Okay, I know what you’re thinking. Philadelphia bagels? New York and New Jersey may be proud—and highly competitive—regarding their own, but I promise there are places on this side of the tri–state area where you can find that perfect hangover antidote. From your classic bacon, egg, and cheese to sweet bagels, Philly has it all. Pro tip: Don't sleep on the ketchup, salt, and pepper trio for your savory bagel meals.

Bart’s Bagels

If you want a heavy and loaded bagel that will probably keep you sated for more than half a day, Bart’s Bagels’ B.E.C. is the way to go. As someone who doesn’t particularly enjoy cheddar cheese, I recommend taking the risk, and also adding sriracha to the sandwich (yes, you can handle the spice). Multiple strips of crisp bacon, piled with a thick egg omelet and strong cheddar within the bagel of your choice, this classic sandwich won't disappoint. B.E.C.s have been done time and time again, but Bart’s take makes it extra special. 

Not to worry, there’s more to Bart’s than a bacon, egg, and cheese. I’d also recommend venturing out with your tastes and trying their tofu cream cheese or delving into their smoked fish sandwiches. Bart’s is varied in its menu and the perfect place to go for a bite any time of the day—or rather till they close at 2 p.m.

This family–owned shop describes itself as a “bagel bake house, smoked fish joint, and neighborhood coffee shop." The owners have carried their Jewish heritage forward with the noises, tastes, and smells of their freshly baked goods, and you can feel that authentic familial warmth the minute you step under the shop's blue sign.

Address: 3945 Lancaster Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19104

Photo: Shahana Banerjee

Happy Sunshine Food Truck

With the cutest name and bright yellow truck to go along with it, Happy Sunshine promises a good time. The Cambodian couple who concoct the food truck's delicacies serve every meal with a warm smile and, very simply, put peace into their food. This is something they've noted as very important in their culture.

Continuing the theme of breakfast and bagels, I took the hot sausage, egg, and cheese. Happy Sunshine suggested I put ketchup on my bagel, and I’m never going back. Their bagels have the ideal, Instagram–worthy cheese pull, and are perfectly toasted for the start of the day.

The food truck’s menu is quite expansive and cheap, with breakfast and lunch options, from French toast platters and hash browns to steak sandwiches and hoagies. University City folk storm this place all week, so hop on the bandwagon. Owners Maggie and Thach put their heart and soul into their truck from before the crack of dawn, and treasure your good reviews and business.

Address: Drexel Campus, on the strip of 33rd and Arch

Photo: Shahana Banerjee

Happy Star Food Truck

You may say this is cheating because this isn't a bagel place, but it's breakfast, so we’re just going to roll with it. This was also my first time trying a breakfast roll sandwich with the simple egg–and–cheese combo. I’ll be honest: I previously wasn't a fan of the bread roll, but Happy Star has swayed my perception. 

They serve breakfast and lunch all day, and aren't just limited to typical American fare, as you can easily grab a roll in the morning and a teriyaki chicken platter for lunch. They also have large homemade drinks like hibiscus and ginger teas, which are a great addition to any meal.

Though parked on a competitive street of food trucks, Happy Star clearly brings back familiar faces every day as they recognize their regular customers on the spot. Check out this food truck if you’re down for a little walk and need an inexpensive variety of breakfast and lunch meals that run till 5 p.m.

Address: Drexel Campus, on the strip of 33rd and Arch

Photo: Shahana Banerjee

The Bagel Place 

Normally, food trucks tend to serve the most popular bagel menu items, keeping it savory. But independently–owned bagel joint in Queen Village gives you the chance to experiment with a variety of different spreads and bagel flavors. The Bagel Place sells $2 bagels ranging from blueberry, French toast, and pretzel to rosemary & cracked pepper, pumpernickel, rye swirl, and egg. Their cream cheese spreads include garlic & chive, veggie, cheddar horseradish, sour pickle, strawberry, and honey walnut.

I was feeling a little nostalgic this week, so I went with my hometown go–to order of a French toast bagel with honey walnut spread. The bagel size may be small, but it's mighty—this shop certainly doesn't lack in the amount of filling it gives you. 

Something I loved learning about The Bagel Place is how community–oriented it is. The business prides itself in providing to local schools, churches, and organizations and donates bagels to homeless groups throughout Philadelphia. The shop strives to create a sphere which is inclusive of all people, and knowing that when taking a bite into their warm bagels and baked goods, makes this place all the more special.

Address: 404 Queen Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147

Photo: Shahana Banerjee

Honorable Mention: Lyn's

I don't need to say much for Lyn's, I'm sure you all know just how lovely Lyn and her family are and how they've created their own little landmark here in front of the Quad. I highly recommend her turkey bacon, egg, and cheese or egg–chicken combos on bagels with sriracha. Prepare to be served with pure smiles and warmth!

Photo: Shahana Banerjee lyn’s