Reading: how to make soft fried eggs
Meet my favorite fried egg: the crispy olive oil fried egg. These fried eggs have golden, lacy, crispy edges, which contrast beautifully with their runny yellow yolks. Contrast is everything!
Start with a good egg, a hot skillet, and a generous drizzle of olive oil, and you’ll end up with the most flavorful fried egg you’ve ever tasted. They are infinitely better than the rubbery, sulfurous eggs that come out of non-stick skillets. In fact, these are the only fried eggs I ever want to eat.
I learned this technique several years ago from Phoebe Lapine via her YouTube video on fried eggs. Thanks, Phoebe! I’ve been cooking eggs this way ever since.
You’ve seen these crispy fried eggs on my recipes over the years, but I’m highlighting the technique today and offering all the tips and tricks I’ve learned. You’ll also get a look at my favorite recipes featuring these golden beauties.
Watch How to Fry An Egg
How to Make the Best Fried Egg
Tips and considerations to keep in mind:
Start with a great egg. I like to buy local eggs, which have the most beautiful golden yellow yolks. Free-range organic eggs are great, too.
Cook one or two eggs at a time. I usually just cook one egg at a time in a small skillet because sometimes the two eggs cross paths and stick together.
Use a cast iron skillet if you have one. Cast iron is non-toxic and retains heat well. If you warm up the pan as directed before adding the oil, it should offer a great non-stick cooking surface. I use my 8″ cast iron pan (affiliate link) for single eggs, or 12″ pan for two eggs. My next best bet would be stainless steel. I’m hesitant to suggest non-stick pans because high heat can damage the coatings and release toxic PFOA’s into the air.
Crack the egg into a bowl first. You can more easily avoid oil splatters this way. I also find that pouring from a bowl yields a more evenly shaped fried egg that cooks a little more evenly.
Make sure the oil is hot before you pour in the egg. This helps ensure that the egg doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan, and yields super crispy edges.
Be careful and watch out for hot oil splatters! This recipe is going to leave some tiny oil splatters on your stovetop. You’ll want to step away after you pour in the egg to avoid getting splattered yourself.
A note on basting the egg white with oil: Most olive oil fried egg recipes suggest basting the egg white (not the yolk) with the hot olive oil while it cooks. You can do this by tilting the pan and scooping up some of the hot oil with a spoon. However, I can’t do this without burning my hand with oil splatters! My eggs turn out great without basting, so I didn’t include this in my recipe.
If you want more firm yolks: For medium eggs, just cook the egg for 30 to 60 more seconds. If you want more firm yolks than that, you can cover the egg for 30 seconds or longer while it cooks.
Repeat with additional eggs. You can continue frying eggs in the same skillet. Just add another drizzle of olive oil before each egg. You might need to dial down the heat as time goes on (if you catch the faintest whiff of smoke, it’s too hot).
Season as desired. These fried eggs are basically perfect right out of the skillet, but I love to sprinkle them with a little flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Serve them with a knife and a fork to cut through their crispy undersides!
Recipes Featuring Crispy Fried Eggs
Avocado Pesto Toast
“I wish I could attach a photo of how beautiful this came out. This breakfast is delicious! It’s easy to make, and the different flavors are incredible. I may never make pesto other than like this again! Even my insanely picky husband (who has never eaten an over easy egg in his life) loved It!” – Meghan
Fresh Huevos Rancheros
“I’ve just tried this recipe, the first time I have had huevos rancheros. Simply one of the greatest foods I have ever tasted. Thank you.” – Kate
Chilaquiles Verdes with Baked Tortilla Chips
“SO good. Made this recipe for friends over the weekend. Took a shortcut and used pre-made salsa verde… since we were at a lake house and relaxing on a boat is more fun than chopping veggies… but still turned out great. Every one of your recipes that I have tried has been a huge success. Thanks!” – Emily
Goat Cheese Polenta with Roasted Vegetables
“I made this last week for dinner and hands down it is probably one of the best meals I’ve ever made/eaten! I loved all the flavors. The veggies I roasted were bell peppers, carrots, asparagus, brussels sprouts and red onion. My husband was a huge fan too. I’m definitely adding this to my rotation.” – Kayla
Spicy Breakfast Fajitas with Fried Eggs and Guacamole
This recipe is available only in my cookbook, Love Real Food! If you haven’t tried it yet, you have really been missing out. One of my favorites, for sure!
Please let me know how you like your fried eggs in the comments! I really love hearing from you, and I hope this technique becomes your new favorite.