I ordered the same breakfast at IHOP and Perkins. The winning chain was better in almost every department

I ordered the same breakfast at IHOP and Perkins. The winning chain was better in almost every department

Selfie of the writer wearing a gray sweatshirt and brown beanie in a booth at IHOP

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I ordered the same breakfast at IHOP and Perkins to see which one was better.

Amena Ahmed



  • I ordered breakfast at IHOP and Perkins to see which restaurant offered the tastiest food.
  • IHOP’s pancakes exceeded my expectations, but I wasn’t a huge fan of its French toast or eggs.
  • Perkins’ tasty eggs, bacon, and French toast secured the chain as the winner of this taste test.
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Over the past few years, the demand for breakfast restaurants and diners has grown as more people opt to go out for their morning meals. But not every breakfast restaurant provides the same value for the price.

To find the best breakfast in my area, I ordered the same meal — pancakes, eggs, bacon, and French toast — at both IHOP and Perkins Restaurant and Bakery.

Turns out, the bigger chain isn’t always better.

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I started at IHOP, a chain I’m familiar with.

Exterior of an IHOP with logo, blue painted wall, and peaked roof. The entrance has brick pillars

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I’d been to IHOP plenty of times before.

Amena Ahmed



IHOP is a fast-casual breakfast chain that’s primarily located in the US, but has over 1,700 locations worldwide. It can even be found in countries like Mexico, Egypt, and Pakistan.

This chain, which has been in business for over 65 years, is my go-to breakfast spot. However, I usually stick to plain buttermilk pancakes and hash browns, so I was excited to try more items on the menu.

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IHOP looked pretty empty, and the service was fast.

Front host area at IHOP. The room has a bright-blue desk with a computer and the IHOP logo on a wall in the background

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There weren’t many diners at IHOP.

Amena Ahmed



To my surprise, IHOP wasn’t busy when I walked in. It was almost too quiet for my liking.

This being said, I came in for an early dinner on a Tuesday, so it may not have been a busy time for IHOP anyway. I was seated immediately and placed my order about five minutes later.

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I ordered the 2 x 2 x 2 meal and French toast.

Plate of French toast next to a plate full of pancakes, bacon, and scrambled eggs on a wooden table at IHOP

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I ordered pancakes, bacon, eggs, and French toast.

Amena Ahmed



I started with IHOP’s 2 x 2 x 2, which included two eggs of any style, two bacon strips or sausage links, and two buttermilk pancakes for $8.

I also ordered the Thick ‘N Fluffy classic French toast, which was $10.

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I had high expectations for the pancakes, and they didn’t disappoint.

Stack of two pancakes cut in half and a fork with a piece of pancakes above it. Scrambled eggs with ketchup sit on the plate

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The pancakes were satisfying and fluffy.

Amena Ahmed



IHOP’s pancakes, which were topped with a satisfying dollop of butter, were fluffy and melted in my mouth with every bite.

The batter wasn’t too sweet or savory, so I could add as much syrup and butter as I wanted without clashing with the flavor of the pancakes.

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I wasn’t a fan of IHOP’s scrambled eggs.

Scrambled eggs on a plate with a blue rim. Pancakes and bacon also sit on the plate

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IHOP’s scrambled eggs had a flavor I didn’t enjoy.

Amena Ahmed



I received a sizable portion of scrambled eggs at IHOP but took only a few bites.

The eggs were cold, like they’d been sitting out for a while, and had a flavor I didn’t like. They were a bit runny and not as salty as I’d hoped.

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The bacon from IHOP wasn’t as crispy as I wanted it to be.

Plate of scrambled eggs, pancakes, and bacon hanging off the plate in the foreground

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I loved the flavor of the bacon at IHOP, but wished it had more crunch.

Amena Ahmed



I like my bacon super crispy, and the two strips I got at IHOP weren’t as crunchy as I’d have preferred.

However, the bacon was savory and paired well with the rest of my meal. If the strips were a little crispier, I would’ve had difficulty choosing which chain offered the better meat.

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The Thick ‘N Fluffy classic French toast was massive but seemed undercooked.

Slices of French toast with corners cut off on a plate. The French toast is covered in syrup

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The French toast at IHOP was mushy.

