Huevos Rancheros

The recipe is flexible, sometimes we use canned salsa and just add a few more chopped tomatoes and some chopped pickled jalapeños to make the sauce.

Sometimes if we have some leftover refried beans, we'll spread some on the tortillas before topping them with the eggs and salsa. My mother has been known to add a pinch of sugar to the salsa sauce if she feels it's too acidic for her taste.

  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 2-4 servings


  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, chopped (about a half cup)
  • 1 15-ounce can whole or crushed tomatoes, preferably fire-roasted, (or 1 -2 large fresh vine-ripened tomatoes, when in season)
  • 1/2 6-ounce can diced green Anaheim chiles
  • Chipotle chili powder, adobo sauce, or ground cumin to taste (optional)
  • 4 corn tortillas
  • Butter
  • 4 fresh eggs
  • 2 Tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped (optional)


1 Make the sauce: Sauté the onions in a little olive oil in a large skillet on medium heat. Once the onions are translucent, add the tomatoes and their juices. If using whole canned tomatoes, break them up with your fingers or a spatula as you put them in the pan.

If you are using fresh tomatoes, chop them first, then add. Note that fresh tomatoes will take longer to cook as canned tomatoes are already cooked to begin with.

Add chopped green chilies. Add additional chili to taste, either chipotle chili powder, adobo sauce, regular chili powder, or even ground cumin.


Bring to a simmer, reduce heat to low, and let simmer while you do the rest of the cooking, stirring occasionally. Reduce to warm after it has been simmering for 10 minutes. Add salt to taste if needed.

2 Warm the plates: Heat the oven to a warm 150°F, place serving plates in the oven to keep warm.

3 Prepare the tortillas: Heat a teaspoon of olive oil in a large non-stick skillet on medium high, coating the pan with the oil.

One by one (or more if your pan is big enough) heat the tortillas in the pan, a minute or two on each side, until they are heated through, softened, and pockets of air bubble up inside of them.


Then remove them and stack them on one of the warming plates in the oven to keep warm while you continue cooking the rest of the tortillas and the eggs.

4 Fry the eggs: Using the same skillet as was used for the tortillas, add a little butter to the pan, about two teaspoons for 4 eggs. Heat the pan on medium high heat. Crack 4 eggs into the skillet and cook for 3 to 4 minutes for runny yolks, more for firmer eggs.


5 Assemble and serve: To serve, spoon a little of the sauce onto a warmed plate. Top with a tortilla, then a fried egg. Top with more sauce, sprinkle with cilantro if desired.

Serve either one or two eggs/tortillas per plate, depending on how much you want to eat. I'm a 2-egg 2 tortilla person myself.

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  • Pille

    I’ve never had huevos rancheros before, but it sounds like a great alternative for our usual savoury weekend breakfast. Thank you for sharing, Elise!

  • dhanggit

    The photo is stunningly delicious.;cant wait to try myself :-)

  • jonathan

    ¡Tan simple, tan delicioso!

    (Would your mom be terribly upset if in addition to a “schmear” of frijoles refritos, I crumbled some Cotija on top?)

    I would have done the same if we had had any beans or Cotija left in the fridge. :-) ~Elise

  • Steve

    I like to throw some bacon in there too to give it some more flavor.

  • Ellie

    I’ve always wanted to try this dish, I guess the only reason that I haven’t is that I’m not organized enough in the mornings to do more than toast a piece of bread! If can get get my butt into gear and make some salsa beforehand, it may be worthwhile giving this a shot over the weekend for brunch, it certainly looks worth the effort!

  • John P

    Living in Houston/San Antonio, this is a very common dish that I cannot imagine being without. I can’t wait to try your recipe. I usually see these served as scrambled eggs or as a “hybrid” omelette, but this looks pretty stunning. I also like throwing in some bell pepper for extra veggies.

  • merd

    Love it. I feel this is an energizing breakfast to start the day or a wonderful way to end a late night (early morning) after having drinks with friends (in that case add some has browns to the plate also). I prefer eggs over easy for this and am a two egg/tortilla person myself :)

    Another thing I highly recommend is a trick I learned from a local restaurant that essentially gave their recipe for fresh ‘roasted’ salsa. They pan roasted whole tomatoes, peppers, onions, and garlic in the oven under the broiler that were brushed with olive oil. The skins peel right off the veggies and the meat gets that (semi) fire roasted flavor and near stewed texture. I like to make a batch which disappears within days and having this prepped up makes a recipe like this very easy. You can add some vegetable juice (V8) to the skillet and it will help produce the sauce consistency instead of just roasted veggies.

  • Jerry

    Oh merciful heavens and other things! How I wish I was at your place right now! That picture has me HUNGRY!

    I haven’t seen a good plate of huevos since leaving California!

