What You Should Know About Shake Shack's Breakfast

"Shake Shack" is synonymous with rich milkshakes, decadent, fresh burgers, and, of course, those incredible crinkle-cut French fries. Although Shake Shack's lunch and dinner menus are legendary, a few Shake Shack locations also serve up the most important meal of the day: Breakfast. Yes, there are a few key locations where you can get Shake Shack's spin on breakfast classics with a Stumptown coffee to wash it all down.

Although Shake Shack's first breakfast options popped up in transit hubs, several other locations are jumping on the rise-and-shine bandwagon with variations on egg and cheese sandwiches, pastries, as well as hot or cold brew coffees. 

A few select Shake Shacks across the pond also have breakfast menus, giving tired Londoners a break from artificial-tasting egg and cheese sammies in favor of the real deal. Like everything at Shake Shack, breakfast is top-notch, so if you're an early bird and happen to stumble across a breakfast-slinging Shack, you're in luck.

Shake Shack offers breakfast at its original NYC location

According to Business Insider, in 2017, Shake Shack began offering breakfast at its flagship location in Madison Square Park, New York. JFK Airport was technically the first spot to serve up Shake Shack's yummy breakfast sandwiches back in 2013 (via Eater); however, the breakfast debut of Shake Shack's original location was still a massive deal for New Yorkers and Shake Shack enthusiasts. 

According to Shake Shack, the 2017 breakfast rollout, featuring tasty treats from Daily Provisions, and hot or cold brew Stumptown coffee, was a gigantic promotional success featuring Shake Shack favorites. Shake Shack's Madison Square Park breakfast launch marked an exciting new turning point for the company, as it was the first time that Shake Shack served morning goodies outside of an airport or rail station (via The Gothamist). 

Of course, since breakfast is a boon for other chains like Taco Bell, it's no surprise that New Yorkers gobbled up Shake Shack's early bird offerings.

The menu features breakfast sandwiches

Shake Shack's breakfast menu is humble but hearty: It focuses on a few key sandwiches with high-quality ingredients and proven taste profiles (via Busines Insider). You can choose between a few variations on the iconic cheese, egg, and meat sandwich. Customers can opt for bacon and sausage as their protein of choice. Additionally, you can customize your order with extra eggs. While one sandwich is enough to satisfy your tastebuds and tame early-morning hunger, we wouldn't fault you for grabbing an extra one to go.

Diners can enjoy perfectly-cooked, cage-free eggs, a generous sausage patty or bacon stack, and gooey melted cheese stacked high on a potato bun: Paired with a refreshing Stumptown Coffee, it's the ideal get-up-and-go meal. Shake Shack's breakfast options reflect its overall commitment to quality ingredients and good food served quickly, revolutionizing the fast-food industry with a gourmet spin on the breakfast sandwich that's hot and made to order.

Get your coffee with a touch of sweet indulgence

Although Shake Shack's breakfast menu features mostly savory fare and a few artisanal sweets, there's one unexpected breakfast offering that allows you to get your caffeine fix and sugar high at the same time: A Stumptown Cold Brew Float. Thirsty customers can order up Stumptown's classic cold brew with some premium vanilla ice cream for a deliciously eye-peeling sugary treat that's anything but your morning cup of joe.

If super-saccharine coffees aren't your thing, don't worry. There's still Stumptown's robust drip blend or a plain-old cold brew sans custard. On the other hand, why not treat yourself and your tastebuds to a morning version of an iconic float? Unfortunately, since there are precious few Shake Shack locations offering morning munchies, you might not have the opportunity to crown your chilly Stumptown brew with a huge scoop of vanilla for the foreseeable future.

Shake Shack's first breakfast was served at JFK

Shake Shack's inaugural breakfast rollout opened at JFK, which is one of the busiest international airports in the world (via TimeOut). Shake Shack's JFK location served up hot 'n fresh sandwiches and coffee to the tired masses, whether they were hopping on a flight or getting off a long-haul red-eye.

Shake Shack's 2013 rollout at JFK offered a short and sweet menu of breakfast sammies and fresh coffee (via Eater). Although Eater notes that Shake Shack is more expensive than other breakfast options, its quality certainly speaks for itself.

The chain's commitment to fresh, humanely-sourced ingredients and its twin mandates of producing high-quality food that's quickly made to order make it an excellent option for JFK commuters. Also, let's be honest here; most airport food tastes like warmed-up plastic, so fresh cage-free eggs, soft potato rolls, and high-quality meats are most certainly worth the few extra bucks. 

