Full English Breakfast is practically an institution in the UK. It’s a porky fried feast with bacon, sausages, eggs, and baked beans. Customise it however you like. Just don’t worry about the calories.
I’ve lived in Scotland long enough now that I’m starting to lose track of some of the differences between the US and the UK. I’ve gotten into the habit of ordering Skippy peanut butter on Amazon. I know the one place in town where you’re likely to find canned pumpkin puree. I’ve basically given up all hope of every eating great Tex Mex. I mean, is it too much to ask to get a wet beef chimichanga with a pool of really great refried beans alongside? Apparently it is.
I’ve learned most of the lingo. I think. I know that greet means to cry, and “how no” actually means why not. I’ve learned to drive my moped on the left side of the road, and I almost never forget my table number when ordering food at a pub. I’m starting to get the hang of things.
But I have to admit, I still find the whole Full English Breakfast thing a bit overwhelming. It’s just a lot. But you’ll never get a British person to speak a word against it. With restaurants and neighborhood cafes being closed for most of the past year, going out for a Sunday morning fry up hasn’t really been feasible.
How to make a Full English Breakfast
Given that there are so many components, it’s not the simplest thing to do at home. Not that any part is complicated. It’s really more about the math than the cooking. You’re just picking out your favorite things and figuring out how to get them all hot at the same time. It’s something I’m sure every British mom has learned to master. You can use a combination of oven and frying pan to bring this cholesterol fest to the table. Just don’t forget the tea.
I’ve given the instructions for how I tackled what you see in the photos, but your products will probably be a little bit different, so think of the recipe as more of a guide.
What goes in a Full English Breakfast?
This plate is highly customisable. You can mix and match your favorite things. You can even do a vegetarian or vegan version if you need to. And you can make it Scottish or Irish with a few changes.
There’s pretty much always going to be back bacon (as opposed to streaky bacon, which is what we’re used to in the US) and sausages. In England, it’ll be pork sausage links, but in Scotland, you may get square or lorne sausage. You can also have black pudding, which I’ve added. To make it more Scottish, go for haggis.
I actually meant to include hash browns and just forgot to buy them. They’re pretty much always going to be the frozen triangular hash browns rather than an actual shredded potato. You’ll also always get toast. If you’re lucky, there’s insanely flavorful fried bread which is usually cooked last in the frying pan to soak up all the grease that’s left from all that pork above. In Scotland, you might see potato scones, and in Ireland, there’s likely to be soda bread.
You gotta have at least one fried egg. I like mine over easy with a nice runny yolk, but I find I really only get that when I make my own eggs here. Do what you want with your eggs.
In amongst all this meat and carbs, you’ll often see tomatoes and mushrooms. I added cherry tomatoes here more for their aesthetic appeal. More often, it’s a plum tomato, sliced in half, and fried. I have a feeling the mushrooms might come from a can. We usually skip this at home because you know I don’t want that, and Geoff could take it or leave it, but he’d rather leave it.
I don’t know if baked beans count as a vegetable, but I do know it doesn’t count as a Full English Breakfast without them. It’s gotta be Heinz beans in our house. My husband is very particular about this.
Like I said, a Full English Breakfast is highly customizable. If I’ve forgetten your favorite thing, please don’t be offended. In fact, let me know in the comments if there’s anything you like in your breakfast that I’ve left out. I’m much more of a pancake and waffle kind of girl.
Make it magical
Tomatoes are full of powerful feminine energy. This red fruit full of seeds is known to inspire love and passion, so it would be perfect for a romantic dinner. They can also help protect you from negative vibes. Call in the energy of tomatoes whenever you want things to get a little lovey dovey. (Source: The Witchipedia)
Look, I’m not saying eat a Full English Breakfast every weekend, though I’m sure there are some people who do. I’m just saying, it’s worth the experience at least once. If you can finish it, my hat’s off to you. And we’ll pretend it’s a top hat. It’s gonna be awesome.Print
Full English Breakfast
An overflowing plate of savoury breakfast foods including bacon, sausages, hashbrowns, eggs, beans, fried bread, and toast. And don’t forget the cup of tea.
- Prep Time: 10
- Cook Time: 30
- Total Time: 40
- Yield: 2 servings 1x
- Category: Breakfast
- Method: Fried
- Cuisine: British
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 4 sausages
- 4 slices of bacon
- 4 pieces of black pudding
- 4 slices of bread
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes
- 1 can of Heinz baked beans
- 2 eggs
Amounts are merely suggestions. If it’s easier to just cook the whole packet of bacon or sausages, etc. just do that and have leftovers.
Making a Full English Breakfast is much more about math than cooking technique. You’re basically just heating up a bunch of stuff without really adding anything. Make your own battle plan. Do it all in the oven. Customise your favorite ingredients. Mix and match. Here’s what I did:
- Preheat your oven to 200 C (400 F). Cut your sausage links apart if necessary, and spread them on a foil-lined baking sheet. Put the sausages in the oven and cook for about 12 minutes. Use tongs to turn them all over, then put them back in the oven to finish cooking for another 12 minutes or so. Check the cooking instructions on your package because cooking time will vary by size.
- While the sausages are in the oven, put a large skillet over medium heat, and start cooking your bacon to your desired level of doneness. Again, times will vary depending on whether you use back bacon or streaky bacon. Go with what you like.
- After your bacon has started to cook, tip your can of beans into a small saucepan, and place this over the lowest heat possibly to simmer gently while you get on with the rest.
- When your bacon is cooked through, remove it to a paper towel-lined plate. I cover this with a pot lid to help keep things warm.
- Add your black pudding slices to the same frying pan you cooked the bacon in. Cook these for about three minutes per side. Again, check packet instructions for your particular brand. Remove to the same plate as your bacon.
- Up next, toss your tomatoes into the hot skillet and lightly fry them in the fat left over by the bacon, etc. Cook them until they just start to blister on the outside, then remove them to a bowl.
- Somewhere during all this, you can also be making toast and buttering it. If you can put someone else on toast duty, all the better.
- Possibly the most delectable part of the homemade Full English Breakfast is the fried bread. If your bacon has given off lots of good grease, you just need to slap a couple pieces of bread into the hot skillet to soak it up and get brown and crisp. If you need a little extra help in the bacon grease department, you can spread reserved bacon grease (that you’ve been saving in a jar in your fridge for just such urgent need) just like you would butter, then fry for a few minutes per side until brown and crisp.
- I like to fry my eggs in a separate small frying pan just because that’s easier for me. You can do them in the same frying pan as everything else if that’s easier for you. I like mine over easy.
- Once everything is ready, start loading your plate. Don’t forget the tea.
- Okay, this is not really a recipe so much as a list of things that go on a plate and a strategy for cooking them. Obviously, this is just one way to do it. Go nuts!
Keywords: Sausage, Eggs, Bacon, Beans