Making soft cooked eggs in the microwave

Teresa_MNJanuary 18, 2011

Has anyone ever made soft cooked eggs in the microwave? I love to have basted or over easy eggs for breakfast a couple times a week. We have a really great cafeteria where I work and I used to be able to get a great breakfast several times a week. During the time I was out of work the two short order cooks got promoted to other jobs. The two guys that work the grill now can't cook a soft egg. The yolks are always broken and I need a knife to cut the white part. There is a kitchen area on the floor where I work that has microwaves. I want to bring eggs a couple days a week and make them with runny yolks in the microwave.

I found instructions online and it seems pretty simple. Have any of you ever tried this?

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I pre-made a bunch of poached ones, cooked for four minutes in barely simmering water. Bf reheated them for one minute in the microwave, and said they were perfect-- still runny in the middle. I will be trying it myself in the morning.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 8:36PM
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Teresa, it is very easy to cook a soft egg in the microwave.

It has been a while since I cooked an egg that way so I made one tonight just for you, so I could tell you the timing.

Butter a small ramekin. Crack an egg into the ramekin and then poke the yolk with a fork. (Important to do this other wise the yolk will explode). Season with salt and pepper and add a teaspoon of water. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap, but leave a slight opening on one side.

Microwave for about 50 to 60 seconds on medium. In my microwave, the egg was perfect at 56 seconds.

If you love the eggs really runny you are better off taking the egg out of the microwave a few seconds before it is perfectly set, because it will keep cooking.

Moe loves runny eggs.


    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 8:52PM
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Teresa, we do it almost every morning. All you need is a custard cup, or any small cup, and a small piece of plastic wrap if your cup doesn't have a lid. Crack the egg into the cup, cover with the wrap or lid and microwave for about 22 seconds on high. You will have a perfectly cooked egg, solid white, runny yolk, and not a single extra calorie from fat or the need for salt. They're perfectly shaped, too, and there is virtually no prep or clean-up! No fuss, no muss, no boiling water to deal with.

Some microwaves are faster or slower than others, so yours may take only 20 or as many as 25 seconds. I do one egg at a time, plop it on a plate while the second one cooks. You can't beat this method for ease or time.


    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 8:58PM
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Ann, the eggs slip right out of the ramekin without butter, leaving absolutely no residue in the cup, and I've never poked my yolks or had one explode, if that is why you do it.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 9:01PM
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Lucky for you Sherrmann. Not fun cleaning up after an exploded egg. I'd rather be safe than sorry.

I know that you can do it without butter. But I've never met an egg that didn't taste better with a little butter. A smear in the bottom of the ramekin doesn't add many calories.

This is not my preferred way to cook an egg. I'd much rather have it fried or scrambled or in an omelet. But it would definitely be the perfect way for Teresa to cook one at work.


    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 9:10PM
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Thanks Jessica, Sherry and Ann T! Ann - that egg looks perfect! I tried 2 eggs tonite. They did not turn out so good. First - 2 at once might be too much. The yolks were getting overdone and the whites were too runny. And I used a "Gladware" plastic container. I don't know why I used it other than it was in the dish drainer. I just put a custard dish in my tote bag - I'm sure the glass will make a difference. My microwave at home is only 700 watts. The ones at work are 1200 I'm sure.
I will take all the advice into consideration and give it a try tomorrow - one egg at a time. Thanks for the photos Ann.

Thanks again!

    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 9:18PM
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There are so many ways to make the perfect egg, because there are so many different preferences.

The easiest way to get the repeatable end result is if you happen to like eggs cooked to extreme hard boiled. You can get the same result every time. Otherwise it gets tricky, because the egg chemistry is so complex, and egg chemistry is so sensitive to cooking temperature.

As you can see from the picture, every two degrees change in temperature, there is a noticeable change in consistence in the white and the yolk. It is not easy to control two degrees change in any normal cooking method.

I have been using the sous vide cooker to make eggs. Obviously that makes it brainless. I can cook eggs with less than one degree accuracy. I look at the chart, and decide on exactly what degree of runny-ness I want that morning, and I am guaranteed the exact result every single time. I also have eggs cooked to a garanteed saftey temperature, even it is runny. This goes for scrambled eggs too.

To answer the question, Yes I have make eggs in the microwave, I mostly put the egg in a cup of water. I can get pretty good results sometimes. To get the exact results, you will need eggs of the same size, same starting temperature and place in the exact same spot in the microwave.


