Definition of breakfast in English:



  • A meal eaten in the morning, the first of the day.

    ‘a breakfast of bacon and eggs’
    mass noun ‘I don't eat breakfast’
    • ‘After a traditional breakfast on Tuesday morning, we will set off again for Baikonur.’
    • ‘When they arose late in the morning, two breakfasts of pancakes, eggs, bacon, jelly-covered toast, milk, and orange juice were already made for them to eat.’
    • ‘Fourteen people were asked to eat a different breakfast on each of four mornings.’
    • ‘Luckily pseudonymous kid is a great city kid, though we had a couple of bad mornings where late breakfasts made everyone cranky and impatient.’
    • ‘He lived with a couple called Mr and Mrs Birdikin above their shop and used to eat a hearty breakfast of bacon and eggs every day.’
    • ‘The guy on duty that morning had prepared our breakfasts for us ‘take-away’, so we could have the food on the bus.’
    • ‘Many of us grew up with National Radio blaring while we had our breakfast in the mornings.’
    • ‘For the record, I personally have bacon and egg breakfasts quite often and eat enough sausages to make me a good German.’
    • ‘To mark the departure we had a breakfast yesterday morning at Nikau just within my team.’
    • ‘Many people were put off their breakfasts on Friday morning by radio news bulletins about human and animal excrement in our drinking water.’
    • ‘I went on to eat a light breakfast and to get my morning writing session done, then felt decidedly dozy.’
    • ‘She is very fond of fruit, particularly bananas and eats a good breakfast and dinner every day.’
    • ‘Early morning breakfasts, and a delightfully varied lunch menu are now available six days a week.’
    • ‘The shop was already open, though it was early in the morning and Höß was still eating his breakfast.’
    • ‘Early morning breakfasts have not become the fashion.’
    • ‘The two sows and piglets are are a bit annoyed this morning - their breakfast is late.’
    • ‘I was in Starbucks opposite the British Library this morning having my breakfast.’
    • ‘Ellis also encourages his athletes to eat big breakfasts and light dinners.’
    • ‘With breakfast and the pale morning sun finally starting to warm our frozen bodies, we hit the dusty track once more.’
    • ‘All it was, it seems, was a bad pint of beer and not his breakfast on a Sunday morning.’


[no object]
  • Eat breakfast.

    ‘she breakfasted on fried bread and bacon’
    • ‘Only a few miles from where I'm writing this, children come to their ill-equipped schools having breakfasted on nothing but a cup of coffee.’
    • ‘The sun was shining and it was not too windy, so we breakfasted alfresco style.’
    • ‘According to research published in 2003, kids breakfasting on fizzy drinks and sugary snacks performed at the level of an average 70-year-old in tests of memory and attention.’
    • ‘So, we had breakfasted by ten and were out wandering the city by eleven.’
    • ‘Quickly, we settled into an unhurried routine of rising late, breakfasting on board, and then sailing from one island to the next, stopping along the way to dive the region's many reefs.’
    • ‘After the family breakfasted, a meal which I did not attend, Helda sought me out in the garden.’
    • ‘We breakfasted on pastries and coffee from the hotel's Il Fornaio Panetteria and used a coupon we'd received at check-in to get free biscotti.’
    • ‘I said goodbye to the other breakfasting Mavi backpackers, feeling a bit bad that I was leaving them just so I could have a warmer room.’
    • ‘The shooters showed up while we were breakfasting on fatty kebab, naan, and yogurt.’
    • ‘They breakfasted on dried venison, bread and cheese.’
    • ‘I breakfasted there a week ago and naturally, a photocopy of the strip was tacked up above the register, front and center, just like hundreds of Zippy strips at hundreds of diners and lunch counters all across the country.’
    • ‘But not until I am bathed and breakfasted do I approach the first official happy hour of the day.’
    • ‘He was already breakfasted and curled up in a tight ball of sleep in his summer nest at the head of the bed.’
    eat, munch, munch on, ingest, consume, take, partake of, taste, swallow, devour, feast on, gulp, gulp down, gobble, gobble down, wolf, wolf down, scoff, scoff down, tuck in, tuck into, breakfast on, lunch, lunch on, dine, dine on
    View synonyms


  • have (or eat) someone for breakfast

    • informal Deal with or defeat someone with contemptuous ease.

      • ‘Claire manages to stand her ground with Hersh but he'd have had me for breakfast.’
      • ‘But the Liberals finally had them for breakfast through the most basic and important of election tactics - tear.’
      • ‘She'd managed to get herself a part in a play, and they'd roasted her and toasted her and had her for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.’
      • ‘However, if they made the slightest mistake, then the shield wall would have them for breakfast.’
      • ‘Another City-based source warned that, despite reassuring clauses in the merger announcement: ‘Halifax will have them for breakfast’.’
      • ‘Most performers have had critics rip them to pieces and eat them for breakfast.’
      • ‘One reviewer has already remarked that the book's heroine, Clara Hutt, ‘could eat Bridget Jones for breakfast’.’
      • ‘She looked like she could eat him for breakfast and spit out his bones to make her lunchtime soup.’
      • ‘He may be perfectly polite and even smile from time to time, but he still looks like he would eat you for breakfast rather than give much away about himself.’
      • ‘Another good question is, if he does argue his case, will the remaining justices eat him for breakfast, or simply dismember him?’
      • ‘Therefore, I did what we always have to do: Fought them at every turn; for if you do not fight them like Vikings they'll have you for breakfast.’
      • ‘The evil arms dealing world of imports and exports has created him and from now on we will have to have him for breakfast in one form or another.’
      • ‘In fact, if you aren't nice to your rat friends, they'll eat you for breakfast.’
      • ‘There is no new-metal sarcasm or hipster posturing taking place here: this un-ironic swaggering will drink all your beer and then eat you for breakfast before you even realize you've taken your pants off.’


Late Middle English: from the verb break + fast.