The traditional Turkish breakfast!

Turkish breakfast is the best way to get your day started anywhere in the world. It’s filling, giving you the energy you need, but light, so you’re not weighed down all day like some other popular breakfasts.

Traditional Turkish breakfast is definitely the best reason to get out of bed.

Turkish breakfast is organic-friendlyvegetarian-friendly (but still with some lovely meats for the carnivores amongst us), and even vegan-friendly.

So what’s all in it?


I can confirm that cheese is a big deal for the Turkish people. In a real Turkish breakfast spread, Turks put many varieties of cheese such as kasseri, uncured goat’s cheese (known as “lor”), white cheese from Ezine, mihalic cheese which originates in the Ottoman Empire, Tulum cheese from Izmir and many more.

Different kinds of Turkish Cheese


Different kinds of olives

Usually, both black and green olives will be served. Be prepared for Turkish olives to be better and more flavorful than any you’ve ever had before.


Bread is another critical part of Turkish breakfast. Standard Turkish white bread, called “ekmek,” with a crispy crust and a light fluffy inside is always hot and freshly baked. Sesame bread called Simit is also present at just about every Turkish breakfast. From there, açma and poğaça breakfast rolls, often stuffed with anything from cheese to meat to olive paste, are common to go with the food and the bread is used to eat with the salad and soak up any juices from either a menemen or the olive oil or some of the other delectable dips on the breakfast menu

Beyond the common themes but the specialties vary greatly by region.

Van Breakfast

Traditional Breakfast of Van, which may soon be a part of the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage List.


As you can see, Turks are also really into jams, such as apricot jam, strawberry jam, sour cherry jam, plum jam, fig jam, quince jam, rose jam, bergamot jam. You can probably find the jam of every fruit and vegetable in Turkey including hot pepper.

Honey And Clotted Cream

This is luxury at most breakfasts, but it’s an absolute must. The clotted cream of “kaymak” is as good cream as you’ll find anywhere in the world, and Turkish honey is also famed as amongst the best, with hundreds of different types on offer (depending on the flowers they’re pollinated from), all of them 100% natural of course. In fact, honey straight off the comb is very common in Turkey, with locals heading to the store and buying an entire honeycomb rather than a jar.


Turks like to treat themselves with eggs with fermented sausage or scrambled eggs with tomatoes, green peppers, bell peppers and spices such as hot chili flakes, oregano, and ground black pepper. This scrambled egg meal called menemen.

The best part of eating eggs with fermented sausage is dipping pieces of bread in this delicious spicy egg yolk-fried sausage combination.
The onion is optional in menemen

Turkish tea has a great role in breakfast

More tea is consumed in Turkey than any other country in the world, and it starts at breakfast. Black tea is much more common than any other kind of tea, and in Turkey, it’s made in something called a çaydanlık, which separates a concentrated form of tea and boiled water. It’s strong but never bitter, and studies have shown that Turkish tea helps regulate blood vessels and the heart, lowering the chance of a stroke or heart attack. It’s served in beautiful fluted glass cups, adding to the aesthetics of the breakfast.

In short:

  • Turkish breakfast is very rich.
  • Turkish people eat a lot of different things at breakfast. They do not like a simple one.
  • It’s quite normal in Turkey to go to a restaurant or someone’s home for breakfast.
  • Turkish people drink tea instead of coffee during breakfast. After breakfast, they drink Turkish coffee.
  • Turkish people eat vegetables like tomatoes or cucumbers at breakfast. Also, olives are eaten for breakfast in Turkey.
  • Simit (bagel-like pastry), cheese, and tea are Turkish people’s most favorite things in breakfast.
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