15 Ingredients That Will Take Your Fried Eggs To The Next Level

making fried eggs in pan
making fried eggs in pan - Gmvozd/Getty Images

Eggs have to be one of the most versatile components of a savory breakfast. Whether you prefer them sunny-side up or over-easy, poached or scrambled, there's something undeniably comforting about tucking into a warm plate full of these protein-packed beauties. If fried eggs are a firm favorite on your breakfast table, you might tend to stick to the same basic cooking method. But even the classics can benefit from a little enhancement. By incorporating a few unexpected ingredients, you can transform your everyday fried eggs into something a little more unique and flavorful.

We've curated a list of the ultimate ingredients for pairing with fried eggs, to help you switch things up and inject some excitement into your morning routine. These ingredients are easy to find, simple to use, and all complement the delicious flavor and texture of eggs. From the rich and tangy to the spicy and savory, there's an addition for every taste preference here. There are of course the classics like butter and ketchup, and some more unusual — think pickle juice or chili jam! So give this list a look and we guarantee you'll be left with all the inspiration you need to whip up an epic fried egg breakfast.

Read more: Ingredients To Take Your Scrambled Eggs To The Next Level


fried eggs, fries, and ketchup
fried eggs, fries, and ketchup - Jaromila/Getty Images

It's a condiment you most likely already have in your fridge, and it's the perfect pairing for your freshly fried eggs. Tomato ketchup is sweet, tangy, and a totally delicious addition to your breakfast, with that slight acidity balancing the richness of the egg yolk, and sweetness working beautifully with the savory egg white. You might associate this sauce with burgers and fries, but if you've not tried it with eggs, we urge you to see what you think.

You can either go for the classic drizzle, squirting ketchup over the fried eggs after cooking, or simply serve it as a dipping sauce on the side. If you've got some other classic savory breakfast components on your plate, like sausages or bacon, ketchup will pair amazingly well with these too.

There are also some fun variations on traditional tomato ketchup available in most stores, such as those with a little chili added for a spicy kick, or perhaps a herb-infused ketchup for a fresher, more complex flavor profile. Premium ketchup brands may also boast a higher tomato content if you're after a richer taste.

White Pepper

bowl of white pepper
bowl of white pepper - Handmadepictures/Getty Images

When it comes to seasoning food, black pepper often steals the show. But with its subtle, spicy taste and finely ground texture, white pepper can actually be a better fit for a range of dishes. We love adding white pepper to fried eggs along with a pinch of salt, with the two working together beautifully to enhance the natural flavors of the egg.

White pepper comes from the same plant as black pepper, but its processing method gives it a distinctive flavor. It's milder and less pungent than black pepper, bringing a slight warmth and earthy taste. This makes it perfect for elevating the taste of your fried eggs without overpowering them.

Just sprinkle a pinch of ground white pepper over your eggs, either while they're cooking or once you've served them up, to infuse them with that wonderful peppery flavor. If you want to add more of a spicy kick to your eggs, try pairing the pepper with some red pepper flakes or hot sauce.


pesto eggs on toast
pesto eggs on toast - Kristen Carli/Mashed

Stirred through your pasta or dolloped on pizza, pesto might already be a staple in your kitchen, but have you tried it with eggs? This vibrant green sauce is packed with herbaceous flavor, traditionally made from basil, garlic, pine nuts, Parmesan cheese, and olive oil.

The rich and creamy, yet fresh and zingy flavors of pesto are the perfect match for the simple savory goodness of a perfectly fried egg. Pesto is readily available to buy in most stores, but you can also try making a batch at home if you want to maximize freshness and flavor.

There are a few different ways to incorporate pesto into your fried eggs. Of course you could simply drizzle a spoonful of pesto over the top once the eggs have cooked. Or you can replace any cooking oil or butter you would have used for frying with pesto, and heat it up before cracking the eggs into the pan. This will allow the eggs to become infused with that rich pesto flavor all the way through. If you're serving your fried eggs on toast, you could always simply spread a layer of pesto onto the toasted bread before topping with the eggs.

