Why a Wedding Breakfast, is called a Wedding Breakfast

Why is a Wedding Breakfast called a Wedding Breakfast?

Spoiler alert: we’re not talking a full English (although…)

While the phrase ‘Wedding Breakfast’ might conjure images of fry ups and cornflakes, don’t fret! We aren’t about to insist on bacon sandwiches and porridge for your post-nuptial feast. It’s simply an old fashioned, traditional term, for the first meal you share as a couple after the “I Do’s”.

Why though? Well, I can fill you in on the technical origins, or if you just want to read some suggestions on how you could in fact have breakfast for your wedding breakfast, then skip the following few paragraphs:

Wedding Breakfast Facts

Back in ‘pre-reformation times’ (Google it) a wedding would have been a ‘Eucharistic Mass’ so the couple would have been required to fast prior to the Big Day (sounds like hell). Following the service, they would share a meal with family and friends to celebrate and to break their fast, hence, breakfast. Thankfully, the guests weren’t afflicted by the same fasting routine.

Interesting facts about the phrase:

It’s mostly only used in Britain these days, so other countries probably think we’re a bit weird. We’re OK with this though!

Its use was first recorded in 1850 but may date back to 1830.  So, it’s not even 200 years old yet.

Sometimes the ‘Wedding Breakfast’ was simply a few sweets supplied by the congregation, to sustain the starving couple, followed later in the day by a simple dinner. The origin of canapés, perhaps?

Three is honestly as many interesting facts as I can find on the subject, so moving on to the exciting bit…

Wedding Breakfast, breakfast ideas

Naturally, your ‘Wedding Breakfast’ can be absolutely anything you like! No croissants or scrambled eggs necessarily required. While we’re on the topic, here is a six course breakfast inspired menu:

Iced heritage tomato Bloody Mary, compressed cucumber, black olive dust and a chorizo straw

Crispy kipper fritter, leek and lemon gel, whiskey mayonnaise and pickled leek tips

Parsley porridge, crumbled black pudding, crispy shallots and reduced birch sap syrup

Scrambled duck egg, duck breast bacon, gizzard sausage, duck fat and thyme hash brown, kohlrabi and date brown sauce

Tonka bean waffles, blackcurrant compote, pain au chocolate ice-cream

Cereal milk and yoghurt terrine, hazelnut granola, poached apricots and honey



By Rose Harvey