20 Second Scrambled Eggs

20 Second Scrambled Eggs

I love scrambled eggs in the morning, but when I’m shooting Cutthroat Kitchen I don’t have a lot of time. Luckily this dish comes together in about two minutes and cooks in 20 seconds. If your mornings are anything like mine, you might want to give this recipe a try.

20 Second Scrambled Eggs
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  1. 6 large eggs
  2. 1 1/2 teaspoons harissa paste (see note below)
  3. 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  4. 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  5. 3 ounces heavy cream
  6. Big dash of hot sauce
  7. Dash of turmeric
  8. 1 tablespoon cold butter
  9. 1-2 tablespoons feta cheese, optional
  10. 1 teaspoon of tomato paste, optional
  1. Dump everything but the butter into a blender and puree until smooth.
  2. Heat a 10-inch, nonstick skillet over high heat until a drop of water "hovers" on the surface of the pan when dropped in.
  3. Add the butter. As soon as it stops sizzling, kill heat.
  4. Pour 1/3 of the egg mixture into the pan. Count to 10.
  5. Gently stir with a rubber spatula while counting to 10 yet again.
  6. Immediately turn out and serve.
  7. Optional: Top with feta or cheese of your choice.
  1. Harissa paste is a North African specialty composed of chiles, garlic and spices. It's amazingly versatile and hearts eggs all day long.
ALTON BROWN https://altonbrown.com/


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  1. 1

    This recipe is definitely a keeper. Next time I’ll double the harissa and hot sauce, as the flavor was very mild. The real virtue is the perfectly moist, yet firm eggs. Other techniques come out too dry or too wet. This was perfect. I guess the cream plus cornstarch does it, would be interested to know the chemistry. I haven’t seen this technique anywhere else. Doing the whole thing in the blender is another bonus (though now I’ll have to get another blender – one for the eggs and one for the pancake batter!).

    I don’t think you have to be quite so precise as the recipe calls for. I poured half the eggs into a twelve inch skillet – worked just fine. Also had to fiddle with the heat a little, as initially the pan wasn’t hot enough to cook the eggs through, but this wasn’t a problem either. I wouldn’t bother with hovering water drops (what the heck is that, anyway?) or countdowns. Just cook’em until they’re done.

  2. 2

    Alton Brown likes science, so here’s a word problem. I don’t have a 10 inch skillet. Instead, I have a twelve inch skillet, and an eight inch skillet. How can I make this dish?

    Possible answer: The area of a circle is pi times the radius squared. Therefore, the area of the twelve inch skillet is over twice that of a ten inch skillet. So, if I heat both the twelve inch and the eight inch skillet, I should be able to pour two-thirds into the first and the last third into the second and have all the eggs done at once. Now, will it work in practice?

    • 3

      Sorry, screwed up the math. You should be able to pour about one half of the mixture into the twelve inch skillet. Then you could pour in the second half, still easier than doing it three times. If the math holds. Will report back tomorrow.

  3. 4

    I watched you make this on your Facebook live demo, and knew I had to try it. Supremely glad I did! Now I don’t want eggs any other way. That’s not a bad thing, right?

  4. 5

    Wow! I did not have any harissa so I used chili garlic sauce instead. I also was out of
    heavy cream, but substituted half and half instead. It was amazing. I will be
    looking for harissa and picking up some heavy cream to try the recipe as stated and
    I’m sure it will not disappoint. Thanks for the recipe AB!

  5. 6

    I used sambal oelek in place of the harissa and hot sauce.

    I will never, ever use another scrambled egg recipe or technique. They turned out absolutely perfect in my antique cast iron.

  6. 7

    Harissa paste…could not find it locally in the short notice i need it for, BUT I did find Harissa sauce at Whole foods. It’s a tad runnier so should I add more corn starch per chance or just cook it a tad longer??

  7. 10

    Hmm, delicious. Tastes a lot like chorizo and eggs to me.

    For those of you wondering where to get harissa paste, you can get it from Amazon.

