The Egg McMuffin Makeover

March 9, 2011   33 Comments

Seems like everyone and their house, dog, and spouses get makeovers. Perhaps my favorite makeover moment was Oprah's attempt at improving stay-at-home mothers who live in their sweats.

Breakfast Sandwich Recipe

Yes, give a woman a great haircut and some designer clothes and you will have a better looking gal. But, she will hate how itchy and tight her clothes have become and she will revert back to that ponytail when you aren't looking.

What about the Egg McMuffin? If you follow Snack Girl, you know she has been searching for a delicious breakfast sandwich. See: Starbucks Breakfast Sandwich and McDonald's Egg McMuffin.

And, the commenters on these posts kept telling me to make my own sandwich and stop trying to waste my money at fast food venues.

Here is my attempt at an "instant" breakfast sandwich. How is it instant? I made 9 of them and stored them in the refrigerator. I heated them up in the microwave and handed them to my family as we got ready for work and school.

How did it go? I will say that the pre-made breakfast sandwiches were successful - but still not as good as just making the sandwich the morning you want to eat it.

I tried freezing the sandwiches and that was a FAILURE as when I thawed them in the microwave the eggs turned into RUBBER. argh.

How does Starbucks do it? Their sandwich was pre-frozen, heated in a microwave, and delicious.

Oh well. What I learned is DO NOT heat them in the microwave for longer than 30 seconds and they will be fine.

I used Thomas's whole grain English muffins because they are available nationwide and are 100% whole grain, one egg per sandwich, and THIN slices of real cheddar cheese and ham from the deli department of my supermarket.

The result was good - and much improved by a dash of ketchup. (maybe a little Tabasco?) But, interestingly, I wasn't able to cut down on the calories or sodium when I made my own sandwich.

It seems that my choices of english muffin introduced 312 mg of sodium and with the ham and cheese - there was 643 mg of sodium in my sandwich. The Egg McMuffin has 820 mg of sodium and there is 840 mg in the Starbucks sandwich, so I am doing better - but not as good as I would like.

Mine also didn't have fewer calories than the fast food brands, nor was mine cheaper to make than the Egg McMuffin. It was cheaper than the Starbucks version.

Please share your secrets on making delicious breakfast sandwiches. I can use them!


Breakfast Sandwich Recipe

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(makes 9)

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9 eggs
1/3 pound thinly sliced ham
1/3 pound thinly sliced cheddar cheese
2 packages 100% whole grain English muffins


Heat oven to 400F. Crack eggs into bowl and whisk until blended. Spray 8 inch square pan with non-stick spray and pour eggs into pan. Bake for 8 minutes. Cut 9 square pieces and assemble sandwiches. Open muffin, put on egg, 1/2 slice cheese, and 1/2 slice ham. Store in fridge until ready to eat. Heat for 30 seconds in microwave before serving.

Nutrition Facts

276 calories, 11.6 g fat, 27.7 g carbohydrates, 17.2 g protein, 4.6 g fiber, 643 mg sodium, 7 Points+ per sandwich

Points values are calculated by Snack Girl and are provided for information only. See all Snack Girl Recipes

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While your may not be cheaper or technically heathier, you should feel good knowing that you made it yourself without the use of preservatives or artificial ingredients. I use organic ingredients to make mine, so even if it's a little more expensive and a little more work to make it myself, I know I'm getting the best quality. Maybe cut out the meat to save a little sodium and cost? I don't find that I need meat on mine, tastes just as good without. Also, I use white cheddar, it tastes soo much better and doesn't have the artificial bad things that make cheese orange. A really good cheese would bump up the taste if you don't use meat.