  • Susan

    Oh, wow! I’m drooling over here. There is nothing better than a gooey, golden yolk mingling with everything else on the plate! My Dad used to make huevos “Italian Style”, with a tomato-basil salsa. Heaven!

  • Annie

    I usually make mine really hearty with black beans, avocado, and cheese and have it for dinner sometimes. Pretty filling, actually.

    Love your site, Elise

  • foxspit

    Huevos rancheros is the barometer by which I measure a Mexican restaurant. I love this dish and this post makes we want to have some for lunch tomorrow!

  • Janna

    Mmmm, mmm, mmm. I’ve always loved runny yolks, running around all over a dish, ever since my mother used to make us poached eggs, served in a teacup with salt and pepper. This recipe sounds delicious!

  • Jessica

    I’ve been looking for a good recipe for huevos rancheros – I grew addicted when I lived in Mexico. Thanks, I cannot wait to try this!

  • JEP

    This will be my supper tomorrow nite! I like the addition of beans & slices of ripe avocado–yum!

  • Susan from Food Blogga

    I love ’em. They’re so easy and endlessly versatile. Yours are looking mighty good for dinner right about now.

  • RTCaro

    Those huevos look delicious! Can’t wait to try your recipe.

  • Lady Amalthea

    I agree with the huevos rancheros for dinner consensus. They sound divine and mighty hearty–perfect for a nice dinner. I’m getting hungry all over again.

  • Veronica

    MMMMM. My favorite way to eat eggs. We sometimes have these for dinner too!

  • Sorina

    Excellent instructions and photos. Awesome Post!

  • Lulu

    Being a true Brit I am not familiar with Mexican food, so how do you eat heuvos racheros – knife and fork, rolled up, fingers or what? Sorry to be so ignorant! The recipe sounds divine.

    Just with a fork and knife, easy! ~Elise

  • CJ

    Huevos rancheros is one of my favorite comfort foods. Breakfast, lunch , dinner or midnight meal. Yum.

    Your photos make this especially tantalizing.

  • Molson

    I love Huevos Rancheros, but I like poached eggs much better than fried ones. I like my eggs runny, but I tend to overcook them too easily. Instead I poach the eggs in the simmering salsa; the acidity in the salsa keeps the egg together, and I can get them out before they vulcanize.

  • waisze

    I love Huevos Rancheros. It so happens that I have lots of tortilla and salsa left over from the Superbowl party. Thanks for the great idea!

  • Jacqui

    This sounds sooo good. I have heard of this dish…..never had it. I will definitely be getting all the ‘makings’ together to try this one over the weekend. I can envision endless possibilities. Thanks for sharing!


    I have done this recipe before and it is my favorite.

  • Dodie

    I make the best huevos rancheros. I make mine with shredded chicken sauted in El Pato. With beans also chesse, avacados, tomatos and sour cream on top, I also use two corn tortillas and layer it. The fried eggs are fried in butter and your mouth will go wild. The best Mexican food in the world. I just made some the other day for my daughter and I.

  • Lane

    I made this on Tuesday night, and it was delicious!

  • Sarah

    I tried this recipe and loved it. I’ve made huevos rancheros before, but with store bought salsa. Since I can’t get store bought salsa in Laos, I really appreciated your sauce recipe. It was delicious. Thanks!


    Oh my! This is wonderful-I haven’t had this dish for over 20 yrs. I had it in Santa Fe NM at what I think was called the “American Mexican Cafe or restaurant. Don’t think it’s there anymore. I recall this dish with something bordering on ecstasy, it was that good! Can’t wait to try your version. I think it’s the exact same thing. Thanks!

  • Susana

    Thanks for sharing. I definitely agree with the addition of refried beans and cotija cheese. I’ve had this dish in Acapulco and it was beyond divine; however, they used a green salsa and I have not been able to duplicate it. By any chance do you (your Mama) have a good green salsa recipe? Thanks!

    Yes, check out this salsa verde. ~Elise

  • helen

    Goody! Just same recipe I use. I sometimes use green salsa, and serve it with refried beans. Delicious!

  • Myles

    For rancheros addicts only: Try Calamari Rancheros and Carne Rancheros! In addition: with tongs in hand; fire roast your fresh corn tortillas until they begin to blackened; no more! Spoon on rancheros, sprinkle a little fresh cilantro, fold and derive pleasure. Adios.

  • Beverley

    This was great, thanks for sharing! I had to make some adjustments due to what I had (or didn’t have) on hand but it was still really good.

    We had two leftover burrito-sized flour tortillas — I’ve never tried the method of warming them in the frying pan. (Although I didn’t have the pan hot enough for the first one so it ended up a bit oily, but it worked well for the second one!)

    I had only Italian-Style tomatoes on hand, fire-roasted sounds really good, will try that next time!

  • Dee

    I just made these for my boyfriend and me and they were fantastic! I have eaten them at restaurants, but never made them myself. I think mine were better than the huevos rancheros I have eaten in restaurants! I added garlic to the sauce…next time I have to add cojita cheese. Thanks for the recipe and your story!

