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How to Cook Eggs: 11 Different Methods

Find a new answer to “How do you want your eggs?”

I don’t know about you, but I love eggs. I enjoy them in breakfast sandwiches, salads, and on their own. Not only that, but I feel like every dish could be improved by the presence of an egg.

Cooked egg dishes for breakfast

They’re not only delicious but also very healthy.

Eggs are full of protein, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients. They help raise good cholesterol in your body and help maintain your eyesight. Most importantly, they keep you full.

You might not be as big an egg fan as I am, and that’s okay. You may like eggs but get tired of eating them scrambled every week, and that’s okay too. It may help to learn some new ways to cook eggs.

Ways To Cook Eggs

Here are different methods for cooking eggs that make eggcellent additions to your menu. 

Over Easy Eggs

Cooking an egg over-easy means that you fry it completely on one side and then flip it over.

You cook the other side briefly so that the yolk remains runny. If you cook the other side completely, then you’ve made a different type of egg. 

This method can be a delicate process, so don’t worry if it takes you a few tries to get it right.

It helps to use farm-fresh eggs and a nonstick pan. If you prefer using cast iron skillets, be sure to use extra butter. 

I love to eat an egg cooked over easy on a bagel sandwich. It might not be for everyone, but it makes my mouth water thinking about the runny yolk soaking into the bread. 


Poached Eggs

Poached eggs are similar to boiled eggs, except you boil them without a shell.

It might sound impossible, but it’s not. The amount of water doesn’t matter too much, but you want your eggs to be fully covered. 

You bring the water to a gentle boil and then crack an egg into it. The egg cooks for 2 ½ to 3 minutes.

There are several techniques you can use to keep your egg together. Some suggest whirlpooling or rapidly stirring the water before adding the egg. 

Others will tell you to add vinegar or use a ramekin. I suggest trying a few methods to see what works best for you.

The good news is that even if it doesn’t poach, you can still eat it. And if you want to try poached eggs, but you don’t want to make them yourself, you can buy an egg poacher. 


Sunny-Side Up

Sunny side up is similar to the over-easy method, except you don’t flip the egg.

That means the yolk is still liquid, and the whites are barely done. If you prefer to have your egg whites more done, you can put a lid on top for a few moments. 

It’s named sunny side up because the round yellow yolk looks like the sun. If you want to embrace the runniness of this egg, try it on a tostada chilaquiles, a common Mexican breakfast dish.

This recipe combines two of my favorite kinds of food: eggs and tostadas. 


Soft-Boiled Eggs

Whenever I want eggs, but don’t want to have to pay close attention, I make soft-boiled eggs.

I love the ease of preparation, and I love its texture. The whites are firm, but the yolk is creamy. When done well, it feels like butter in your mouth. 

Put a pot of water to boil. Once it’s boiling, carefully lower your eggs into the water. For soft-boiled, leave them in there for 6-7 minutes. Many things can affect your cook time such as:

  • The egg’s starting temperature
  • Your elevation
  • The type of pot you use

It’s also pertinent to remember that your egg will continue to cook even after you take it out of the water.

If you want it to stop cooking, run it under cool water or put it in an ice bath. Soft-boiled eggs are fantastic in ramen or a hummus breakfast bowl


Hard-Boiled Eggs

It’s easier to cook a hard-boiled egg than a soft-boiled egg because there’s less at stake.

The method is the same as soft-boiled, you just let them cook for longer. As far as I know, you can’t burn an egg this way. So if you aren’t sure if it’s cooked long enough, let it go a bit more.

Anything over 8 minutes, should give you a nice hard-boiled egg. If you don’t like a runny yolk, I recommend cooking it for at least 10 minutes. 

Hard-boiled eggs are a great on-the-go snack or tossed in a salad. You can also turn them into deviled eggs


Scrambled Eggs

This method of preparation is the most popular. If you go to a brunch buffet, you’ll probably find these because they’re easy, and they hold up well.

Scrambled eggs can be eggs-tremely delicious when cooked properly.

