A classic French sandwich that elevates the humble ham and cheese sandwich to an elegant brunch or lunch dish. It’s essentially a Croque Monsieur topped with a perfectly cooked, sunny-side-up egg. The combination of warm, toasted bread, melted cheese, savory ham, creamy béchamel sauce, and a runny egg is absolutely divine.


  • 8 slices of good quality white bread
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 8 slices of ham
  • 2 cups grated Gruyère cheese (or a similar melting cheese like Emmental)
  • 4 large eggs
  • Optional: 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard for extra flavor


  1. Prepare the Béchamel Sauce: In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of butter. Add flour and stir for about 2 minutes without browning. Gradually whisk in the milk until the mixture is smooth. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until it thickens, about 5 minutes. Add nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Remove from heat.
  2. Assemble the Sandwiches: Spread each slice of bread lightly with butter. Turn 4 slices buttered side down and spread with a thin layer of béchamel sauce. Add a slice of ham and a generous sprinkle of cheese on each. Cover with the remaining bread slices, buttered side up.
  3. Cook the Sandwiches: In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the sandwiches until golden brown on both sides and the cheese is melted, about 3-4 minutes per side.
  4. Add More Béchamel and Cheese: Preheat your broiler. Transfer the sandwiches to a baking sheet. Spread a thin layer of béchamel sauce on top of each sandwich and sprinkle with the remaining cheese.
  5. Broil the Sandwiches: Broil until the cheese on top is bubbling and beginning to brown, about 2-3 minutes.
  6. Fry the Eggs: While the sandwiches are broiling, fry the eggs to your preference (traditionally sunny-side-up) in a non-stick skillet.
  7. Serve: Top each sandwich with a fried egg. Season the egg with a little salt and pepper.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

  • Calories: 650
  • Fat: 38g
  • Carbohydrates: 44g
  • Protein: 40g

Prep and Cooking Time

  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cooking Time: 20 minutes


  • Serves: 4 people

Croque Madame is a deliciously indulgent dish, perfect for a weekend brunch or a special lunch. The crispy, buttery bread, melted cheese, savory ham, creamy béchamel, and the richness of the egg create a symphony of flavors and textures. Bon appétit!

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