4 Main Types of Breakfast in Hotel Industry

What is breakfast?

Breakfast is the first meal of the entire day. It should be fresh and filled with calories. It is served between 7-10 A.M. Breakfast is widely referred to as the most important meal of the day.

What are the types of breakfasts in hotels?

A list of different breakfast services served in hotels:

  1. Continental Breakfast
  2. American Breakfast
  3. English Breakfast
  4. House Breakfast

This entire list of foods and beverages is always popular at American breakfasts. So, in the USA, breakfasts are mostly cereal or egg-based dishes. Pancakes, toast, and the varieties of full breakfast and continental breakfast are prevalent. So, one thing you should notice in all these breakfasts is that every breakfast meal is a high-calorie breakfast meal. This is the main thing at breakfast in the USA.

1. Continental Breakfast

A continental breakfast is a very light morning breakfast. This type of breakfast is usually served in a buffet and is also designed like a European breakfast. This breakfast service basically focuses on foods that can be easily stocked. This term refers to the continent of Europe, and this breakfast is usually enjoyed in European cultures.

Continental breakfast first came about in 1896. And in the 1800s, the main focus was on a high-calorie breakfast to start the day. And at the same time, so many European travelers were coming to America and staying in hotels.

So at that time, the hotel was responsible for light breakfasts with high calories on their menu, which their European customers would appreciate. In this breakfast type, foods are very caloric. So, the menu is Baked Tomatoes, Omelette, Soymilk, Donuts, Orange juice, Fruits, etc.

Continental Breakfast Covers

Following are the items used for the Continental breakfast cover and their positions:

1. Side plate with side knife: In the center of the cover. Side knife over the underplate towards the right, with the cutting edge facing the left-hand side.

2. Napkin: On the side plate, under the side knife.

3. Breakfast cup and saucer: To the right-hand side of the cover, the handle of the cup is towards the right, slightly angled at 4 o’clock from the guest’s view for convenience in handling; a teaspoon is on the saucer with the spoon handle towards the right.

The table accompaniments are:

  • Bud vase.
  • Preserve the dish on an underliner with a preservation spoon.
  • Sugar bowl with sugar cubes and tongs (if granulated sugar is being used, then provide a teaspoon).
  • Table number.

Points that you should note:

  • Preserves come in disposable containers of different portion sizes.
  • Some hotels use sachets of sugar or low-calorie sugar in place of sugar cubes.
  • A water glass may or may not be placed, depending on the policy of the establishment.
  • The butter dish is not placed beforehand while laying the cover. It is placed at the time of service.

2. American Breakfast

The American breakfast is a breakfast that is not too light or too heavy. In this breakfast type, coffee is the most preferred beverage. Chilled water is served before breakfast. It includes fresh fruits and juice, breakfast cereals, eggs to order, and waffles and pancakes served with syrup and honey.

American Breakfast Covers

The following items are required to lay out the American breakfast cover:

  • Side plate with a side knife.
  • Large knife and fork.
  • Dessert spoon and fork
  • Breakfast cup and saucer with a teaspoon
  • Napkin.
  • Water goblet/glass.

The table accompaniments required are:

  • Bud vase.
  • Preserve the dish on an underliner with a preservation spoon.
  • Sugar bowl with sugar cubes.
  • Cruet.
  • Table number.

American Breakfast Menu

  • Fruit juice.
  • Fresh fruits.
  • Breakfast cereals.
  • Eggs to order.
  • Ham/steak/sausages.
  • Grilled Tomatoes/mushrooms/potatoes.
  • pancakes or waffles with syrup and honey.
  • Breakfast rolls/bread/toast/muffins.
  • Butter/preserves.
  • Coffee/Tea.

American Breakfast Beverages

  • Tea.
  • Coffee.
  • Orange juice.
  • Tomato juice.
  • Milk.
  • Protein shake.
  • Soymilk.
  • Hot chocolate.
  • Protein shake.

Other American Breakfast Foods

  • Dutch baby.
  • Cornmeal mush.
  • Chicken and waffles
  • Brown Bobby.
  • Creamed eggs on toast
  • Beignet.

3. English Breakfast

An English breakfast is a heavy breakfast. This breakfast service type is usually served in the UK and Ireland. It comes in different regional variants with different names depending on the area. Today’s guests are more health-conscious, and most prefer salt-free, low-calorie, and high-fiber foods.

To meet their expectations, the following items should be provided:

  • Sodium-free/low-cholesterol butter.
  • Preserve with no added sugar.
  • Boiled vegetables
  • Decaffeinated coffee
  • Wholewheat/multigrain bread.
  • Skimmed milk.
  • Fresh fruits.

Grilled mushrooms, potatoes, tomatoes, and baked beans in tomato sauce are served with the main dish. Though the English breakfast is usually a little bit heavy, limited dishes are preferred by the guests.

