Skillet Breakfast Scramble Recipe

by Shelley · May contain affiliate links

~ This easy Skillet Breakfast Scramble recipe is hearty and satisfying, but also a fresh, healthier take on restaurant “skillet” breakfasts. So good … true breakfast comfort food! Filled with scrambled eggs, potatoes, peppers, onions, cheese and even a bit of smoky bacon (with lots of ideas to change it up just how you like it). Bonus: Not only is it simple to toss together, but leftovers reheat brilliantly later in the week! ~

(Originally published as Southwestern Breakfast Skillet Scramble on October 8, 2015. Updated photos, text and tips.)

This Recipe Is:     Ready in 30 Minutes or Less    Make Ahead    Vegetarian Option Gluten Free  

Overhead of part of a handled, oval, white serving bowl piled with the finished breakfast scramble after it's garnished with cilantro, resting on red-striped cloth.

I’m always really tempted by those restaurant breakfast choices labeled “Skillets” and “Scrambles.”

So promising in theory, but as I read the descriptions (so full of hope!), I almost always find that they involve (greasy) fried hash browns, lots of (fatty) meat, and enough gooey (full-fat) cheese to stop my happily-pumping heart in its tracks. *SIGH*

They taunt me. They jeer. Their fat-laden, artery-clogging pictures beckon tantalizingly.

But I know it’s not worth it. I’ll feel so icky and too-full later … and my tiny arteries … oh, those poor little dears …

Well, this Breakfast Scramble is my comeback!

My answer to those taunts and jeers.

My satisfying, “Oh-yes-I-can-have-my-Scramble-and-eat-it-too” (and not feel gross later) smackdown. (Can food bloggers have scrambled egg smackdowns? Hmmmmm … well, looks like I just did. Take that, greasy diner Skillets!)

Why We LOVE This Quick Breakfast Scramble (and You Will, Too!)

I’ve been making this Breakfast Skillet Scramble for nearly 10 years now, and it’s become one of my family’s all-time favorite weekend breakfast recipes.

Plated serving of scramble recipe and orange wedges, with fork, wheat bread, milk, orange juice, and oval serving bowl of skillet breakfast.

It’s a quick, easy, nutritious and delicious breakfast … a THK recipe, through and through!

It’s got:

  • Fluffy scrambled eggs and diced hash brown potatoes,
  • Studded with flavorful bell peppers and onions …
  • Plus melty cheese,
  • And a bit of bacon to add satisfying, smoky-salty vibes.

Pretty much exactly like those restaurant-style breakfast skillet scrambles. Deliciously hearty comfort food (which is exactly what you want in great brunch recipes)!

Except that it’s lighter and leaner and won’t leave you feeling bogged down and groggy and regretful.

Nope!

It’s loaded with high-quality protein and lots of nutrient-rich veggies that’ll keep your family fueled up all morning.

And it’s such a very simple recipe. Ready in a twinkling … perfect for lazy weekend mornings. (Or seriously great made ahead for quick breakfasts all week long!)

Here’s all you have to do …

How to Make Your Breakfast Scramble

Ingredient Prep

There’s very, very little prep work to be done here – just chopping up some onion and peppers and lightly beating a few (standard-sized) large eggs.

White bowl with 6 raw eggs, with wire whisk ready to begin lightly beating them.

You don’t even have to thaw the potatoes (or the corn, if you’re using frozen). So crazy-simple!

To make this even more, extra easy in the morning, you can chop the onion and peppers the night before. Just pop them into separate baggies or containers and stash them in the fridge for go-time.

Step #1

Preheat a little oil in a nonstick, large skillet over medium heat.

Nonstick skillet with raw vegetable ingredients just added and wooden spoon stirring.

Once your pan is warm, add your corn and potatoes (remember … no need to thaw them!), onion, and peppers.

Breakfast skillet once vegetables have begun to soften and brown, but before eggs are added to scramble.

Cook your veggies for about 12-15 minutes, until they’re lightly browned.

