Do you love Croque Madame breakfast sandwiches? Serve them in a new way by making them “breakfast cup” style in muffin tins!
I love the toast cup version of this classic French breakfast with melty gruyere, bechamel sauce and of course – ham! I like to call these quick croque madames. Making the croque madames in a muffin pan allows you to make 6 at once which is perfect for brunch gatherings or breakfast potlucks.
What Is the Difference Between Croque Monsieur and Croque Madame?
A croque monsieur (aka “mister crunch”) is a hot ham and cheese (most often gruyere) sandwich, popular in French bistros. A croque madame is a croque monsieur topped with a fried egg (sunnyside-up) on top!
Why is it called a Croque Madame?
The female counter-part to the Croque Monsieur gets its name because the egg on top is said to resemble a woman’s hat. The breakfast name supposedly dates back to the 1960s.
How to make:
First, you’ll want to make the actual toast cups that will hold your ham, cheese, and egg. The technique is really simple and can be used for other breakfast cups as well.
Use a rolling pin to flatten your bread slices. I used a jumbo muffin pan so I used 1 slice of bread per muffin pan compartment. You can use a regular muffin pan if you use small eggs and less filling, just trim your bread slices accordingly.
Melt 2 tablespoons butter and brush bread slices with melted butter. Gently press each bread slice into 6 jumbo muffin cups. You can trim off any excess, if your bread slices are too large.
Now you’re ready to fill your bread cups with gruyere cheese, ham, béchamel sauce and your egg.
I recommend using a high quality, thinly sliced ham such as black forest ham. The ham combined with the melting gruyere cheese and poached egg is simply delicious!
What is béchamel sauce?
Béchamel sauce is a white roux (butter and flour that have been cooked together) mixed with milk and seasoning. It’s considered one of the mother sauces for French cuisine, and it’s used in Croque Madames!
Sometimes you might alternate in a mornay sauce, another of the French’s most popular sauces. Mornay sauce is simply a béchamel with grated cheeses added in.
As you can see above, these breakfast croque madame cups are really simple to make! They’re the perfect savory breakfast addition.
I love that you can make a lot at once, because they’ll all come out at the same time, ready-to-eat for brunch guests!
I made mine with a delicious amber yolked egg, hence the golden color!
What to serve with Croque Madame Breakfast Cups?
I love to serve these on a pretty white platter alongside fresh fruit and juices. It rounds out a simple brunch menu beautifully!
Croque Madame Cups
- 6 slices thick white sandwich bread
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 6 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole milk
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- ½ cup shredded Gruyere cheese
- 6 slices high quality ham thinly sliced
- salt and pepper to taste
- diced herbs for garnish
- Preheat oven to 375°. Use a rolling pin to flatteneach bread slice. Melt 2 tablespoons butter and brush bread slices with meltedbutter.
- Gently press each bread slice into 6 jumbomuffin cups. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan, make béchamel sauce by meltingremaining 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Whisk in flour for 30 seconds.Slowly whisk in milk, salt, nutmeg and mustard.
- Continue to whisk while mixture thickens, about3 minutes. Remove and set aside.
- Fill each muffin cup with slice of ham, sprinkleof Gruyere cheese, and tablespoon full of bechamel sauce. Top each muffin cupwith an egg (yolk and whites). Sprinkle with salt and pepper, as desired.
- Bake for 18-22 minutes or until whites are set and yolk isslightly set. Sprinkle with diced herbs (like fresh thyme or parsley) as desired.
I hope you’ll give this twist on the classic Croque Madame a try! I can’t wait to hear what you think!