What’s the Difference Between a Frittata and a Quiche?

updated Feb 28, 2023
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Credit: The Kitchn

Springtime is full of opportunities to entertain guests, be it for Mother’s Day, a graduation party, or simply a sunny brunch outdoors. For many of these occasions, a frittata or quiche is the perfect addition to your spread — you can make them advance, tailor the mix-ins to the preferences of your crowd, and pair them with any number of simple sides. But you may be wondering, what exactly is the difference between these two egg bakes?

Quick Overview

Main Differences Between a Frittata and Quiche

The biggest differences between a frittata and a quiche are the presence of a crust, the egg-to-dairy ratio, the vessel that they’re baked in, and where they are cooked.

Frittata vs Quiche

There are four key differences between a frittata and quiche.

  • Crust: Quiche is baked in a pastry crust, often a pie crust. A frittata has no crust at all.
  • Dairy: Quiche has a higher proportion of dairy, one part egg to two parts liquid dairy. It is, in fact, a type of custard. A frittata, on the other hand, is an egg dish with just a small amount of dairy added.
  • Cooking vessel: Quiche is typically baked in a pie or tart pan (because of the crust) while a frittata is typically cooked in an oven-proof skillet or cast-iron pan.
  • Where it’s cooked: A quiche is cooked entirely in the oven, while a frittata starts on the stovetop and then is transferred to the oven to finish.

What Is a Frittata?

A frittata is made up primarily of eggs, with a bit of full-fat dairy (think: sour cream, yogurt, heavy cream, or crème fraîche) to prevent dryness and to make it fluffy and custardy, plus any combination of fully cooked add-ins for flavor.

The cooking begins on the stovetop — you’ll sauté any veggies or cook any meat that’s being added in an oven-safe skillet — then pour the egg mixture (eggs, dairy, cheese, and any seasonings, spices, or herbs) over those cooked ingredients. You’ll continue to cook the frittata on the stovetop just until the edges begin to set, then transfer it to the oven to finish cooking. One 10-inch frittata makes four very generous portions, or six smaller slices.

Our Latest and Greatest Frittata Recipes

Credit: Joe Lingeman

What is Quiche?

Quiche, while also egg-based, is baked in a crust in a pie pan. Because it has the support of the crust, it can also handle more dairy (think: one part egg to two parts liquid dairy), and is therefore a bit silkier and more wobbly than a frittata. In the case of a quiche, the dairy you’ll use will either be whole milk, half-and-half, or heavy cream.

A quiche, while still fairly easy to make, is also a bit more labor-intensive than a frittata, because you must blind bake the crust before adding the mix-ins and the egg mixture and returning it to the oven.

Our Latest and Greatest Quiche Recipes