Despite Austin’s booming restaurant scene, there are still only a handful of places to find late-night food. Here are the best options for satisfying your cravings 24 hours a day.
The Love Migas are my favorite, but your breath will be less than lovely after consuming this hot mess of eggs, garlic butter, serrano peppers and cheese. Order the standard migas if you plan to be around other human beings in the near future.
All the pancakes are great, but the gingerbread and blueberry varieties consistently earn gushing praise. 2304 Lake Austin Boulevard; (512) 478-8645
I don’t really understand this whole chicken and waffles phenomenon, but the version they serve at 24 Diner is apparently among the best in Austin. If you need a quick starter, order the jalapeno-infused corn fritters. The sweet potato hash may sound like a side dish, but it’s a hearty meal with sausage, poblano pepper and Monterrey jack cheese. Prices are a little higher than you’d normally find at a standard all-night diner, but the food is better too. 600 N. Lamar Boulevard; (512) 472-5400
Located across the street from the University of Texas campus, Austin’s Pizza is a favorite among late-night crammers and over-achieving drinkers. The 10-inch personal pizza with pepperoni and red onions is rumored to have alcohol-absorbing properties (it does not).
If wheat does not agree with you, there’s a gluten-free crust available. The bar upstairs hosts live music and trivia contests. 2324 Guadalupe; (512) 795-8888
A hole-in-the-wall diner, Star Seeds is a reliable late-night breakfast joint with huge breakfast tacos. Service can be spotty, but what do you expect in the middle of the night?
Intoxicated vegetarians flock here for the affordable selection of meat-free tacos and sandwiches. 3101 N. Interstate 35; (512) 478-7107
Late at night, the taco craving can become almost irresistible. Instead of settling for sketchy Taco Bell Tex-Mex, however, head to Tyson’s Tacos. Some of the most popular tacos include the Princess Leia (potato, eggs and cheese), the King George (migas, avocado, bacon) and the Prince (fried tilapia, pickled beets, purple cabbage and goat cheese). Despite the fancy names, the prices are very reasonable. The covered outdoor patio is a relaxing spot to wind down and, if necessary, sober up. 4905 Airport Boulevard; (512) 451-3326
The steaming migas plate with black beans will lift you right out of whatever malaise or funk you happen to be in. Another favorite is the Eggs Francisco, an English muffin topped with queso, eggs, tomato, and bacon. Looking for a sweet breakfast treat? Try the decadent cinnamon roll pancakes. 3003 South Lamar Boulevard; (512) 445-4451
The little run-down bakery had its 15 minutes of fame in 2012 when it was mentioned on Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations show. Fortunately, the family-owned joint hasn’t lost its humility.
They’re still cranking out sweet Mexican pastries and above-average Mexican breakfast plates served with wonderfully fresh and puffy tortillas. 1924 S. 1st Street; (512) 443-6369
The San Antonio-based chain has a loyal local following primarily because of the always-cheerful service. The food is nothing spectacular, but it’s generally a cut above Denny’s or IHOP. Expect huge pancakes, flaky biscuits, and a full coffee cup. 9091 Research Boulevard; (512) 837-1119