Home Cook’s Guide to Boiled Eggs

Home Cook’s Guide to Boiled Eggs

A boiled egg is a delightful thing in any and all variations. A hard-boiled egg is almost the perfect food — compact, portable, and full of protein. You can peel and eat it with just a little salt and pepper. You can scoop out the yolk, mash it up with mayo, mustard, and a little paprika, and make a deviled egg. And lately, everyone is wild for egg salad sandwiches (because they’re amazing!).

Its softer compatriots are lovely, too. Who doesn’t love to dip a toast soldier in the runny yolk of a soft-boiled egg? A medium-boiled egg lends its creamy yolk to dishes, swirling into ramen noodles or spilling over spinach on toast. A little firmer still, and the egg can go most anywhere — nestle it into a salad, atop a pile of asparagus, or into a stew and its bright orange center is sure to please.

And yet, getting boiled eggs right can be so tricky! All of us have boiled one gray at some point. So here is our fool-proof method for boiling perfect eggs every time.

Basic Directions

Always start with cold, refrigerated eggs.
Place the eggs in a pot and fill it with cold tap water, covering the eggs by about 1 inch.
Bring the water to a rolling boil for 10 seconds, remove the pot from the heat, and cover it.

If you want a:
Soft white and runny yolk remove the eggs from water after 2 minutes.
Semi-firm white and runny yolk remove the eggs from water after 4 minutes.
Set white and creamy yolk remove from water after 6 minutes.
Set white and set yolk remove from water after 8 minutes.
Hard white and hard yolk remove from water after 12 minutes.

While the eggs are cooking, set up an ice bath with half ice and half water.
When the eggs are done cooking, gently put them in the ice bath — this will stop the cooking process and cool them down enough to peel.