‘Barefoot Contessa’: Ina Garten’s Frittata Recipe Is an Easy Breakfast to Feed a Crowd

Barefoot Contessa star Ina Garten learned an early lesson in entertaining — make your menu simple and delicious so that you get to spend time with your guests and they leave happy. Her breakfast frittata recipe is a satisfying meal idea that takes little time to make and feeds a crowd.

Ina Garten appears on Sunday TODAY with Willie Geist
Ina Garten | Mike Smith/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank

Ina Garten made 1 entertaining mistake that she’ll never repeat

Garten has learned a lot about cooking over the years and there’s one tip she learned early on: don’t overdo it in the kitchen when you have guests or you’ll miss out on the conversation.

Garten explained to FN Dish that she had guests over once and decided to make omelets for everyone, but it was a time-consuming task.

“The first time I ever made eggs for a crowd, I did a party when I was really young, Jeffrey and I were first married. I made omelets for each person,” Garten explained. “Trust me, that was a bad idea.”

“That’s why frittatas are great, because not only can you make frittatas all at once, either a big one or mini ones, but you can make them ahead, refrigerate them, and reheat them,” she shared. “A little secret.”

RELATED: ‘Barefoot Contessa’: Ina Garten’s Easy Risotto Recipe Solves a Problem She Calls ‘Annoying’

Ina Garten’s frittata recipe is customizable

While demonstrating how to make her potato basil frittata recipe on the Barefoot Contessa cooking show, Garten first cooked the potatoes and set them aside. While mixing up the eggs, she shared how the recipe is customizable.

“I actually find that you can use whatever’s leftover from dinner. If you had chicken and broccoli the night before, it makes a delicious frittata,” she explained.

Garten’s frittata includes ricotta cheese, gruyere cheese, butter, and basil. She adds flour for “substance” and baking powder so it rises. The egg mixture is added to the potatoes and baked until it’s “puffed and golden and delicious.”

How to make the Barefoot Contessa potato basil frittata

Substitutions are no problem for the breakfast recipe, either. As Garten explained during a 2020 interview with PBS News Hour, if you don’t have the ingredients on hand, food can still be delicious.

“I made a frittata the other day. It was a potato basil frittata. I had no basil, so I used scallions,” Garten explained. “And you know what? It was the best frittata I’d ever made.” (You can find the recipe on The Food Network website.)


  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, divided
  • 2 cups peeled and ½-inch diced boiling potatoes (4 potatoes)
  • 8 extra-large eggs
  • 15 ounces ricotta cheese
  • ¾ pound Gruyere cheese, grated
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ¾ cup chopped fresh basil leaves
  • ⅓ cup flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking powder

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a 10-inch ovenproof omelet pan, melt 3 tablespoons of butter over medium-low heat, then add the potatoes, cooking them for 10 to 15 minutes until tender. Melt 5 tablespoons of butter in the microwave.

Whisk the eggs together and add the ricotta, Gruyere, melted butter, salt, pepper, and basil. Stir to combine. Add the flour and baking powder and stir.

Pour the egg mixture over the potatoes. Bake the frittata for 50 minutes to an hour. It will be browned and firm in the middle when done.