Taste Test: Early Bird Specials

These well-appointed breakfast sandwiches are hands-down the most important meal of the day.
Photo by Jes Nijjer

The Bodega from Love Handle

The iconic New York City bodega sandwich squishes bacon, egg, and cheese inside a hard roll and sends you on your way. But Mass Ave sandwich gem Love Handle lets you choose your meat (maybe you’re in the mood for some pork belly) and adds cherry jam to its version. 877 Massachusetts Ave., 317-384-1102

Photo by Jes Nijjer

The Early Burger from Easy Rider Diner

Caramelized onions, chipotle mayo, and a soft brioche bun would elevate any cheddar cheeseburger to a gourmet rank. Fountain Square diner Easy Riders starts with that, adds egg, and offers it as a morning grab-and-go option. 1043 Virginia Ave., 463-224-0430 

Photo by Jes Nijjer

The BECCY from Sidedoor Bagel

The name is an acronym (kind of) for this bagel-based sandwich’s ingredients: bacon, egg, and cream cheese. Choose your bagel flavor—the hand-rolled sourdough options range from the Flaky Salt workhouse to Garlic White Cheddar, a flavor bomb well worth the 50-cent upcharge. 1103 E. 10th St.

Photo by Jes Nijjer

The Hibernator from Big Bear Biscuits

You might need a knife, fork, and an unhinged jaw to attack this biscuit restaurant’s grizzly stack of bacon, cheddar, and buttermilk-fried steak. 3905 E. 96th St., 317-343-2103; 773 E. Main St., Brownsburg, 317-286-3696

Photo by Jes Nijjer

Deluxe Good Morning from Cleo’s Bodega & Cafe

A toasted croissant slicked down with locally made Trap Buttah Sauce is the warm and flaky vessel that delivers a messy mouthful of egg, bacon, and cheese at this northwestside grocery and cafe. 2432 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St., 317-932-3361