List: 5 Tasty Huevos Rancheros (+ Recipe)
Huevos rancheros is easily one of my favorite brunch dishes of all time. I’ve noticed, though, that restaurants tend to prepare this dish quite differently. This made me wonder…what exactly qualifies something as being huevos rancheros?
According to good ole Wikipedia, “the basic dish consists of fried eggs served upon lightly fried or charred corn tortillas topped with a salsa fresca made of tomatoes, chile peppers, onion, and cilantro. Refried beans, Mexican-style rice, and slices of avocado or guacamole are common accompaniments, with cilantro as a garnish.” Untraditional variations include flour tortillas instead of corn and pureed chile or enchilada sauce instead of salsa fresca.
Side bar: this dish was labeled as huevos rancheros at a restaurant in Tulsa. I beg to differ, people.
Anyway, please see below for top picks for “authentic” huevos rancheros in OKC, as well as a recipe from yours truly!
Packard's, as I will relay to anyone and everyone, has the best huevos rancheros in town. They keep it simple and fairly classic: corn tortillas, refried black beans, ranchero sauce, over-easy eggs, pepperjack cheese, salsa and sliced avocado (sometimes I add grilled onions, too). The full-size tortillas are soft, and the dish is served with a lovely halo of homemade corn chips to finish it off.
I think it’s the sauce that puts the huevos rancheros at Packard’s over the edge. It’s a bit creamy, tastes incredibly fresh, and has just the right amount of heat to keep things interesting. The eggs are always cooked perfectly, too, which is a major plus in my book.
201 NW 10th St. @packardsokc
The huevos rancheros at Cafe Kacao is really quite similar to that at Packard’s, with the main difference being that it uses whole black beans rather than refried, guacamole rather than sliced avocado, and crispy whole tortillas rather than chips on the side. The ranchero sauce, again, has incredible flavor, and I like to add a side of their special green sauce, too.
I slightly prefer the Packard’s version over Kacao’s, though, because it’s a bit more evenly proportioned. Kacao’s is nearly overwhelming in its amount of beans (and that’s saying a lot coming from me), and I personally am a bigger fan of sliced avocado. Still worth a try, though? For sure.
3325 N. Classen Blvd. @cafekacao
Neighborhood JAM gets a lot of love at OKCVeggie.com, but for good reason. Their new Bahn Mi sandwich is my current obsession, but their Huevos Rancheros was certainly an original favorite! Just order it with no beef barbacoa, or ask for it on the side and feed it to your husband.
There’s a ton going on in JAM’s huevos rancheros. Their version features corn tortillas layered with black beans, pepper jack cheese, guacamole, ranchero sauce, two eggs your way (over-easy is the only way, in my book), pico and cotija cheese. I also usually like to add cilantro and red onions, as I’m an avid fan of extraneous toppings. It may come out looking like a mess, but it’s hella delicious!
15124 Lleyton's Court. @neighborhoodjam
While I’m still mad at Revolucion for getting rid of their Cauliflower Al Pastor tacos, I will say that they have excellent huevos rancheros on their brunch menu, served Saturdays and Sundays from 10am to 4pm. The menu description makes it sound pretty basic: corn tortillas, refried black beans, ranchero salsa, a fried egg, cilantro, queso fresco, avocado and a side of potatoes. But of all the huevos rancheros on this list, Revolucion’s ranchero sauce is the most distinct. It’s loaded with cumin and has a deep smokey flavor that reminds me a lot of the red chile sauce at The Shed (see the recipe below for details). Their crispy roasted potatoes, too, are delectable. As you can see from the photo above, adding grilled onions just sets this dish over the top!
916 NW 6th St. @revolucionokc
Redrock Canyon Grill offers a super basic, classic version of huevos rancheros—and there’s certainly nothing wrong with that. Their ranchero sauce contains chorizo, which is a bummer, but you can still enjoy crispy corn tortillas, black beans, avocado, queso fresco and sunny-side up eggs; go ahead and add peppers and onions, too, and ask for a side of salsa verde. After you doctor it up a bit, you won’t even miss the typical sauce. Maybe the end result isn't really huevos rancheros, but it's still super fresh and tasty!
9221 Lake Hefner Parkway. @redrockcanyongrill
My parents recently traveled to Santa Fe, NM, and ate at one of my favorite restaurants in the world: The Shed. It's renowned for its homemade red chile sauce, and my parents were kind enough to bring us back three jars. The chile sauce's "sweet and pungent flavor has made The Shed's enchiladas world famous. This essence of New Mexico enhances huevos rancheros, chile con carne, enchiladas, carne adovada, beans, posole and many other foods calling for a red chile sauce." I can attest that this description is 100% accurate.
I've never made huevos rancheros at home, but I thought some fresh jars of The Shed's red chile sauce would provide the perfect opportunity. If you've made it this far in this post, you've probably realized that you don't necessarily need a hard-and-fast recipe to create huevos rancheros. However, I did decide to whip up a lentil "fauxrizo" filling to make things a little more interesting, and that recipe is included below. This lentil filling would also go great in enchiladas, burritos and on taco salads! The Shed does sell their red chile sauce online, but you could easily use a local store-bought sauce if you prefer.
Corn or whole wheat flour tortillas
1 can of vegetarian refried beans (I prefer Amy’s brand)
1 jar of red chile or enchilada sauce (as stated, I used sauce from The Shed)
1 medium yellow onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups cooked brown lentils
3/4 c. finely chopped walnuts
1 T. soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke or 1 T. Chipotle Tobasco sauce
1.5 t. ground cumin
1.5 t. ancho chile powder
1/4 t. cayenne pepper, or to taste
6-8 oz. tomato sauce
Salt & pepper to taste
Low-fat Mexican cheese
1) Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Brush both sides of each tortilla (you’ll need two tortillas per person) with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook for five minutes, remove and flip, and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes.
2) In a large skillet, sauté the onion and garlic with olive oil over medium heat until the onion is translucent.
3) Add the lentils, walnuts, soy sauce, liquid smoke (or Tabasco sauce), cumin, ancho chile powder, cayenne pepper and black pepper to the skillet. Cook until the mixture dries up a bit, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the tomato sauce and some of the enchilada sauce, and cook for another couple of minutes. The amount of sauce you add is really up to you! I personally prefer mine saucier.
4) Spread some of the refried beans onto one of the crispy tortillas, then top with several scoopfuls of the lentil mixture and a bit of Mexican cheese. Add the second tortilla on top and press gently. Add additional sauce or salsa if you’d like, and top with eggs (I did two over-easy eggs). Finish off with sliced avocado, cilantro and queso fresco.