Earlybirds can enjoy breakfast at LaGuardia Airport

Although most Shake Shack locations open at around 11 a.m., LaGuardia Airport is an outlier, allowing early birds to enjoy their morning coffee and a sammie at, or before, the crack of dawn (via LaGuardia). Terminal B's Shake Shack opens at 5 a.m., a boon for business travelers and holiday-makers who want to get a jump on their day and need some coffee to do it.

As with the JFK location, the Shake Shack at LaGuardia offers an array of simple but scrumptious sandwiches, coffee, and other treats. They also offer a few delectable surprises, as one traveler discovered: According to Michael W. Travels, LaGuardia's Shake Shack serves an incredible creation called the "Wake Up Shack," which is comprised of Shake Shack's standard eggs, bun, and meat, but with some tots and special sauce thrown on for good measure. 

This breakfast sandwich is not to be confused with Shake Shack's "Wake and Shake" milkshake (via The Street). The "Wake Up Shack" is a breakfast treat that seems to be LaGuardia-specific, so you'll have to visit one of New York's top transit hubs to get it.

Drive-thru breakfast may be on the horizon

Back in 2016, Shake Shack seemed adverse to the idea of drive-thru dining (via Eater). However, recently, the company has been flirting with the concept of grab-and-go service (via Restaurant Business). Shake Shack has dipped its toes into drive-thru waters, and it's getting some good results. Although the chain only has six drive-thrus as of 2022, they're already bringing in a substantial amount of business.

There are also plans to open several more; Shake Shack aims to open 10 drive-thrus by the end of 2020 and even more in 2023. However, outfitting existing Shacks with drive-thrus will take additional resources and time. 

So, although breakfast-serving Shacks and drive-thru Shacks don't form an overlapping (and mouthwatering) Venn diagram as of yet, hopefully, they will someday soon. Who knows? In a distant, delicious future, you might be able to pick up your egg and cheese sandwich and coffee from the comfort of your own car.

Shake Shack Breakfast is available across the pond

Although Shake Shack is New York born and bred, the company has its sights on new global horizons with locations in the Philippines, Singapore, China, the United Kingdom, Turkey, Russia, and the UAE (via CNN). Unfortunately, while all of these locations serve up loaded burgers, thick and creamy milkshakes, and Shake Shack's addictive crinkle-cut fries, there are precious few that hit the early morning breakfast sweet spot.

Fortunately, London's Gatwick Airport is one of those coveted locations (via London Eater). Gatwick Airport is the only Shack in the United Kingdom serving up the most important meal of the day. As with stateside Shacks, Gatwick Airports' breakfast includes the standard but sublime offerings of breakfast sandwiches, coffee, and a few dessert-adjacent treats. Not only do Londoners and transit passengers get to experience the sheer magic that is the Shake Shack breakfast, but arriving Americans can also get their fix upon landing.

Your breakfast sammie has cage-free eggs

One of the vital things that sets Shake Shack apart from the fast-food, chain-restaurant pack is its commitment to expectational ingredients. Shake Shack's egg sandwiches might look pedestrian at first glance, but when you bite into them, you'll realize that you've tapped into something special. Quality meats, good cheese, and most importantly, cage-free eggs make all the difference.

Shake Shack's "Stand For Something Good" mandate encompasses supporting local farmers and distributors, as well as using cage-free eggs in its products. According to the Cleveland Clinic, the definition of "cage-free eggs" is exactly what you might expect: These eggs are laid by hens that can eat and drink of their own free will and aren't bound to small, cramped cages for their entire lives. Cage-free eggs certainly do put Shake Shack a cut above the rest. We'll never know if happier hens produce tastier eggs; either way, you can snack guilt-free.

Shake Shack breakfast makes good business sense

Shake Shack doesn't seem to have a plan to roll out its breakfast menu nationwide, despite rave reviews and a clear fan following in major metropolitan hubs like New York (via Eater). If it did, it might experience even more growth based on the fast-food breakfast model similar to mega-chains like Mcdonald's. 

However, according to Barrons,  serving breakfast across all locations does seem to make smart sense and could solidify Shake Shack's future for decades to come. In August 2022, Shake Shack's stock suffered a minor setback, most likely related to food and packaging pricing costs (via The Motley Fool). 

Only time will tell which changes Shake Shack decides to enact in order to offset the rising food costs and stabilize the stock. While Shake Shack breakfast across all locations doesn't seem to be in the cards for Shake Shack, it might be wise for it to consider going the way of other fast-food giants and make breakfast a permanent fixture.