The Tunisian Huevos Rancheros

Spicy egg dishes are found the world over. Here’s a yummy, easy one to find in your campsite.

Shakshuka (pronounced shahk-SHOO-kah, for inquiring minds) is one of those dishes of which many cultures have their own variation (Mexico’s huevos rancheros, Italy’s eggs in purgatory, and Andalusia’s huevos flamenca are dishes reminiscent of shakshuka), and nearly every North African and Middle Eastern country to this day insist that shakshuka is “theirs.” While it seems that Tunisia is likely the originator of this dish, it also appears that Libya, Yemen, Morocco, Algeria, Egypt, and Israel all want to stake their claim on shakshuka as well. It makes sense: this dish is cheap, easy, hearty, and above all: delicious. All reasons as to why shakshuka is an excellent camping meal as well.

This meal is great for both breakfast and dinner. The number of eggs you use depends on the size of your pot, as well as your desired serving size. I’d recommend at least one egg per person for breakfast, or two eggs per person for dinner. Take care when cracking the eggs directly into the sauce – the shells are a pain to try to pick out. If you prefer, crack each egg into a bowl and then slip them into the sauce one by one. We chose to use poblano peppers in our version because they are pretty middle of the road in terms of heat. If you want a milder shakshuka, you can use red bell peppers. If you’re a fan of spicier food, you could use or add a jalapeño or two.



Serves 2 | Total time: 25 minutes

1 tablespoon butter (or olive oil)
2 poblano peppers, seeded and diced
1 small onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1 (14.5 oz) can diced tomatoes
2-4 eggs
¼ cup goat cheese, crumbled
½ loaf crusty French bread
salt & pepper

Heat butter in your pot over medium heat. Once melted, add the poblano peppers and onions, stir to coat, and cook for 5 minutes or until beginning to brown, stirring as needed. Add the garlic, cumin, and paprika and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add the tomatoes and their juices, along with ½ cup water. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes to allow the mixture to thicken.

Crack the eggs into the sauce, spacing them evenly apart. Cover and allow the eggs to cook until the whites have set and the yolk is to your prefered consistency, 5-7 minutes. You can spoon the sauce over the top as needed to encourage them to cook thoroughly.

Season to taste. Serve immediately with goat cheese and a few slices of crusty French bread.

Camp Notes is a big high five to the fun of sleeping outdoors and all that comes along with it. You know, camping and stuff.


Fresh Off the Grid is Michael van Vliet and Megan McDuffie. Read more at Fresh of the Grid at
  • tom

    mexico has not only huevos rancheros, but another egg dish i discovered last fall in baja sur. huevos divorciados! the oval plate has one egg on the left, cooked to your order, on green chile. on the right side of the platter is another egg cooked to your order, on red chile. in between the two eggs are chilaquiles. of course huevos has a double meaning in Mexican Spanish….que triste el matrimonio!

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