There's always something about breakfast for dinner that feels like a treat. It's easy to whip up. The ingredients can almost always be found in our pantries. And after a long day, a big plate of french toast is sometimes all that we need. Here are 9 breakfasts for dinner -- eggs, pancakes, waffles, and everything in between -- to treat yourself, your wallet, and your schedule. You deserve it.
• Browse through our Dinner Tonight ideas for more breakfast-for-dinner plans.
• Browse our list of Make-Ahead Breakfasts for an even easier breakfast-for-dinner (or breakfast-for-breakfast, for that matter).
• Got a question in the kitchen? The Food52 Hotline is here to help!
Although they go by many other names -- egg in the basket, egg-in-the-hole, bird's nest, to name a few -- in our house we called them "one-eyed sandwiches," and the technique originated with my grandfather. I'm biased, to be sure, but there are a few small details that I think really make Grandpa's egg sandwiches better than all the other versions out there. The first is the use of white bread. Another key step is toasting the bread before you fry it. This ensures that it's nice and crisp, which makes a nice counterpart to the salty, soft-cooked egg. - Merrill
2 slices white bread
2 tablespoons salted butter
2 large eggs, preferably free-range and/or organic
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Lightly toast the bread and butter both sides with 1 tablespoon of the butter. Using a 1 1/2" round biscuit cutter (or a shot glass), cut a circle out of the middle of each slice of bread. Do not throw away the circles!
2. In a medium, nonstick skillet, melt the remaining tablespoon of butter over medium heat. When it starts foaming, add the toast slices and the little toast rounds and cook for a minute or two on each side, until nice and golden. Push the little rounds to one side of the pan, and then gently crack an egg into the hole of each slice of toast. Cook for about 2 minutes, until the white has set around the sides of the sandwich, and then gently flip and cook the other side for another minute or so, until the whites are cooked through but the yolks are still nice and runny. Put each sandwich on a plate, top with the crispy little toast rounds, and serve immediately with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
A batter of flour, milk, eggs, and nutmeg is blended together, then poured into a hot skillet filled with butter and baked. Anyone confused? I didn't think so. The surprise comes at the end, when you open the oven door to find a poufy, toasted, utterly delectable-looking pancake. It soon collapses as you shower it with confectioners' sugar and lemon juice, slice it up and devour it. It's sweet and tart, not quite a pancake and not quite a crepe. But lovable all the same. - Amanda
This recipe (originally from Aretha Frankenstein's restaurant in Chattanooga, TN) is the ideal I-just-woke-up-from-a-waffle-dream waffle, a morning-of alternative to the overnight yeasted kind. The cornstarch in the batter helps tamp down gluten formation, making these waffles silky and moist inside with a crust as thin and crisp as an eggshell. - Kristen
If you're typically a breakfast purist who enjoys nothing more than a bowl of fat free yogurt sprinkled with toasted what germ first thing in the morning, this may not be the dish for you -- then again, it just might be! The truth is, it's a special breakfast, not meant for every day (even for those of us who don't gravitate to yogurt and wheat germ), but for an Occasion. You know, like having friends over on a Sunday morning, or seducing a new mate. The croissants develop almost unbelievably crisp edges when they're dipped in egg and milk and then fried in butter. I put some fresh orange zest and juice into the batter for the croissants, and then a little Cointreau in with the syrup to keep the orange theme going. - Merrill
First, a confession: I used to hate scrambled eggs. They reminded me of sulfur-infused cardboard. Or insulation. Years later, I learned how to make creamy, soft scrambled eggs, and now I crave them regularly.Good, free-range eggs are paramount to this recipe, for both taste and safety reasons, and they require very little embellishment: I add a small lump of mascarpone or creme fraiche, a dribble of cream, or whatever is around (not milk, which makes them tough), a dash of salt and pepper and nothing else. - Merrill
Here's an easy recipe that might just make you turn your back on sweet french toast forever. It still pairs well with eggs and bacon, but (dare we say it?) this french toast would also make a mean Monte Cristo. - Amanda & Merrill
We ate this for lunch and agreed it was the perfect meal for the middle of the day -- or the beginning of the day, or the end of the day. The spicy merguez (you can use hot Italian sausage if you can't find merguez or chorizo) is bathed in a lush, smoky sauce of tomatoes, onion, garlic and spices; when you cut into the soft eggs on top, poached right in the sauce, the buttery yolk combines with the rest of the dish and mellows any sharp edges. - Amanda and Merrill
For those who crave the purity of a plain pancake but occasionally find themselves wanting more, ENunn's recipe might be the perfect compromise. Lemon's perfume (from both the juice and zest) permeates these light, fluffy buttermilk pancakes, but the real magic lies in the addition of one key ingredient: chunks of cream cheese are blended into the batter until they are reduced to about pea-size, later resulting in salty, creamy pockets scattered throughout the cooked pancakes. The trio of lemon, cream cheese and tangy sweet blueberries is subtle yet seductive -- a combination that can only be improved upon with a generous slathering of excellent quality maple syrup. - Amanda & Merrill
There's nothing to making this French toast. But there is one thing that makes it exceptional: cream. KayB cuts to the chase, forgoing spices and extracts, and focussing instead on eggs, cream and challah. You whip together the eggs and cream, which form a custardy mixture, then dip the eggy bread into this custard -- make sure to gently squeeze the bread with your fingertips to draw the eggs and cream to the center -- and fry them in butter. Outside is a crisp crepe-like shell. Inside, pudding. What are you waiting for? - Amanda & Merrill