Breakfast Polenta Bowls

In this breakfast polenta bowls, you’ll find  creamy polenta, crispy bacon, sautéed onions and peppers gets topped off with a crispy-edged fried egg.

I have mad love for polenta. It may sound strange but I can’t quite quit it. I want it for dinner. Or to sit on the couch and spoon it straight from the pan and into my mouth… and now I will forever crave it for breakfast.  So basically all day errryday.

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So peep this. I ate both these bowls. I’m not proud but I was blissfully full. Full of creamy polenta,  topped with sautéed green bell pepper and onions, crispy bacon lardons THEN (big gasp) a crispy fried egg tops it off… that drippy yolk kills me. Just kills me.

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You won’t believe how simple and extremely delicious and comforting this breakfast bowl is.

Let’s do this.

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The usual breakfast suspects. I like it.

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Start by tossing the bacon into a cold cast iron skillet and heat over medium.

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Cook, stirring every so often until crispy and gloriously perfect.

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Scoop the bacon pieces out with a slotted spoon and onto a paper towel lined plate.

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Drain off all but a tablespoon of bacon fat. (Save that fat for frying the eggs!!!)

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Toss in the diced onion…

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…the diced green bell pepper…

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…plus a pinch of kosher salt. Cook stirring until the vegetables are soft and tender.

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Transfer those to a medium bowl…

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Add in the crisp bacon pieces and stir to combine.

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Pour two cups of milk into a medium sauce pan.

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Add in a cup of broth, place on the stove top heat over high.

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In the meantime, measure out 3/4 teaspoon of salt and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper.

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Once teeny tiny bubble start to gather on the top of the milk/broth combo… it’s about to come to a boil.

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Reduce the temp to medium or medium-low and pour in the polenta, salt and pepper while whisking.

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Continue to whisk, dodging the bubbling hot polenta, until the milk has been absorbed and the mixture is lusciously creamy. Keep on low and stir to keep the polenta loose.

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The skillet should still be warm from the vegetables, so just heat it back up to medium and add in the bacon fat you saved from earlier. Crack in as many eggs you need or that can fit in the pan and cook according to your preference.

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Divide the polenta by spooning it into bowls. Top with bacon/pepper mixture and a crispy edged fried egg.

Sometimes I like to sprinkle my eggs with salt, cracked black pepper and red pepper flakes for a smidgen of heat.

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Then I go in for the kill, armed with a fork and enjoy every blessed bite and in this case, every bowl too! And the breakfast polenta bowls leftovers are just as fab the next day.

Oh and this isn’t the last of polenta in breakfast form. I guarantee it.


Enjoy! And if you give these Breakfast Polenta Bowls a try, let me know! Snap a photo and tag me on twitter or instagram!

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My cookbook Simply Scratch : 120 Wholesome Homemade Recipes Made Easy is now available! CLICK HERE for details and THANK YOU in advance!


Breakfast Polenta Bowls

Creamy polenta, crispy bacon, sautéed onions and peppers gets topped off with a perfect, crispy-edged fried egg.

Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 40 minutes


6 strips applewood or pecanwood slab bacon, sliced into 1/2 inch pieces

1/2 cup finely diced red onion

1/3 cup finely diced green pepper


2 cups whole milk

1 cup chicken or vegetable broth

1 cup coarsely ground yellow polenta (grits)

3/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

4 eggs

red pepper flakes


Place bacon pieces in a 10-inch cast iron skillet and heat over medium. Stir occasionally until the fat has rendered out and bacon is crispy. Use a slotted spoon to transfer to a paper towel lined plate.

Drain off all but 1 tablespoon of fat, reserving remaining fat for later. Add onions and peppers to skillet, season with 1 pinch of salt and stir to coat in the fat. Sauté until soft and tender. Transfer to a small clean bowl, add in the crispy bacon pieces and stir to combine.

In a medium-size saucepan add milk and broth, heat on high until bubbles just start to form at the top. Whisk in polenta, salt and pepper. Continue to whisk until liquids have been absorbed and the polenta is creamy. Keep on low heat, stirring occasionally to keep it loose.

In the meantime, add remaining bacon fat into skillet and heat over medium. Crack in eggs, cook according to preference. Season cooked eggs with salt, pepper and chili flakes.

Spoon polenta into bowls, top with bacon/pepper mixture, top with a fried egg and torn parsley leaves. Serve immediately.