Give them an occasional stir. BUT, the key here is actually NOT to stir them TOO often because you want them to develop some nicely browned areas.

Step #2

While your veggies are cooking merrily away, combine your lightly beaten eggs, milk and salt in a medium bowl. Give them a quick whisk, but there’s no need to beat them smooth.

Step #3

When your veggies are as tender as you’d like them, with some alluring golden-brown spots, pour your egg mixture into the skillet.

Breakfast skillet in nonstick pan when scrambled eggs are nearly cooked through and cheese is just starting to melt.

Add your cheese and bacon, and let that delicious concoction continue cooking while you stir it around to scramble the eggs and get everything combined.

Ingredient Tip: Bacon

While you can certainly cook and crumble your own bacon, we usually reach for the little packages of real bacon bits (NOT Bac-Os) you typically find in the salad dressing aisle. They’re particularly great since we don’t often use up entire packages of bacon very quickly. Plus, they’re a handy shortcut!

If you do want to cook your own bacon for this recipe, we recommend selecting an organic or nitrate-free brand, and choosing lower-fat center cut bacon or turkey bacon.

And if you wanna swap out the bacon, I’ve got ideas for that, too. Read on …..

Keep cooking that delicious scramble-y goodness over medium heat, until the cheese melts a bit and your fluffy eggs are done to your liking.

Step #4

Serve it up right away, piping hot out of the skillet (or in a pretty serving bowl if you’re feeling fancy)!

Offer up any yummy toppings you like.

Our faves are cilantro, salsa and {optional for heat lovers} a few dashes of hot sauce … which gives it a little Southwestern flair. Some chopped avocado or a daub of guac are also fantastic ideas! (And I’ve got even more flavor variations and topping suggestions for ya in a sec …sausage?? feta??? … keep reading …..)

Breakfast scene featuring skillet scramble at center on white plate and in background in shite serving bowl, along with sliced oranges, glass of orange juice, little bowl of fresh strawberries, and wheat bread.

It’s a throw-together breakfast you’ll make again and again!

The Origin Story

I originally shared this egg scramble recipe with all of you back in 2015, after a whirlwind, three-day culinary press tour of Columbus, Ohio, which was focused on everything EGGS.

We ate, photographed, talked (and probably even dreamed about) eggs.

We sampled the iconic Eggs Benedict Lindey’s (with filet mignon!) at Lindey’s in German Village, and a reimagined Smoked Chicken Hash with roasted poblanos, gouda and salsa verde at the schwanky-shabby-chic The Guild House.

We ate an unbelievable meal in a rustic converted barn at the organic Jorgensen Farms, sitting around a massive plank table. We were surrounded by hay-piled rafters, lovely wild-flower-filled mason jars, and the warm glow of lights strung from overhead beams.

It was all heavenly. Every.single.bite.

And, of course, there was a cooking demo! (Including the perfect way to hard-cook eggs … and yes, friends, I did a little mental dance inside as he described the same hard-boiling method that we recommend here at THK. But then, I guess I wasn’t really surprised – we definitely did our research and lots of our own testing before we shared that post with you!)

I couldn’t wait to head home and cook eggs, eggs, eggs … including this yummy Skillet Breakfast. It quickly became a go-to, any time I could wrangle my busy family to all be in the same spot at the same time for breakfast together on a cozy weekend morning.

Closeup of two female hands from woman wearing navy blue, holding forth white, oval serving bowl of cooked breakfast scramble before it's garnished.

And through the years, I’ve found lots of ways to change it up, often because I had to adapt on the fly to whatever I happened to have on hand.

Here are just a few ideas of how you can change it up, too …

Breakfast Skillet Recipe Swaps and Toppings

Go Southwestern!

I originally started making this healthy breakfast recipe as a vaguely Mexican-inspired, “Southwestern Breakfast Skillet Scramble.” So that’s where the idea for toppings like cilantro, salsa, hot sauce, and even guac or chopped avocados come in.

If you like that hearty Southwestern flair, you could use a poblano pepper, or mince up some jalapeños to cook with the other veggies, for another layer of pepper flavor and a little heat.