    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 9:33PM
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dc - leave it to you to take it to the extreme. :-)

I will attempt Ann's/Sherry's methods tomorrow morning. And I'm getting off the bus at the French Bakery on my way to work for a crusty French roll to dip in my runny yolk.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 9:45PM
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I've found that with contact methods, either a little bit of the white is still gloppy at the middle, or the yolk is hard cooked around the edges. Cooking in water seems to be just the opposite-- the white sets almost immediately and the yolk slowly goes from raw to gummy around the edges. I'll be interested to see if it works out nicely for you-- a quick microwaved egg sounds awfully convenient.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 10:30PM
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I will try everything! I just want a good egg for breakfast a few days a week. I appreciate the help.


    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 10:34PM
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Good advice Teresa. You mostly just need to figure out what the timing for that particular microwave will be. I've always done it like Ann. I like that little bit of butter taste too. I just don't use black pepper. Smiles. The little bit of water is what makes the top cook nicely. I don't like using plastic so I always used a Pyrex custard cup and set a saucer on it for the top.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2011 at 11:34PM
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Tried two eggs for lunch.

The first one I placed in the glass ramekin, poked a hole in the yolk, added a tsp of water and covered with plastic wrap slightly vented. I set the time at 40 seconds in my 700 watt microwave. A little too long, but passable. I should have set it for 30 and let it set to finish cooking per Ann's instructions.

The second one was put in a ramekin, poked the yolk and slipped it into a baggie that I did not close. I did this because I thought it would be easier to store a box of baggies in my desk than it would a roll of plastic. I forgot the water and set for 30 seconds. It sounded like it was exploding so I pulled it out at at 27 seconds. The yolk was underdone and the white was overdone.

The water REALLY makes a difference. I think I will try it tomorrow with a dab of butter, water and plastic wrap. I'll just have to alter the time for the 1200 watt MW at work.

Even though these weren't perfect, they were far better than the eggs I got in the cafeteria. And perhaps one day I will get one to look as perfect as Ann's pictures!

I was telling my mother about the quest to microwave an egg. She said when I was about a year old she started to give me soft boiled eggs. She put the egg in one of her antique egg cups and set it on the high chair tray with toast torn up in tiny pieces. I would dip each piece of toast in the yolk and eat them using two fingers. She said she was always amazed that I never spilled one drop of yolk. I said, I'm amazed you would give a one year old and antique egg cup!

    Bookmark   January 19, 2011 at 12:51PM
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Hi: I don't know if you want other ways to cook eggs besides the micro wave.

Here are a couple other ways.
When I did Short Orders, I put the eggs on the grill,with a couple tablespoons of water and place a lid over them.

They will Steam to perfection like an overlight but better.

Here is an egg Poached.
I put it in a cupcake form that was coated with aluminum,
set it in a Skillet with a little water.

Put a lid on top and cooked to my taste.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2011 at 3:05PM
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Lou - I can cook them like that at home. I was looking for a way to get a soft cooked egg for breakfast at work. I used to be able to get basted eggs - made exactly like you described them. But the two short order cooks in the cafeteria insist on brutalizing the yolks.

I am determined to master the egg in the microwave!!! With a little practice I know I can get it right.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2011 at 3:15PM
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It is interesting that most people focus mostly in the cooking of the yolk. The yolk is only 33% of the egg.

For me, I want to make sure that at the same time the egg white is also cooked to the exact degree I want.

That makes the job difficult. Because:

.......................Egg white.........................Egg yolk
62..................Begins to set,runny............Liquid
64..................Partly set, runny................Begins to set
66..................Largely set, still runny.......Soft solid
70..................Tender solid, Soft ..............solid, waxy
90..................Rubbery solid....................Crumbly texture

Please don't call me an egghead. :-)


    Bookmark   January 19, 2011 at 6:02PM
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I'm calling you an egghead! You are making this waaaaaaaay to complicated for me as I am sitting at home on a sick day. :-)

I don't know - but Ann's egg looks perfect in the photo's. And the ones I made were pretty tasty even thought not perfect.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2011 at 6:05PM
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"--I'm calling you an egghead!-----"

You have my feelings all scrambled.

dcarch :-)

    Bookmark   January 19, 2011 at 6:13PM
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I know that there are many here that care about the science of cooking/baking. But not me.