  • nobodyfamous

    A key note: When the recipe says “Medium heat” it means something like a 3 out of 10 on the stove. If you take it literally, setting the stove to 5, you will end up with burned tortillas.

    Everybody’s stove is different. ~Elise

  • Ron Padian

    This has always been my favorite breakfast for camping trips. To cook it in one pan I make enough salsa for one serving, push a couple of dimples in the salsa and slip an egg into each dimple. Cover to poach the eggs and when they are done I sprinkle with some cheese. I toast the tortillas directly over the flame of my little camp stove.

  • Christine

    I made this recipe twice last weekend. We liked it so much the first time that we had to make it again. This is a keeper in my house. Thanks.

  • Nancy

    I was looking for something different to serve over the holiday weekend and came upon this recipe and decided to give it a try. We LOVED it. It’s a keeper in this house!

  • John

    Thanks for sharing, Elise. Your recipe just made the best breakfast I’ve had in months!

  • Christie

    Thanks for this great recipe! It was super fast and easy and, most importantly, delicious! I found that the sauce was enough for 2 servings. I served it with black beans and sour cream on the side. I can’t wait to make this again and I know I’ll make it on a regular basis.

  • Kim

    Hi Elise!

    Kudos to your mom for having you make salsa at the age of 5. I’m Vietnamese, so at 5, my mamma had me cooking the dinner rice. :o)

    It’s really hot in Southern CA today. That said, I have no CLUE why I was craving huevos rancheros. Doing a search for some photo ideas (because I’ll be blogging about it later this week), I came across your post. Just wanted to let you know that it inspired to capture a colorful photo of my own. :o) So thanks!

    Brunch was delicious. Now, if only I could figure out how to duck out of the heat!

    Enjoy the rest of your weekend,


  • Karlee Hoffart

    OMG- these were so good! I have made huevos rancheros before but they were not as good as these…. thanks!

  • Jennifer

    Yummy recipe Elise! Thanks for sharing. I lived in Mexico for a year and my family loves Mexican food–my husband is latin, and he said these were the best H.R.’s he’s ever had. I made this for Christmas breakfast–I’ll be making it again! P.S. I served it with cilantro and grated cotijo on top, and black beans on the side.

  • Joe

    I made this for brunch today! I added a dollup of guacamole on the side. Quite tasty. Thanks for sharing!

  • Jo

    I always spend hours drooling over the recipes on here, and it’s torture, so today I made these for brunch. This definitely beats bacon and eggs! I added crushed garlic with the onions, and used cayenne pepper because canned Anaheims are hard to come by here. But then I also added chipotles (because I finally found them in NZ and wanted to use them immediately), PLUS the adobo, because I’m crazy.

    Well, it was crazy good. I can see myself making different delicious versions of it. Thank you!

    • Martha

      Now that you’ve located a source for chipotles in adobo, stock up and try this: put two. 4 oz. cans in your blender, whirl until thoroughly combined, & freeze in an ice cube tray. When frozen, store in a freezer bag. Add 1 or 2 cubes (depending on your heat tolerance) to dishes calling for chipotle & adobo. Terrific in sopa seca.

  • Angora

    One egg – one tortilla person here ;).

    Really great recipe. I made it today for lunch (just an hour ago) and we all loved it! Though, having norwegian-ized tastes like we do, we had to add a lot of sour cream to milden the salsa’s hotness :). Nevertheless, it was excellent! Thank you for the recipe!

  • Veronica

    My boyfriend is a chef, and he makes Huevos at his cafe…it’s by far the most popular dish on the menu. The difference with his is he puts Ranchero sauce on top of the tortillas first with green onions and some cheese, and he also adds guacamole on top (under the salsa).

  • Rohn Jay Miller

    I love the “leftover” quality of huevos rancheros which opens the dish up for some creativity. If I don’t hve leftover chili, I like pan searing either ground chuck or chorizo with seasonings of ancho, chipotle, cumin and salt. Toss in the chopped onion and tomatoes, get that all cooked together.

    I line the side of an individual serving bowl with folded flour tortillas, then pour in the cooked meat mixture. Cover that with some shredded cheese and diced green onion, then lay on two over-easy eggs with ground pepper. The mix of rich egg yoke and salsa/chili–as you rightly point out–is the heart of the dish.

  • Dennis Hauptstein

    Thanks from Germany! I just came home from the nightshift and the the desire for a really uplifting breakfast. Never had this before, but it was outstanding good and revitalized me totally! Will have it regular now :-D

  • Rocket Roller Jr

    we’re having this for breakfast at work, so i came to your website to see what it is we’re having. thanks for the recipe and description, and to all the user comments as well.

  • Lilo

    I use crumbled bacon in mine and refried beans it’s sooooo good