Keeping with that same Southwestern feel, you could pump up the protein even more by adding some black beans.

But there’s so much more you can do to change this up in lots of different ways!

Side closeup of one serving of breakfast scramble heaped on small white plate, garnished with cilantro, with two orange slices on plate and fork to left.

More Yummy Variations!

• For starters, you could certainly skip the bacon crumbles and choose a different protein altogether. Try cooking some crumbled turkey breakfast sausage in the skillet before you add your veggies. Or slice up any flavor of chicken or turkey sausage links and toss in a few of those to brown with the vegetables.

Wanna Make This a Vegetarian Breakfast Scramble?

I often do! I especially love using Morningstar Farms Veggie Chorizo Crumbles for a little flavor kick. But feel free to try your fave vegetarian sausage, too!

• Vary the cheese however you like. Maybe some reduced-fat cheddar cheese or crumbled feta?

• Mmmmmm … and actually, feta would be brilliant in a more Mediterranean-vibed scramble. I’m thinking maybe a garnish of green onions and basil instead of cilantro. Juicy, fresh cherry tomatoes sliced on top after you pull it off the stove. You could even drizzle a little pesto on top. Yum yum yum!

• And don’t worry about EXACT proportions here, friends. Wanna go easy on the potatoes but add some extra onions? No problem! Running short on red peppers? No worries … add extra green ones (or orange or yellow).

How About Portable Breakfast Burritos?

Great Idea!

Use this crave-able scramble as the filling for a warm tortilla, along with some hot sauce, pico de gallo, refried beans … whatever you like!

Wrap ’em up for your family to grab as they dash out the door, and everyone will be happily powered up all morning long!

• Or, hey hey … you could even spoon your Breakfast Scramble over avocado toast, too! (Kinda like a pumped-up version of our Breakfast Avocado Toast with Egg and Sausage.)

You’ve got lots of options to make this Breakfast Egg Scramble exactly how you want it, every time you make it!

And since it’s so darn quick and easy to whip up, I just bet it’ll become a go-to for you … just like it did for me!

FAQs At-a-Glance

Can I Use Egg Whites Only, Instead of Whole Eggs?

Sure! I do that sometimes. One large, whole egg equals approximately 1/4 cup. As Taste of Home explains, 2 egg whites also equal roughly 1/4 cup. So, to replace the 6 eggs called for in this Breakfast Scramble recipe, use the whites from 12 eggs (or 3/4 cup egg substitute / packaged egg whites).

Can I Skip the Bacon in This Skillet?

Yep! As I discuss in more detail in the article above, you have lots of options for switching up the flavors – and the meat. Different types of sausage (ground or sliced links), even veggie sausage are all options. Or go meatless!

Can I Make This Breakfast Scramble Ahead?

You actually can! Works like a charm. It reheats surprisingly well. Whether you make the entire batch ahead of time, for meal prep on busy mornings, or simply have a bit left over, you can stash it in the fridge and gently rewarm it later (I use the microwave). And as I mentioned earlier, if you’d like to get ahead on prep work, without making the full recipe ahead of time, you can chop the onion and peppers the night before and refrigerate them in separate bags or sealed containers.

So next time you scan down a restaurant brunch menu and start craving one of those greasy, bog-you-down skillet breakfasts, you’ll pat yourself on the back, knowing you can easily make something just as yummy at home tomorrow instead.

With WAAAAAY less fat and calories and why-did-I-just-eat-that-I-need-a-nap guilt! 😉

Breakfast scene with plated scramble recipe as part of whole meal with oranges, small bowl of strawberries, glass jar of milk, glass of OJ, sliced wheat bread, and serving dish of remaining skillet breakfast,

More of Our Favorite THK Egg Recipes …

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Closeup of oval serving bowlful of breakfast scramble on white cloth with thin red stripe.