I make breakfast sandwiches almost every morning. One of my favorites to make uses:

1 100 calorie Arnold Sandwich Thin
3 Egg Whites
2 Tablespoons Whipped Chive Cream Cheese
Sliced Onion

Crack eggs and separate whites into a microwave safe bowl. Toast the sandwich thin in a toaster. Put bowl of eggs in the microwave for 1 min. 30 seconds. When bread is done, spread a tablespoon of cream cheese on each side. When eggs are finished, put on one side of the bread. Add sliced onion, 1 tablespoon of salsa or hot sauce. Assemble sandwich and enjoy!

Tried making you own english muffins? Not nearly as difficult as one would think 136mg sodium in the recipe I use Switch the white flour for whole wheat and you got yourself a pretty good substitute

I use these-…

2 "fried" egg whites with a handful of chopped spinach (and sliced tomato if I have any)

1 thin slice Tillamook cheddar

1 slice Jones Canadian Bacon

have you tried the Power Sandwich at Panera? all natural ingredients...sounds delicious - I would eat without the bread, since i don't do carbs, and this would eliminate 150 cals & 280 mg sodium

My version of an egg mcmuffin is a homemade breakfast burrito. While it doesn't save any calories, it is by far the most delicious and filling breakfast I make.

1 Eggland's Best egg (yes, the brand matters)

1/2 oz sliced havarti cheese

1 slice reduced sodium bacon

1 whole wheat tortilla (Mission Healthy Heart - soft taco size)

hot sauce to taste

I cook the egg as if it were an omelette and fold the cheese and crumble the bacon in the middle.

This version is about 300 calories depending on the tortilla and bacon that is used.

Snack Girl - have you ever reviewed Eggland's Best eggs? I know they are much pricier, but they are by far the best eggs I've ever eaten. When I cook them for family and friends, I often get asked what kind of eggs they are because it is a noticeable difference. Highly recommended!

Thanks so much for all these great ideas! I can't wait to try them.

@Carrie - I have not tried Eggland's Best - I will take a look - my neighbors have chickens so I am lucky and get fresh eggs from next door.

I absolutely love the Panera Power Sandwich. The whole grain bread, white cheddar cheese, fresh egg and smoked ham have so much flavor! I just looked up the stats:

Calories = 330
Cal from Fat = 120
Fat = 14
Sodium = 830
Protein = 22

In comparing it to the McDOnald's McMuffin, I'm shocked to find that the McMuffin is lower in all those categories (except protein @ 18). I had justified the time spent parking & walking into Panera with the fact that the sandwich seemed healthier, but I think I'll stick with the drive thru when I can't eat breakfast at home.

Unfortunately I woke up late this morning and hit Mcdonald's drive thru on the way to work. I got the value meal, sausage egg & cheese w/ hash brown and some oj.... even worse with the sausage I'm sure! A bit disappointed with myself, but I'll try and make it up the rest of the day! Anyway, when I make my own, I use Thomas' whole wheat english muffin, 2 scrambled eggs in the microwave and a slice of cheese... touch of ketchup to make it not as dry... I'm always really full off of it, so I could probably reduce it to one egg.. and get better quality cheese (I use the pre-packaged individual slices) sometimes.

Here's my version. To cut down on calories I use only one side of the bread for each sandwich. There are 4 of us, so it works out. I bake egg whites in a muffin tin. In each cup I put a 1/4 of egg whites, half a laughing cow wedge, some spinach a little slice of mushroom and a 1/4 slice of turkey bacon. I do not add salt, but do sprinkle a little pepper and paprika. Bake for 20 mins in a 400 degree oven. I refrigerate them for about a week. Heat them up in the toaster oven.

Instead of english muffins, have you considered using Western alternative bagels? I think they have a less dry texture and hold up well in this type of sandwich. I like to use turkey bacon and egg whites and add some baby spinach in my sandwiches. And Trader Joe's has a great hot and sweet mustard that goes well with this.

I use morning star sausage for mine...I usually don't like the "fake meat" stuff..but those patties are awesome!

Thanks for your egg muffin makeover and ...

