Savory Herb and Lemon Yogurt Eggs

Savory Herb and Lemon Yogurt Eggs

Late spring and early summer always make me think of brunch. What’s better than sitting outside on a warm morning, preferably under a shade tree in someone’s garden, enjoying a nice breakfast and maybe a mimosa or two? This dish of fried eggs over a savory herb and lemon yogurt is a perfect brunch dish for this time of year–it’s simple to put together from ingredients which you might already have on hand, it has a touch of elegance to it, and it celebrates those Mediterranean flavors which always feel right when the weather is warm.

This recipe is inspired by the Turkish dish cilbir, though it is a few derivations down the line. Cilbir is traditionally made with spiced butter poured over a base of yogurt and topped with eggs. My first derivation of cilbur was an Asian-inspired take, chili crisp eggs, using a homemade chili crisp in lieu of the spiced butter. That recipe is still a favorite breakfast of ours, but it was too spicy for some folks, which got me thinking about how I could remove the heat. Eventually, this Mediterranean version popped into my head.

In this recipe, we use the same technique that I use to make chili crisp or chili oil, but instead of infusing the oil with a boatload of heat, we instead perfume it with garlic, lemon zest, oregano, sesame seeds, and just a hint of red pepper (if you want). The result is a wonderful infused oil that is bright, herbal, savory, and an excellent complement to cool yogurt and fried eggs.

While I envision this as a brunch dish, it would also make a wonderful light dinner for a warm night. Alongside a green salad and a glass of white wine, it would be perfect. Just be sure you have plenty of bread on hand, as you’re going to want it to sop up all of that delicious yogurt and olive oil.


savory herb and lemon yogurt eggs

Savory Herb and Lemon Yogurt Eggs

Greek yogurt and olive oil infused with garlic, herbs, and lemon serve as a delicious, savory base for fried eggs. This riff on cilbir is savory and bright, a perfect brunch dish for the spring and summer months, and one you can put on the table in a flash.
Course Breakfast, Main Course
Cuisine American, Mediterranean
Servings 2 servings


For the infused oil

  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper (optional)
  • ½ tsp salt

For Serving

  • 1 ½ cups plain, low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 4 fried eggs
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped parsley
  • toasted bread
  • lemon juice to taste


  • Add the olive oil to a small saucepan or skillet over medium heat and warm until it just begins to smoke.
  • As soon as the oil shows the first wisp of smoke, remove it from heat and pour in the garlic, lemon zest, sesame seeds, oregano, salt, and crushed red pepper, if you are using it. Swirl this around while the lingering heat of the oil cooks it. Allow to cool for a few minutes.
  • Spoon the Greek yogurt over two plates in a thick layer, then top it with the infused oil. Place two fried eggs on top then give it a squeeze of lemon and sprinkle over the parsley. Serve with toasted bread.


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