How to Make an Omelette
Learning how to make an omelette is an essential cooking skill every home cook should master for preparing a healthy, filling breakfast in minutes. This recipe makes omelettes as perfectly thin as Crepes, and can be customized with all your favorite ingredients and fillings. It only takes 10 minutes!
Omelettes are one of the regulars in my breakfast rotation, and I love that they are both one of the most nutritious and delicious foods on earth. I think often times they are overshadowed by some of the sweet dishes like Buttermilk Pancakes or Bananas Foster French Toast, but omelettes keep my energy stable a lot better and can be just as satisfying!
There are endless ingredients you can put into an omelette, and they can be as simple or elaborate as you’d like. Sometimes I’ll pre-cook specific omelette filling ingredients in advance when I’m in the mood, but omelettes can be just as useful for using up ingredients from the fridge.
Sauteed vegetables are one of the best examples, or if I have leftover Glazed Spiral Ham from a holiday meal, I’ll chop the leftovers up into bite-sized pieces so I can quickly thaw it and throw it in. Consider this a basic omelette recipe that can be customized as you see fit with your favorite ingredients.
Tips for Best Results
Use a nonstick pan – It’s extremely difficult to cook any egg dish in a pan that doesn’t have a nonstick coating. You will certainly need one here for the best results and easiest maneuvering.
Watch the heat like a hawk – Though I will direct you on what levels of heat to use, at the end of the day your mastery of cooking an omelette well is simply knowing your own stove. Always be ready to adjust the heat up or down so that you’re not over-browning the egg. If you have a very powerful stove and you don’t want any browning at all, you may wish to cook over medium-low heat instead of medium.
Take your time – Egg overcooks very easily and can turn rubbery, so you’ll want to err on the side of using lower heat and taking your time. Your patience will be well rewarded with a more tender omelette texture.
While some people like French omelettes that are solely made with egg and butter (no filling), I personally love adding fillings. There are all sorts of omelette ingredients that you can try, like sausage, bacon, ham, peppers, caramelized onions, tomato, mushrooms, cheeses of many varieties, and more.
You just need to make sure that you pre-cook any ingredient you want to use that can’t be eaten raw. The actual cook time of an omelette in the skillet is pretty short, not more than a couple minutes, so you can only count on the heat to cook the eggs and warm the filling ingredients slightly.
A plain omelette, or even a simple cheese omelette, can be plenty satisfying in its own right. But if you’d like to add some ingredients to fill the omelette, here are some of my favorite ideas.
Meats: Crumbled sausage (hot or sweet Italian, Chorizo, etc), crumbled bacon, chopped ham, pancetta. Cook raw meats over medium-high heat for about 5 minutes, until cooked through.
Crumbled Cheeses: Feta, Goat cheese, Ricotta Salata, Blue cheese
Shredded Cheeses: Cheddar, Jack, Gruyere, Mozzarella, Fontina, Havarti
Vegetables: Sauteed mushrooms, spinach, chopped tomatoes, artichoke hearts, diced asparagus, sauteed leeks, scallions, caramelized onions, sauteed bell peppers
Fresh Herbs: Chives, basil, dill, cilantro, thyme
Step by Step Overview:
To start the omelette, combine whole eggs, a pinch of salt, and water in a small bowl:
How many eggs per omelette?
I like my omelettes on the thinner side (you could say it’s more of an egg crepe), so I do two large eggs for one omelette in a 10″ pan. If you want a thicker omelette, use 3 eggs, which is more traditional, or use a smaller 8-inch pan for a 2-egg omelette. The size of the skillet you use plays a part in how thick the omelette will be, so use the right pan for your preferences.
Why I don’t add milk or cream
Some people swear by adding milk to their omelette mix, and some people even add cream, but I am fully in the water camp for beaten eggs. Believe me, I love my milk and cream, but I find water to make for the most fluffy omelette (and the most fluffy eggs in general). It also keeps things dairy-free for people who don’t want cheese or other dairy ingredients in the filling.
Whisk the eggs together until well-blended, and you no longer see any egg white streaks.
By the way, in my experience, you want to whisk eggs with an actual whisk and not a fork. The fork can sometimes be easier to grab, but it’s harder to get the egg whites completely combined with the egg yolks, without streaky bits.
To cook the omelette, preheat a nonstick skillet over medium heat and add the fat of your choice to the hot pan.
Butter, and especially a high-quality European-style butter, is the best option for spreading evenly around the pan and for superior flavor, but you can also use olive oil.
Add the beaten egg mixture to the pan, and if the skillet is hot enough, some of it should sizzle and set immediately.
Then, I like to lift up the edge of the omelette with a turner and tilt the frying pan, to allow the liquid uncooked egg to drip down underneath the cooked egg:
You can also add a lid during cooking to trap the steam and cook the egg more on top.
Once the egg is nearly set, add the fillings of your choice in an even layer, only on one side.
Here I have my favorite combination, with cooked and crumbled Italian pork sausage, sauteed baby bella mushrooms, chopped fresh tomatoes, and shredded cheddar cheese:
I also really love a Western omelette, which has green and red peppers, onion, diced ham, and cheese.
Let the cheese melt and the ingredients warm through, then fold the omelette over to close:
The melty cheese should help “glue” the top of the omelette over. There should also be enough residual heat to finish cooking any runny eggs on the inside.
You can also shape the omelette like this, with the filling ingredients down the middle, and folding into thirds:
How to Serve It
Serve your omelette on a warm plate as promptly as possible, and enjoy your breakfast while hot. I’ll also occasionally make this for a quick dinner!
An omelette can certainly suffice as the whole meal, but I do love pairing them with some Homemade Hash Browns or Potato Hash. You can also round out the breakfast table with some English Style Scones or Chocolate Muffins.
Recipe Tips and FAQ
Keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Yes, store in an airtight container for up to 2 months.
The best way is in the microwave, but covered with a plate or lid so that the steam is trapped in. Take care not to overcook the omelette. I do 15-second intervals, checking each time to see if the egg is properly warmed through. I do not recommend reheating straight from frozen. It’s better to let it thaw in the fridge overnight, then reheat.
You can really do just about anything, but some of my favorites are crumbled meats like sausage, bacon, and ham, sauteed vegetables like peppers, onions, and tomatoes, and cheeses like cheddar, fontina, and goat cheese.
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- 2 large eggs*
- 2 tbsp water
- 1/4 tsp kosher salt
- butter for greasing the pan (or other cooking oil)
- desired filling ingredients (see notes for ideas)
- Pre-heat a nonstick skillet** over medium for a few minutes, until it feels warm when you hold your hand a few inches from the surface of the pan.
- In the meantime, in a medium bowl, whisk to combine the eggs, water, and salt until well-blended. No streaks of egg white should remain.
- Add enough butter to coat the bottom of the skillet (1-2 tsp), then quickly add the beaten egg. Turn the heat to medium low.
- After some of the egg has set, lift the edges of the omelette and tilt the pan to allow the liquid uncooked egg to come into contact with the hot pan and cook.
- When the egg is almost set, add any desired filling, and cook for a minute, to melt any cheese or warm through any of the filling ingredients.
- Fold the omelette over to enclose the filling, then serve and enjoy while warm.
Nutrition is estimated using a food database and is only intended to be used as a guideline for informational purposes.