  8. 11

    Made this recipe this morning. Kinda. Words of advice, though! Alton has this down to a science; trust the man! I have 3 children, myself and my husband to feed. I though to myself, surely it’ll work just fine if I dump it all in. No!! Do it the way he says to do it! I will be trying these again with the PROPER technique; I am confident it works — I mean, he did it live, for crying out loud!

    I don’t have special spices like harrissa paste and the like (partly because I live in the boondocks, and partly because I’d never use that kind of thing enough to offset the cost), and I don’t buy heavy cream regularly (apparently, I don’t do anything hahaha). So I used eggs, salt, milk, and cornstarch.

    Despite the fact that my pan overfloweth (well, almost) and I couldn’t use the no heat technique (eeehh….ya know; plus I have two 2 year olds so I like to make *sure* theirs are completely cooked through…or they won’t eat them anyways…so medium-low it is!) these still turned out beautifully. They were fluffy and not the least bit runny despite not actually cooking them for as long as I typically do (I’m actually attributing thst to the cornstarch).

    I realize I’m long-winded, but if you take nothing else away…

    Just…just don’t put the whole batch in at once.

  9. 12

    Just to clarify, should it be “starts” or “stops” in Step 3?
    3. Add the butter. As soon as it ***stops*** sizzling, kill heat.

    • 13

      “Stop” as stated in recipe is correct.

      Remember that butter has both fat and water. The sizzling is the water reaching 212F and then evaporating. Once the water is gone, the fat can climb to a higher temperature and thus cook the eggs even after pan is off heat.

  10. 15

    Wonderful facebook video! Keep them coming. Will try the eggs as soon as I track down the harissa paste.
    Are you still riding you motorcyle? Please post pics.

  11. 16
    Virginia L

    Can I use potato starch to sub for cornstarch? I’ve also seen a lot of scrambled eggs recipe that cook over low heat for many minutes to get them super fluffy. What is your opinion of that?

    • 18

      I just made these using coconut milk (from a can, not a box) and it came out great. Coconut cream would probably work even better.

  12. 19

    Hi Alton … you are so very entertaining … thanks for hanging with me this morning … I periodically blend my eggs … I use half n half …. like you, I don’t eat them every day … talk to me about tumeric … how long will the eggs keep in the fridge? I am looking forward to another visit …

  13. 20

    This was just perfect! I think I’ll make these 20 nd eggs while I sit down with the GOP debate tomorrow night. Instead of popcorn LOL! You are the best Alton! Love seeing you live in Nashville.

  14. 22

    This looks so delicious! I can’t wait to try it out. I will probably substitute the harissa paste, though, as I’m eager to try this tomorrow! I wonder if there is a healthier sub for the heavy cream so this can be a daily meal… Thanks for sharing and I look forward to seing more!

  15. 24
    Alex Moran

    That sauce sounds amazingly similar to Korean chili paste. I will probably substitute that when I try this since my wife always has that around the house.

  16. 26

    Thanks for posting! Do you make 1/3 every day for three days or are you supposed to use all of the mixture in three individual servings at the same time?

  17. 27

    Where do you buy the harissa? I’m sure online would be a viable source, but I’m curious as to what types of stores might carry it.

  18. 29
    Donald Thornburg

    It’s great to watch you out of the shadow of cutthroat kitchen ! Your still my favorite chef – innovator – and executive cook ! Great recipe without the swamp water . Being on live FB and sharing your culinary expertise – is a great idea ! Looking forward to more . Thanks !

  19. 31
    Stephanie O.

    OH!!! And I’ll be looking forward to more of these live broadcasts…too awesome! And yes, you did look very handsome tonight. 🙂

  20. 32
    Sarah Puckett

    Loved your video on facebook and can’t wait to try this! I also really appreciate the tip on getting rid of gross, watery, eggs. Thanks for sharing and entertaining!

  21. 41

    It was awesome to watch you cook again, Alton. (Mr. Brown? Sorry for any over-familiarity!) I think the little counter on your Facebook live feed topped out around 41,000. I look forward to seeing more; thanks for sharing!

    P.S. – Is Good Eats… ah, nevermind.

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