This site is optimised for modern web browsers, and does not fully support your version of Internet Explorer

BBC

How to boil eggs

Always start with eggs that are at room temperature to best predict the cooking time and minimise cracking.

For a soft-boiled egg, lower the egg into gently boiling water with a slotted spoon. Allow three and a half minutes for a medium-sized egg and four minutes for a large egg. The yolk will be runny and the white just set. Cook for a further minute if you like your soft boiled eggs a little firmer.

For a hard-boiled egg, start the egg in cold water and bring up to the boil. Once the water is gently boiling, set the timer for between 7-10 minutes depending on how well cooked you like your eggs. The longer you boil the egg, the firmer it will be.

Once cooked, plunge the hard-boiled egg into plenty of cold water for one minute. Drain and cover with more cold water. This will prevent the egg from over-cooking in its residual heat. Cracking the shell with the back of a spoon during cooling will also make the egg easier to peel.

Recipes using this technique

Main course

Light meals & snacks

Brunch

Starters & nibbles

Skill level

Easy

Equipment you will need for this technique

  • Saucepan
  • Egg cup (optional)