I have to admit that — at age 33 — I’m just finally learning all of the various ways to fry an egg.
What can I say? I’ve been a happily content sunny-side-up girl for many years. I mean, every now and then I have given them a little flip to briefly fry the other side. But it wasn’t until I learned the little timer method that the difference between over-easy, over-medium, and over-hard fried eggs finally “clicked”. They’re all so easy to make! And so delicious!
And let’s be real — just about any dish tastes better if you pop a fried egg on it.
So for anyone else out there who might have never learned exactly how to make the 4 different kinds of fried eggs, we have a super-cute new video today (<– seriously, it’s totally one of my faves so far!) to show you how. And just in case you missed them, be sure to also check out our new video tutorials this week on how to make poached, soft-boiled, and hard-boiled eggs too!
How To Make Fried Eggs | 1-Minute Video
So, here are my best tips for making perfectly fried eggs:
Use A Non-Stick Skillet: I mean, you can totally get away with making fried eggs in a stainless steel pan or anything else that’s not non-stick. But, you will have a much-much-much easier time lifting out your eggs if you go non-stick. A cast-iron skillet is my favorite pan to use.
Gently Pour In The Egg: Similar to our poached egg tutorial, I highly recommend cracking the egg into a small bowl first, and then pouring that into the pan. (And pro food-styling tip — if you want the egg to stay fairly compact and not spread out all over the pan, hold the bowl down just 1 cm or so away from the pan while you pour in the egg. And pour slowly, letting the whites find their placement for 1 or 2 seconds before letting the yolk slip into the middle of the pan. Works for me every time!) Of course, you’re totally welcome to just crack and pour the egg directly into the pan, but you run the risk of it spreading out much more.
Experiment And Find What’s Best For You: In terms of cooking temperature, how long exactly you cook the eggs, butter vs. oil — everyone seems to have different opinions when it comes to exactly how to cook fried eggs. My favorite method is below, but I know many people who swear by a lower or higher temperature, or who wouldn’t dream of using anything but butter. ;) Up to you!!
Learn how to make fried eggs 4 ways — sunny-side-up, over-easy, over-medium, or over-hard — with this simple step-by-step video tutorial and recipe!
2 teaspoons butter or oil
Carefully break an egg into a small bowl. (Repeat later if cooking multiple eggs.)
Heat oil in a large (and preferably non-stick) sauté pan over medium heat. Once the pan is fully heated, carefully pour in the egg, and let it cook until the whites are completely set but the yolks are still soft. Remove immediately and serve for sunny-side-up eggs.
Or, flip the egg over and cook for an additional 10-30 seconds for over-easy eggs, or 30-60 seconds for over-medium eggs, or 1-2 minutes for over-hard eggs.
Remove and serve immediately, seasoned with salt and pepper if you’d like.
Haha, I’m 23 but I still don’t know how to fry an egg. Thank you for the recipe!
Ok, I have to admit that I had no idea what over-easy, medium and hard meant before this. ? That was such a helpful video! Thanks, Ali!!!
We’re so glad you found this helpful, Michelle! :)
Thanks again for another great tutorial! Stuff like this is so important to keep catalogued, and not many bloggers take the extra step to do these. I really appreciate it!
You’re welcome, Sara, we’re so glad you’re finding them helpful! :)
Your tutorial videos are awesome! Quick, voiceless, music and just simple wording get right to the point!!
And your recipes are pretty amazing, also!!! Huge fan.
Thanks, Sharon, we’re so glad you’re enjoying them! :)
Butter or oil? Naaah. Bacon fat!!
I like a small fry pan with lid. Melt coconut oil, add egg, cover pan using med. to low heat and the steam cooks the top white and yolk just right….adjust to your softness/hardness liking.
I use little metal prep bowls. I crack one egg into each bowl, checking to make sure the yolks are intact. When the pan is ready, I pour the eggs into the pan quickly one after the other, very close to the pan’s surface. No broken yolks or pieces of egg shell, and you can place them more exactly so the yolks don’t end up crowded together.