Amena Ahmed



When the French toast arrived, I noticed the exterior of each slice was covered in a solid-egg coating, as if the mixture hadn’t had time to seep into the bread before it was cooked.

Unfortunately, it seemed like the French toast wasn’t cooked all the way through, as the center of each slice of bread was very mushy.

Luckily, the outer edges of the French toast were crispy, sweet, and fluffy. I just wished it would’ve stayed on the griddle a few minutes longer.

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Next, I went to Perkins.

Exterior of Perkins with green roofing and green oval-shaped logo in front of a blue sky

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I wasn’t super familar with the menu items at Perkins.

Amena Ahmed



Next up, I visited Perkins, which has been in business for over 65 years and has nearly 300 locations in the US and Canada. The casual-dining restaurant is known for its homestyle meals, baked goods, and breakfast foods like pancakes and eggs.

Notably, in 2019, Perkins closed several of its locations and was bought out by a restaurant company called Huddle House.

I’d only been to Perkins once, but I was excited to try the food again.

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Perkins was packed when I walked in.

Picture of the writer wearing a purple sweatshirt and a black beanie in a booth at Perkins. People sit at other booths in the background

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Though Perkins was busy, I didn’t have to wait long to be seated.

Amena Ahmed



I went to Perkins for breakfast on a weekend. The restaurant was very busy, but I was still seated within five minutes.

Perkins’ dining area felt homey and comfortable, and reminded me of the interior of Cracker Barrel.

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I ordered the Magnificent Seven and brioche French toast at Perkins.

Three plates of breakfast food on a table at Perkins. Plates have French toast, hash browns, and scrambled eggs; hash browns, bacon, and scrambled eggs; pancakes

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I received pancakes, bacon, eggs, hash browns, and French toast at Perkins.

Amena Ahmed



I ordered the Magnificent Seven, which typically comes with three pancakes, two bacon strips, and two eggs of any style for $8.

My server told me about a daily special that allowed me to add hash browns and receive two pancakes instead of three for the same price. I took her up on this offer.

I also ordered the brioche French-toast platter, which came with eggs of any style and two pieces of bacon for $13. I switched the bacon out for hash browns.

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The pancakes from Perkins were just OK.

Stack of two pancakes on a white plate. A large scoop of butter sits on top of the pancakes

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The pancakes at Perkins were nice, but I wished they were more buttery.

Amena Ahmed



Perkins’ pancakes came with a very large dollop of butter on top. They were nice and thick but weren’t as buttery or fluffy as the ones from IHOP.

I also wished the pancakes were served on the same plate as the eggs and bacon because I usually like to mix sweet and savory foods in the same bite. Still, I enjoyed the dish.

The eggs were delicious.

Scrambled eggs on a white plate with hash browns, bacon, and butter in the background

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The eggs at Perkins were tasty.

Amena Ahmed



These eggs were warm and scrambled to perfection. I didn’t need to add much salt, and they had a subtle, delicious buttery flavor.

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I loved how Perkins’ bacon was super crispy.

Plate of hash browns, butter, scrambled eggs, and bacon. The bacon looks crispy

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The bacon at Perkins was cooked perfectly.

Amena Ahmed



I loved the bacon because it had just the right amount of grease and crunch. The strips were cooked well and tasted very satisfying with the rest of my delicious breakfast.

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The brioche French toast was very satisfying.

Two slices of French toast with a light dusting of powdered sugar, scrambled eggs, and hash browns on a white platter

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The brioche French toast at Perkins was deliciously sweet.

Amena Ahmed



The brioche French toast was a much smaller portion size than the version I received at IHOP, but I liked it better.

The French toast was evenly cooked, so the syrup seeped through the bread nicely. Its sweetness also paired well with the hash browns.

I’d never had the chain’s French toast before, but I’ll definitely return to get it again.

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Perkins was the clear winner.

Two slices of French toast with syrup and butter on it. The French toast sits on a white platter with scrambled eggs and hash browns

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I loved my meal at Perkins, especially the French toast.

Amena Ahmed



I was pleasantly surprised with how delicious the breakfast was at Perkins. My meal came out in less than 10 minutes, and everything was perfectly cooked.

IHOP’s pancakes were amazing, but I wasn’t satisfied with the rest of my meal. The next time I’m craving eggs or French toast, I’ll stop at Perkins.

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This post was originally published on Insider

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