Breakfast in the Bahamas is not your usual eggs, bacon, toast situation. The Bahamas decided to throw a wrench in our normal breakfast life by introducing things like fish stews, pig feet and corned beef. Sounds strange, I know, and at first I was quite skeptical, however now I can affirmatively say I’m a big fan, don’t knock it till you try it!
One of the most exciting things about traveling is experience the food. You sometimes have to step out of your comfort zone, sometimes it's terrible, most of the time it's quite exceptional! In this case, the latter will most likely be your experience!
Let's get into it, if you’re going to dive into this culture, you have to dive into their breakfast, especially if it will be enjoyed after a night of too many rum cocktails! It’s salty, hearty and will soak up all the unwanted leftover alcohol in your system.
First things first, with your breakfast you’ll usually have a choice of grits or Johnny Cake on the side. Let me get into these amazing side pieces. Grits are a relatively simple side, they are just a standard coarse corn kernel boiled in water and salt, think grainy mashed potatoes, a great option to add some consistency and girth to your soup. Johnny Cake deserves its own section, but I’m not going to leave the grits hanging. Johnny cake is as if a biscuit and cornbread had a baby. Think texture and shape of cornbread, but less grainy and with a bisut-esq flavor and top. Not sweet, but with a slight sweet twist! Its simply amazing on its own, with butter and jam enjoyed with coffee, or dipped in a soup! This is a 100% must try treat!
Stew Fish / Stew Conch-
This is one of my favorites, made from a thick tomato base, still using the base of onions, celery and potato. The fish is usually snapper/grouper, and probably battered & fried. The conch is bare, and absolutely delicious. Best enjoyed with some grits & Johnny cake with a twist of lime.
Boil Fish- As simple as it sounds, fish, usually grouper thrown in some broth with onions, celery and potatoes. This is more of a savage choice in my opinion, but definitely the most healthy on the list.
Souse (Chicken/Mutton/Pig Feet/Sheep Tongue)- Every Bahamians go-to breakfast of choice for a hangover cure. A lovely soup consisting of a meat, as mentioned above, onion, potato, all spice, lots of lime and hot pepper. This is a refreshing, mouthwatering, nose running experience, my personal favorite is the Chicken souse (bone-in!).
Grits & Tuna - Strange for breakfast, yes, but surprisingly enjoyable! This is literally tuna salad served next to a side of grits. Probably the most affordable and lowest calorie count on the Bahamian Breakfast menu!
Corned beef & Grits “Fire Engine” - The Bahamian version of corned beef hash- basically some ground beef with hot pepper, tomato paste and onion, served with some grits on the side. This is a staple in Bahamian culture and you will leave quite full!
Now that you've got the low down on the Bahamian Breakfast menu, it's time to put your taste buds into action! There are tons of great local options for breakfast, and the best usually comes from a small food stand on the side of the road. But for those who want a little more guidance and an almost guaranteed great experience, I have provided a list of the best spots below. Enjoy, and share your feedback with us when you try!
Best restaurants in Nassau for a Bahamian breakfast
A local staple for Bahamian food. Nesbits is not your typical brunch environment, however it has a great menu! My suggestion is to sit out on the patio, you’ll have an ocean view, and order the chicken souse with Johnny cake!
Meze is more of your hip brunch spot. Possibly offering 2 for 1 mimosa’s and most likely filled with people and a loud ambience. Order the stew conch, paired with some Johnny cake and some champagne!
Another staple for Bahamian food. Cricket club is located across from the fish fry, perched up offering a nice view of Arawak Cay. Sit outside and enjoy basically anything from this menu, it won’t disappoint!
A combo of hip brunch spot and Bahamian staple! This is a great stop for a good brunch, conveniently located in Old Fort Bay. Stop by and check out any of their Bahamian breakfast items, you will be impressed!