This Copycat McDonald’s Egg McMuffin Recipe Tastes Just Like the Real Thing

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It's the breakfast sandwich that started it all: the McDonald's Egg McMuffin. Here's how to make your own at home—including that round egg.

McDonald’s Egg McMuffin is the original on-the-go breakfast. It’s such an icon of the brand, that it’s easy to forget that the Egg McMuffin almost didn’t make it onto the menu—but lucky for us, it did, and it’s become one of bestselling items at McDonald’s.

But what about the days when you don’t want to wait in line for yours? Luckily, we’ve got a McDonald’s Egg McMuffin recipe you can make at home and you can make it ahead for the week.

What’s in a McDonald’s Egg McMuffin?

The breakfast sandwich consists of an English muffin, American cheese, eggs and Canadian bacon. It made its first appearance in 1971 when franchise owner Herb Peterson was looking for a way to attract morning customers to his restaurant. Peterson convinced skeptical McDonald’s owner Ray Kroc to add the McMuffin to the breakfast menu nationwide, and the rest is breakfast history. Here’s another secret: It’s also the only McDonald’s breakfast item that uses real eggs.

How Does McDonald’s Make That Round Egg?

The secret is to cook the eggs in a round egg ring. Set the ring on a hot pan, crack in an egg and let it cook. The finished egg is the perfect size and shape to fit on an English muffin.

How to Make a McDonald’s Egg McMuffin

This recipe makes one perfect breakfast sandwich. You need just a few basic ingredients as well as some tools: your three-inch egg ring and a nonstick skillet.

Editor’s Tip: If you want to make it super easy to put your McMuffin together, you can also get this handy breakfast sandwich maker.

  • 1 English muffin, split open
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 slice American cheese
  • 1 large egg
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 slice Canadian bacon

Step 1: Toast and butter the muffin

Toast both halves of the English muffin until they’re golden brown. Spread the butter over the insides.

Step 2: Add the cheese

Place the bottom of the English muffin on a plate and lay the slice of cheese over it.

Step 3: Cook the egg

round egg cooking in a pan for Copycat Mcdonalds Egg Mcmuffin recipeNancy Mock for Taste of Home

Lightly grease the inside of the egg ring with vegetable shortening or oil, then set the egg ring on your nonstick skillet. Let the skillet and ring get good and hot over medium heat. Crack the egg into the egg ring and use a fork or the tip of a knife to pierce the yolk. Sprinkle the salt over the egg.

Here’s the big secret that I learned from a family friend, Oliver Alvarez, who works at McDonald’s: Add steam. Trapping steam around the egg while it cooks helps it set quickly, and gives it a puffy, light texture. To do this, pour a bit of water in the pan around the outside of the egg ring and cover with a lid. Let the egg cook for about three minutes until it’s set. Remove the pan from the heat, and gently lift the egg ring to reveal your cooked, perfectly round egg.

Use a spatula to move the egg onto the cheese slice on the muffin.

Step 4: Cook the Canadian bacon

Add the Canadian bacon slice to the still-hot skillet and cook it for one minute on each side. Slide the hot bacon on top of the egg. Add the top half of the English muffin to complete the sandwich, and enjoy it while it’s hot!

Tips for Making a Copycat McDonald’s Egg McMuffin

How do I get the perfect round egg?

Look for metal egg rings with a little heft (instead of lightweight silicone). The extra weight will help prevent the egg white from seeping under the bottom. Make sure you let the skillet and egg ring get hot before adding the egg. The heat will quickly set the egg white, which helps keep it in the egg ring.

If you don’t want to use an egg ring, look around your kitchen! Round cookie cutters (make sure they’re heat-resistant) and Mason jar lids can work just as well as an egg ring. Whichever method you’re using, be sure to grease the egg ring generously (as well as the pan). If you really want to experiment, you can also use a thick onion ring slice as an egg ring—but the egg may not release from the onion.

Do I have to use Canadian bacon?

You can try other popular breakfast meats on your copycat McMuffin, like regular bacon, turkey bacon, butterflied pork or breakfast sausage. Make round chorizo sausage patties for a spicy version. Thinly sliced strips of seasoned steak would also taste amazing! (And what a great way to use up those restaurant leftovers.) Pile on fresh cold cuts you might already have in the fridge—sliced turkey, ham, roast beef or bologna. I would even make my McMuffin with Spam sometimes. Some folks might like theirs with smoked salmon (lox).

You can make your McMuffin gourmet, too. Use a slice of pepper jack cheese. Add a sprinkle of chopped chives or tarragon. Whisk the egg with chopped onions and diced green pepper before pouring it into the egg ring. Add a dash of hot sauce. The flavor combinations are endless!

How do I make copycat McMuffins in advance?

Toast the muffins while the eggs are cooking, and let the finished eggs cool before building the sandwiches. Wrap finished sandwiches individually in waxed paper, parchment, foil or plastic wrap before storing them in a freezer storage bag. Store in the freezer for 1-2 weeks.

To reheat, put a sandwich in the fridge to thaw for a couple hours. Remove the packaging and wrap the sandwich in damp paper towel. Reheat in the microwave for 1-2 minutes at reduced power.

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Nancy Mock
Discovering restaurants, tasting bakery treats, finding inspiration in new flavors and regional specialties—no wonder Nancy loves being a food and travel writer. She and her family live in Vermont and enjoy all things food, as well as the beautiful outdoors, game nights, Avengers movies and plenty of maple syrup. Find Nancy’s writing and recipes at her website: Hungry Enough To Eat Six.