Huevos Rancheros

Huevos Rancheros are a traditional Mexican breakfast featuring warm corn tortillas and fried eggs covered with a delicious “ranch-style” salsa.

An amazing and scrumptious vegetarian meal that can actually be served also as a hassle-free dinner or as quick lunch. The secret is on the sauce!

Huevos rancheros being drizzled with salsa.

What is huevos rancheros?

Huevos rancheros is a Mexican dish made by placing fried eggs on top of a corn tortilla and then drizzled with a rich, delicious, salsa made in a ranch-style. The name of this dish translate to ‘ranger’s eggs’.

The dish was invented in rural Mexico (ranchos) by using the leftovers of salsa de molcajete, tortillas, and refried beans on the side.

Mexican rancher's eggs.

Sometimes other preparation’s leftovers are used to make this dish, for example from beef chile rojo or chicharron en salsa roja.

If you want to really make a traditional and simple Mexican huevos rancheros, you don’t really need that much: The simplicity of this dish is enough to enjoy it without fancy toppings like sour cream, avocado, cheese, etc. Because let me tell you that the key is in the salsa.

Notes before starting

  • If you can, use corn tortillas. Flour tortillas absorbs too much oil if fried and get a little bit soggy if you don’t.
  • Homemade corn tortillas holds better the sauce and you can even make them ahead.
  • Many recipe calls for store-bought ranchero salsa, believe me, making your own sauce is quick and easy, use a blender instead of a mortar/molcajete to speed up things.
  • You can use any kind of chilies you want. Green, red, fresh or dried doesn’t matter. Just don’t skip adding some because they’re the main reason the sauce tastes so good!
  • If using dried hot chilies be careful how many you add or you’ll end with a super spicy sauce.
  • Adjust spices to your liking. The key is moderation.
Closeup on runny fried egg's yolk.

Huevos Rancheros Recipe

Start by making the sauce: Wash throughly the tomatoes, clean the onions and chilies. If you want the sauce to not be so spicy, cut chilies longwise and discard seeds and veins -don’t forget to use gloves if you doing this step- .

Make the salsa

On a comal or griddle grill to char tomatoes, chilies, onions and garlic. Start adding tomatoes first, then onions, next chilies and last garlic.

Roasted ingredients for salsa.

If using a molcajete (or mortar) first place garlic, cumin, pepper and salt. Crush for a minute or so.

Then add onions and chilies and crush until combined. You can leave it with a few chunks here and there or you can grind to your desired consistency.

Mashing chilies and other ingredients on molcajete.

Add tomatoes with the skin on, those charred spots are the reason of that amazing “smoky” flavor. Grind for a couple of minutes until your desired consistency.

Mashing tomatoes on molcajete.

Adjust with salt, if salsa is too spicy for your taste, roast one or two more tomatoes and grind them until you’ll have a nice, combined salsa ranchera.

Sauce on molcajete.

Using a blender

Use a blender or food processor if you don’t have or want to use a mortar or Molcajete.

Place first garlic, cumin and pepper. Add half a cup of water and blend for 1 minute. Add the remaining ingredients and blend for a few seconds to achieve a chunky salsa or a bit more for a smoother texture.

Cook the salsa

On a medium saucepan heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the salsa and let it sizzle for one minute. Add half cup of water and let it simmer for 2 more minutes. Adjust with salt and set aside.

Ranchero-style salsa on a pan.

This step is totally optional, but personally I find the salsa to be more tasteful after cooking if for a few minutes.

Fry Tortillas

Add some lard (or oil) to a no-stick frying pan and heat over medium heat. Fry tortillas one by one until lightly crispy but not too crunchy. Crispy tortillas will hold better the sauce, so don’t skip this step.

Place tortillas on a plate with kitchen paper towels to absorb excess of oil.

Fried tortillas over kitchen paper towels.

Make The Eggs

Using the same frying pan where you fried tortillas, cook the eggs to order. Traditional Huevos Rancheros are made with sunny side up eggs, so cook yours with the yolk cooked to your preference.

Two eggs frying on a pan.

Assemble

Transfer two tortillas side by side onto a plate. Add some ranchero salsa and spread it over tortillas.

Spreading ranchero salsa on tortillas.

Now place your fried eggs on tortillas and then finish with more salsa on top.

Eggs on tortillas with salsa rancheros on top.

Serve with refried beans on the side, and if you making this for breakfast, I also suggest to try our café de olla recipe (Mexican pot coffee).

Huevos rancheros served with refried beans.

Pro Tip!

Make a large batch of salsa ahead and then freeze it in small portions for up to 3 months. So next time you crave some huevos rancheros for breakfast, you can thaw the salsa overnight and have it ready in the morning!

More Mexican breakfast recipes

Huevos rancheros recipe.

Huevos Rancheros

Huevos Rancheros are a traditional Mexican breakfast featuring warm corn tortillas and fried eggs covered with a delicious “ranch-style” salsa.
PREP 20 minutes
COOK 10 minutes
TOTAL 30 minutes
No ratings yet
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Servings: 2

Ingredients 

For ranchero-style salsa

  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • ½ small onion
  • 1 jalapeño pepper
  • 2 chile de arbol
  • 1 garlic clove
  • ½ tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Instructions

Make the ranchero salsa

  • On a comal or griddle grill to char tomatoes, chilies, onions and garlic. Start adding tomatoes first, then onions, next chilies and last garlic.
  • On a molcajete or mortar first place garlic, cumin, pepper and salt. Crush for a minute or so.
  • Then add onions and chilies and crush until combined.
  • Add tomatoes with the skin on and grind for a couple of minutes until your desired consistency.
  • Adjust with salt, if salsa is too spicy for your taste, roast one or two more tomatoes and grind them until you’ll have a nice, combined salsa ranchera.

Cook the salsa

  • On a medium saucepan heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the salsa and let it sizzle for one minute.
  • Add half cup of water and let it simmer for 2 more minutes. Adjust with salt and set aside.

Fry Tortillas

  • Add some oil to a no-stick frying pan and heat over medium heat.
  • Fry tortillas one by one until lightly crispy but not too crunchy.
  • Place tortillas on a plate with kitchen paper towels to absorb excess of oil.

Fry The Eggs

  • Using the same frying pan where you fried tortillas, fry the eggs to your preference (runny, well done, etc).

Assemble

  • Transfer two tortillas side by side onto a plate. Add some tomato salsa and spread it over tortillas.
  • Now place your fried eggs on tortillas and then finish with more salsa on top. Serve immediately.

notes

Using a blender to make the salsa
  1. Place first garlic, cumin and pepper.
  2. Add half a cup of water and blend for 1 minute.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients and blend for a few seconds to achieve a chunky salsa or a bit more for a smoother texture.
Pro Tip!
Make a large batch of salsa ahead and then freeze it in small portions for up to 3 months. So next time you crave some huevos rancheros for breakfast, you can thaw the salsa overnight and have it ready in the morning!
Nutrition
Calories: 421kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 372mg | Sodium: 240mg | Potassium: 778mg | Fiber: 7g | Sugar: 7g | Vitamin A: 2437IU | Vitamin C: 38mg | Calcium: 133mg | Iron: 3mg
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