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poached eggs with n'duja on top of herbed yogurt
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Turkish Eggs with Herbed Yogurt (Cilbir)

Perfect poached eggs are served on top of a garlicky, herbed yogurt with a spicy melted butter + 'nduja sauce. Serve with pita or crusty baguette. Simple, yet overwhelmingly satisfying!
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time20 mins
Course: Breakfast
Cuisine: Turkish
Keyword: cilbir, herbed yogurt sauce, how to make turkish eggs, how to poach eggs, spicy butter sauce, turkish eggs, what is 'nduja
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 339kcal
Author: ari | well seasoned


For the herbed yogurt

  • 1 ½ cups whole milk Greek yogurt
  • cup ricotta
  • 2 Tbsp chopped dill plus more for garnish
  • 1 garlic clove finely chopped

For the spicy sauce

  • 3 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 Tbsp 'nduja see notes below for substitutions

For serving

  • 4-8 poached eggs recommended 2 per person -- instructions included below
  • 1 tsp distilled white vinegar
  • crusty baguette or pita
  • maldon sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Recommended equipment:

  • mortar and pestle but not a necessity!


Make herbed yogurt

  • In a large bowl, combine yogurt, ricotta, and dill.
  • Place garlic clove in mortar, if using, then crush with pestle into a paste. Alternatively, you can place chopped garlic on a cutting board, add a ½ tsp kosher salt, and push down into the garlic + salt with the blade of a knife. Do this repeatedly, smushing it down until the salt breaks the garlic down into a paste-like consistency.
  • Add garlic to yogurt, then whisk until smooth. Set aside.
    herbed garlic yogurt

Make spicy sauce:

  • Place butter and 'nduja (or substitute, see note below) in a pan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring often to break down 'nduja, until melted and fragrant, about 2-3 minutes. Transfer sauce to a serve bowl and set aside.

Poach eggs

  • Bring a large pot of water to a gentle simmer - not boil! Add 1 tsp distilled white vinegar.
  • When hot, use the back of a wooden spoon to swirl the water into a whirlpool. Let settle, then add additional eggs, making sure not to overcrowd the pot. You can do this in batches if cooking more than 4-6 eggs.
  • Allow eggs to cook for 3-4 minutes for a runny yolk. Carefully transfer with a slotted spoon to a paper towel-lined plate to dry, then serve immediately. See note below to make eggs a few days ahead!

To serve

  • Divide yogurt evenly between bowls. Top each with two poached eggs, then spoon 'nduja sauce on top. Garnish with additional fresh dill, then sprinkle a pinch of flaky sea salt on top of each egg. Serve immediately with pita or crusty baguette.


If you can't find 'nduja, substitute with 1 tsp of Aleppo pepper (traditional in cilbir) or use 1 tsp smoked paprika + 1 tsp red pepper flakes to get that heat.
You can poach eggs up to 3 days in advance. Follow instructions above, then when finished cooking, transfer eggs to an ice bath. Store in a sealed container in the refrigerator with cold water for up to 3 days. To reheat, bring a large pot of water to a gentle simmer. Place eggs in water and allow to reheat for 2 minutes. Drain with a slotted spoon and serve immediately.
Nutrition facts do not include pita or baguette.


Serving: 2eggs + ¼ yogurt + ¼ sauce | Calories: 339kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 24.9g | Saturated Fat: 12.5g | Cholesterol: 414mg | Sodium: 387mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 3.9g
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