- Yelp/Parker S.
- Insider asked chefs what they order at the popular breakfast chain IHOP.
- One chef said that when possible you should get creative with your egg orders and try having them basted.
- Other chefs said they recommend IHOP’s flavorful steak tips and protein-heavy omelets.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
If you haven’t been to IHOP lately, you might be surprised to learn that the iconic breakfast chain is serving up a lot more than just pancakes.
From appetizers to dinner entrees, there are a dizzying number of options on the chain’s menu these days. To help you narrow these dishes down, Insider spoke to chefs to see what they recommend.
Here are the 5 things chefs would order at IHOP.
One chef’s advice is to try ordering off-menu at IHOP.
Chef Crystal Blanchette told Insider that customers at IHOP shouldn’t be afraid to be adventurous with their egg orders.
“The best thing about restaurants like IHOP is that the cook knows a million different ways to make an egg, including my personal favorite: a basted egg. My biggest tip would be don’t be afraid to go off the menu when ordering,” said Blanchette.
The chefs at IHOP often prepare hundreds of eggs per day, so they can typically handle your preference for a slightly firmer fried egg or an extra-runny poached egg.
If your server indicates that substitutions are okay, go ahead and order your eggs exactly how you’d like them.
Try the Simple and Fit breakfast for a lighter meal.
- Yelp/Tiffany S.
Although the chain has a lot of hearty options, there are a few for those who prefer a lighter breakfast.
“The Simple and Fit two-egg breakfast is always my go-to when I am trying to stay fit in a house full of pancakes,” said Blanchette.
Ordering this combo meal will get you two cage-free scrambled egg whites, two slices of turkey bacon, a serving of fresh mixed fruit, and a slice of whole-wheat toast.
Before substitutions or additions, the meal contains about 380 calories.
The steak tips at IHOP come highly recommended.
- Yelp/Dianna B.
If you want to skip the sweet stuff at IHOP, you might want to opt for one of its generously portioned dinner options.
Chef Melica, owner and operator of Zest N Spice Cuisine, told Insider that she’s a big fan of the chain’s sirloin steak tips.
“I would order the steak tips because they marinate them for between eight and 24 hours in a sweet, tangy, and savory sauce, then add caramelized onions. The tips come out extremely tender and pan-seared to perfection,” said Melica.
The sirloin steak tips are served with your choice of two sides.
Load up on protein with an omelet at IHOP.
- Yelp/ Ann T.
If you believe that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, you might want to make sure you get an early hit of protein by ordering one of IHOP’s omelets.
“Their omelets are extremely satisfying. The number of eggs used and different selections of fillings are what makes the omelets [so great]. They are made to order, tasty, hot and scrumptious,” Melica told Insider.
Fortunately, you’re pretty spoiled for choice when it comes to omelet mix-ins and fillings.
That in mind, most of IHOP’s omelet options contain over 840 calories.
If you’re looking for a lower-calorie option that’s still laden with protein, IHOP also offers a cage-free egg white omelet with avocado, pepper-jack cheese, and tomatoes. It contains about 370 calories.
Of course, you can’t go wrong with pancakes.
- Yelp/Taylor A.
It’s not called the International House of Pancakes for nothing.
If what you’re looking for is a dose of something sweet and satisfying, Melica said IHOP can definitely serve up a fine plate of pancakes.
“Every time I’ve ordered pancakes at IHOP, it has seemed as if they are cooked to order. They come out hot and fluffy, and when you cut into the short stack and see the steam, your mouth automatically starts to water,” said Melica.
There are also plenty of options if you choose to order pancakes.
You can add some breakfast sides to your stack with the “Build Your Own Pancake” combo offer, which includes two pancakes, two eggs, two bacon strips or sausage links, and a serving of hash browns.
Diners can also order the chain’s original full stack of buttermilk pancakes or order something more decorated, like the rainbow-cupcake pancakes or the triple-chocolate stack that’s served with chocolate syrup and chocolate chips.