English Breakfast Cover

The following items were used for the English breakfast cover and their positions:

  1. Side plate with Side knife: left-hand side of the cover. Side knife over the underplate with the cutting edge facing the left-hand side.
  2. Napkin: On the side plate, under the side knife, or in the center of the cover.
  3. Fish knife and fork: knife to the right and fork to the left of the cover.
  4. Large knife and fork: knife to the right and fork to the left of the cover.
  5. Dessert spoon and fork: top of the cover, the dessert spoon on top with the handle towards the right, and the fork down with the spoon handle towards the left.

English Breakfast Menu

  1. Fruit juices: Fresh or canned juices (orange, Pineapple, grapefruit)
  2. Stewed fruits: apples, prunes, figs, guava, apricots, fruits, and compôte.
  3. Breakfast cereals: Cornflakes, Wheat flakes, Oats, Muesli, and porridge
  4. Eggs: Omelette, fried, poached, scrambled, or boiled.
  5. Fish: kippers, bloaters, smoked haddock, fried fish, and kedgeree.
  6. Meat: Ham, Sausages, Bacon, Salami, Liver, Kidney
  7. Bread: breakfast rolls, toast, or bread.
  8. Beverages: coffee, tea, chocolate, tisanes

4. House Breakfast

House breakfast is the breakfast menu of the establishment, available at a set price and named after the hotel. English breakfast may include fruit juice, breakfast cereals, eggs to order, breakfast rolls with butter, preserves, or some items from English breakfast, along with national or regional dishes according to the place.

For example, a hotel in Canada where mostly Indian guests stay will have more Indian dishes than a hotel in India. More Malaysian guests will have more Malaysian dishes on their house breakfast menu.

House Breakfast Cover

The following items are required to lay the cover for the house breakfast:

  • Side plate with a side knife.
  • Dessert spoon and fork.
  • Napkin.
  • Large knife and fork.
  • Breakfast cup and saucer with a teaspoon.
  • Water goblet/glass.

The table accompaniments required are:

  • Bud vase.
  • Sugar bowl with sugar cubes.
  • Table number.
  • Preserve the dish on an underliner with a preservation spoon.
  • Cruet.

The position of the items is similar to all-purpose breakfast cover laying. Table accompaniments for all covers are kept in the middle of the table, in a line. The bud vase should be in the center.

Popular Breakfast Menu Lists in Five-Star Hotels

  • Bacon.
  • Egg.
  • Cheese Sandwich.
  • Biscuit.
  • Bread pudding.
  • Doughnut
  • Muffins.
  • Breakfast Cereals.
  • Sausages.
  • Danish pastry.
  • Egg Sandwich.
  • Egg Benedict.
  • Fried eggs.
  • French toast.
  • Pancake.
  • Omelette.
  • Raisin bread.
  • Strudel.
  • Tart.
  • Yogurt.
  • Granola.
  • Grits.
  • Ham.
  • Hash brown.
  • Kolache.
  • Muesli.
  • Monkey bread.
  • Poached egg.
  • Scone.
  • Orange.
  • Protein bar.
  • Soya Milk.
  • Oatmeal.
  • Grits.

Some toppings are:

  • Compôte.
  • Hot sauce.
  • Butter.
  • Honey.
  • Jam and jelly.
  • Maple syrup.
  • Salsa.
  • Powdered sugar.
  • Nutella.
  • Marmalade.
  • Margarine.

The Service of Breakfast in a Five-Star Hotel

In a 5-star hotel, guests prefer eating customary dishes during breakfast, which is mostly taken by residential guests. Breakfast usually consists of foods that are high in energy content. Hotels offer complimentary breakfast to residential guests who stay under the Continental plan, American plan, or modified American plan.

Depending on the policy of the hotel, during check-in Guests who are eligible for complimentary breakfast are either given breakfast coupons for the number of days they intend to stay, are given breakfast coupons for the number of days they intend to stay, or are given coupons every day.

The coupons issued at the time of check-in are collected in the restaurant at the beginning of the service. These coupons are analyzed against the room occupancy list at the end of service to know how many residential guests took breakfast and how many of them did not. The excess of breakfast covers the coupons collected to represent the non-residential breakfast guest.

If coupons are not given, verify this against the rooming list. If the guest is not eligible for complimentary breakfast, the bill as per actuals is raised, a signature is taken, and the bill is sent to the front office for charging to the guest’s account.

Breakfast is served mainly in two places in the hotel:

  1. Hotel restaurant
  2. Hotel rooms

Hotels that offer free breakfast to residents serve breakfast in the restaurant at a buffet with a wide range of selections. All breakfast menus are usually at a set price; however, a la carte breakfast menus are also available.

So, among all of the meals, the breakfast service in a hotel poses a great challenge to the service brigade and needs special attention. It should be organized effectively and served without delay, as guests arrive continuously for breakfast and all of them want quick service. Buffets can be done with a minimum number of service staff. Dishes should be replenished quickly to avoid formation due to sickness.

Dipayan Mondal
Dipayan Mondal

Dipayan is the author of this blog. He completed his hotel management degree from GNIHM, Kolkata. And he is very passionate about the hospitality industry. And right now, he is working as a successful hotelier in a 5-star hotel.