This Is How to Boil Eggs Once and for All

Updated 05/09/19
How to Boil an Egg
Half Baked Harvest

We'd be lying if we said we've never consulted the internet on how to boil eggs without ruining them. Even scrambling and frying eggs can be a tall order when you aren't equipped with the right techniques. And don't even get us started on the potential disasters triggered by uninformed attempts at poached eggs. In fact, the only thing more traumatic than an egg gone wrong is the egg-parenting project we had to do back in high school.

Here's the good news: Once you nail down the right techniques, this healthy breakfast item is super easy to prepare. Even better, eggs are endlessly versatile, with tons of delicious recipe options out there. We're here to save the day with this guide of basic instructions on how to make your eggs. Hint: It's all about time, temperature, and tools. Find out what they are to guarantee better breakfasts ahead.

How to Boil Eggs

How to Boil Eggs
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Directions:

Fill your pot with water, and bring it to a boil. Some prefer to put the eggs in before the water, but according to Epicurious, this makes the peeling process more difficult. Once the water is boiling, turn the stove to a low simmer. Now you can lower your eggs into the pot. As soon as they're in the boiling water, set your timer.

Timing Tips:

If you like to eat your eggs really runny and straight out of the shell, set your timer to four minutes.

For a gooey yolk just beginning to set but a firmer outer layer, go for six minutes.

Set your timer to eight minutes for a golden yolk that's just a tiny bit gooey and a firm outer layer.

For a completely firm egg, 10 to 12 minutes is best. Any longer will yield a dry and crumbly yolk. If there's a green ring around the rim, you know you’ve overdone it.

How to Fry Eggs

Fired Egg Directions
Salt and Wind

Directions:

Put a nonstick pan on medium heat, and add a small amount of butter or olive oil. As the butter melts, crack your egg into a bowl, and make sure there aren't any shells before you carefully place the egg on the pan. After one minute, lower the heat.

Timing Tips:

At the same time, cover the pan with a lid to trap the steam and cook the top of the egg. If you want a runny yolk, your eggs will be ready in four minutes.

For a hard yolk that's completely set, give it at least six minutes. Now you're ready to start your day sunny-side up! 

How to Scramble Eggs

Scrambled Egg Directions
Half Baked Harvest

Directions:

Add a tablespoon of butter to a nonstick pan over high heat. While you're waiting for the butter to come to a bubble, whisk your eggs in a small bowl. Then pour them onto the center of the pan. Lower the heat once you begin stirring.

Timing Tips:

As soon as you pour the eggs into the pan, begin to folding them slowly with a spatula. Your heat should be lower at this point.

After about a minute, small sections will begin to form, and you'll notice your eggs begin to solidify. The harder you want your eggs, the longer you should continue stirring, but any longer than five minutes will result in dry, leathery eggs.

How to Poach Eggs

How to Poach an Egg
Salt and wind

One bad experience with boiled eggs will put them on your bad side forever.

Directions:

Fill a deep skillet with two inches of water; then bring it to a boil. Once it's boiling, add a touch of white vinegar. This will keep the egg white from spreading too thin without changing the color. Before you put your eggs into the skillet, make sure there are no shells by cracking them into a small bowl. Now gently slip them into the water and turn the heat to a low simmer. Cover the skillet with a lid as the stove is set to the more gentle heat setting.

Timing Tips:

Poached eggs are all about loose yolk with a slightly firm white layer. To get this effect, scoop your eggs out after four minutes and place them on paper towels to soak up any water. Simple and over-easy in more ways than one!

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Blanche Vaughan Egge: Recipes $5
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Sur la Table Chef’s Choice Gourmet Egg Cooker $40
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Food52 Brass Egg Spoon $32
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Cost Plus World Market Ceramic Egg Crate $7
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Sur La Table Italian Olivewood Egg Cup $10
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Now that you know the basics on how to boil eggs, learn some recipes or start planning an Easter egg hunt.

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