk for a nourishing start to your day.
Now onto Jaguar Bakery's Santa Clara kitchen to pick up a box of vegan pan dulce and treats to bring home as the highlight of your brunch table. A little additional planning is needed to secure some goodies when orders open on Tuesdays for Saturday pickup, but we guarantee it’s worth it! While the menu changes weekly, varying types of conchas, cuernitos, cupcakes, and bars are usually available. Ordering at least two of each is necessary because sharing is difficult to do when treats taste this good.
Pictured: Jaguar Bakery