5 Easy, Fancy Ways to Make Eggs a Meal

updated Sep 12, 2019
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(Image credit: Susanna Hopler)

Let’s take a moment to truly appreciate the awesomeness of eggs. What other food can be cooked in so many ways, yet also be a foundational ingredient in baked goods, custards, and sauces? Eggs hold a rightful place as a refrigerator staple because they’re economical, have a long shelf life, and have been the savior of last-minute meals when you don’t have much else around to cook.

We love all those things about eggs — and we’re in good company — but for these recipes, we wanted to treat this workhorse ingredient to a little luxury. So while these recipes are still great for quick dinners and family brunches, they feature eggs in all their melting, yolky, showstopping glory. From an ingenious vegetarian take on Scotch eggs (they’re wrapped in falafel!) to the crispiest, cheesiest, Frenchiest croque madame, here are five stunning ways to make eggs the main attraction.

(Image credit: Christine Han)

Make the Saucy Egg the Point of It All

Most Instagram- or Pinterest-worthy photos of eggs show bright yellow or orange yolks oozing out of the fried or poached whites. If you’re a fan of runny yolks, you’ll understand the undeniable satisfaction of poking your fork or knife through to watch the hypnotizing outpouring of yolk.

Whenever that happens, I like to give an imaginary pat on the back to whoever cooked the egg to such perfection. This tasty, runny yolk creates what I fondly dub “egg sauce,” and it suddenly makes dishes like cheesy croque madame sandwiches or these cute little crispy prosciutto and hash brown cups extra luxurious.

(Image credit: Christine Han)

An Elegant Luxury Any Time of Day

Since they’re packed with protein, eggs have always been the go-to choice for vegetarians or those looking for an extra boost of protein in their diet. I’ve always been a fan of the particular way eggs fill me up. They’re satisfying, but aren’t too heavy or rich to make me feel sleepy afterward. I find this to be especially true when they’re poached in a brothy soup chock-full of greens.

Poached eggs already have an air of elegance about them since they’re so often associated with dishes like eggs Benedict or really expensive toast, but this recipe makes them feel fancy and nourishing. Cook eggs right in the hot broth so they absorb all the flavors of the soup. Once pierced, the egg releases ribbons of rich yolk, giving the soup a satiny texture.

(Image credit: Christine Han)

Fast and Fancy Eggs Start with Good Technique

The natural beauty of eggs is that they are delicious in and of themselves. It’s hard to get bored when there are just so many ways to simply cook them! If you’re ready to bring out the luxurious side of eggs — as a cook new to the world of egg cookery or as an old pro ready to reacquaint yourself with a familiar ingredient — taking the time to master creamy scrambled eggs, perfectly set hard-boiled eggs, crispy fried eggs, and delicate poached eggs is the first step. Tackle these techniques with gusto — the investment is small, but the payoff is long-lasting.

Once you’re the master of all things egg, take it up a notch and give these five recipes a try. We promise delicious results and satisfied eaters!

5 Recipes for Fast and Fancy Eggs