How to Make Poached Eggs


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Poached Eggs are the perfect easy breakfast recipe and ready in about 5 minutes.

An egg and some water are all you need to make this easy breakfast. Once you’ve got the timing down, you can make eggs with a perfect yolk every time!

a poached egg broken open over toast

Why We Love these Eggs

Healthy, quick, delicious, easy… so many reasons!

Great for breakfast, over roasted veggies, on avocado toast or even next to a stack of french toast!

I’ve shared my favorite step-by-step tips to make a perfect poached egg every time.

Whether a soft, medium or hard yolk is preferred, the result is a delicious egg that’s great on toast, English muffins, or roasted potatoes.

Ingredients/Variations

Only 3 ingredients.

EGGS For this recipe, any type of eggs will work great! The instructions below are for large eggs, you can use any size but may need to adjust the cook time by 30 seconds or so.

WATER Traditionally poached eggs are made with boiling water. But depending on how you want to use them, try poaching them in broth, they’re great over roasted asparagus. This adds an extra level of flavor that is oh-so-delicious!

SALT & PEPPER You can keep it simple and season your poached eggs with just salt and pepper or get creative!

4 minute and 5 minute poached eggs with toast

How Long to Cook

  • Soft: 3 minutes will give you a very runny yolk and slightly undercooked white.
  • Medium: 4-5 minutes. 4 minutes yields a poached egg with a soft white and runny yolk. 5 minutes is a bit more set and jammy rather than runny.
  • Hard: 6 minutes produces eggs with a firm white and a yolk that is tender but not runny.

gently pouring eggs into water from a bowl and removing them with a slotted spoon

How to Poach an Egg

This recipe is only 3 simple ingredients and comes together in 3 simple steps!

  1. Boil water, reduce to a simmer (add a teaspoon of vinegar if desired).
  2. Break one egg into a small bowl and gently slide it into the water. Immediately repeat with the second egg.
  3. Remove with a slotted spoon. Season and serve immediately.

Since poached eggs have such a mild flavor, they can literally go with everything from a fancy eggs benedict to broken over roasted asparagus, on avocado toast, or throw into a warm spinach salad with bacon bits!

Tips for the Perfect Poached Egg

Poached eggs are a simple recipe but here are a few tips to help them turn out perfect every time!

  • Unlike with hard boiled eggs (where they’re easier to peel if they’re older), for poached fresh is best.
  • Add a teaspoon of white vinegar to the water. This will help keep the whites together as the egg cooks.
  • Pick your type of poached egg (soft, medium, or hard) and watch carefully to avoid overcooking. Look for a solid white with a runny yolk center.
  • Be sure to use a slotted spoon when removing from the water. This allows the water to run off and prevents your toast from getting soggy. You can also set them on a paper towel from the pot to help soak up some of the excess water.
  • If making eggs for a crowd, cook eggs a few at a time and put into ice water to stop cooking. When the batch is ready, add the eggs and simmer 45-60 seconds to heat them.

Yummy Egg Recipes

How did you enjoy these Poached Eggs?  Be sure to leave a rating and a comment below!

a poached egg broken open over toast
5 from 1 vote
Review Recipe

Poached Eggs

Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 4 minutes
Total Time 6 minutes
Servings 2 eggs
Author Holly Nilsson
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Make perfect Poached Eggs every time with this easy recipe!

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • water
  • salt & pepper

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Instructions

  • Bring 3-4 inches of water to a boil in a saucepan. Reduce heat to a gentle simmer.
  • Break one egg into a small bowl. Slide the egg gently into the simmering water. Repeat with remaining egg.
  • Cook until whites are set and yolks are cooked to desired doneness, about 4 minutes for a medium egg.
  • Use a slotted spoon to remove eggs. Season with salt & pepper and serve warm.

Recipe Notes

Add a teaspoon of white vinegar to water to keep the whites together as the egg cooks. (optional) 
Types of Poached Eggs
Watch carefully to avoid overcooking. Look for a solid white with a runny yolk.
  • Soft– 3 minutes will give you a very runny yolk and slightly undercooked white.
  • Medium– 4-5 minutes. 4 minutes yields a poached egg with a soft white and runny yolk. 5 minutes is a bit more set and jammy rather than runny.
  • Hard – 6 minutes produces eggs with a firm white and a yolk that is soft but not runny, or only slightly so.

Nutrition Information

Calories: 63, Carbohydrates: 1g, Protein: 6g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 164mg, Sodium: 62mg, Potassium: 61mg, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 238IU, Calcium: 25mg, Iron: 1mg
Keyword How long to poach an egg, how to poach an egg, poached eggs
poached eggs over toast with a title
a poached egg dripping over toast with writing on it
Examples of 4 minute and 5 minute poached eggs with toast

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About the author

Holly

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Holly is a wine and cheese lover, recipe creator, shopping enthusiast and self appointed foodie. Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making deliciously comforting recipes for the everyday home cook!

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