Skillet Breakfast Scramble

Yield: 5 1/2 cups
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 17 minutes
Total Time: 27 minutes

This easy Breakfast Scramble is a fresh, healthier take on restaurant skillet breakfasts. Bonus: leftovers reheat brilliantly later in the week, and make a terrific filling for breakfast burritos or topping for avocado toast, too!

  Ready in 30 Minutes or Less    Make Ahead    Vegetarian Option • Gluten Free  

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 3 cups frozen, diced hash brown potatoes or O'Brien potatoes (cubed hash brown potatoes with onions and peppers)
  • 3/4 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
  • 1/2 cup finely diced sweet onion
  • 1/2 cup finely diced green pepper
  • 1/2 cup finely diced red pepper
  • 6 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons nonfat milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup shredded, reduced-fat Mexican cheese blend or cheddar cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped and crumbled bacon or real bacon bits (not Bac-Os) (see notes)
  • for serving: minced fresh cilantro, salsa, and hot sauce, if desired (or refer to other topping ideas in post above)

Instructions

  1. Briefly preheat oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add potatoes, corn, onion, and peppers, and cook until lightly browned, about 12-15 minutes. Stir occasionally, but you want the vegetables to develop some nicely browned areas, so don't stir so frequently that you prevent that from happening.
  2. Meanwhile, combine eggs, milk, and salt in a medium bowl.
  3. Pour egg mixture into pan with potato mixture and add cheese and bacon. Continue cooking, stirring to scramble, until eggs are done.
  4. Serve immediately with cilantro, salsa, and hot sauce (if desired) for Southwestern flair. Or, for other flavor variations and swaps, refer to all the ideas in the post above.

Notes

Bacon: If you choose to cook and then crumble your own bacon, we recommend selecting an organic or nitrate-free brand, and choosing lower-fat center cut bacon or turkey bacon. In a pinch, however, to save time, we often use packaged real bacon bits (NOT Bac-Os), particularly since we don’t often use up entire packages of bacon quickly enough. Either option will work in this recipe.

Vegetarian option: As discussed in the post above, you can substitute various things for the bacon, including vegetarian sausage. I especially love using Morningstar Farms Veggie Chorizo Crumbles for a little flavor kick, but you can try any vegetarian sausage you prefer.

Make-ahead tips: To help this breakfast recipe come together extra-quick in the morning, you can chop the onion and peppers the night before and refrigerate them in separate bags or sealed containers. Also, this Breakfast Skillet reheats surprisingly well, so you can certainly make it ahead the day before and gently rewarm it prior to serving for busy mornings, or save leftovers to reheat for a quick breakfast later in the week.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 5 1/2 servings Serving Size: 1 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 283Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 228mgSodium: 574mgCarbohydrates: 32gFiber: 4gSugar: 5gProtein: 18g

Nutrition information should be considered an estimate only, and may vary depending on your choice of ingredients or preparation. No guarantees are made regarding allergies or dietary needs. Always consult a physician or dietician for specific advice and questions.

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Southwestern Breakfast Skillet Scramble Recipe {www.TwoHealthyKitchens.com}
Southwestern Breakfast Skillet Scramble Recipe {www.TwoHealthyKitchens.com}
Southwestern Breakfast Skillet Scramble Recipe {www.TwoHealthyKitchens.com}
Southwestern Breakfast Skillet Scramble Recipe {www.TwoHealthyKitchens.com}
Southwestern Breakfast Skillet Scramble Recipe {www.TwoHealthyKitchens.com}
Southwestern Breakfast Skillet Scramble Recipe {www.TwoHealthyKitchens.com}
Southwestern Breakfast Skillet Scramble Recipe {www.TwoHealthyKitchens.com}
Southwestern Breakfast Skillet Scramble Recipe {www.TwoHealthyKitchens.com}

29 thoughts on “Skillet Breakfast Scramble Recipe”

    • I think you’ll really love it, Beth. It’s very delicious – and so much lighter than what you typically find on restaurant menus with those crazy, calorie-loaded breakfast skillets. It’s still satisfying, though – and actually powers you up for the day ahead! ~Shelley

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