Smash Breakfast Tacos Start With A Crispy Layer Of Sausage

Everyone knows that a good day starts with a filling morning meal, but if it's a great day you're after, you're going to need to pull out the breakfast big guns. Crafted with flour tortillas and a thin layer of sausage browned to perfection, smash breakfast tacos are the perfectly crispy birria-style tacos that will surely put a little pep in your sleepy step.

Inspired by the smash burger, a Midwestern dish that achieved viral stardom in recent years, smash breakfast tacos utilize the same cooking technique that gives smash burgers their signature taste and texture. While a smash burger is made by using a spatula to press a loose mound of ground beef into a supremely thin patty, allowing the edges to caramelize, smash breakfast tacos are crafted by pressing breakfast sausage, such as chorizo into the griddle using a flour a tortilla.

Thanks to a process called the Maillard reaction, which is similar to caramelization, as the sausage beneath the tortilla begins to brown, the reducing sugars and amino acids present in the meat undergo a series of chemical reactions that trigger the release of intricate new aromas and deeper flavors. And because the sausage is pressed into a thin disk, exposing more of the meat to the hot grill, in just a matter of minutes, the thin layer of sausage develops a perfectly crispy, brown crust, adding a divine textural element.

Sausage is the star of the show

When crafting smash breakfast tacos, the meat is the star of the show. As such, you can buy pre-made chorizo from the grocery store or make your own by combining raw ground pork with dried spices like smoked paprika, chili powder, coriander, Mexican oregano, cinnamon, and garlic powder. Spicy vegan chorizo can be substituted if you're looking for a plant-based option. If you require something a little more mild, you can also whip up some classic breakfast sausage or use ground beef.

As only one side of the sausage will be exposed to the griddle (the other will be covered with the tortilla used to smash the meat), the sausage can be left on the grill for two to five minutes, allowing enough time for the steam building beneath the tortilla to cook the sausage all the way through. Once the sausage is adequately crispy, the whole ensemble can be flipped.

With the tortilla now exposed to the griddle, you can add cheese. After another 30 seconds, or until the tortilla has become crispy and the cheese has melted, remove the tacos from the heat and top with fried or scrambled eggs. Fried breakfast potatoes, guacamole, fresh veggies, sour cream, caramelized onions, and hot sauce (or any other taco toppings that tickle your fancy) can be layered on top before folding the taco in half and serving.