Pesto pairs fantastically with other ingredients too, like roasted tomatoes, sautéed spinach, or a sprinkling of cheddar cheese. It's a simple addition that can allow you to create a flavorful base for a Mediterranean-inspired feast.

Hot Sauce

fried egg and avocado toast
fried egg and avocado toast - Marianne Haggstrom /Getty Images

Hot sauce is a frequently reached for condiment amongst those who crave a bit of heat in their meals, and adding hot sauce to your fried eggs is the perfect way to transform them into something bold and exciting. What better way to awaken your senses in the morning?

Hot sauce comes in a range of different varieties, with each providing a slightly different blend of flavors and level of heat. If you prefer a milder, sweet heat, try adding a buffalo sauce. Or maybe sriracha is your sauce of choice, offering a medium spice level and a hint of garlic flavor. For a hot sauce that truly packs a punch, Tabasco is a great option, with its bold and tangy taste.

Adding hot sauce to your eggs couldn't be easier. Just grab your favorite bottle of sauce and drizzle it right on. Be mindful that a little goes a long way in amping up the spice factor! Some great side options for balancing the heat of your spicy fried egg breakfast are creamy and cooling slices of avocado, or crumbled feta cheese.

Sesame Oil

sesame oil and sesame seeds
sesame oil and sesame seeds - Everyday Better To Do Everything You Love/Getty Images

When deciding what type of oil to fry your eggs in, you don't have to stick to neutral-tasting varieties like canola or vegetable oil. Using an infused oil is an amazing way to transform the flavor of your eggs, and sesame oil is one of our favorites.

Sesame oil has a deeply nutty, toasty flavor. It's often used in Asian-inspired dishes like stir fries, or as an ingredient in dressings and marinades, but its distinctive taste also makes an amazing accompaniment to eggs.

This flavorful ingredient is pretty potent, so a little will go a long way. Two teaspoons of sesame oil is the great amount for flavoring two eggs, and you can combine this with another tablespoon of a neutral oil of choice to ensure your eggs don't stick to the pan.

The nutty taste of sesame oil is a great pairing for other ingredients commonly used in Asian-inspired cooking, like soy sauce and green onions, so feel free to drizzle or scatter these over your eggs too. To take the sesame theme to another level, try toasting some sesame seeds in the pan before cracking in your eggs.


butter block on chopping board
butter block on chopping board - Synergee/Getty Images

This one might sound simple, and may well already be a staple in your egg frying routine, but don't underestimate the power that butter can have in adding flavor to eggs. Its creamy texture and rich taste means it serves as the perfect addition to your egg pan, making everything feel extra luxurious.

Put simply, butter will add a depth of flavor that other fats simply can't match. Not only does it enrich the flavor of the eggs, it'll also create a beautiful golden color that makes them look super appealing.

To make the ultimate buttery fried eggs, first melt two tablespoons of butter in a frying pan. Next, add two eggs, and once the whites have started to set, tilt the pan so you can scoop up some of the melted butter on a spoon. You'll want to spoon this over the egg whites, basting the eggs to help them cook and infuse them with buttery richness. Keep spooning the butter over the whites until the eggs are cooked, then transfer them to a plate and season with salt and pepper. If desired, you can continue to cook the butter in the pan for another few minutes, to brown it and give it a deeper, caramelized taste. This can then be poured over the eggs for an even more indulgent and flavorful meal.

Feta Cheese

crumbled block of feta cheese
crumbled block of feta cheese - Candice Bell/Shutterstock

The feta fried eggs trend recently took TikTok by storm when several popular food influencers shared mouth-watering videos showcasing the process of frying eggs atop a bed of crumbled feta. And with that irresistible combination of creamy, melty, slightly charred feta and rich golden egg yolks, we can see exactly why this recipe captivated so many foodies across the world.

