Green Eggs, No Ham – Recipe for Eggs in a Basket

Will you eat them on St Pat’s? Will you eat them wearing hats?
I do so like them, Sam-I-Am, I do like green eggs with no ham!

— Modified from the Dr Seuss classic “Green Eggs and Ham”

The pesto takes this breakfast classic – Eggs in a Basket* – to a whole new level for Meatless Monday. It can turn your St Patrick’s Day breakfast into Top ‘O The Mornin’. And the basket shape of the bread makes this a perfect Easter basket breakfast or brunch!

I loved the spinach pesto created by Andrea Meyers of Andrea’s Recipes. She steamed the spinach before blending it – Genius, Andrea! This makes the pesto smoother and darker green. I used mostly spinach with just a few basil leaves to make this sauce more budget friendly. And I love a little lemon zest to brighten the taste! I blended the pesto in my blender for a smoother sauce, but you can use your food processor for a more traditional rustic texture. And, many times we advocate for a cheaper oil, but use the good stuff here because the fruity taste of extra virgin olive oil really comes through!



Cook and prep time about 30 minutes; serves six

8 large eggs, divided
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
6 slices day-old firm white bread
8 cups chopped spinach
A small handful of basil leaves
3 cloves garlic
1/3 cup pine nuts
1 lemon
1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated (about 1/4 cup finely grated)
A few dashes Tabasco sauce
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Spray a large cup muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray. In a pie pan or other shallow pan, mix 2 of the eggs, milk, garlic powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Dip each bread slice in egg mixture for about 10 seconds on each side. Place soaked bread slices in muffin tins, forming a “basket,” with corners of bread sticking up out of muffin tin slightly. Crack one egg into all 6 muffin tins. Bake for 15 minutes for eggs that will have slightly soft yolks, or bake longer as desired to make egg yolks firm.

Place spinach in a glass bowl or ceramic dish, cover with plastic wrap and then microwave for about 90 seconds, or until completely wilted. Remove 1 teaspoon zest from lemon and 2 tablespoons juice from lemon. Place juice and zest and all remaining ingredients in blender (for a smooth sauce) or food processor (for a more rustic sauce). Blend until smooth.

Serve egg baskets on a plate, drizzled with pesto sauce.

*Note about ‘Eggs in a Basket’: This dish is traditionally made by cutting a round hole out of a slice of bread, placing the slice in a skillet and cracking an egg into the center. I made a more ‘basket-y’ shape buy soaking the bread slices in a French toast custard mixture and then pressing them into muffin tins.

** Check out all the quirky names for this dish: One Eyed Jack. Eggy in a Basket. One Eyed Pirate. Gashouse Eggs. Egg in a Window. Egg in the Hole. Pirate’s Eye. Toad in the Hole. Adam and Eve on a Raft. Bird’s Nest. Bull’s Eye. Cave Entrance. Camel’s Eye. Eagle Eye. Egg-Holey-O. Egg Castorini. Egg in a Blanket. Egg in a Frame. Egg in a Hat and Coat. Egg in Bed. Egg in a Nest. Eggy Toast. Eye of the Beholder. Gaslight Eggs. Hobo Toast. Hobo Eggs. Nest Eggs. O’Johnnies. Submarine Egg. Victory Egg. Rocky Mountain Toast. Yolky Pokey. Hole in One. Man in a Boat. Baby in a Hole. Eggs in a Bonnet. Bird’s Nest Eggs. Knothole Eggs. Moon Over Miami (from the Betty Grable movie) Ox Eye Eggs. Chicky in a Nest. Navy Eggs. Breakfast Bulls Eyes. Egg in the Middle. Sunlets. Boy Scout Eggs. Kellogg Eggs.

Other food bloggers’ takes on this egg classic:
One Eyed Jack, aka Eggs in a Basket, For the Love of Cooking
Eggs in a Basket with Wonton Wrappers, Green Lemonade
Eggs in the Basket, A Series of Kitchen Experiments
Gashouse Eggs, Kitchen Parade

— posted by Donna


  1. says

    I bookmarked this when you posted it, and just got around to cooking it for the first time yesterday. It’s delicious! The flavors all mixed together so well (and at the same time, stayed very distinct- we both described having waves of flavor). My husband said it’s one of the yummiest things we’ve eaten lately (and it was one of the easiest to cook). Thanks for the recipe!!

    • says

      Heather – thank you so much – it is one of my favorite things to make for breakfast – and easy, too! So glad you enjoyed them!

  2. says

    Such an interesting concept! And I love the spinach-pesto sauce.

    Thanks so much for your comment on my blog, and for reading! That soup really WAS as green as it appeared in the photo–I think the fresh peas make the difference. And glad your comment brought me here–I see lots of food categories that I’d like to explore (gluten-free first of all. . . ) :)

  3. says

    I love this recipe! Here’s another name for you, in my family we always called this type of dish with eggs cooked in a whole cut in a piece of toast “Popeye Eggs” cause the eye was popping out of the hole. A Big favorite in my family growing up, but you’ve taken them to the next level here!

  4. says

    What a great idea to put the spinach pesto over eggs. We use that pesto for all sorts of things. And wow, there’s more than a few of the names for this dish I’d never heard of. I think my favorite is Camel’s Eye.


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