These eggs in tomato sauce are one of those recipes that I turn to over and over again in my kitchen. Not only are they delicious, but they’re great to make when you’re low on ingredients or time.
Eggs in Tomato Sauce
I’ve found that many cultures have some form of this dish, including the French. It’s probably because it’s a simple meal with internationally available ingredients and just a small handful of them.
You’ll find these eggs in tomato sauce referred to as “oeufs à la provencal” in France (a.k.a. Provencal-style eggs). In my house, they’re known as the miracle meal.
There’s nothing to eat!
I don’t know about you guys, but sometimes I have these melodramatic moments where I yank my fridge door open and feel hopeless about what I’m going to make for dinner.
At this point, I’m usually hungry, feeling uninspired, and have very limited ingredients to work with. It’s that moment when you wish you had ended up making the trip to the grocery store instead of procrastinating and avoiding the errand.
But don’t worry, these eggs in tomato sauce are here to the rescue!
All the main ingredients that go towards the making of this dish are ever present in my kitchen: eggs, olive oil, tomatoes (or canned tomatoes, or marinara sauce), and bread. If I’m feeling up to it, I’ll even serve it with a simple side salad of lemon-dressed arugula and parmesan shavings.
The Tomato Sauce
If you have jarred marinara sauce, feel free to use that to really make this an easy breezy meal. Otherwise, the simple step of prepping a couple of fresh tomatoes or emptying a can of diced ones will do just fine.
I usually have fresh tomatoes on hand because I make a lot of salads with them, so when I prepare this dish, I remove the pulp from the tomatoes and use the pulp to create the tomato sauce.
A little tomato paste is added to increase the depth in flavor, but it’s not necessary if you don’t have that. Some salt, pepper, a pinch of thyme leaves (or dried thyme/herbes de provence/oregano) really spruces up the sauce.
I love cooking my eggs in simmering liquid, like the way it’s done here in tomato sauce. I place a lid over my skillet to help the process, and in return, I get eggs that have soft whites that are cooked through and runny egg yolks that stream out all over my tomato sauce.
Some garlic croutons (toasted baguette slices with olive oil and garlic) are added on the side to dip and scrape up all that glorious sauce and eggs.
These eggs in tomato sauce are the perfect warm meal to whip up when you’re looking for a comforting tasty dish with minimal effort and time.
Eggs in Tomato Sauce
A quick and easy, Provencal dish made up of eggs poached in tomato sauce.
- 1/2 onion diced
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 2 tomatoes (see note)
- 1 tbsp tomato paste (about 16 grams) optional
- 1 sprig of thyme (see note)
- 2 eggs
- olive oil
- fresh basil or parsley optional
Warm a thin layer of olive oil in a small skillet. Add the diced onion and sauté over medium-low heat until translucent - about 5 minutes. In the meanwhile, prepare your tomatoes by removing the flesh/pulp from the tomatoes. Discard the skin; give the pulp a rough chop.
Add the garlic to the onion and sauté for 30 seconds. Add the chopped up tomato pulp along with the tomato paste. Stir together and cook for 1 minute, then add 1/8 cup of water.
Add the leaves from the sprig of thyme, about 1/2 tsp of salt (or to taste) and a pinch of freshly ground pepper. Let the mixture simmer over low heat for a few minutes for the tomatoes to soften up a bit.
Crack the eggs open and onto the tomato sauce. Set the heat to medium-low and place a lid over the skillet. Let the eggs cook for about 4-6 minutes, until the yolks have obtained a thin white film over them and the whites are cooked.
Before serving, sprinkle a small pinch of salt and pepper over just the eggs. Garnish with a drizzle of olive oil and/or fresh parsley or basil.
Instead of fresh tomatoes, you can use 1/3 cup of prepared marinara sauce or 1/2 cup of canned diced tomatoes.
Instead of thyme, you can use 1/4 tsp of dried thyme or 1/4 tsp of dried herbes de provence. Another alternative: use 1/2 tsp of dried oregano, rubbing the oregano between the palms of your hands before adding it in.