Wow, I'm reading everyone's recipes in the comments section and they are awesome! So many things to try. Thanks to everyone posting comments with other suggestions!! So many things that I wanna try! :)

Starbucks does not use a microwave to heat up their sandwiches...they use a very powerful convection oven that is set to the exact amount of time it takes for each of their sandwiches or wraps. Also all of the sandwiches are taken out of the freezer the night before and refrigerated so that they defrost. So maybe you could take yours out of the freezer the night before and put them in the oven or toaster oven instead in the morning?? worth a try :)

My recipe is very similar to the others who use the Thomas whole wheat English Muffins, the only difference being I use Cholula as my hot sauce which I mix with the eggs when I make it. I also use canadian bacon. I guess I don't really look at the sodium/calories as much as I am assured that I am using quality ingredients with no preservatives, etc.

Here's mine:

-Put a little bit of butter in an oven proof custard cup, add one egg per cup and sprinkle on some shredded Mexican cheese, stir w/ fork

-Bake at 350F until egg puffs

-Serve on a Trader Joe's British muffin or crumpet

-You can serve with a breakfast meat of choice

(make day of though, I don't suggest saving it for later...)

I've made plenty of premade breakfast sandwhiches and froze them and never had a problem with the eggs being rubbery. I read online that if you use salt in the egg before freezing it it can make the egg rubbery. So what I do is use a tad bit of butter on my biscuit or english muffin and put a bit of salt on the butter, then put thin slices as cheese to act as a barrier for the salt and glue to keep the sandwhich together once you reheat. My boyfriend loved when I made up a ton of these so all he had to do was grab them out of the freezer and pop them in the microwave when he got hungry at work.

You can keep things from getting rubbery while re-heating in the microwave by using 50% power. It takes a little longer to heat up but it doesn't get hard or rubbery.

My morning breakfast sandwich consists of...

1/4 cup Egg Beater or whites only egg substitute

pinch of shredded cheese
seasoned to taste
1 piece of turkey bacon

and light onions and chives cream cheese spread

on a Thomas Everything Bagelthin

I never considered premaking these! I always just try to beat the clock in the mornings. I'm definitely going to try doing these the night before this week. Thank you!

Cutting out the yolk is where I save the most calories. I make two egg whites (32 cal) for half the calories in one whole egg. I cook them in a Nordicware microwave egg poacher for one minute. I top them with a slice of deli thin smoked ham (20 cal), and half a slice of 2% american cheese (23 cal) and put it in a 100 calorie thomas english muffin. The whole thing is about 175 calories and the longest part is toasting the muffin.

I use a whole wheat english muffin (120 calories), forgo the cheese for a thin layer of Crofters pomegrante jelly (~10 cals) and use a slice of Jennio Turkey bacon (20 calories) for a 200 calorie sandwich. I love the salty sweet combination.

Looking for ideas for breakfast food and saw your post about freezing sandwich. I make my egg patties in advance and add a few mushrooms peppers and onions to the patty. Freeze When ready to eat, microwave a frozen patty for a minute or so. Throw the ham and cheese on a whole wheat pita add the warmed egg patty and then microwave for a 30 - 45 secs. and it is by far the best egg sandwich. Not rubber. I think the moisture from the veggies is what save it. Give it a try.

I make these sometimes too, in a similar fashion to yours. Then, I found a recipe I loved and nixed that sandwich all together. My all time, best quickie breakfast:

Two toaster waffles, whole grain, organic (Like Eggo but better)

1 Tbsp Teddy Natural Peanut butter

Half a small banana

I toast the waffles (usually eat the other half of the banana while waiting) then spread peanut butter on one waffle. Slice the banana and arrange on the peanut buttered waffle, and top with the other waffle.

Its easily portable, delicious, and fills me right til lunch. its fast and easy!

For eggs, I recommend eggs from "Pasture raised hens"

I began getting the eggs from pasture raised hens. They are awesome!

