Roast Beef Hash

Topped with an egg, this dish transforms leftovers into something crisp, aromatic, and indulgent.

A plate of roast beef hash with a fried egg on top.

Serious Eats

Why It Works

  • Thoroughly crisping the potatoes adds texture and dimension to the finished dish.

The glories of roast beef hash don't make a lot of sense until you've got a hunk of cooked roast beef ready to go in the fridge. This is a leftover meal, and yet it manages to change the ingredients into something crisp, aromatic, and indulgent. When topped with an egg it can make a bountiful breakfast—or a very filling dinner. I liked this better than the original roast dinner.

This is adapted from Saveur magazine, which in turn got it from James Beard. It's as good as any place to start.

Though the roast beef gets top billing, the potatoes are just as important. Leftover boiled potatoes would probably work better, but freshly boiled spuds are OK in a pinch. It's just about getting the potatoes as crisp as possible, which is why the recipe keeps the heat at medium-high most of the time. If it looks like things are moving from crunchy to burnt, just reduce the heat. It may take a little while longer, but it's worth it.

This recipe was originally published as part of the column "Dinner Tonight." As noted above, it was adapted from a recipe from Saveur magazine.

February 2009

Recipe Facts



Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 70 mins
Total: 90 mins
Serves: 2 servings

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  • 1/4 cup canola oil

  • 2 cups Yukon Gold potatoes

  • 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped

  • 2 cups roast beef, diced in 1/4 inch cubes

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped

  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne

  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg

  • Salt and pepper

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

  • 2 eggs


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the potatoes and cook until tender, about 15-20 minutes. A knife should easily slip into them. Remove and stash in the fridge for 15 minutes or so while you prep the rest of the ingredients. Then dice the potatoes into 1/4 inch cubes.

  2. Pour the oil into a large skillet over medium-high heat. Dump in the potatoes and cook for 10 minutes or so, stirring occasionally, until they begin to brown. Add the onion and cook for another 10 minutes, or until they are very soft.

  3. Add the roast beef, garlic, thyme, cayenne, and nutmeg. Cook for 5 more minutes, stirring occasionally.

  4. Pour in the heavy cream and stir until distributed. Then press down on the hash with the back of a spatula and cook for a final 10 minutes, stirring every 2 minutes until very crispy and browned. Season with salt and pepper. Top with a fried egg.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
875 Calories
60g Fat
42g Carbs
42g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 2
Amount per serving
Calories 875
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 60g 78%
Saturated Fat 20g 98%
Cholesterol 335mg 112%
Sodium 2051mg 89%
Total Carbohydrate 42g 15%
Dietary Fiber 4g 15%
Total Sugars 5g
Protein 42g
Vitamin C 19mg 95%
Calcium 113mg 9%
Iron 6mg 34%
Potassium 2100mg 45%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)