Turkish Eggs (Cilbir) is the ultimate savory breakfast! Made with garlicky Greek yogurt, then topped with poached eggs, spicy butter and other fix-ins, it's an easy and delicious way to serve eggs!
Say hello to my second "vacation recipe", these Turkish eggs! If you recall, the first recipe I recreated was this fattoush salad, and now I'm sharing these delicious eggs with you.
So, what are Turkish eggs, exactly? They're made with a yogurt base, then topped with poached eggs, melted butter and fresh herbs. They're often served with toasted bread for dipping as well, and are truly a great recipe to make for brunch.
I opted to recreate the recipe we ate at Mana in Aix en Provence, which included pickled red onion, fresh dill, chives and coconut bacon. However, I decided to use regular bacon simply because it's quicker to make. I'm not going to claim this is the authentic way to make Turkish eggs -- I'm simply recreating the recipe we ate and loved.
- An incredibly flavorful way to cook eggs
- Creamy garlicky yogurt topped with poached eggs and herbs
- Drizzled with spicy butter, so you know it's going to be delicious
Yogurt - I recommend using full fat Greek yogurt, which will provide a thicker, creamier base
Garlic - No substitution! I used two garlic cloves, but you can use more or less to taste.
Butter - You could substitute olive oil in a pinch, but it's not going to be the same. You ultimately want spicy butter to be drizzled over the yogurt.
Eggs - Poached is the way to go, and it's not as tricky as you think (I promise!)
Add-ins - I used pickled red onion, bacon and fresh herbs, but you could also add microgreens or use tempeh bacon to keep it vegetarian
Bread - I used sourdough toast, and it was perfect for dipping into the yogurt and egg yolk.
Step 1: Pickle the onion. You can make quick pickled onions while preparing the rest of the recipe. Add sliced red onion to a jar, then add vinegar, water, sugar, and salt and let the onions sit for at least 20 minutes.
Step 2: Prepare the yogurt. Start by mixing the yogurt, garlic, salt, and pepper together in a bowl. Let the mixture sit while you make the rest of the breakfast, which will increase the garlicky flavor.
Step 3: Cook the bacon (optional). Bacon is not a typical ingredient found in Turkish eggs, but if you want to include it, go ahead and cook it now. I recommend cooking it in a small skillet, then transfer it to a plate and placing a paper towel on top to keep it warm.
At this point, you can also chop the fresh dill and chives and set aside.
Step 4: Poach the eggs. The easiest way I can explain how to do this is as follows:
-Crack the eggs (however many you're wanting to cook) individually into ramekins (so, 1 egg per dish).
-Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add a little bit of vinegar to it, reduce the heat to medium-low then use a spoon to quickly stir the water to create a whirlpool. Drop the eggs into the center of the swirled water 1 at a time and cook them for 3 minutes.
-Use a slotted spoon to carefully remove the eggs one at a time and transfer to a paper towel.
Step 5: Make the butter. While the eggs are cooking, add the butter to a small saucepan and melt it. As soon as it's melted, add the paprika (regular or smoked) and stir to combine, then immediately remove the butter from the heat.
Step 6: Assemble. Divide the marinated yogurt into two shallow bowls, then add the eggs on top. Drizzle both bowls with the spicy butter sauce, then add your desired toppings, like herbs and red onion.
Tips and tricks
- Want a really great poached egg tutorial? Check out Downshiftology's post on how to poach eggs.
- Don't own ramekins? Use small bowls instead.
- If you want a substitution for paprika, try use aleppo pepper or red pepper flakes instead.
- To keep this vegetarian, simply omit the bacon or make my tempeh bacon instead.
Can this be made ahead of time?
Yep! Though in my personal opinion, I'd wait to poach the eggs until you're ready to serve them. You can make the yogurt, pickled onions and even the bacon up to a day in advance. That way, all you have to do is assemble everything and add the eggs on top and you're good to go.
More easy breakfast recipes
If you made this recipe, be sure to leave a comment and star rating below. Thanks!
Turkish Eggs (Cilbir)
for the yogurt:
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- 2 garlic cloves grated
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
for the butter:
- 2 tablespoon butter
- ½ teaspoon paprika regular or smoked
for the eggs:
- 4 eggs poached
- 2 slices bacon
- ¼ cup pickled red onion
- 2 tablespoon fresh dill chopped
- 2 tablespoon chives chopped
- If you haven't done so already, start by pickling the onions: add the sliced onions to a jar or bowl, then top them with ¼ cup white vinegar, ¼ cup water, 1 tablespoon cane sugar and 1 teaspoon of salt. Let them sit while you prepare the rest of the breakfast.
- Next, make the yogurt: add the yogurt to a bowl, then grate the garlic on top and add the salt and pepper; stir to combine, then set aside.
- If you want to add the bacon, make it now. Cook the bacon, then transfer it to a plate and place a paper towel on top to keep it warm. While the bacon is cooking, bring a large pot of water to a boil.
- Now, poach the eggs. Crack each egg into a small ramekin or bowl (1 egg per dish). Add 1 tablespoon of vinegar to the pot of boiling water, then use a spoon to quickly stir to create a whirlpool, then drop the eggs 1 at a time into the center of the swirled water. Cook the eggs for 3 minutes, then use a slotted spoon to remove them and place them on a paper towel.
- Add the butter to a small saucepan. As soon as it melts, add the paprika and stir to combine, then remove the butter from the heat.
- Last, assemble the bowls: divide the garlicky yogurt into 2 bowls, then add the poached eggs and bacon on top and drizzle everything with the spicy melted butter. Top each bowl with the pickled red onions and fresh dill/chives, along with more salt and pepper to taste. Enjoy!
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