Huevos Rancheros

From by Toni Dash
Huevos Rancheros

Huevos Rancheros Photo

Last month I hopped down to Santa Fe, New Mexico, for a few days, which definitely is one of my all-time favorite food towns. I’ve been averaging a trip a year for the past few years and find there is definitely far more to devour than my stomach can manage in one trip.

One thing I’m always reminded of when there is how much I love a spicy, savory breakfast. I’ve never been a big carb eater for breakfast, much more preferring protein. Add some sultry, spicy sauce and I’m all in. I’m sharing my latest post-trip craving for Huevos Rancheros today!

Another great thing about the Southwestern-meets-Mexican food breakfasts is that they usually are naturally gluten-free. Chilaquiles are another favorite with corn tortillas, scrambled eggs, chicken, homemade chile sauce, avocados, and fresh toppings like tomatoes, cilantro, queso fresco, and sour cream. Are you hungry yet?!

Huevos Rancheros Picture

Huevos Rancheros are similarly irresistible with lightly fried corn tortillas, topped with homemade refried beans (“quick-style” in my version), homemade spicy salsa, fried eggs (or scrambled if you prefer), cilantro, and queso fresco. The mere appearance makes my mouth water! It’s such a satisfying dish, especially with a big cup of coffee. Fuels you up for a full day of fun.

Something I love about this recipe is how quick the components are to prepare; they each could be used for different recipes too. The refried beans are made using canned pinto beans, which speeds up the process.

I also have a little twist I use that might sound weird but you need to trust me on this. Instead of cooking the beans with water, I use a mixture of prepared coffee and water. Hold on, hold on, don’t close the page! The coffee serves to deepen the flavor of the beans and does not leave them tasting like coffee. Honest. You have to try it.

Huevos Rancheros Image

The spicy sauce is also easily prepared thanks to the food processor. One thing to look out for when traveling in the Southwest or having Mexican food is whether the red or green chile sauce has flour in it. It usually does. That can really put a damper on the full experience of a dish. This sauce is thickened slightly by frying it, which also deepens the flavor.

I’ve been loving sharing naturally gluten-free recipes with you! Spicy Ginger Chicken Stir-Fry, Hasselback Sweet Potatoes with Chipotle Creamed Turkey and Roasted Spring Vegetables with Butternut Squash Noodles. You’d never know they are naturally gluten-free but it does speak to how gluten-free recipes can be fun, flavorful and unique. There’s no reason gluten-free eaters need to be left out of delicious food!


Huevos Rancheros Recipe


For the Salsa:

  • 1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/4 cup yellow onion, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, packed
  • 1 large clove garlic, peeled
  • 1 jalapeño, stemmed and seeded
  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • kosher salt, to taste

For the Refried Beans:

  • 1 15 ounce can pinto beans, drained
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup strong brewed coffee
  • 1/2 teaspoon adobo sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 large clove garlic, peeled and diced

For the Eggs:

  • 4 large eggs
  • 8 corn tortillas, 5-6 inch diameter
  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1/4 cup queso fresco, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves, torn, for garnish


To Make the Salsa:

  1. In a food processor, combine tomatoes, onion, cilantro, garlic, and jalapeño. Process until pureed.
  2. In a medium saucepan, warm the 2 teaspoons of canola oil over medium-high heat. When the oil appears to ripple add the salsa. Stir constantly for 3-5 minutes, allowing the salsa to thicken slightly. Pour the salsa into a bowl, salt if needed, and return the pan to the burner without cleaning it.

To Make the Refried Beans:

  1. Add the beans, water, coffee, adobo sauce, cumin, and garlic to the salsa pan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly and smashing the beans (note: I find using a wooden cooking spoon works well for this). Cook for 3-4 minutes until the liquid begins to incorporate into the mixture, thickening the beans. Remove from heat and allow to sit (beans will continue to thicken). Salt if needed.

To Prepare the Huevos Rancheros:

  1. In a small skillet, add 1/2 teaspoon of the remaining canola oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add a tortilla and allow it to warm for about 30 seconds, flip and warm on the opposite side for 30 seconds. Remove from the pan and place on an individual serving plate. Repeat, using more oil as needed, until four of the tortillas are each on serving plates. Continue warming the remaining four tortillas in the same manner and set aside.
  2. In a large skillet, fry the eggs or scramble them (your choice). Divide the refried beans evenly (about 1/4 cup per serving) and spread a serving on each tortilla on the serving plates. Top with an egg (careful not to break the yolk if fried eggs), a serving of salsa (note: there will be more salsa then needed for each serving), cilantro leaves and a sprinkle of queso fresco. Fold each of the remaining four warmed tortillas and add one to each plate for sopping up the dish.


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