How to boil an egg

How to boil an egg

Boiling an egg may seem the simplest of tasks but it is still easy to get it wrong. Whether looking for a yolky, soft-boiled egg to dunk soldiers into or a hard-boiled egg to use as sandwich filler, it is important to learn the fundamentals.

The following guidelines are for a medium-sized egg.

Bring a small pan of water to the boil; the pan should not be too large as the eggs will roll around and crack
Reduce the heat to a simmer and gently lower in the eggs using a slotted spoon
The cooking time depends on how well you would like the eggs to be cooked: Soft boiled: 4 minutes – the white is set and the yolk is runny. Hard boiled: 9 minutes – the white and yolk will be completely cooked through
Remove the eggs from the water with a slotted spoon and serve immediately. If you are not going to eat the eggs straight away, plunge them into iced water to stop the cooking process and peel when cool enough to handle


Always use an accurate timer when boiling eggs – every second really does count.

When cooking with eggs, always ensure they are at room temperature before commencing; putting eggs directly from the fridge into boiling water will cause them to crack and the cooking time will not be consistent.

Don’t cook more than four eggs in the pan at once, as this will affect the cooking times.

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