I prefer to make my scrambled eggs with buttermilk. You need a small bowl and a whisk or fork. Crack several eggs into the bowl, add a bit of buttermilk, and whisk them until they’re mixed well.

The important thing to remember is to wait until the eggs are cooked to add seasoning.

Heat a skillet to medium heat and put butter in the pan. Add your eggs and mix them up with a spatula.

When they’re close to being finished, I like to add cheese on top, so it can melt. Add your seasonings and serve. This meal is great to make with your kids, too. 


Over Hard Eggs

An over-hard egg is also known as a fried egg. It’s cooked all the way through on both sides.

The yolk is hard and tastes similar to the yolk in a hard-boiled egg. This way to cook eggs is a good option if you don’t like runny eggs. 

These are easier to cook since the timing isn’t as precise. You could burn these eggs, but you don’t have to monitor them as closely as over easy. Over hard eggs go well: 

  • On top of burgers
  • Served with a side of greens
  • On top of shrimp and grits

Over hard eggs are one of the best ways to cook eggs because they’re simple and versatile.


Over Medium Eggs

You may guess based on the name that over medium eggs are somewhere between over easy and over hard.

Over medium eggs have a firm white and only slightly runny yolk. I feel it’s like ordering a steak. There’s not much difference between these, but it matters to some people.

I’d eat an over medium egg by itself or on top of savory oats. I’d eat them on a salad as well, but that may not be for everybody.

To take these eggs to the next level, I recommend using hot sauce.


Baked Eggs

Now, baked eggs are a lot of fun. You can cook them in cute little dishes or on top of a breakfast casserole.

To bake eggs, preheat your oven to 375℉. If you want to use individual dishes, butter some up, and crack 2 eggs into the dish. 

Add some salt and pepper, and then bake for around 15 minutes. Your cook time may be affected by the type of dish you use.

You can bake them longer if you prefer a well-done yolk. I love adding extra ingredients, including:

 Feel free to add other seasonings and toppings.


Omelets

Omelets may look intimidating, but you can learn to make them, too.

Take 2-3 eggs and lightly beat them with a fork in a small bowl. Put an 8-inch nonstick skillet on medium-low heat. The key to a tasty omelet is to keep the temperature low and consistent.

Pour the eggs in and let them sit for a few minutes. Use a spatula to let any uncooked egg run out. Add your desired fillings and let it cook a little longer.

Careful not to make the omelet too heavy. Fold the omelet in half and serve. Feel free to go crazy with the filling!


Frittatas

In my opinion, frittatas are like omelets on easy mode and just as scrumptious.

To make frittatas, you need to crack a couple of eggs into a small bowl. Add cream and salt, and then whisk together. Chop up any vegetables that you want to have in your fabulous frittata.

Add the veggies to an oven-safe pan, and then pour the egg mixture on top. Add cheese, and bake at 400℉ for about 15 minutes.

Frittatas have a texture that’s similar to quiche, and they’re just as versatile. You can add just about anything you desire to a frittata, but I love adding avocado and rocket on top.


Ways To Cook Eggs

  1. Over Easy Eggs
  2. Poached Eggs
  3. Sunny-Side Up
  4. Soft-Boiled Eggs
  5. Hard-Boiled Eggs
  6. Scrambled Eggs
  7. Over Hard Eggs
  8. Over Medium Eggs
  9. Baked Eggs
  10. Omelets
  11. Frittatas

Final Thoughts

These are some of the best ways to cook eggs in no particular order. Each method is relatively straightforward, and the resulting egg will make a fantastic addition to most dishes.

Eggs are cheap, delicious, and nutritious. We could all benefit from having more of them in our diet, and I encourage you to try these different preparation methods at home as soon as possible. 

While you probably assumed you’d cook chicken eggs, there are other edible eggs you can prepare as well!

Did I leave out your favorite way to prepare eggs? Leave a comment below, and I’ll check it out!

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Written by Erin Elizabeth

Erin lives in East Passyunk and enjoys checking out the local restaurants in South Philly and beyond. Her favorite restaurants are those with spicy food and outdoor seating so that she can bring along her dog, Miss Piggy.