March 30, 2006
The Humble Fried Egg Sandwich

egg_sandwich_jf.jpgSometimes when looking for something good to blog about, the answer can be right under your nose. That's what happened to me recently when I was making a fried egg sandwich for breakfast. I make one of these probably 3 times a week nowadays and have been making them off and on since my dad showed me how when I was just a wee lad.

Now, as I understand it, Alton Brown has some sort of Unified Sandwich Theory which says...well, what do you know, you can read it yourself on the interweb. Relevant here are two of the corollaries (corollary to what I'm not sure): soft fillings best on soft breads. Check. I use a soft challah-type roll. And avoid placing layers of slippery substances next to one another. Check. That's the bit about where to apply ketchup.

Does everyone do ketchup and Tabasco? I'm guessing people grew up with other toppings to their fried egg sandwiches. Once I had no ketchup so I did pesto. Not bad.

Fried Egg Sandwich

1-2 t butter
2 eggs
Tabasco Sauce
1 soft roll

Crack two eggs into a small bowl and set aside. Melt butter in an 8" pan on high heat. When it has bubbled a bit, slide the eggs from the bowl to the pan (so as not to break the yolks). Fry those for about two minutes on high. Meanwhile, cut your roll in half and lay it on your plate in butterfly fashion. Turn down the heat to medium and here is where you have some decisions to make. If you like your yolks broken, do it now. Also, do you like your eggs fried "soft" or "hard"? If you like them fried soft, then flip them now. If you like them fried hard, as I do, keep them on this side for another two minutes and then flip. Cook on the flip side for about two minutes or until you are happy with how runny the eggs are.

Put ketchup on one side of the roll and 2-20 drops of Tabasco as well. Then lay the egg across the bread and close up the sandwich. I once made the near fatal flaw of putting the eggs on the bread and ketchup on the egg. When I closed it up, the ketchup was between two layers of egg. Slip-sliding all over the place. I shed one tear. I had really messed up.

That's a lot of bytes for a simple fried egg sandwich, but I have no job. So there you go.

Posted by Justin in Bogotá at March 30, 2006 8:35 AM Print-friendly version

A healthier and tastier alternative to ketchup and tabasco is salsa. Green or red. Also, you could be really crazy and crack the eggs directly into the pan. Always break the yolks early, and add the salsa once the eggs are just about dry-looking. The flavor of the salsa is crucial if you're going to to go healthy and use PAM instead of yummy butter.

Posted by Kuz on March 30, 2006 at 8:12 AM

Yes, salsa would be a fine alternative. And while some may like to use the spray stuff, I find it unnaturally complicated for how simple an ingredient it dispenses. If you're looking for more health, I would simply look to other places to cut fat/calories. The 1-2 t of butter isn't big in the grand scheme of things.

Posted by Justin on March 30, 2006 at 9:08 AM

Ketchup on eggs - never! i always thought that was kinda gross.

Justin, you aced me out on my pepper and egg sandwich I've been meaning to post. Green peppers, onion, garlic, butter, and eggs. Add a little cheese if you swing that way and serve on a chewy Turano French roll.

It's a Lent favorite.

Posted by barrett on March 30, 2006 at 10:31 AM

This shouldn't preclude you from posting your own egg sandwich. It's certainly different enough.

Also, Barrett, did you write this poll:,,643460,00.html
? "Gross" is in the lead, but not by much.

Wow, over 11000 responses. That's quite a large non-random sample.

Posted by Justin on March 30, 2006 at 10:53 AM

i've tried to kick my bacon, egg and cheese habit by subtracting the bacon and adding onions and tomatoes
its lovely and just a bit healthier, and yes, i also but ketchup AND hot sauce on it
i'm convinced i have a lycopene deficiency, i'm completely addicted to any tomato based product

Posted by ann on March 30, 2006 at 12:37 PM

Just checking if the comments work.

Posted by barrett on March 31, 2006 at 12:23 PM

Hey Barrett,

Looks like they work. Good to see you hard at work making sure all the little things work from our end.

Maybe no ketchup for this one, but I do for the egg-in-a-hole (hobo eggs).
I'm a fan of the very thinly sliced mater on the sammich along with crispy bacon or ham or prosciutto. And maybe a smattering of grated yummy cheese with a little melty action.
Depending upon the time of day, it may get some fresh basil or leaves of something. I like to toast the bread a bit, just for a little texture and aroma.
If this is after an extremely long evening, I'll embiggen the bread, double the egg and add a patty of fresh sausage of any kind.
Hot sauce or fancy mustards will be used on nearly any food here at Meathenge Labs.


Posted by Dr. Biggles on April 1, 2006 at 3:46 PM

I am not pleased at all with my fried egg sandwich, as I spilt all the yolk over my harrods suit. Then i dropped my tie in the ketchup. My mummy was disapointed at me after i applied for a job in sue clark health and fitness with the dirty suit on. now my mummy gave me a slap on the bottom. please teach me how to eat properlly.

yours faithfully


Posted by rcb on November 14, 2008 at 6:51 AM

I've seen a lot of fried egg sandwich recipes and it's my humble, yet highly regarded opinion that although this delightfully simple yet sublime recipe will span the range from the truly simple to the outrageously grandiose, fried egg sandwiches share some basic common ingredients. Bread, Mayonnaise, and Ketchup.
This is the way I like it...
Set your favorite frying pan on a low heat and add just enough cooking oil to do the job...i prefer the time the pan is up to operating temperature, you should have been toasting two slices of bread and dicing one green onion, (If you don't have a green onion, a thin slice of yellow onion will do fine). Break two eggs and start them frying slow. You can either lightly fry the onions with the eggs to save some time, (depending upon the size of the pan), or you can leave them aside for a minute. By now your toast should have popped...spread a light smear of mayonnaise on one slice of toast and sprinkle the diced green onion, (fried or not), on top of the mayo. Once the eggs are fried how you like them by this time, (Over hard for me), slide them on top of the onions and put a little sriracha, (the brand name is Spiracha. It's a Tai Chili pepper sauce and it's great on eggs), on top of the egg. Close the sandwich with the other slice of toast and there you are. Inexpensive, and great for when you aren't sure exactly what it is you want for a quick snack...enjoy

Posted by MetalChef on August 12, 2009 at 6:01 PM

I've always done my fried egg sandwich with two toasted pieces of nutty whole wheat bread, mayo, and salt and fresh cracked pepper. I crack the eggs right into the pan of melted butter, and swirl a fork around in them to break the yolks. Pretty simple, but delicious. I've never ever put ketchup on an egg. How awful!

Posted by Barbara on October 3, 2009 at 3:55 PM

Bread, mayo, egg... nothing more, nor less. Well, okay, if the mood strikes, add cheese, or tomato, or a slice of ham, but then it's not a fried egg sandwich, is it?

I don't bust the yolks. I let them fry until they're hard on both sides. And I use big shepherd's bread with two eggs.

The mayo is important. Nothing BUT REAL mayo.. Miracle Whip is disgusting.

Posted by DollParts on September 23, 2010 at 5:59 PM
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