Don’t Leave Shirred Eggs Off Your Menu For Brunch


If you’re writing a menu for brunch, don’t forget Shirred Eggs. They’re extremely simple, can be made well in advance, and make a great table presentation.

People love foods in individual serving dishes. In my many years of Catering, I’ve seen the trends come and go, but high visual appeal never goes out of style. Individual appetizers in a flat-bottomed Asian spoon are always a hit. Hors d’ oeuvres served in martin glasses or desserts in chocolate cups are delicious to the eye.

That’s why when I create a menu for brunch, I try to include shirred eggs. “Shirred” refers to being baked in individual ramekins. Eggs baked in ramekins don’t sound particularly exciting, but it’s what you do before and after the egg that makes it amazing.

You can add any of your favorite ingredients to the ramekin to make a signature shirred egg dish yourself. My favorite is to place a slice of ham or Canadian bacon in the bottom of the ramekin, crack an egg, top with Swiss Cheese, broccoli, mushrooms, and a touch of cream.

You might line the individual baking dish with toast points, an egg, crumbled bacon, and cheddar cheese. Sometimes, the shirred egg is baked within brioche dough or puff pastry that will rise as the egg bakes, giving an egg-inside-a-croissant result.

Even near the shore, people are creating shirred egg dishes with bits of shrimp, lobster, sausage, peppers, and tomatoes. Your art is complete when you’ve assembled the ingredients YOU like best and baked them with an egg in an individual. You’ve created your first shirred egg!

The ramekin is baked at 325F (180C) until the egg is set to your liking. If you’ve created a menu for brunch that includes a buffet, you can create multiple varieties of shirred egg and display them on buffet table. The ramekins will keep the dish warmer than omelets or scrambled eggs and the amount of choices you can present to your guests is limitless.

Shirred eggs needn’t be relegated as a special occasion only item. They’re a healthy alternative to pastries and cereals when you can eat whole eggs with protein from an individual serving on your way to work.

However, shirred eggs should not be forgotten when you’re planning your menu for brunch. They can be made well in advance and refrigerated until baking. You have the ability to bake only a few at a time, saving on potential wasted food and you can make an elegant presentation with the least amount of effort.

I’d love to hear what combination of ingredients would make up YOUR shirred egg.
Please leave your comment below:

About Chef Todd

Chef Todd Mohr is a Certified Culinary Educator who has empowered home cooks all over the world with the reliable, dependable, repeatable METHODS behind cooking that build confidence, generate creativity and enable anyone to cook with the ingredients THEY desire.

11 Comments

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  • Chef Todd Mohr
    Chef Todd Mohr
    2:37 PM - 23 January, 2015

    Hi Mendi!
    Please don't apologize for asking ANY questions, that's what our community is founded on, a seeking of information. If you're a curious cook that wants to know the HOW and WHYs of cooking, you MUST ask questions. So, keep them coming, I'm always glad to answer anything.

    Yes, the bacon must be cooked entirely before being added as an ingredient for shirred eggs. Bacon must be cooked in a dry conductive fashion to render fats and caramelize sugars. That's what makes it shrink and get crumbly (covered in WebCookingClasses Week 1). When making shirred eggs, you are cooking in a convective method where the heat is applied indirectly through hot air. If the bacon is covered with an egg and/or cream, it will never get crunchy and brown. So, pan fry, oven roast or even microwave your bacon first and then add to the egg for roasting.

    This is explained in depth in my course and you can take advantage of a free trial at http://www.webcookingclasses.com/learn-to-cook/

  • Mendi
    Mendi
    10:35 PM - 22 January, 2015

    Thank you so much for making your wonderful classes and tips available to the home cook! I am just beginning, so forgive me if this is something covered in a future class. When making a shirred egg with bacon on the bottom, is it possible to get the bacon crisp? Should the bacon be baked for a period of time before adding the rest of the ingredients?

  • Chef Todd Mohr
    Chef Todd Mohr
    12:38 PM - 20 April, 2014

    Hi Diane!
    Thank you for those great suggestions. One of the great things about Shirred Eggs is the WIDE range of ingredients and creativity you can apply.
    I love the Chili Relleno in a cup! Great idea, and a fantastic dish for a Bed and Breakfast. It's perfect! Thanks for sharing.

  • Diane Hoffman
    Diane Hoffman
    6:14 PM - 19 April, 2014

    I served shirred eggs for breakfast and my Band B all the time- a great way to present a lovely egg dish to a lot of guests at one time and it looks fancy and they are all warm when served - I sautéed finely chopped kale ,onion ,garlic and red peppers with a little Cajun seasoning -baked until almost set and then sprinkled a little gruyere or shredded pepper jack on top - baked for another 30 seconds
    it was always a hit

    for a spicier dish -I cut seeded and roasted jalapeno(or poblano ) and added a roasted strip to the top of the egg with seasoning and queso asadero-- then sprinkle with a teaspoon of crumbled tortilla chips a teaspoon of fresh salsa - it is like a little chili relleno breakfast in a cup

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  • cheftodd
    cheftodd
    11:03 AM - 27 April, 2011

    Thanks for the note, Tommy.
    Cooking is fun! Cooking can expand your mind and enjoyment of life. Cooking is NOT a competition game show.
    Thank you for your support in my mission to take cooking out of the living room and return it to the kitchen.

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  • Tommy Valdes
    Tommy Valdes
    12:10 PM - 26 April, 2011

    Thanks for the brunch ideas. I am already an online customer of your cooking class and have received your tapes as well. love your coaching. Thanks, Tommy

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