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Huevos Rancheros (Mexican Ranch-Style Eggs)

These quick and easy Huevos Rancheros have fried corn tortillas topped with refried beans, fried eggs, warm salsa, queso fresco, and fresh cilantro. Traditionally served for breakfast, they’re also great for brunch, lunch or dinner!

Today we’re making what I think is one of the best breakfasts ever. In addition to its good looks, this classic Mexican dish is hearty, filling, and so incredibly delicious. Plus, it’s ready in less than 30 minutes!

In Spanish, huevos are eggs and rancheros are ranchers, so huevos rancheros (pronounced like way-vohs ran-chair-ohs) translates to ranch-style eggs or rancher’s eggs…so named because they were often eaten by Mexican farmers as a mid-morning meal.

This is my version of huevos rancheros. It might not be totally authentic, but it’s got all the necessities (corn tortillas, eggs and tomato salsa) and then some…and it’s crazy good!

Instead of serving refried beans on the side, I put them right on the fried tortilla and then top that with a fried egg. On goes the warm salsa, and then I sprinkle on some crumbled queso fresco and chopped fresh cilantro.

I prefer to go the homemade route with both the salsa and refried beans (to me, this really takes this dish over the top, and I hope you try them). I make them ahead of time so that, when I want to make these eggs, everything is ready to go and I can put it all together in about 25 minutes.

The light crispiness of the tortillas combined with the creamy refried beans, the richness of the runny egg yolk, the tasty tomato salsa, the salty and tangy cheese, and the freshness of the cilantro is a combination of flavors and textures that’s pretty hard to beat.

I could seriously eat these huevos rancheros every single day and never get tired of them!

huevos rancheros on a white plate

Ingredients You Need

  • Salsa (use your favorite; I use my Quick and Easy Homemade Salsa)
  • Refried beans (canned or homemade; I use my Easy Homemade Refried Beans)
  • Avocado oil (or an extra-light tasting olive oil meant for frying)
  • Corn tortillas (small, 5 to 6 inches in diameter, white or yellow; I use white)
  • Eggs
  • Salt
  • Black pepper
  • Queso Fresco (a fresh Mexican cheese that crumbles similar to feta cheese; look for it in the specialty cheese section of your grocery store)
  • Fresh cilantro

Note: Ingredient amounts are in the recipe card at the end of the post.

For those of you who would rather pictures instead of a video, here’s a quick look at the steps:

  1. Warm the salsa and refried beans.
  2. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat and fry the corn tortillas (2 at a time) until they are lightly golden brown and starting to crisp up but still slightly pliable. As you finish cooking the tortillas, place them on a plate lined with paper towels.
  3. In the same skillet, fry the eggs to your liking (sunny-side up, over-easy, over-medium, or over-hard).
  4. Spread ¼ of the refried beans on each tortilla (¼ cup each).
  5. Place one fried egg on each tortilla.
  6. Top each with ¼ of the salsa (¼ cup each), ¼ of the queso fresco (1 tablespoon each) and ¼ of the cilantro (¾ teaspoon each). Enjoy!
3 numbered images, number 1 is of salsa and refried beans in pots on the stove, number two is of corn tortillas being fried in a skillet and then put onto a plate lined with paper towels, and number 3 is of 4 eggs being fried in a skillet
3 numbered images, number 4 is of a a corn tortilla topped with refried beans on a plate, number 5 is of a fried egg on top of the corn tortilla with beans, and number 6 is of the tortilla, beans and egg topped with salsa, cheese and cilantro

Note: The video and photos above are just a brief overview of the steps. Scroll down to the recipe card at the end of the post for the full printable recipe with ingredient amounts and detailed instructions.

Recipe Tips & Tidbits

  • Since we will be frying the tortillas and then frying the eggs in the same skillet, be sure to use one that is not prone to sticking. I use a well-seasoned cast iron skillet; a nonstick skillet would also work.
  • Fry the eggs however you like them! My choice is either sunny-side-up or over-easy.
    • Sunny-Side-Up: Fry until the whites are set and the yolk is still runny (don’t flip).
    • Over-Easy: Fry until the whites are almost fully set, then flip over and cook just long enough to finish cooking the whites while leaving the yolks runny (this should only take a few seconds).
    • Over-Medium: Fry until the whites are almost fully set, then flip over and cook until the whites are fully set and the yolk is semi-runny and starting to firm up.
    • Over-Hard: Fry until the whites are almost fully set, then flip over and cook until the whites are fully set and the yolk is firm and not runny at all.
  • If you want your tortillas more crispy, just cook them a little longer.
  • Not into cilantro? Skip it. These will still be absolutely delicious without it!
  • This recipe can serve 2 or 4 depending on appetites and whether you are serving side dishes. I usually serve this without sides, and so the two of us each eat two. With sides or smaller appetites, one would be plenty for each person.

