Super simple one pan breakfast prepared in a skillet. This gluten free brunch dish starts with super crispy shredded hash browns, peppers, some bacon, and is finished off with eggs and melty cheese.
I take my shredded hash browns very seriously. Preferably made from scratch and not from shredded potatoes out of a bag from the freezer aisle. Extremely crispy on the outside, pillowy soft in the center. Golden brown and always with ketchup on the side.
You might say I’m a hash brown snob. And you’re completely right.
I’ve learned a few tricks over my shredded hash brown perfecting years, and if you want the CRISP of the crispiest hash browns ever with today’s breakfast skillet recipe, listen up:
2 Ways to the Crispiest Homemade Shredded Hash Browns
(1) First, rid your shredded potatoes of as much moisture as possible. Less moisture = more crisp. Think about a cookie recipe. Take out the tenderizing egg yolks, the moist brown sugar, and the butter. You’ll be left with very crisp hockey pucks. Not something we want in our chocolate chip cookies, but definitely the crisp texture we’re after for shredded hash browns.
Potatoes are loaded with moisture, which makes browning difficult.
Immediately after shredding the potatoes, place them into a large bowl lined with paper towels and squeeze the heck out of them with more paper towels on top. Grab more paper towels if you need to and just keep squeezing. Alternatively, you could shred the potatoes onto a kitchen towel, wrap them up, and squeeze them out over the sink.
(2) Cook them. I learned this from Blue Apron. You could either bake in the oven or cook the whole potato in the microwave until it’s tender. I don’t do it that way. Because I don’t have patience to wait for the potato to cool down before shredding it. So, I shred the potato, squeeze as explained above, and then par cook in the microwave, wrapped in paper towels, for 2 minutes. Why do I do this? It gets the cooking process started and the heat creates a layer of starch around the exterior. When fried, the extra starch dehydrates and creates that crispy crust.
This little par bake allows the shredded potatoes to get that brown crust quite quickly, quite evenly, and helps to keep the centers of the potato shreds soft.
Ok, now that you’ve read my obsessive spiel on crispy hash browns, let’s get to the breakfast skillet toppings. My crispy potatoes lend the perfect “bed” for sautéed peppers, bacon crumbles, eggs, and smoky gouda cheese. Or any cheese you prefer, really. It’s your typical eggs and hash breakfast, only taken to the next level.
I used both red and green peppers to add a little color to the dish, which is actually quite perfect for this time of year! I used thick-cut bacon which was a happy mistake. It was ridiculous……ly awesome.
Let’s not forget about the eggs. 4 eggs is plenty for us, but you could easily squeeze 6 eggs on top of this breakfast skillet.
The best part about this incredibly flavorful, crisp, cheesy, eggy, bacon packed breakfast is that it only takes one pan to make. Yup, this diner inspired dish is a one pan recipe you can whip up for brunch—or even dinner. The breakfast skillet you see here (plus a few more test recipes) was brinner a few times last week.
Check out my step-by-step photos below for some visuals. Living a gluten free lifestyle? Great news! This recipe joins my easy frittata recipe and my other gluten free recipes as “delicious, not only for a gluten free recipe.” Eat up!
And if you’re looking to pair your breakfast with a little something sweet, these cinnamon rolls are the perfect treat.Print
Hash Brown Breakfast Skillet
- Prep Time: 40 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 50 minutes
- Yield: serves 4
- Category: Breakfast
- Method: Cooking
- Cuisine: American
Super simple one pan breakfast prepared in a skillet. This brunch dish starts with super crispy shredded hash browns, peppers, some bacon, and is finished off with eggs and melty cheese.
- 2 medium Russet or Yukon Gold potatoes (or sweet potatoes)
- 3 strips bacon*
- 1 large bell pepper, chopped (I used 1/2 of a red and 1/2 of a green)
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 4 large eggs*
- 1/3 cup shredded smoked gouda cheese*
- optional: chopped fresh or dried parsley
- Begin shredding the potatoes by using the largest holes of your box grater. Wash and scrub the potatoes clean. You can peel them or leave the peels on, whichever you prefer. I always peel them when I make shredded hash. Place the shredded potato in a large bowl lined with a couple paper towels. Top with more paper towels and press down hard so the paper towels can absorb a lot of the moisture. You want a lot of the moisture gone, so just keep squeezing and using new paper towels as necessary. Alternatively, you can shred the potatoes onto a kitchen towel, wrap them up, and squeeze them out over the sink.
- Transfer the shredded potatoes to a plate lined with two layers of paper towels. Cook in the microwave on high for 2 minutes– see notes in my post about why you are doing this. Set the potatoes aside.
- Place a 10 – 12 inch skillet on the stove. Bacon should always begin in a cold pan, so before you turn the heat on, lay out your three strips on the pan. Then, turn the heat on low. Cook the bacon on both sides just before they become crispy. They will go back onto the stove and then in the oven, so they have more time to cook later in this recipe. Remove from heat, reserve the grease, and set bacon on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb some grease. Once the bacon is slightly cool, you can chop it up.
- Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C).