As per food writer and TikToker graceelkus, whose video has amassed over one million likes, the first step in making feta eggs is crumbling feta cheese into a hot frying pan, leaving a space in the middle to crack your egg into. Once the cheese starts to get a little melty, add the egg and any seasoning of choice. She recommends black pepper and red pepper flakes. Cover the pan and leave everything to fry until the egg is cooked through and that crumbled feta around the edge of the egg is gloriously browned. Since the feta melts into the egg as it cooks, you should be able to scoop the feta-crusted egg up in one swoop of the spatula. Serve it on toast, or as Grace does, on a tortilla spread with a generous layer of guacamole.


mincing cloves of garlic
mincing cloves of garlic - New Africa/Shutterstock

There are few ingredients as aromatic, flavorful, and universally loved as garlic. Though it might not seem like a natural addition to fried eggs, we can assure you that its fragrant aroma makes an incredible pairing.

There are a few ways you can introduce the moreish flavor of garlic into your eggs. Try adding minced garlic to your frying pan along with the oil or butter, and sautéing it for a minute or so before cracking in the eggs. As it cooks with the eggs, the garlic will mellow and sweeten, imparting its delicious aromatic taste throughout the eggs. Sliced garlic will also work great here for a more subtle flavor. Again, you can first saute the garlic slices in oil until softened and just starting to crisp up. Then, crack in that egg, and season with some salt and pepper.

Garlic oil is another fantastic way to bring garlicky deliciousness to your breakfast plate. With this handy ingredient, you can either use it for frying, or drizzle a little over the top of your eggs before serving.


bowl of paprika
bowl of paprika - Synergee/Getty Images

It's a staple in curries, Mexican-inspired dishes, and seasoning blends, but paprika should absolutely be your new go-to when whipping up your morning eggs. This spice has a beautiful deep red color and smoky flavor, with a mild kick that's perfect for jazzing up your breakfast. Paprika is also an incredibly popular garnish for deviled eggs, if you need any more proof that these two ingredients are a great match.

You can easily incorporate paprika into your fried eggs by dusting a pinch over the top before serving. This adds a lovely pop of color and flavor, without being too overpowering. Another simple method is to stir the paprika into the oil in the frying pan before you add the eggs. This helps to toast the spice slightly, intensifying its flavors and distributing it evenly throughout the eggs.

Remember that paprika comes in a few different forms — hot, sweet, or smoky. So opt for the one that will deliver your preferred flavor and spice level.

Fresh Herbs

fresh chopped herbs on cutting board
fresh chopped herbs on cutting board - Candice Bell/Shutterstock

Adding fresh herbs to any dish is a great way to elevate it with a pop of color and fragrant flavor, and eggs are no exception. A range of herbs will complement fried eggs beautifully, including parsley, chives, dill, and basil.

Again, it's your choice whether you simply sprinkle the herbs on top of the eggs as a beautiful garnish, or add them during the cooking process. Just make sure to finely chop the herbs so every bite of your eggs can be filled with that herby goodness. Herbs also tend to burn quite easily, so if adding them to the pan, make sure to fry them in the oil for just a few seconds before you crack in the eggs.

You can boost the flavor of herby fried eggs even further by combining them with other ingredients, such as a squeeze of lemon juice for extra freshness, or a sprinkling of feta or Parmesan cheese for added savory richness.

Soy Sauce

soy sauce fried eggs
soy sauce fried eggs - Sandy's Kitchen / Youtube

If you're a lover of umami flavor, soy sauce is the perfect ingredient for packing that deep, savory goodness into your cooking. By adding it to fried eggs, you can give your breakfast a wonderful saltiness that's sure to take the final dish to the next level.

To infuse your fried eggs with the intense savory depth of soy sauce, first add some neutral-flavored oil to your frying pan. Heat it up, and crack in the eggs. Once they're beginning to cook, it's time to add your soy sauce. Mixing a tablespoon of soy sauce with half a tablespoon of water and a teaspoon of brown sugar is a good way to balance the rich flavors of the sauce. Pour the mixture in, and allow it to bubble away as the eggs finish cooking.