Thanks for sharing with us! :)
Another Egg-celent video! Thanks for all the tips! I will try your small bowl method and slow pouring… I always do the fast and spreading everywhere, haphazardous method but I like yours better. ;) thanks a bunch
Thanks, Bita, we’re happy you enjoyed it! :)
During high school, I worked as a short order cook in a coffee shop, and did breakfasts on weekend mornings. It was so easy to make great eggs on our huge griddle. I really miss being able to get underneath them with a long spatula, and often have yolk breakage when I try to go over easy. Of course I don’t miss the stacks and stacks of orders when we were super busy, or liver and onions night, or the time we had a fire in the grease trap…
Ahh yes, there’s nothing like the griddle! That’s a tough job, but we bet you’re an egg-making pro! :)
I crack eggs into my measuring cups with fairly long handles then I can slip the eggs out easily without burning my fingers
Thank you for these wonderful egg tutorials! Eggs are an important part of my family’s diet. Now I can finally make over-medium fried eggs perfectly. I finally invested in a non-stick skillet, but for the past few years have been cooking solely with cast iron. A tip if you’re making eggs in a cast iron skillet – use enough oil/fat to keep it from sticking! For those of you who are meat lovers, you really can’t go wrong cooking your fried eggs in about a 1/4 inch of bacon grease ;D
You’re very welcome, Rebecca, we’re glad you’re enjoying them! Thanks also for that cast iron skillet tip — bacon grease is a wonderful thing. :)
I once saw a comment from a fellow food-lover that was something like “Who doesn’t know how to fry an egg?” Well, lots of people! I knew how to fry an over-medium egg, but not the other 3, until now. Please keep these simple technique videos coming, Ali. They’re genuinely helpful and I’m sure I’m not the only reader who appreciates them.
Thank you, we’re so happy you’re finding them helpful, that means a lot to us!
I usea 8″ non-stick pan with a lid. I agree, a cast iron pan is the best. I put the eggs in. For a sunny side up egg, I add 1 tablespoon of water to the pan and then cover. This causes additional steam and the eggs cook a little quicker.
I also use a lid. It helps to baste the egg and cooks it faster. Also great if adding cheese just remove from heat and put lid back on for a few seconds.
If you want to stop eggs spreading, a really hot pan and oil will help as it “crackles” the egg at the edges. But basically, cook with better, fresher, eggs. Eggs spread out when the protein in their whites is high in the “runny” type. Also, as the strong protein weakens, the membrane around the yolk also breaks down and the yolk is more likely to break and not be what a fried egg should be. This happens because: eggs are not from properly-fed chickens, the eggs have been handled and stored badly (vibrated, or stored hot), or they are old: the protein breaks down to the watery stuff, and even water, as time goes by.
Ironically, IME good eggs are harder to cook, in that you have to work harder to make the albumin (white) firm without drying/cooking the yolk. This because the albumin is much thicker and will firm more slowly.
Honestly, I’m just finding your article in 2020. Just turned 21 and never knew any of this! Thanks for the easy to read article :)
Thank you for this! For years, I’ve hated my eggs because they were undercooked or over cooked -and much preferred them made by the restaurants. Yet, I kept trying because “eggs and toast(or on toast)” or “eggs with bacon/ham/sausage” or “eggs and fried potatoes”, huevos rancheros, etc. etc. sounded so good.
PS) I’m about 25 years older than you!!
Thank you for your help!!!
I’ve never been able to make a fried egg. I don’t like them, so I never learned to cook them, but my daughter loves them. I finally made her 2 perfect eggs without going through half the cartoon to get them!
VERY USEFUL THANKS FOR THE ADVICE
I have made fried eggs many times but never with much success….until now!!! I just made 6 fried eggs to perfection because of the tips in this recipe! Thanks so much!!
It makes me more understand how to make a fried egg
Thank you.i learnt alot
love your video! Thanx!!!
Thank you so much