Winter is the perfect time to explore the natural stone shelters where native Arkansans once lived
Common Grounds, Fayetteville More than just a coffee and pastry shop, Common Grounds also offers great breakfast-related alcoholic beverages like mimosas and Bloody Marys. Sausage rolls and quiches are popular, and you can't go wrong with the Lox of Love, which comes with capers blended directly into cream cheese. $$$, 412 W. Dickson St., 479-442-3515, commongroundsar.com, 7 a.m.-11 a.m. Mon.-Fri., 7 a.m.-1 p.m. Sat.-Sun.
Susan's Restaurant, Springdale Known for breakfast and lunch, this family restaurant packs in the crowds on weekend mornings. Our pick here is the chili and cheese omelet. The chili has a great strong tomato tang to it; mix in some cheese under that envelope-style egg wrapper and you have a manfood morning. $$, 1440 W. Sunset Ave., 479-751-1445, 6 a.m.-2 p.m. daily.
BEST WAFFLE Waffle Hut Family Restaurant, Springdale The best waffles in the state can be found at this 35-year-old breakfast-heavy establishment along Sunset Avenue (Highway 412). The slightly malted batter of the big Belgians is a perfect match for syrup or sweet strawberries and a pile of whipped cream. $, 2223 W. Sunset Ave., 479-751-8476, 7 a.m.-2 p.m. daily.
BEST ORGANIC The Bean Palace, Rogers Everything you'll eat at the Bean Palace is organic, from the sausage and hickory-smoked bacon to biscuits, pancakes and waffles made with grains milled on-site. Apple butter, syrup and jellies are available for every breakfast. $$, 11045 War Eagle Road, 479-789-5343, wareaglemill.com, 8:30 a.m.-11 a.m. daily.
Cliff House Inn, Jasper Great breakfasts with a great view over the Arkansas Grand Canyon looking out over the Buffalo River Valley. While traditional favorites like French toast are tasty, go for the country smoked ham steak served with eggs and those decadently moist Angel Flake biscuits. The biscuits alone are worth the drive, but you'll be happy for the ham steak's smoky and sugary flavor once you get there. $$, Old Hwy. 7, 870-446-2292, cliffhouseinnar.com, 8 a.m.-10:30 a.m. daily.
Ozark Cafe, Jasper More than 100 years old, this is the oldest breakfast restaurant on our list. Featuring omelets and pancakes, the true star is the Ozark French toast, a cinnamon-and-brown-sugar encrusted creation served with caramel and pecans. Chocolate gravy is also available in copious amounts with buttery, flakey biscuits. $$, 107 E. Court St., 870-446-2976, thefrontporchinn.net, 6:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m. daily.
Local Flavor Cafe, Eureka Springs Don't miss the spicy Mexican Scram, a Poblano pepper stuffed with cheese, eggs and onions, topped with avocado slices, tomato and sour cream and served with black beans and two very different salsas. $$-$$$, 71 S. Main St., 479-253-9522, localflavorcafe.net, 8 a.m.-10:30 a.m. Mon.-Sat.
Mud Street Cafe, Eureka Springs The coffee alone is worth heading down the stairs to this basement-level eatery. But dishes like vegetable hashbrowns with no less than 11 types of vegetables included and tangy sour cream pancakes truly make the windowless space a destination. Another favorite: the Mud Muffin, a Wolferman's English muffin with a folded scrambled egg, Cheddar cheese, tomatoes, onion, black olives and bean sprouts inside. It's a mouthful, but there are sprouts; it's got to be good for you, right? $$-$$$, 22 S. Main St., 479-253-6732, mudstreetcafe.com, 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Thu.-Tue.
BEST ETHNIC New Delhi Cafe, Eureka Springs Try the chocolate-scented coffee and the Indian omelet wraps. The latter's a captivating blend of eggs, sweet caramelized onions, fresh tomatoes, chilies and masala spices in a folded tortilla. $$, 2 N. Main St., 479-253-2525, thenewdelhicafe.com, 8:30 a.m.-11 a.m. daily.
BEST CINNAMON ROLLS Ferguson's Country Store, St. Joe Here you'll find big country breakfasts made from scratch and starring crumbly biscuits, country sausage and omelets. But don't you dare have breakfast or any other meal at Ferguson's without one of the store's famed softball-sized cinnamon rolls. Take-home rolls fill a burger box and come with six ounces of icing. $$, 121 E. Highway 333, 870-439-2234, buffalorivertradingco.com, 8 a.m.-11:30 a.m. daily.
Calico County, Fort Smith Country breakfast, defined. While you might be tempted to stop at coffee and the un-iced cinnamon rolls that make it to every diner's table, you'd be missing out on the likes of crusty-tender country-fried steak, homemade biscuits and the best chocolate gravy you'll ever have. $$, 2401 S. 56th St., 479-452-3299, calicocounty.net, 6:30 a.m.-11 a.m. daily.
BEST 24 HOUR BREAKFAST Benson's Grill, Fort Smith The breakfast quesadillas and the GOTcha (Gravy On Top) breakfast both have their following, but we're faithful to the sweet potato pancakes, a short stack of 8-inch rounds topped with a big lump of margarine. $, 2515 Rogers Ave., 479-782-8181, 24 hours daily.
Lewis Family Restaurant, Fort Smith Best known for its Inferno Burger, this restaurant should also be getting notice for breakfast items like French toast made from homemade bread and its turkey sausage. The waffles are studded with more than an ample share of pecans. Breakfast all day. $$, 5901 Highway 71 S, 479-646-4309, 6 a.m.-3 p.m. daily.
Lucy's Diner, Fort Smith The youngest of Fort Smith's three 24-hour eateries, Lucy's offers a gigantic house special breakfast for $6.49; there are more than a dozen possible toppings for your hash browns. Try the cheeseburger omelet, a full burger patty crumbled and melted together with American cheese in a fluffy side fold three-egg omelet. $$, 4605 Towson Ave., 479-646-1001, lucysdiner.com, 24 hours daily.
Atkins International Cafe, Atkins This surprising little Mexican-American cafe along Hwy. 64 serves up traditional breakfasts and omelets. The standout dish is the huevos rancheros, eggs served with rice and beans and a pungent orange salsa made in-house that's heavy on the tomatoes — it's perfect when mixed with all the other ingredients in a tortilla. $$, 211 E. Main St., 479-641-2760, 6 a.m.-11 a.m. Mon.-Sat., 8 a.m.-11 a.m. Sun.
The Old South, Russellville The corned beef comes out of a can but it's plentiful; the hash browns are griddle crisp and the cathead biscuits are hand-formed. Breakfast all day. $$, 1330 E. Main St., Russellville, 479-968-3789, 6 a.m.-9 p.m. daily. 6 a.m.-9 p.m. daily.