Substitutions & Variations

  • For a “green” version, use your favorite salsa verde.
  • Corn tortillas are traditional and add a great flavor, but you could use small flour tortillas if you prefer.
  • If you’d rather not get into frying corn tortillas, you can skip that step and try using store-bought tostadas/tostada shells instead…they’re already crunchy and ready to go!
  • Cotija cheese, a Mexican-blend shredded cheese or even crumbled feta cheese could be used instead of queso fresco.
  • Use scrambled eggs instead of fried eggs.
  • Cook up some Mexican chorizo (¼ to ½ pound) and add it on top of the refried beans before you add the eggs.
two plates of huevos rancheros with a knife and fork and small bowls of queso fresco and cilantro on the side

Make Ahead, Leftovers and Freezing

Make Ahead

This dish is best when made right before serving, so I don’t recommend making it ahead of time.

That being said, if you are going to use homemade salsa and/or refried beans, you can (and should) make those components ahead of time. Then you can just quickly warm them up, fry the tortillas and eggs, and assemble the huevos rancheros right before serving.

Storing Leftovers

As an assembled dish, leftover huevos rancheros don’t do very well (soggy tortillas, overcooked eggs upon reheating, etc.).

For that reason, I recommend cooking only as many tortillas and eggs as you need for one meal so that you don’t have any leftovers.

If you have leftovers of the individual ingredients, however, go ahead and store them separately according to the package directions or recipe instructions.

Freezing

Freezing huevos rancheros is not recommended.

two servings of huevos rancheros on one white plate with a knife and fork on the side

What to Serve with Huevos Rancheros

Huevos Rancheros don’t really need a side dish, but you certainly can have sides (this would also help stretch the recipe so you could feed more people). Here are some ideas:

  • Potatoes (such as home fries, hash browns or roasted potatoes)
  • Bacon or sausage
  • A tossed green salad (especially if you were serving this for lunch or dinner)

I hope you try this Huevos Rancheros recipe and love it as much as I do. Thanks for visiting today!

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More Mexican Recipes To Try

If you make this recipe, I’d love to know how it went! Please leave a star rating and comment below. Thanks!

huevos rancheros on a white plate

Huevos Rancheros (Mexican Ranch-Style Eggs)

These quick and easy Huevos Rancheros have fried corn tortillas topped with refried beans, fried eggs, warm salsa, queso fresco, and fresh cilantro. Traditionally served for breakfast, they're also great for brunch, lunch or dinner!
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Author: Michelle / Now Cook This!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 2 to 4
Estimated Calories: 776

Ingredients

  • 1 cup salsa, your favorite (store-bought or homemade)
  • 1 cup refried beans, canned or homemade
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil, or an extra-light-tasting olive oil meant for frying
  • 4 corn tortillas, 5 to 6 inches in diameter, white or yellow (I use white)
  • 4 large eggs
  • salt, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste
  • ¼ cup crumbled queso fresco
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

Instructions

  • Warm the salsa and refried beans.
    You can do this on the stove in small pots over low to medium-low heat or in microwave-safe bowls in the microwave.
  • Meanwhile, heat the avocado oil in a large skillet (12 inches) over medium heat.
    Since we will be frying the eggs in this same skillet later, you want to use a pan that is not prone to sticking. I use a well-seasoned cast iron skillet; a nonstick pan would also work.
  • Fry the corn tortillas (2 at a time) in the hot oil just until they turn a light golden brown in spots and are just starting to crisp up but are still slightly pliable, about 1 to 2 minutes per side. As you finish frying the tortillas, place them on a plate lined with paper towels; set aside.
    If you want crispier tortillas, cook them in the oil a little longer.
  • In the same skillet over medium heat using the oil that is left over from frying the tortillas, fry the eggs to your liking (see Notes below; I do either sunny side up or, over-easy); season with salt and pepper.
  • To assemble: Spread ¼ of the refried beans over each tortilla (¼ cup each) and top each with one fried egg. Then top each with ¼ of the salsa (¼ cup each), ¼ of the queso fresco (1 tablespoon each), and ¼ of the chopped fresh cilantro (¾ teaspoon each).
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!

Notes

  • Sunny-Side-Up Eggs: Fry until the whites are set and the yolk is still runny (don’t flip).
  • Over-Easy Eggs: Fry until the whites are almost fully set, then flip over and cook just long enough to finish cooking the whites while leaving the yolks runny (this should only take a few seconds).
  • Over-Medium Eggs: Fry until the whites are almost fully set, then flip over and cook until the whites are fully set and the yolk is semi-runny and starting to firm up.
  • Over-Hard Eggs: Fry until the whites are almost fully set, then flip over and cook until the whites are fully set and the yolk is firm and not runny at all.
  • Not into cilantro? Skip it. These will still be absolutely delicious without it!
  • This recipe can serve 2 (2 each) or 4 (1 each) depending on appetites and whether you are serving side dishes.
  • Estimated calories shown are based on 2 servings of 2 each. For 4 servings, estimated calories would be 388 each.
  • Consuming raw or undercooked eggs may increase your risk of foodborne illness.
Did you try this recipe? I’d love to see it!Share it on Instagram, tag @nowcookthis and use the hashtag #nowcookthisrecipes. Thanks!
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