I like the whole process of cooking, but in the end it is all about taste. Hopefully it looks good too, but ultimately it is the taste that does it for me. Not the science.


    Bookmark   January 19, 2011 at 6:20PM
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Sometimes I care about the science. But not on a day when I am home with a really sore throat. Soft cooked eggs were the perfect thing to eat earlier today. And they taste so good - even if I did not get them exactly how I wanted them.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2011 at 6:35PM
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Actually, dcarch, you may have just made an excellent point for NOT cooking eggs sous vide. Basically your meat theory in reverse. You've noted that by cooking at higher temperatures the outer sections of meat get done past your ideal before the center is perfect for you.

This phenomenon may be exactly what you want to happen if you want the whites somewhere in the "tender solid, soft" range and the yolks just at the border of "begins to set." This is probably how I would describe my perfect solf boiled egg.

    Bookmark   January 19, 2011 at 6:59PM
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Posted by foodonastump "Actually, dcarch, you may have just made an excellent point for NOT cooking eggs sous vide ---"

FOAS, you are getting to be very good! excellent point and observation.

Given the fact that the basic sous vide sets the absolute temperature, no lower and no higher, depending on what you are trying to do, there are some flexibilities.

What I have tried is at some point in the cooking of the egg, I can reset the temperature higher. In a small cooker with not a lot of water and a 500w heater, I can very quickly raised the temperature to cook the white at a different temperature.


    Bookmark   January 19, 2011 at 7:30PM
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I tried an Ann-T egg yesterday on toast and it was lovely. Thanks for the tip!

    Bookmark   January 20, 2011 at 3:02AM
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This thread reminded me that I have a microwave egg cooker that I purchased last year but never tried. I don't do eggs but I'm trying really hard to make them for DH. Wizard walked me through it last year and I've been okay since then but it's still hit or miss. It's hard to make an over-easy egg with it disgusts you!

I'm trying this gadgetthrough> handy tool this morning.

Here is a link that might be useful: Microwave Egg Cooker

    Bookmark   January 22, 2011 at 8:24AM
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I made one in a small corning/corelle bowl with a plastic lid sitting on top. Smeared a tiny bit of butter on bottom and broke the yolk and added the teaspoon of water. I believe my microwave is a 1100 watt one so I cooked it one minute at 50% and it was perfectly cooked without a soft yolk. I don't think I wanted a soft yolk in mine. Seems like the tiny bit of water makes a huge difference in making them soft and not rubbery.

I have those Rubbermaid stain resistant plastic containers and I used the lid off that to put on top. I use these all the time to stop spatter on small items. Otherwise I use a large microwave spatter guard cover for plates.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2011 at 9:13AM
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*don't forget to set the microwave at 50% power (medium)

    Bookmark   January 22, 2011 at 10:16AM
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I made two this morning and decided I wanted a softer yolk. Both eggs cooked differently though I cooked them the same(one at a time). The first egg was a bit larger than the second, I cooked it(same as above post but less time) 50 seconds at 50% because I wanted softer. It came out just slightly softer than hard cooked plus it exploded even though I had broken the yolk and it was even spread all out so it was broken a lot.

The second egg cooked exactly the same as above was slightly smaller but yet it cooked with soft yolk. The second egg did not explode. I think that the 50% cooking in a microwave is inconsistant. They were really good though but different from eachother.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2011 at 10:23AM
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Teresa, I know you asked for ways to microwave an egg,
Out of the shell.
So this is probably not of any help to you.
But I thought I'd add it anyway.

I, too, like my eggs with a soft, even runny, yolk.
But boiled.

I have a handy lttle egg cooker that I got in Walmart,
several years ago.
It is plastic of some sort, egg shaped.
You fill the bottom with water to a certain level (marked),
put in the aluminum insert,
Stand one to four eggs on it,
put the top half of the 'egg' on,
And mmicrowave, on high,
For the number of minutes it says for the degree of doneness you want.
Let it stand for a bit,
and remove eggs to cold water.
When slightly cooled to touch,
Peel & eat.

It may take a bit of experimenting with different egg sizes,
And different microwaves,
But after that,
A perfetly done (boiled) egg,
Perfect for dipping,
Every time!


Here is a link that might be useful: Microwave egg cooker

    Bookmark   January 22, 2011 at 10:25AM
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