If desired, you could add some other ingredients to the mix, such as green onions, or sesame seeds. Simply sauté these in the pan before you add the eggs and soy sauce mixture.

Bacon Bits

plate of bacon bits
plate of bacon bits - Tanya Consaul Photography/Shutterstock

Bacon and eggs are a timeless pairing, and you don't always have to serve these as two separate components of your breakfast. Scattered over your fried eggs, finely chopped bacon will bring an amazing crunch and extra smoky flavor. It's a great way to ensure that these two breakfast staples get paired up in every mouthful of your breakfast.

You can of course buy them ready made, but bacon bits are also super easy to prepare at home. First, add strips of bacon to a cold frying pan. Then place the pan over medium heat. Heating the bacon slowly will release the fats naturally present in the bacon, so there's no need to add oil. Once browned on one side, flip the bacon and cook until crispy all over. Drain the cooked bacon on some kitchen paper to remove any excess fat, and once it's cool enough to handle, finely chop it up with a sharp knife or scissors.

If desired, you can keep any leftover bacon grease in the skillet and use it to fry your eggs, for added smoky flavor. When you're ready to serve everything up, go ahead and scatter the bacon bits all over the top of the fried eggs.

Pickle Juice

jar of pickles
jar of pickles - Viktoriya Telminova/Getty Images

For a tangy twist on fried eggs, try adding pickle juice. That's right, there's no need to waste that briny liquid from your jar of pickles. It might just be the flavor-packed secret ingredient you've been looking for when it comes to sprucing up your morning eggs.

With its combination of vinegar, salt, and spices, pickle juice adds a unique tang and refreshing, zesty taste to eggs. It sounds a little odd at first, but once you give it a try, you'll see how the flavors work perfectly to cut through the richness of the eggs.

Start by frying the eggs in a little oil until they've almost finished cooking. It's at this point that we add the pickle juice. Pour in a generous glug, straight from the jar if you wish, and swirl the pan around to coat the eggs in the tangy liquid. After a quick bubble, and once the eggs are cooked through, your pickle-infused breakky is ready to serve.

Chili Jam

spooning from jar of chili jam
spooning from jar of chili jam - Annapustynnikova/Getty Images

If you're a fan of spice and sweetness, chili jam is an irresistible condiment that perfectly combines the two. Dolloped on your eggs, it can add a totally different, but delightfully complementary dimension of flavor to the dish. Try serving your fried eggs on toast, with a generous spoonful of chili jam and a scattering of chopped chives on top.

You could even go all-out and prepare your very own chili jam at home. This requires just a few basic ingredients — red chili peppers, red bell peppers, jam sugar (this contains pectin to help thicken up the jam), and vinegar. First, we blitz up the two types of peppers in a food processor, before stirring together the sugar and vinegar in a saucepan. Add the chili mixture and boil until everything starts to thicken up. Let the jam cool before transferring to sterilized jars. This versatile condiment is also amazing dolloped on salads, or grilled meats such as salmon or chicken.


turmeric fried egg in pan
turmeric fried egg in pan - Fountain Avenue Kitchen / Youtube

Turmeric, a bright yellow spice with a distinct earthy flavor, is a fantastic ingredient for adding vibrant color and a bold warmth to your fried eggs. This versatile spice is not only a healthy choice, possessing anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, but it makes your eggs look, taste, and smell amazing too!

To make turmeric fried eggs, first heat your fat of choice in a frying pan. This can be oil, butter, or some recipes recommend using ghee, in keeping with the South Asian-inspired flavors. Once your oil of choice is nice and hot, stir in the turmeric. About ¼ teaspoon per two eggs is great. The fat should be golden and shimmering, and now it's time to add those eggs. As they cook, the whites will become infused with that vivid golden color and earthy goodness. Serve them up, and enjoy a breakfast with a newfound touch of elegance.

Turmeric also pairs well with other spices, like cumin and paprika, or aromatics like garlic and ginger. Serve the turmeric eggs alone, on toast, or perhaps with some sautéed veggies like spinach, mushrooms, or tomatoes.

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