Delmonico's in New York City states on its menu "Eggs Benedict was first created in our ovens in 1860." Don't let that intimidate you. It is a simple recipe of poached eggs, slices of Canadian bacon, and homemade Hollandaise sauce on top of a buttery English muffin. For many people, myself included, the most daunting part of Eggs Benedict is making creamy Hollandaise sauce. Fear not. There are no double boilers or hand whisking required for my Best Eggs Benedict Recipe ~ for Two, just a blender.
Why are Eggs Benedict so special?
- People love to order Eggs Benedict restaurant often for brunch, especially around Mother's Day and Easter. It is actually easy to make at home.
- It is a beautiful dish. It just looks like Spring on a plate.
- Eggs Benedict with Hollandaise is perfect for breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner.
Eight years ago when I wrote Perfectly Poached Eggs with Fresh Thyme, I was still terrified of Hollandaise sauce. Now that I know the secret, I realize this dish would have been even better with a luscious Hollandaise sauce.
Substitutions and Variations
An English muffin and Hollandaise sauce are really a blank canvas. You can put whatever you like in between the two. Even the poached egg is optional, although you could not really call it Eggs Benedict. On television cooking shows, when they omit the egg, they just call it a Benedict.
- Spicy - If you love a little heat, add Cayenne pepper to the Hollandaise sauce or charred jalapeños on top of the egg.
- Pantry Pull - Substitute bacon, ham or sausage for the Canadian bacon. Use what you have on hand!
- Deluxe - Substitute fresh crab or lobster for the Canadian Bacon for a special occasion breakfast or brunch.
If you haven't yet tried my Crab Benedict with Thai Chili Butter, check it out! Nice dish with a little heat. Thai chili butter? Oh That's Good!
- English Muffins. I use Bay's refrigerated English muffins. My second favorite is Oroweat Extra Crispy.
- Fresh Eggs. The freshest eggs you can find! See my notes and video on how to remove watery egg whites from your eggs.
- Butter. I use salted butter because I always have it on hand. If using unsalted butter, add the amount of kosher salt listed in the recipe. Omit the salt if using salted butter. You can always add a pinch of salt later, if needed.
- Canadian Bacon
- Hot Sauce. My favorite is Cholula brand. You can also add a little cayenne pepper to the Hollandaise for a touch.
- Kosher Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper
(See recipe card for quantities.)
Traditionally Hollandaise Sauce is made by placing boiling water in the bottom of a double boiler and making the sauce in the top of a double boiler. You must whisk the egg yolks while adding hot melted butter very slowly to keep from scrambling the egg yolks.
Or, you can make it in a blender and keep it our little secret. When Hollandaise sauce is made in a blender, the heat from the metal blender blades "cooks" the yolks. Blending creates a beautiful emulsion. The sauce comes out silky smooth. If the sauce get too thick, stop blending and add a little water.
Hollandaise sauce made in a blender is a game changer! You still have to follow the rules, but the hard work is done by the blender. Let's get started!
Equipment for Best Eggs Benedict
- Small and medium saucepans
- Perforated Ladle (Optional, but awesome. See video demonstration below.
Video: How to Remove Watery Egg White
Video: How to Poach Eggs
Assembly Steps for Best Eggs Benedict
Toast and butter English muffin halves.
Add warm Canadian bacon.
Add hot poached eggs.
Pour on the Hollandaise sauce.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Drizzle with hot sauce. Enjoy piping hot!
Storage and Serving
Eggs Benedict should be eaten immediately. It is not a dish you should save and warm up later. You can make the Hollandaise sauce ahead of time if need be. If it is too thick add a little splash of ice-cold water and stir. To re-heat the sauce use a double boiler with the Hollandaise sauce on top of double boiler over barely simmering water in the bottom of the double boiler. Do not overheat the sauce. It could break and become grainy and greasy.
These ingredients do not stand up well to refrigeration or freezing.
