Fried Eggs Over-Hard on a white plate next to greens with breakfast potatoes and orange juice in the background (with logo overlay)

Fried Eggs: What’s the Difference? + Fried Eggs Over-Hard Recipe

There are so many ways to cook a fried egg, do you know the difference? Over-hard fried eggs are cooked through without a broken yolk.

Sunny-side up, over easy, over medium, over hard….. there are so many options for fried eggs. Do you know the difference? I had no idea until recently, but knowing the difference will definitely make it easier to order eggs when we are out for breakfast!

For me, I almost always go with scrambled eggs. It’s safe and hard to mess up and I know I’ll be getting exactly what I want. But when we are at home, I like to experiment a little more with the eggs and try different ways of making them.

So that being said, what is the difference in the different types of fried eggs?

Sunny-Side-Up

An egg that is done “sunny-side-up” means that the egg is never flipped. The yolk (sun) is left completely intact and stays mostly uncooked. The white of the egg is cooked most of the way through and usually is left with just a little bit of sheen to it. This seems to be one of the most popular ways to fry an egg. If you do a search online for fried eggs almost all of the photos and recipes are for a sunny-side-up egg.

Eggs Over-Easy

Similar to sunny-side up, when you make fried eggs over-easy, you want the yolk to barely get cooked. It should still be very runny and intact. The only real difference between sunny-side up and over-easy eggs is that an egg made over-easy is flipped once while being cooked. This means the egg white gets cooked a bit more and usually doesn’t have that sheen to it.

Fried Eggs: What's the Difference? + Fried Eggs Over-Hard Recipe

Eggs Over-Medium

As we get further in the descriptions, the eggs get cooked a little more. Over-medium eggs are cooked the same as over-easy because they are flipped while frying, but are just cooked a bit longer. The yolk in an over-medium fried egg is only slightly runny.

Eggs Over-Hard

Personally, this is the only way I will eat a fried egg. When it’s cooked over-hard, the yolk is cooked completely through, similar to a hard-boiled egg. As with the others, the egg is flipped while it is cooked, and it is done longer. Both the egg white and yolk are cooked until they are considered done and nothing is raw.

My only drawback to fried eggs is the fact that I don’t like egg whites on their own, which is why I prefer to break the yolk when I make my fried eggs. I also can’t stand a runny yolk. It reminds me too much of a raw egg and totally grosses me out! I couldn’t ever eat an egg sunny-side-up or over-easy. That’s why, in this recipe, I am showing you how to make a fried egg over-hard because I do have to eat this food after I make it! We like to prepare the eggs with seasoned potatoes.

Step by Step

Heat a sauté pan over medium heat and add the oil until it’s warm.

Crack the eggs into the pan. If you want the yolk broken, do that now. If not, leave the egg as it is.

Sprinkle the egg with salt and pepper.

After a few minutes, once the eggs start to set, flip and cook the other side.

The amount of time you let the egg cook will determine the doneness of the yolk. Take the eggs off the heat when they hit your desired doneness.

Recipe

Fried Eggs Over-Hard on a white plate next to greens with breakfast potatoes and orange juice in the background (horizontal)

Fried Eggs Over Hard

There are so many ways to cook a fried egg, do you know the difference? Over-hard fried eggs are cooked through without a broken yolk.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Keyword: eggs
Servings: 1 serving
5 from 8 votes

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 2 eggs
  • salt and pepper (to taste)

Recommended Equipment

Instructions

  • Heat a saute pan over medium heat and add the oil
  • Once the oil is warm, crack open the eggs into the pan
  • If you want a broken yolk, do that now
  • Sprinkle with salt and pepper
  • After a few minutes, once the eggs start to set, flip and cook the other side
  • Determine how cooked you want the yolk and take them off the heat when cooked to desired doneness
Click the buttons below to share and print this recipe
Pin Recipe Print Recipe
Nutrition Facts
Fried Eggs Over Hard
Amount Per Serving
Calories 165 Calories from Fat 108
% Daily Value*
Fat 12g18%
Saturated Fat 3g15%
Cholesterol 327mg109%
Sodium 125mg5%
Potassium 121mg3%
Protein 11g22%
Vitamin A 475IU10%
Calcium 49mg5%
Iron 1.5mg8%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Shop This Recipe

When making any recipe, it’s essential to make sure you have the correct equipment. The following items are hand-selected for this recipe and are all items I have personally used and/or recommend.

These are affiliate links. See disclosures for more information.

56 thoughts on “Fried Eggs: What’s the Difference? + Fried Eggs Over-Hard Recipe”

  1. I have always wonder what the differences were and I had no idea there was such a variant. I am not a fan of the texture of eggs but I wonder if they were better cooked if I would be okay with it. Runny yolks are just gross to me.

  2. Ha ha! I’m glad I’m not the only one who didn’t know the difference. I guess that’s because my favorite eggs are scrambled! I do think I’d like the hard ones way better than the over easy ones. I’m not a fan of runny eggs!

