Learn How to Make Perfect Boiled Eggs – Soft Boiled and Hard Boiled – so you always get the yolk consistency you like the most (or the one that the recipe calls for). If you follow the tips and tricks that I share today, I assure you that you will always have spot on hard-boiled and soft-boiled eggs.
Making perfect hard-boiled or soft-boiled eggs is another essential cooking staple (if you like them of course). With the arrival of warmer weather and salads of all kinds, hard-boiled eggs are a very popular ingredient, so I thought of them to continue with the series of cooking basics.
By the way, in addition to using hard-boiled eggs in salads, they are also an ideal toast topping or even a delicious snack with a pinch of salt, and they are perfect for batch cooking.
How to Make Perfect Boiled Eggs Tips & Tricks
If you want to easily control the cooking times for a perfect hard-boiled egg, especially if you want it soft-boiled, there are a few things to keep in mind. The detailed recipe is, as always, at the end, but let me summarise the most important points.
Cook the Eggs in Already Boiling Water
It’s important to start by placing the eggs directly into boiling water to be able to control the cooking times properly. If we start from cold or room-temperature water, we introduce a lot of variability: on the one hand the temperature of the water itself and on the other hand the time it takes to heat the water up depending on the pot material.
The materials of the pot greatly influence how long it takes for the water to heat up. For example, in an aluminum or stainless steel pot, it will be much faster than in a cast iron pot. Consequently, if you started from room temperature water in a cast iron pot, you could end up with softer eggs than if using a stainless steel one after the same cooking time.
- When you place the eggs into the boiling water, just before you can decrease the heat a little so that the water does not spurt too much and thus you can prevent the egg shell from cracking. Once in, you can turn the heat up again.
- The eggs should ideally be at room temperature to avoid a sudden temperature change.
Cooking water must cover the eggs
The water should cover the eggs by at least 2 cm so the egg cooks evenly. I also find that this helps the yolk be centred and not move to one side. Note that not overcrowding the pot also helps, since the water can circulate properly between the eggs.
Ice water bath to stop them from cooking further
Cuando sacamos los huevos del agua, estos están aún calientes y el calor residual irá cocinando la yema. Para que esto no ocurra, pon los huevos en agua con hielo (o agua muy muy muy fría) una vez los hayas sacado del cazo, así se enfriarán muy rápido y la cocción se parará.
When we take the eggs out of the boiling water, they are still hot and the residual heat will continue cooking the yolk. To prevent this from happening, place the eggs in an ice water bath (or very very very cold water), so they cool down quickly and stop cooking.
Cooking Times and Yolk Consistency
If you follow the tips and tricks in the previous section, then depending on how long the egg has been cooking you will get the following yolk egg texture (the white is always hard). For large eggs:
- 6 minutes: the yolk is still runny in the center, but is starting to firm up around the edges.
- 8 minutes : the yolk has firmed up but is still soft.
- 10 minutes: very similar to 8 minutes but here it is no longer soft and has more consistency. It’s easier to remove it from the white.
- 12 minutes: at this point we practically have a hard-boiled egg, but the center is still a little softer. I like this cooking point for legume salads like this one Mediterranean Chickpea Salad.
- 14 minutes: traditional hard-boiled egg, with the yolk cooked but buttery.
IMPORTANT! Hard-boiled eggs can be overcooked and if it happens they get that greyish-greenish layer around the yolk. This is because after about 15 minutes the egg white releases hydrogen sulfide that reacts with the iron in the yolk, forming ferrous sulfide.
How to Peel Soft and Hard Boiled Eggs
Having made many hard boiled eggs in my life, I find that there is no exact science, but the following things always help me:
- Place the eggs once cooked into cold water: this is one of the key tips for making hard-boiled eggs already, but I also find that if I don’t do it, it’s harder for me to peel the eggs. I suppose that the temperature contrast helps the membrane to separate more easily from the egg white.
- Crack the thickest central part of the egg, rotating it going all the way around (you can roll it too). This separates the top from the bottom of the shell and makes it easier to remove it. It’s important that the membrane is torn cause if it isn’t, no matter how much you see the shell cracked, you won’t be able to take it off. You can tear the membrane with your fingernail or a knife.
There are other methods such as shaking the egg in a jar with water, but I find that this can be a bit aggressive and break the egg. The same with the spoon method if we are not careful, especially when we make soft-boiled eggs between 6 and 10 minutes, which are still a bit soft.
How to Store Boiled Eggs
As mentioned above, making soft-boiled or hard-boiled eggs in advance is a perfect idea for batch cooking, but we have to make sure that we don’t forget them in the fridge. According to the US Food and Safety Department, hard-boiled eggs can last up to 7 days in the fridge with the shell on.
If you follow the How to Make Perfect Boiled Eggs tips and tricks, be sure to leave a comment and rate it. Hearing from you is everything! Oh, and don’t forget to tag me on Instagram, I absolutely love seeing your creations. Happy cooking!
How to Make Perfect Boiled Eggs
- L Eggs - at room temperature
- Bring a medium-sized pot of water to a boil. There needs to be enough water to cover the eggs by a couple of centimetres.
- When the water boils, reduce the heat so that the water does not bubble vigorously, and gently place the eggs inside (don’t add too many eggs at once, there must be space between them for the water to circulate properly). Turn the heat back up to bring the water to a boil again.
- Cook the eggs from 6 minutes to get a soft-boiled egg with runny yolk to 14 minutes to get a traditional hard-boiled egg.
- Once the eggs have cooked to your preferred time, transfer them to an ice water bath to stop them from cooking.
- Once cool, crack the shell them around the centre (tapping and/or rolling), making sure that the membrane has cracked too, and peel them. Enjoy!