This is How Long You Should Boil Eggs for the Perfect Breakfast

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Whether you're a breakfast enthusiast or just like to have a protein packed snack, mastering the art of boiling an egg is an essential skill.

One key determinant of the perfect egg is working out the absolute optimal time to have your eggs boiling in the pan. For the more culinary challenged amongst us, it's easy to commit an egg-boiling faux pas by under or overcooking them.

Thankfully, your days of domestic disaster are over and we're about to provide a foolproof approach so that your yolks are of desired consistency and contribute to a breakfast of champions.

Below, we explain how to boil an egg and for how long, how to check if they're fresh and serve up some of the very best egg-based recipes. We've even hand picked an eggspert nutritionist to explain the benefits of hard boiled eggs.

Let's crack on with the details.

preparing healthy food with boiled eggs ingredients, fresh vegetables, herbs
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How Healthy Are Boiled Eggs to Eat?

Boiled eggs are packed with a range of excellent health benefits, something registered SENR performance nutritionist Nina Walker can attest to. 'Eggs are the unsung heroes of nutrition — versatile, affordable, and nutrient-dense. They’re a must have in any diet,' she says.

Portable Protein

When hard boiled, eggs are the perfect snack to take on the go. With 12 grams of protein in two boiled eggs, they can help contribute to your total daily protein goal. When it comes to muscle gain, this isn't their only super power. Walker explains, 'Not only do they deliver a protein-packed punch, which is essential for muscle repair and growth, they are also full of essential vitamins and minerals crucial for muscle recovery and bone health.'

variety of appetizers boiled eggs, and avocado on white background
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Low Calorie

A couple of eggs contains roughly 150 calories, making them a good contribution to your diet if reducing calorie intake is your goal. Not only that, they are incredibly satiating, meaning they will keep you feeling fuller for longer, reducing the likelihood of you raiding the kitchen cupboard come the afternoon slump.

High in Nutrients

Eggs are high in omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins and minerals. We apparently shouldn't be swerving the yolk, according to Walker 'Don’t overlook the yolk. It’s rich in healthy fats and fat-soluble nutrients like vitamins A, D, and E, which are vital for overall health and wellbeing.' As well as this, the yolk contains choline, which is important for brain health.

Quick and Easy to Prepare

It can't be disputed that boiled eggs are super easy to prepare and pack away for the day. Also if you're short on time before the morning commute, you can get the job done in 10 minutes to bring on the go.

How to Check If Your Eggs Have Gone Bad?

The float test indicates the age of the egg, as air enters over time, it causes it to be more buoyant. You can check if eggs are fresh by:

  • Placing the eggs in a bowl of water.

  • Fresh eggs will sink to the bottom and lie flat on their side.

  • Older eggs will stand upright or float.

Do You Put Eggs in Boiling Water or Cold?

Always start with cold water. If you put the eggs into boiling water, the eggs could crack or cook unevenly. Increase the water and eggs in temperature together for a perfect evenly cooked egg, crack free.

How to Boil an Egg

boiled egg
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  1. Fill a saucepan with water.

  2. Ideally, make sure your eggs are room temperature to begin.

  3. Slowly lower the eggs into the cold water.

  4. Bring the water to a rolling boil.

  5. When the water is boiling, set your timer using the times below for your desired consistency.

  6. When they're done, either eat straight away or plunge them into cold water to make peeling them easier.

How Long Should You Boil Eggs?

  • 3 minutes: very lightly-cooked egg white and runny yolk

  • 4 minutes: lightly-cooked egg white and liquid yolk

  • 5 minutes: firm egg white and lightly cooked yolk

  • 6 minutes: cooked egg white and soft cooked yolk

  • 7 minutes: the classic hard boiled egg

  • 8 minutes: a firmly cooked hard boiled egg

How Do You Tell If an Egg Is Boiled?

To tell whether an egg is uncooked or hard boiled, complete the spin test. Put the egg on its side and spin it. Hard boiled eggs spin evenly and quickly. Whereas, uncooked eggs wobble when they spin due to the liquid inside.

fresh salad with soft boiled eggs
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10 Best Egg Recipes

  1. Ultimate Scotch Eggs

  2. Pesto Eggs

  3. Breakfast Muffins

  4. Bubble & Squeak

  5. Turkish Eggs

  6. Breakfast Burrito

  7. Tteokbokki

  8. Sweetcorn Fritters

  9. Oyakodon

  10. Spiced Potato & Egg Salad

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