-Much, much tastier & more nutritious than store bought eggs. Pasture hens run wild all day in the pasture eating seeds, grass and bugs like natural birds. These "happy hens" produce incredibly delicious eggs with a very yellow yolk that is incredibly fresh. You can very easily find Pasture raised eggs anywhere you live if you do a Google Search such as : Pasture raised eggs, Maryland.

There are millions of farms that sell directly to the public. I go on the weekend about 2x per month.

Go try it. Not only is it a nice drive, but you'll be hysterical seeing hundreds of chickens milling about in the pasture with the cows & sheep. Also, pasture raised chickens are truly free raised (cage free still means chickens are jam packed side by side in an indoor chicken house but still never see the light of day).

I promise, once you eat a pasture raised chicken egg, you;ll never, ever buy a store bought egg again!!!

Wow, you girls are rocking your egg sandwiches! Thanks for all of these tips. I make egg sandwiches many mornings, sometimes with sandwich thins, which cut the calories a bit and aren't so dry. I grew up on Egg McMuffins but over the years I've been eating a little healthier and now they just taste like salt licks, very disappointing. I'm always surprised at how much salt there is in food.

I have a morning sandwich almost every day.

Thomas whole grain english muffin - 3 points

1 egg - 2 points (or egg whites for 1 point)

Morning Star veggie sausage patty - awesome!! - 2 points

Jarlsberg light cheese - 1 point

I found a microwave single egg maker at Wegmans and my family loves using this for sandwiches.

You just spritz bottom with a little oil or spray butter, crack one egg into it, break up the yolk and add salt and pepper and microwave for 60 seconds. We love it on 100 calorie english muffins with a slice of low fat cheese. You certainly could use 2 eggs and eliminate the yolk if you prefer. No pans to clean up. And the kids make their own.

Can you freeze these ahead of time?

How do you get the eggs to firm up evenly? I tried this and only the outside 2 or 3 inches firmed up in the time recommended... I baked longer, but was scared to burn the outside bits, so tried to microwave them instead. The whole bit was just disastrous, lol.

No need to make ahead! It takes 45 seconds to "poach" an egg in the microwave 1. crack egg into cup, cover w/ napkin, nuke; 2.toast your choice of bread 3. put egg between bread. Go! :)

These are to TDF (to die for).

1 Johnsonville Turkey Sausage

1 Slice Beef Steak Rye, cut in half to toast

1 slice fat free or light cheese.

Heat Sausage in microwave and cut in half, place on toasted rye, arrange cheese on toast and put together and wrap in paper towel. Heat for 12-15 seconds.

I make breakfast sandwiches to take to work. Here is the recipe. 1/3 cup Egg Beaters, 1 slice of Jones Canadian Ham, 1 slice of Weight Watchers cheese and 2 slices of Sara Lee light whole wheat bread (toasted). Calories 159.1, fat 0.8g, sodium 638.6g, carb 20.1g, fiber 5.0g, sugar 2.0g, protein 18.8g - Not too bad!!

You need to try this recipe ...

2 Ingredient Weight Watchers Bagels


To make 1 cup self-rising flour sift together

1 cup flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
To make bagels
1 cup of self rising flour
1 cup Fage Total 0% Greek Yogurt
1 Egg for egg wash

Trader Joe's Everything But the Bagel seasoning

Instructions Preheat oven to 350º

1. Combine 1 cup of self-rising flour and 1 cup of Fage Total 0% Greek Yogurt in a bowl until a dough starts to form.

2. Turn dough on a lightly floured surface and brush your hands with a bit of flour.

3. Knead and divide into 4 parts.

4. Roll out each dough ball to form a rope and pinch the ends of each rope together to make a circle. You will have four bagels.

5. Beat one egg and brush over the bagels and sprinkle with Trader Joe's Everything but the Bagel seasoning.

6. Bake at 350 degrees on a pan sprayed with cooking spray for 23 minutes and 500 degrees for 2 minutes so the tops can brown.

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