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22 Responses to “Breakfast Polenta Bowls”

  1. #
    Ashley Shipman — February 20, 2015 at 9:20 am

    Get in my belly.

  2. #
    Kelli H (Made in Sonoma) — February 20, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    That’s my dream breakfast right thur.

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — February 25th, 2015 @ 10:02 am

      Ha ha! Thanks Kelli!

  3. #
    Carol at Wild Goose Tea — February 20, 2015 at 5:50 pm

    I love breakfast food. I would eat this in a New York minute and be utterly delighted. A very good idea.

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — February 25th, 2015 @ 10:01 am

      Thank you Carol! 🙂

  4. #
    Ashley@blondegirlcravings — February 21, 2015 at 12:27 am

    This looks divine!! Looks super hearty and filling, I can see having this for brinner too.

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — February 25th, 2015 @ 10:01 am

      YES! Brinner is my absolute favorite!!

  5. #
    Alison H. — February 21, 2015 at 8:45 am

    You had me at polenta! Then you went and added all my favorite things and created perfection!

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — February 25th, 2015 @ 10:00 am

      Thanks Alison! I could eat this every single day of my life!

  6. #
    Stephanie @ Girl Versus Dough — February 21, 2015 at 4:34 pm

    Dude, I would eat both of those bowls and THEN some. So much yum!

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — February 25th, 2015 @ 9:59 am

      Ha ha! I know riiiight! 🙂 Thanks Stephanie <3

  7. #
    Camille Q — February 22, 2015 at 5:58 pm

    This is dreamy, creamy, delish!!!! Can’t wait to make it. Making another one of your recipies tonight, So this one will have to be tomorrow. And I agree with @blondegirlcravings–brinner!

  8. #
    Mila — February 22, 2015 at 9:30 pm

    I see a handful of sharp cheddar thrown in the grits, and possibly a thin slice of tomato under the egg. And then it’s dinner tomorrow!

    Those bowls make it look even better! I need a few of those, with handles.

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — February 25th, 2015 @ 9:55 am

      YES! Brilliant! And I got the bowls at Pier1 😉

  9. #
    Liz @ Floating Kitchen — February 23, 2015 at 10:54 am

    These are pretty darn gorgeous. I would eat both bowls too!

  10. #
    bev @ bevcooks — February 24, 2015 at 9:12 am

    YESSSS yesyeysyes. I’m smitten for soft polenta, so this is AGUNNAHAPPEN.

  11. #
    danielle — February 25, 2015 at 7:50 pm

    i didn’t have polenta, but i did have grits (the white ones). delicious. i’ll try it with the polenta next time!

  12. #
    Laura @ Laura's Culinary Adventures — February 26, 2015 at 1:39 pm

    Yum! Polenta for breakfast! I can get behind that!

  13. #
    Bri | Bites of Bri — March 3, 2015 at 1:06 pm

    Omg! I seriously just expressed my undying love of polenta last night (while eating it straight from the pot pre-dinner). I’d totally eat both of these. Pinned to make immediately. I like your style!

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — March 3rd, 2015 @ 9:58 pm

      Ah! Polenta lovers unite!! <3

  14. #
    E — March 24, 2015 at 12:40 pm

    I tried this too, with high hopes, for a family breakfast this past weekend… My mom said she’d do the polenta (as we’re from a country where polenta is pretty much national food, so she does know how to make a good one, me… not so much). Sadly, she was reluctant to use the milk & broth mixture and decided to use water when she made the polenta, to which she added a bit of butter to make it more smooth and yummy. Another substitution I made was yellow onion instead of red, as I was out. Sadly, while everyone said it was good, I didn’t find it as flavourful as I was expecting… And I am now wondering why that was, was it the lack of milk & chicken broth in the polenta or was it the yellow onion? The other thing I found eating this is while I don’t mind it in stir fries and other dishes, I wasn’t thrilled by the pepper-onion combo:( Any thoughts on this, Laurie?

    • Laurie McNamara replied: — March 29th, 2015 @ 6:04 pm

      Hi E! It could be any of the reasons you mentioned. Maybe it was using water and not the milk and broth for the polenta… but it could of been the yellow onion, I don’t think they have the same flavor as a red onion. It’s really hard to say but if you give it another try, keep me posted on what you think. I hope you had a lovely weekend! 🙂

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