How to Fry an Egg

A perfectly fried egg is no mystery—it just takes a bit of practice in order to achieve mastery. Sunny side up or over easy, here's how to do it right, every time, with a video, step by step instructions, and photos.

  • Cook time: 4 minutes
  • Yield: 1 fried egg


  • 1 large egg
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons butter or olive oil, depending on your pan type

Special equipment:

  • 8- or 10-inch nonstick skillet, well-seasoned cast iron skillet, or stainless steel skillet


1 Heat the pan: Melt the butter or heat the oil  in your skillet over low heat for 1 minute. Use 1 teaspoon of butter or oil per egg if using a nonstick skillet or well-seasoned cast iron skillet. Use 2 teaspoons of butter or oil if you're using a stainless steel skillet.

Swirl the pan to coat the bottom.

2 Cook the egg on the heat: Break the egg into the skillet, and cover the pan with a lid. Cook for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, covered, or until all but a thin rim of egg white around each yolk is opaque.

Perfect Fried Egg break the egg into the skillet

3 Finish cooking the egg off the heat: Remove the pan from the heat, keep covered, and let sit for about 30 seconds to finish cooking.

If you want to make an over-easy egg, use a thin spatula and slide it directly under the yolk. Gently lift the egg and flip it over, and let it cook for 10 to 15 seconds. Add a few more seconds a piece for both over-medium and over-hard.

Fried Egg Recipe cook the egg

4 Serve: Remove the lid. Slide a spatula directly under the yolk when removing from the pan and serve.

How to Make Fried Eggs