- Turn the stove heat up to medium. When bacon grease begins to simmer, add the shredded potatoes. Give them a quick mix with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. Allow to cook for about 2 minutes, untouched. Add the chopped pepper, salt, and pepper. Stir things around once or twice, then flatten everything out using the back of a wooden spoon or spatula. Allow to cook, untouched for 3 minutes. Stir, then allow to cook for 2 more minutes. The potatoes should be getting quite brown at this point. If not, continue to cook a little longer while stirring occasionally until they are. Stir in the chopped bacon and cook for 2 minutes. Remove skillet from the heat and flatten out the top of the hash using the back of a wooden spoon or spatula. Then, using the back of a spoon, make 4 shallow indentations into the hash. Crack an egg into each indentation. Top with shredded cheese (I usually sprinkle it around the eggs).
- Transfer skillet to the oven and bake until the egg whites set, about 8-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste (usually I just add more pepper) and top with the parsley. Serve immediately.
- Make Ahead Instructions: This is best enjoyed right away. Leftovers keep well in the refrigerator for a day or two.
- Don’t Eat Bacon? If you do not eat bacon, you can leave it out. Since we cook the potatoes in the bacon grease, use 2 Tablespoons of unsalted butter instead.
- Eggs: You could easily fit 6 eggs if you’re feeding a larger family.
- Cheese: I love smoked gouda and the smoky flavor it brings to this dish. However, you can use your favorite cheese. I’ve made this other times using shredded mozzarella, shredded Mexican blend cheese, and shredded pepper jack (so good!).
Keywords: crispy hash breakfast skillet
Start with the potatoes. Peel (it’s optional to peel them!) and shred 2 medium large-ish potatoes. Squeeze out the moisture as directed in the recipe above. Then, cook in the microwave for 2 minutes. Set them aside.
Now, the bacon. 3 strips of bacon, cooked then crumbled. Don’t cook until extremely crisp because the bacon will be cooked again in a few more steps. Keep the grease in the pan.
Per the written recipe above, into the leftover bacon grease goes the potatoes and chopped bell pepper over medium high heat. I used half of a green pepper and half red. Add salt and pepper. Do not stir around too much. You want the potatoes to really brown.
Add the bacon. Notice how the potatoes are becoming golden?
Remove from heat and make 4 indentations into the top of the hash using the back of a spoon. Crack the eggs in these indentations.
Bake until the egg whites are set, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley and more pepper (both optional). Serve and be amazed at how quick and easy a gourmet tasting, comforting breakfast can be!
Reader Comments & Reviews
Is it possible to make this with a different protein? How would you suggest?
Absolutely! This is a very forgiving recipe so you can use whichever protein you wish instead of the bacon (sausage would be great!) or you can simply leave the bacon out – see recipe notes.
Thank you loved this recipe! Could of squeezed more water out of potatoes.
First attempt and I know I didn’t get enough moisture out despite using at least 10 paper towels. I think next time I’ll try a salad spinner first and then follow up with the paper towels.
I’ve learned a trick to remove the moisture. I’ve been using a cloth turkey stuffing bag to squeeze liquid from grated zucchini for muffins. Put spuds in.the bag and squeeze. It should work. I hated wasting paper towel. Bonus to this method is the bag is washable
Great recipe! Because I’m lazy, I used frozen sliced bell peppers and onions and fresh hash browns (from the refrigerated section at the grocery store). I will definitely make again!
I literally can’t get the potatoes to get crispy, no matter how much I squeeze the moisture out of them. It takes amazing otherwise, just some goopy potatoes
Sunday morning is a special cooked breakfast day and I wanted something with potatoes and poached eggs. This is so yummy!! Must admit that I wanted to use up some hash brown potatoes I had on hand, so precooked like you suggested, and it turned out not too bad. I a sure made from scratch would have been even better — next time.
Made this last night but added onions in with the peppers, and mushrooms added in right before the eggs, and did it on a cast iron skillet on a Weber charcoal kettle grill. After adding the eggs I put the lid on. It was amazing and I’ll probably make it again tonight.
Mmm. So good. We don’t really keep peppers around our house, so I threw in some onion, scallions, and spinach instead. A perfect breakfast for a Sunday morning! Thinking about introducing this recipe to my family when they come up for Christmas. Thanks!
This. Was. SO. Yummy! Thanks for sharing the recipe! Was looking for a breakfast skillet recipe and so glad I found yours! I absolutely enjoyed it! My bacon wasn’t as thick and I only had red bell peppers at home but I love that the recipe didn’t need that many ingredients to taste to wonderful. Will definitely make this again =).
Holy flippin’ cow! I LOVE this recipe!
You have “officially” turned me into a hashbrown snob. 🙂
Thank you for posting this. I never could get my hashbrowns to turn out quite right. This time they were perfect.
Have a wonderful day!
Hi Sally! I was wondering if there was any way I would be able to cook this on just a stovetop! I live in a dorm at the moment and we don’t have an oven but I really want to try this recipe!
Yes, absolutely. Instead of transferring to the oven, simply stir the eggs around into the hash to make sure they cook through.
We just made this on a whim and it was GREAT.
We used instant hash browns (from Costco), but still used the paper towel trick and it worked really well to crisp up the potatoes. We also added in onion, zucchini, and used cheddar cheese instead of gouda. It was super yummy. Next time we’re going to try it with sausage instead of bacon. You could easily make this into a Denver/Southwest dish by adding some jalapenos and/or a couple of tablespoons of salsa.
Very versatile dish! We loved it and will definitely make it again; thank you!
I can’t wait to make this for myself, but my husband does not like bell peppers or onions. Any suggestions on great tasting substitutions?
How about sun dried tomatoes (for great flavor!), zucchini, or chopped broccoli for a little crunch?