  3. Thanks for the tips! I have never actually heard of eggs-over-hard before – you learn something every day! But I love eggs in all forms, so I will definitely give this a go. Especially when you serve it next to some gorgeous bacon!

    1. Before doing the research for this post, I didn’t know that’s what they were called. I never ordered fried eggs because I thought they would just have the runny yolk and that’s how it’s made.

  4. My husband loves his eggs sunny side up and the nurse in me sees something else each time he is eating eggs. Now, I am going t be fancy and order Fried eggs over hard next time we go for brunch.

    1. Yeah, there’s just something about the runny yolk that has always bothered me, too. But, my husband likes them that way with either toast or bacon to dip in the yolk. I go for over-hard or scrambled every time.

  5. This was really so informative and interesting. I never knew the names although I had seen all the forms of eggs. I personally love sunny sides up OR eggs over easy but hubby wants it over hard. Thanks I am really ready to order my brunch for the weekend.

  6. I honestly do know the difference between the different type. However, I think most restaurants don’t especially some breakfast spot. I will be saving this and showing them when next they bring out something that wasn’t ordered. Hahahaha. Great post!

  7. angela@marathonsandmotivation.com

    I loved reading this because I did not know the difference until now! I am actually a huge fan of the soft poached egg!!

  8. Journa Ramirez

    I don’t know why, but I always love runny eggs. I didn’t know that I could still consider a lot of things when cooking eggs!

  9. Anshika Juneja

    I’ve never heard of eggs-over-hard before but I love making new recipes and this is a perfect go-to breakfast for me. I’m definitely going to try this, even my brother is very fond of eggs!

  10. I had no idea there was any difference(s)!! As long as it looks fried and there’s eggs and Olive and pepper… every other thing’s pretty much a bonus to me so as the make the meal to be bigger.. lol

  11. I may be in the minority but I love my eggs over-easy and poached. I can tolerate scrambled eggs but my bread is usually lonely without its runny yolk to swim in.

  12. Oh yuuuum! I am certainly a fried egg over hard. I love eggs and I eat them in multiple ways. It’s morning and I’m on my way down to make this recipe now. I hope I have some spinach to make it complete.

  13. I don’t eat eggs at all but I don’t want my food limitations to get in the way of what my kids eat. I didn’t know the differences between the fried eggs before reading this. Now I can teach my kids!

    1. I am the same with a lot of foods. My mom was picky and it rubbed off on me. I am trying to make sure my kids are exposed to all types of foods, even if they won’t eat them right now.

  14. Honestly, I didn’t know the difference about fried eggs! This post wasn’t just informative, but it was absolutely delicious. My favourite way to prepare eggs is fried!
    Also, the T-fal pan is amazing, I used this for many recipes!

  15. My family cannot do without eggs! we simply love them and keep trying 10 different recipes. I have tried everything mentioned above. Each recipe of egg is different in their own ways.

    1. It’s crazy that the difference in cook time can be so small, but make a big difference in the outcome. My youngest loves eggs but my oldest doesn’t, so we don’t have them as often as I would like sometimes.

  16. I should totally show the girls this post when they get home from sleepaway camp. Kimmie had to learn how to cook eggs a few different ways earlier this year for a Girl Scout badge, and now Essie loves having Kimmie cook her morning eggs to order whenever possible. They would LOVE this explanation and step-by-step of the different types of fried eggs.

    1. That’s awesome that Kimmie can make them herself! When Justin and Tyler went to Cub Scout camp in the spring, everyone was apparently amazed that Tyler could crack an egg so well as one of the youngest kids in our pack. He has lots of practice here 🙂

  17. Definitely a good primer on all the types of fried eggs. I’m with you, I think I prefer scrambled the most. Although I admit I’ve become a sunny side up person when I’m not doing scrambled which is funny because I hated the runny yolk when I was younger but appreciate it more now.

  18. I really like eggs in general, but I love fried eggs. I love them in butter; they’re the best. Runny yolks used to really gross me out when I was a kid, but now I love them. I must say that I can’t eat over-hard eggs because I find them a bit too dry for my taste. I wouldn’t go for sunny side up either, but I think I would prefer over-easy or over-medium eggs 🙂

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Improve your cooking today

Whether you’re just getting started or looking to improve your skills, the Intro to Cooking guide was made for you! Sign up to receive a free copy, which also includes 7 simple yet tasty recipes. Plus you’ll receive new recipes in your inbox every week. Yum!

Make sure to check your inbox (and spam folder) for your confirmation email, which includes the link to download your Intro to Cooking guide.

Pasta All-In
Banana Bread

Wait! There's more great recipes...

Stop cooking the same recipes every week. Sign up and you’ll receive new tasty recipes in your inbox each week. Plus, you’ll also receive an Intro to Cooking PDF so you can quickly improve your cooking skills.

%d bloggers like this: