Eggs en Cocotte is an easy way to cook eggs for breakfast or brunch. Add some spinach and bacon, or whatever you have on hand.
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Eggs en cocotte is a simple, classic French recipe that's easy to make when you are feeling lazy, but also a beautiful dish that's fancy enough to serve to guests for brunch.
This recipe is easy to customize to whatever you have in the fridge - leftover veggies like mushrooms or peppers, most any kind of cheese, herbs, etc. I like the spinach here because I always have some around, and it adds nice green to the dish, no matter what time of year.
I do my eggs en cocotte in the oven, but Jacques Pépin does his oeufs en cocotte in a covered deep skillet on the stove top. I am reading his book, The Apprentice: My Life in the Kitchen, right now - for the third time. I highly recommend it. He has an incredibly interesting life and I can hear his voice in my head when I read it. I love that.
What are eggs en cocotte?
A cocotte means any kind of small, heat-proof dish that you can use to cook and serve individual portions. Eggs en cocotte are cooked in small dishes, usually with heavy cream, and other ingredients like veggies or a bit of bacon, etc. They are then cooked in the oven in a water bath, which helps the eggs to cook evenly and prevents overcooking.
- Heavy Cream
- Cooked vegetables: Use whatever you have, like spinach, mushrooms, red peppers, etc.
- Optional: Cooked bacon, sausage, or prosciutto. Top with chives, scallions, or parsley. Add gruyére or goat cheese.
How to make it
Preheat oven to 350.
Grease ramekins/cooking dishes with butter or olive oil.
Cook bacon according to your desired method. I prefer the microwave for this dish. So easy. No mess.
In a skillet over medium heat, melt butter or add olive oil and quickly wilt spinach. Distribute the spinach evenly among ramekins or serving dishes.
Make a small indent in the spinach and nestle the eggs into them. Season with salt and pepper.
Place the serving dishes onto a sheet pan or into a casserole dish and place in the oven. Carefully pour hot water into the sheet pan so each dish has water ⅓ to halfway up the sides of the dish. This ensures gentle cooking.
Cook for 10-15 minutes, or until eggs are just set, or longer if you prefer your egg yolks more done in the center. I like mine sunny and runny!
Crumble the bacon and distribute evenly over each dish. Serve immediately.
- Buckwheat Crepes are another classic French recipe that can be made with with whatever ingredients you have on hand.
- My Piperade recipe offers a twist on the traditional, using spicy chorizo.
- Baked Eggs in Avocados with Chorizo and Queso Fresco will whisk you away to a seaside Mexican resort.
- Chilaquiles Verdes with Fried Eggs and Chorizo is my favorite Mexican breakfast of all time!
Eggs en Cocotte with Spinach and Bacon
- 8 eggs
- 6 oz baby spinach
- 1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
- 8 slices bacon
- 16 tablespoon heavy cream
- kosher salt
- cracked black pepper
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Grease the cooking dishes with butter or olive oil.
- Cook bacon as desired, set aside. I prefer the microwave for this. So easy. No mess.
- In a skillet over medium heat, melt butter or add olive oil. Sauté spinach until just wilted. Distribute evenly among cooking/serving dishes.
- Add 4 tablespoon heavy cream to each dish.
- Create a small well in the spinach, and crack two eggs into each container. Season with salt and pepper.
- Cook in a water bath: Place cooking/serving dishes on a baking pan and place it in the oven. Carefully add hot water to the pan so it goes ⅓ to ½ way up the sides of the cooking dishes.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the eggs are done to your liking. Remove from oven, crumble bacon on top. Serve immediately.
- This recipe assumes that your cooking vessels will hold two eggs easily. Just cut ingredients in half if using a smaller container and only cooking one egg in each.
- I like to use my Lodge cast iron mini servers or my Lodge cast iron mini skillets for this recipe because the presentation is so cute!!