How to Do a Fried Egg: The Perfect Breakfast Staple

How to Do a Fried Egg: The Perfect Breakfast Staple

There are few breakfast dishes as satisfying as a perfectly cooked fried egg. The crispy edges and runny yolk make for a delicious meal any time of day. However, many home cooks struggle with getting the timing and technique just right. In this article, we’ll show you how to fry an egg to perfection, every time.

Choosing Your Eggs

When it comes to frying eggs, the quality of the egg is key. Look for fresh eggs with firm yolks and whites. You can test the freshness of the eggs by placing them in a bowl of water. If they sink to the bottom and lay flat, they are fresh. If they float to the top, they are no longer fresh and should be discarded.

It’s also important to use eggs at room temperature. Cold eggs straight from the refrigerator can cause the egg whites to cook more quickly, leading to an uneven and tough texture.

Preheating Your Pan

Before you start cooking your eggs, you’ll want to make sure that your pan is preheated. This helps to ensure that your eggs cook evenly and don’t stick to the pan.

Heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat for a few minutes. You can test the heat of your pan by sprinkling a few drops of water onto the surface. If the water immediately sizzles and evaporates, your pan is ready.

Adding Oil or Butter

Next, you’ll want to add a small amount of oil or butter to the pan to prevent the eggs from sticking. You can use any type of oil or butter that you prefer, but keep in mind that different fats will alter the flavor of the eggs.

If you’re using butter, wait until it has melted and is just starting to foam before adding your eggs.

Cracking Your Eggs

Now it’s time to crack your eggs into the pan. You can crack them directly into the hot pan or crack them into a bowl first and then carefully pour them into the pan. Be careful not to break the yolks.

For sunny-side up eggs, cook them until the whites are set and the yolks are just starting to firm up. For over-easy or over-medium eggs, carefully flip the eggs over once the whites are set and cook for an additional 30 seconds to a minute.

Seasoning Your Eggs

Once your eggs are cooked to your liking, it’s time to season them. You can sprinkle them with salt and pepper or add any other herbs or spices that you prefer.

Keep in mind that eggs can take on the flavors of any seasoning or herbs that you add, so experiment with different combinations to find your favorite.

Serving Your Eggs

Fried eggs are a versatile dish that can be served in many different ways. They’re delicious on their own with a slice of toast, or you can use them as a topping for hash browns or avocado toast.

You can also use fried eggs as a base for a delicious breakfast sandwich. Place the cooked egg on a toasted English muffin and top with bacon, cheese, and your favorite condiments.

Cleaning Your Pan

After you’ve finished cooking your eggs, it’s important to clean your pan properly to prevent any sticking or burning the next time you use it.

Allow the pan to cool completely before washing it with a soft sponge and mild soap. Avoid using abrasive scrubbers or harsh chemicals, which can damage the nonstick surface of the pan.


Fried eggs are a simple and delicious breakfast staple that can be cooked to your personal preference with a few simple tips and tricks. Whether you’re a fan of sunny-side up or over-easy eggs, the key is to use fresh, room temperature eggs, preheat your pan, and add a little bit of oil or butter to prevent sticking. With a little practice, you’ll be frying eggs like a pro in no time!


How do you keep the yolks from breaking when frying an egg?

One way to prevent the yolks from breaking when cracking the eggs into the pan is to crack them into a small bowl first and then carefully pour them into the pan. You can also use a spoon to create a small well in the center of the egg whites to help cradle the yolk as it cooks.

Can you fry an egg without oil or butter?

While adding a small amount of oil or butter can help to prevent the eggs from sticking, you can also fry eggs without any added fat. To do so, make sure your pan is well-seasoned or use a nonstick skillet.

How long do you cook a sunny-side up egg?

Cook a sunny-side up egg until the whites are set and the yolk is just starting to firm up. This usually takes about 2-3 minutes.

Can you fry an egg in a cast-iron skillet?

Yes, cast-iron skillets are a great option for frying eggs. Just be sure to preheat the skillet before adding the eggs and use a small amount of oil or butter to prevent sticking.

What spices go well with fried eggs?

Many different spices and herbs can be used to season fried eggs, including paprika, cumin, oregano, chives, and parsley. You can also add a sprinkle of hot sauce or salsa for an extra kick of flavor.

Are fried eggs healthy?

Fried eggs can be a healthy breakfast option when enjoyed in moderation as part of a balanced diet. Eggs are a good source of protein and healthy fats, but it’s important to keep portion sizes in mind and pair them with other nutrient-dense foods.



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