Breakfast Ideas: Huevos Rancheros

A suggestion for a healthy (and delicious) breakfast or brunch for you – Huevos Rancheros (Spanish for ‘Rancher’s Eggs’)

I probably eat this once or twice per week. It does take a little more time to cook than just pouring a bowl of cereal, but it’s worth the effort. It’s highly nutritious, and high in protein to keep you full for ages.

INGREDIENTS (per serving)

Half a small onion, chopped
Half a red pepper, chopped
Chipotle chili powder (or smoked paprika)
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped or crushed
Handful of green leaves (eg spinach)
Handful of cooked black beans (optional)
Half a tin of chopped tomatoes
2 eggs
Half an avocado
Pinch of chopped coriander leaf (cilantro)


Put the chopped onion and red pepper in a frying pan with a little oil and fry for a few minutes until softened.

Add the garlic and chipotle chili powder, and fry for another minute. NOTE: If you haven’t used chipotle chili before, go easy, it’s powerful stuff! It has an amazing smokey taste that is essential in this dish, so if you don’t like chili, substitute it for some smoked paprika rather than just leaving it out.

Cooking Huevos Rancheros

Add the beans (if using) along with the green leaves and the tinned tomatoes. Cook for another couple of minutes. For ease, I use already cooked, frozen beans and frozen spinach. There’s no need to thaw them first, they can go in frozen at this stage, just allow a few minutes extra cooking for them to thaw.

Use a spoon to make 2 ‘wells’ in the mixture and crack an egg into each (see picture)

Cook on a low heat until the tomato sauce is thickening and the eggs are cooked. If they eggs are taking a while to cook on the top, you can always put the pan under a grill for a minute or 2. The aim is to have the egg whites cooked but the yolks still a little runny – this takes a bit of practice!

Plate up, and scoop the avocado in pieces over the top, then finish by sprinkling the coriander over the top.

NOTE: Huevos Rancheros ‘proper’ is served with guacamole, but I never have any in, and it’s too much of a faff to make, so I settle for scooping some avocado over the top, which works just fine.

A Healthy Breakfast

This is a great low-carb brekkie. With ample protein from the beans and eggs, vitamins and other nutrients from the tomatoes and greens, and some good fats from the avocado, this is a winner all round.

From a Chinese medicine perspective, this is a pretty balanced dish. The Cold nature of the tomatoes is balanced by the heat of the chili, onions and garlic. The main ingredients are primarily Yin and Blood tonics (tomato, avocado, egg, black beans, spinach) but unlike some Yin and Blood tonics they aren’t heavy and cloying, and they’re given life by the Hot ingredients, making this a versatile dish that’s suitable for pretty much anyone.