My top tip concerns the watery goo that accumulates inside an egg. This liquid is actually the breakdown of the egg white (albumen). Egg whites consist of roughly 90% water and 10% protein. As an egg ages, the white begins to separate, creating the watery goo. This results in scrambled eggs that separate and become watery, fried eggs that run in the skillet creating a skirt of thin egg white around the firm white, and a foamy gross mess when poaching eggs. Commercial eggs are more likely to have watery whites than farm fresh eggs due to longer storage times.
I have found a way to deal with watery whites. I have tried (unsuccessfully) to pour the liquid off or strain it off with various kitchen gadgets. I finally found a perforated ladle on Amazon for $11.95 that works perfectly! You simply crack the egg into a small dish, then pour it into the ladle allowing the liquid to drain off, then drop the egg back into the small dish. Discard the liquid and cook your eggs! See my video, How to Remove Watery Egg Whites, in this post.
Easy Eggs Benedict Recipe ~ For Two
- Small saucepan
- Individual small bowls
- Slotted spoon.
- Paper towel
- Baking sheet to keep toast warm
- Small skillet
For the Hollandaise sauce:
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter if using salted butter omit the added salt
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 dash hot sauce or Cayenne pepper optional
For the rest of the dish:
- 1 English muffin, halved
- 4 slices Canadian bacon
- 2 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon Butter
- 1 teaspoon green onion, finely diced for garnish, optional
- Hot Water
- Pinch Salt and black pepper
For the Hollandaise Sauce:
- Gently melt the butter in a small pot, keeping it warm, off the heat.
- Separate two eggs and add the yolks only to a blender. Save the whites for another use or discard.
- Add the lemon juice and salt (if using unsalted butter.) Blend on medium-high speed for 30 seconds until yolks turn a lighter shade of yellow.
- Turn the blender down to its slowest setting and SLOWLY pour in the melted butter while continuing to blend.
- When the butter is all in, turn the blender off and taste the sauce. If it needs more salt, add a pinch. If it needs more acid add a squeeze of lemon juice. Transfer the sauce to a pouring container.
For the rest of the dish:
- Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
- Heat a small skillet on medium-high heat. Place slices of Canadian bacon in the skillet and heat, flipping once, until light golden brown on both sides. Canadian bacon cooks fast and dries out easily. It is already fully cooked so it just needs a warm-up and a little color.
- Place the Canadian bacon on a baking sheet and keep in warm oven until ready to assemble.
- Toast the English muffins and add them to the baking sheet in a warm oven.
- While the Canadian bacon cooks, fill a small pan ⅔ way with hot water. Put the pot of water on a burner over medium heat. When the water begins to form small bubbles on the bottom of the pan, reduce to medium-low heat.
- Break two eggs into individual small bowls. If the whites are watery try to pour off as much of the liquid as you can. If you have the perforated ladle I recommend, use it now to drain off the watery white.
- When the pot of water comes to a slow simmer, gently slide the eggs into the water. Do not add vinegar and do not get the water swirling. If you have removed the watery whites, these are not needed.
- Genly lift the egg off the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon or a slotted spoon to prevent sticking. See my instruction video, How to Poach Eggs, in their post.
- Keep the eggs in the simmering water for 4 minutes for poached eggs with runny yolks. If you have someone who does not like soft yolks, continue to cook until the yolk becomes pale, approximately 1-2 minutes more.
- Use a slotted spoon to gently lift the eggs out of the water. You will need to blot off the excess water. My preferred method is to place them on a slice of stale bread. You can use paper towels, but the eggs might stick and the yolks break when removing from the paper towel.
Assembling the Eggs Benedict:
- Place a buttered English muffin half to a plate. Top with Canadian bacon slices. Carefully place a poached egg on top of the bacon. Pour Hollandaise sauce on top.
- Garnish with Salt, Pepper, and a dash of hot sauce and/or something green like diced scallion, parsley or pea shoots, like I did.
- Serve immediately!
Approximate nutrition information is provided as a convenience and courtesy only. You are encouraged to do your own calculations if precise data is required.