It’s been decades since McDonald’s introduced the blockbuster Egg McMuffin, and until recently, the breakfast sandwich has remained largely the province of the drive-thru and the Kraft Singles–slinging corner deli. Lately, though, like other iconic American foodstuffs—the hamburger and the hot dog come to mind—the humble egg sandwich has been subject to ingredient upgrades and fancy-chef tweaks. It only makes sense: Why settle for an old kaiser roll and an industrial egg when today’s painstakingly DIY locavore cooks are willing to bake their own biscuits, grind their own sausage, and procure their eggs from farms where pastured chickens have the run of the place?
A breakfast sandwich worth waking up early for: The super-fresh eggs come from contented Lancaster, Pennsylvania, chickens; the thick, smoky bacon from Faicco’s; and the breakfast sausage, kaiser rolls, and buttermilk biscuits are made in-house.
$9; 465 Court St., at Luquer St., Carroll Gardens; 718-254-0327. Photo: Hannah Whitaker
This is the egg sandwich that launched the trend and made Colonel Bill Newsom a household name among country-ham-loving New Yorkers.
$4.75; 135 N. 5th St., nr. Bedford Ave., Williamsburg; 718-302-5151 Photo: Hannah Whitaker
A meatless version, but a good one: softly scrambled eggs with bits of fried sage, melted Cheddar, and the oddly delicious addition of mayo.
$7; 18 Bedford Ave., at Lorimer St., Greenpoint; 718-383-5345. Photo: Hannah Whitaker
Scrambled egg, chewy bacon, and a slab of piquant Cheddar inhabit a split slice of Grandaisy pizza bianca. Available for brunch and lunch in both Brooklyn and Manhattan branches, and at Manhattan’s Cafe Pedlar next door.
$10; See frankiesspuntino.com for info. Photo: Hannah Whitaker
The so-called Ship’s Biscuit is a salty square of house-baked focaccia, split and stuffed with excellent ricotta that’s matched in texture by the softest, creamiest scrambled eggs known to man.
$6; 378 Metropolitan Ave., nr. Havemeyer St., Williamsburg; 718-387-4777. Photo: Hannah Whitaker
Momofuku Milk Bar
The pork and egg bun is an unholy mess, but a deeply delicious one, with a deep-fried soft-poached egg spilling its yolk over hunks of pork belly, garnished with cucumber and hoisin.
$9; 207 Second Ave., at 13th St.; no phone. Photo: Hannah Whitaker
Bark Hot Dogs
Bonus points for neatness: Bark cooks its eggs Mickey D’s style into perfect”albeit slightly dense”circles. The bacon is Nueske’s, the cheese Grafton, and”for any Thomas’s detractors out there”the muffins are Bays’.
$4.75; 474 Bergen St., nr. Flatbush Ave., Park Slope; 718-789-1939. Photo: Hannah Whitaker
Organic eggs and Vermont Cheddar play their roles well, as do the optional add-ons. But it’s the sweet, squishy Portuguese muffins, shipped in from Fall River, Massachusetts, that make it special.
$4.75; 18 Ave. B, nr. 2nd St.; 212-477-7137. Photo: Hannah Whitaker