Southern Breakfast Stack with Frizzled Egg

Breakfast stack with ham and tomatoes, grits and eggs.

I’d like to thank Deb Perlman at Smitten Kitchen for my current obsession with frizzled eggs.  OMG!  I’ve always loved eggs…  Loved the versatility.  Loved the simple joy of releasing the yolk with a toast point, love them fried, scrambled, soft-boiled, hard-boiled, poached, dropped in soup, stirred into carbonara — and as the crowning glory on a char-grilled burger.   

grape tomatoes and diced ham with thyme
Roasted grape tomatoes with diced ham

But my current obsession started back in October when she published her revelatory blog post titled “the crispy egg“.  Since then, I can’t get enough of this ridiculously simple, but transformative preparation of the humble egg.  

carton of brown eggs

I’ve actually been seeking out excuses to make it and not just for breakfast.   The instructions are simple.  Place a dry skillet on the stovetop and let it heat up for a solid minute or two before adding the oil.  Heat the oil until it’s a lava-like slick in the bottom of your pan — then add the egg.

YouTube video

And leave it alone.  It will bubble, splatter, hiss and spit at you.  When the bottom is browned and crispy, you tip the pan and use a tablespoon to scoop up the hot oil and redistribute it on the whites of the egg that haven’t quite solidified.  This is the coolest thing I’ve done in the kitchen in a long time – it feels very chef-y.

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spoon grits onto a plate

Remove the pan from the heat and count to 10.  (One Mississippi, two…)  Use a thin spatula (I used a fish spatula) to carefully lift the egg from the pan and deposit it on this decadent mound of cheese grits and oven roasted garlicky tomatoes with diced ham.

top grits with tomato ham mixture

Let me wipe the drool from my chin.  The interplay of the crispy-edged egg, with the savory ham, concentrated tomatoes and jolt of garlic over creamy, cheesy slow cooked grits.  I really don’t know if there’s anything better.  I’ll think about it and get back to you.

backlit plate of Southern Breakfast Stack with Frizzled Egg
overhead shot of Southern Breakfast Stack with Frizzled Egg

In the meantime, though — you must make this.  You MUST.  It’s swoon-worthy!  Note: click here for the cheese grits recipe also on this site and for a sweet/savory bite, try these manchego ham waffles — on which a crispy egg would be phenomenal.

Eggs and grits as a breakfast stack on a plate.

More savory breakfast classics you might like:

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Southern Breakfast Stack with Frizzled Egg
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5 from 5 votes

Southern Breakfast Stack with Frizzled Egg

This is the kind of savory breakfast you get in  a diner, where each of the components gets piled on the other.  It’s what Sunday mornings are made for!
Author: Lisa Lotts
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Keyword fried egg, grits, roasted tomatoes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4


  • 2 cup grape tomatoes or baby heirloom tomatoes
  • 1 cup ham diced
  • 2 clove garlic minced
  • 2 teaspoon fresh thyme
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cups recipe prepared garlic cheese grits recipe on this site

For frizzled egg

  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon canola grape seed or olive oil for each egg you’re making
  • salt and pepper to taste

Serving options

  • buttered toast or english muffin
  • mimosa invite me
  • bloody mary invite Scott


  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  • On a small baking sheet, mix tomatoes, garlic, ham, thyme and olive oil. Toss to combine then scoop the tomato mixture into a tight circle on the baking sheet. (This is so that when the juices leak, they don’t cook off and the tomatoes and ham create a nice sauce when cooked. Bake in oven for 15 minutes, until tomatoes start to slump and give off their juices. Remove from oven and transfer to a small bowl.

