The humble scotch egg has been a staple of British picnics, car journeys, and pubs since before living memory, reportedly first rolling onto the scene in the 18th century as an invention of the London department store Fortnum & Mason, controversially making it not actually Scottish.

Scotch eggs, in my view, are best enjoyed with a pint in hand while lounging on a picnic blanket in the weak but persistent heat of the British summertime, however they've recently made their way onto restaurant menus, competing with the stalwart classic of fish and chips.

Traditionally made with sausage meat, this faux-Scottish snack has been sadly off the menu for vegetarians. Yet times are changing, and thanks to Quorn mince scotch eggs are now for the herbivores among us.

This particular recipe calls for deep frying, however if this isn't your style these can also be baked. Simply coat them in oil with a pastry brush, and bake at 200C for 20 minutes or until browned.

Vegetarian Scotch Eggs

  • Prep Time:40 mins
  • Cook Time:5 mins
  • Total Time:45 mins
  • Servings:5
  • Medium


  • 300g bag Quorn Mince
  • 7 eggs
  • 1 large clove garlic minced
  • 50-75g breadcrumbs or 1 slice bread blended
  • 1 tspn dried sage
  • 1 tspn flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 tspn nutmeg
  • 1/2 tspn cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tspn salt
  • 1/2 tspn pepper
  • flour for dusting
  • sunflower vegetable or other deep frying oil
Matt Volpe
  • Step 1

    The first step is to boil 5 of your eggs (the other 2 are used elsewhere in the recipe). Given that the eggs will continue to cook when you eventually fry your scotch eggs, you want to aim for somewhere between soft and medium boiled, so around 5 to 6 minutes. Once the time's up, immediately dunk them in cold water and leave them submerged while you prepare your mince.

    Matt Volpe
  • Step 2

    Quorn mince is quite grainy, so I've found that when following a recipe that requires it to be shaped in any way, the best approach is to roughly blend it so the grains can better bind together. Mix into your mince with a metal fork the sage, parsley, nutmeg, cayenne, salt and pepper along with the garlic and 1 egg. Feel free to improvise with the spices, as nutmeg can be a controversial ingredient.

    Matt Volpe
  • Step 3

    Once everything in your bowl is combined, next comes the tricky part. The goal of this section of the recipe is to successfully encase a boiled egg in the mince mixture.
    This is a lot trickier than it sounds.
    I've found that the best way to do that is to use cling film instead of flour. Flour can dry out the mince mixture, making it more crumbly and difficult to mould, and the sheets of cling film can aid in the wrapping process.
    So the first thing to do here is to roll out a golf ball sized lump of mince between two sheets of cling film until it's about as thick as two pennies.

    Matt Volpe
  • Step 4

    Firstly peel the shells from the 5 soft-boiled eggs. Roll one gently in flour, then remove the top layer of cling film from your rolled-out mince and place the egg at the centre.

    Matt Volpe
  • Step 5

    Using the bottom layer of cling film, gently roll your egg up like a burrito, then roughly fold the ends over.
    The mince at this point is delicate, so don't expect to succeed on the first try; you can always roll it back out again.

    Matt Volpe
  • Step 6

    A good way to seal and shape the egg in its mince jacket is to bundle the cling film up in a tight sack. This way, you can gently tease the mince into shape through the plastic without it sticking to your hands. Twist the top of the sack to tighten the plastic's grip, and gently roll the egg around in your hands once youve sealed any possible cracks or holes to mould it into shape. Once you feel the egg is securely wrapped, carefully unwrap it and trim off any excess mince by hand.

    Matt Volpe
  • Step 7

    After the fiddly task of wrapping your eggs, dip them in flour, egg wash, then breadcrumbs.

    Matt Volpe
  • Step 8

    Now comes the frying. Heat around 5cm of oil in a medium-large saucepan. If you're lacking a thermometer to tell when the oil's hot enough, drop a small chunk of bread in. It should bubble and take around 30 seconds to go a crispy golden brown. If you do have a thermometer, aim for around 180C/360F. Lower your eggs in carefully, then fry for around 5 minutes or until just darker than golden brown.

    Matt Volpe
  • Step 9

    And there you have it, an (almost) traditional picnic food thats good as a snack on its own or as a full meal with chips and salad.

    Matt Volpe