Cracking the Secret to the Perfect Hard or Soft Boiled Egg

CC0 Public Domain / Pixabay - congerdesign

You want to know, how long eggs need to boil until they are perfect? Then this article is for you: Utopia will help you make the perfect egg – soft or hard boiled. 

Boiling the perfect egg is not easy: Sometimes the yolk turns out too hard, your soft boiled egg turns out too soft or the egg even bursts open when cooking. This guide will show you how to change that.

Rule of Thumb for Soft and Hard Boiled Eggs

Place medium-sized eggs in boiling water and then rinse them in cold water to cool after cooking. Here’s how many minutes you should boil the egg:

  • 4 minutes for soft boiled eggs: The egg white is firm, but the egg yolk is still very runny – a perfectly boiled breakfast egg.
  • 7 minutes for snack eggs: The egg yolk is thickening – now you have a snack egg.
  • 11 minutes for hard boiled eggs: The egg yolk is firm and can be cut with a knife.

If you use smaller eggs, you have to cook them about 30 seconds shorter. Larger eggs should remain in the water for an additional 30 seconds.

How to Boil Eggs: Size, Temperature, and Altitude

How to make perfect boiled eggs
A Five Minute Egg, or more precisely, an egg with an internal temperature of 150°F. (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pixabay - charly_7777)

How long you boil eggs, is not the only important factor. You will also need to boil them at the right temperature.

How much time the egg needs to reach a given internal temperature depends on several factors:

  • The size of the egg: Larger eggs take longer than smaller eggs.
  • The temperature of the egg: If they are direct from the fridge, eggs need to cook up to one minute longer.
  • Your altitude: Most of us cook eggs in water that has begun to bubble. That is about  212°F (100°C) at sea level, but only 194°F (90°C) at 10,000 ft (3.000m). The higher your elevation, the longer the egg has to cook.

Boiling perfect eggs at the right temperature:

  • The egg white begins to thicken at 143°F (62°C).
  • By the time it reaches 145°F (63°C), the egg white is no longer runny.
  • At about 151°F (66°C), the egg yolk is soft like wax,
  • and at 158°F (70°C) the yolk is firm and can be cut with a knife.

How to Check, if Eggs are still Good

Perfect boiled eggs happy eggs taste better
Happy eggs simply taste better! (Photo: CC0 Public Domain / Pixabay - alexas_fotos)

Before you boil an egg, you should check, if it is still good. You are unsure? Then don’t just throw it away! There are easy ways to tell if eggs are good or bad. Here is one: Simply put the egg in a glass of water. If it floats, it is bad. If it sinks to the bottom, you can still eat it.

You can read the explanation and more tipps here: How to Tell If Eggs Are Good or Bad: The Ultimate Egg Test

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This article was translated from German into English. You can view the original here: Eier kochen: So lange dauert das harte und weiche Ei.

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