For eggs

  • Place a small stainless steel skillet on the stove and heat it for a full minute on medium – to medium high heat (depending on how hot your stove gets – mine runs hot, so I heat the skillet on medium heat) . Add 1 tablespoon oil to the pan (per egg) and heat for an additional 15-30 seconds until oil just starts to smoke. Crack the egg into the hot pan. Egg will splutter and bubble and generally react violently to the high heat. Sprinkle with a little salt and pepper. As the white begins to firm up on the bottom, but is still translucent on top, tilt the pan to one side and use a spoon to scoop up the hot oil and redistribute it over the white of the eggs to help them cook. When the bottom is crispy and the whites are done, take the pan off the heat and count to 10. (one-one thousand, two-one thousand…) Then using a thin, flexible metal spatula — or even a fish spatula, gently lift the egg from the pan. If there are any stuck parts, gently nudge them free. Transfer eggs to a plate or platter as they finish cooking.

To assemble

  • Ladle about 1/2 cup of grits onto each plate. Top with a few spoonfuls of the tomato-ham mixture, being sure to get some of the juices onto each serving. Top each with a frizzled egg. Serve with buttered whole wheat toast or english muffins and if it’s a weekend a mimosa or bloody mary is a must!


Cook no more than 2 eggs at a time using this method. I prefer 1 at a time because the entire circumference of the egg gets a crispy frizzle.
My Mom’s advice on how to fry an egg without sticking is to remove it from the heat and wait 10 seconds before flipping or serving. I don’t know why this works, but it always does. Thank you, Mom!


Calories: 309kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 195mg | Sodium: 216mg | Potassium: 236mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 930IU | Vitamin C: 11.8mg | Calcium: 35mg | Iron: 1.9mg


Don’t forget to Pin It for later!

This hearty breakfast stack is savory and delicious with Southern Style garlic cheese grits, roasted tomatoes, ham and a crispy egg!

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  1. Oh my goodness yesssssss. I’m a Tennessee girl so grits are home for me. We love grits and eggs for breakfast, and these sound delicious…especially since tomatoes will be in season soon!

    1. Pin it for when the tomatoes are ripe, Mary!

  2. This would be so perfect for brunch or even dinner. I love eggs cooked almost every way but have never heard of frizzled egg. Need to try this soon, especially topped on those Yummy looking cheese grits!

  3. 5 stars
    This is a gorgeous breakfast plate! Love those crispy edges of the frizzled egg! Such a delicious way to start the day!

  4. 5 stars
    Oh my gosh, I’m coming over to your house for bk! My Mom used to fry eggs like that, I’ve forgotten how delicious they can be and your description brought the pictures to life – wish it brought them to my plate! πŸ˜‰ haha!

  5. I could just dive right into that plate of goodness right there! Breakfast, lunch or dinner – this would be perfect πŸ™‚ !! Love the ‘frizzled’ egg πŸ˜‰

    1. That frizzled egg is the crowning touch, Dawn!

  6. Oh my! What an incredible dish! Just layer upon layer of flavor, color and texture! This is going to be a huge hit in my house!

    1. Glad you like it – those garlic cheese grits are da bomb!

  7. 5 stars
    This looks like an amazing breakfast or brunch. My husband prefers his eggs this way and I love the name ‘frizzled’! I shall always call them that now!

    1. Frizzled is a great adjective for these eggs!

    1. Thanks, Julia! Warning: there’s no going back after these!

  8. How have I not heard of frizzled eggs?! These really are a revelation! What a fantastic way to kick start the day πŸ™‚

  9. Emily @ Pizza & Pull-ups says:

    This looks delicious, I love fried eggs (and really all eggs) and this preparation looks amazing. Also the name is awesome.

  10. Oooooh my goodness, this sounds amazing! I would happily eat this for every meal of the day! I also love eggs in all forms – I am going to have to try it this way, though!

  11. This looks ah-mazing! Love a classic breakfast that has it all, and tastes amazing no matter what mix ends up in each bite. Definitely trying this soon!

    1. I love a classic breakfast too — this one hits the spot!

  12. 5 stars
    Brings back memories of how my mum always makes Her fried eggs!

  13. Betty Burdick says:

    Oh my…that picture of the fried egg with crispy edges brings back memories of what my mom use to refer to as an “accident” when the skillet got too hot – though I didn’t care, because I too love eggs! The fact that you served that egg over your “Southern Stack” certainly got my attention and I’ll have mine with a mimosa – thank you very much! Looking forward to trying this recipe, maybe next weekend.