Sugar Rush, Anyone? – Meet the Italian Breakfast

This October, when we visited Italy after a couple of days of near-starvation in Croatia, we found ourselves looking forward to our included ‘breakfasts’ at the B&Bs that we were booked at.

Clearly, I’d forgotten what breakfast in Italy means.

The Italians, for some reason, interpret ‘breakfast’ as ‘sugar kick time’ and will offer you a sweet cornetto (croissant / other pastry) dusted generously with powdered sugar (because all that chocolate / marmalade alone is just not sweet enough) and a cappuccino or a caffe. That’s it – a pastry and a coffee – no more, no less. Because the Italians are too fabulous for nutrition, darlings. Ask for the coffee without sugar, of course.

You'll get a wide choice of croissants, don't worry
You will get a wide choice of croissants, don’t worry. Photo by Juan Fernández (Desayuno) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons

While I have a notorious sweet tooth or two (or sweet teeth, as I call them), I’ll admit that the early morning chocolate-and-sugar overload did sometimes prove to be a challenge for me. It also left me slightly baffled – maybe this is the secret behind all those skinny Italian women. The heavy-breakfast person that I am, I’d often find myself dreaming of the massive Turkish breakfast spreads from my holiday there.

Olives, Cheese, Breads, Eggs, Marmalade, Fruits, Salads, Juice, Coffee / Tea - Omnomnomnom
Olives, Cheese, Breads, Eggs, Marmalade, Fruits, Spreads, Juice, Coffee / Tea – Turkish breakfasts, omnomnomnom. Photo by Tanyel (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons

I did get used to these ‘mini-meals’ after a couple of days (and to help things along, the chocolate was always delicious). If you can, I’d recommend getting your breakfast at a cafe in a working-class neighbourhood early in the morning (7 – 8 AM) as the locals grab their breakfasts over a chat with the cafe owner. No bonus food to fill your rumbling stomachs, but lots of musical Italian conversation to fill your ears with. Ciao ciao!

4 thoughts on “Sugar Rush, Anyone? – Meet the Italian Breakfast”

  1. I tend to just have a glass of milk or juice fro breakfast but when available I do love my croissants for breakfast so breakfast in itality sounds just perfect for me! although I imagine that while on holidays ( i.e not somtg I would eat everuday) the turkish breakfast seems delicious!!


      1. Oh well, I should add that I like early lunches… as in I’ve been known to have lunch at 11:30…. So I get the whole have a bigger breakfast so you can then enjoy a later (more normal?) lunch hour but I just can’t eat a lot when I first wake up!

        Liked by 1 person

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