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A poached egg that has been broken into with a fork to reveal the runny yolk.

How To Make Perfect Poached Eggs

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  • Author: Vanessa | Maple + Mango
  • Prep Time: 3 min
  • Cook Time: 3 min
  • Total Time: 6 min
  • Yield: 1 egg 1x
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Poach
  • Cuisine: American


Learn how to make perfect poached eggs with the tips in this recipe!


  • 1 large egg
  • For serving: Himalayan or sea salt and freshly ground pepper


  1. Gently simmer water: Fill a medium saucepan with about 3 inches (8 cm) of water.  Bring the water to a boil and then reduce heat until barely simmering (between 180-190F or 82-88C on an instant read thermometer).
  2. Strain the egg: Crack the egg into a small fine mesh sieve set over a small bowl.  Carefully swirl the egg around the sieve, letting any loose watery egg whites strain through (this reduces the wispy pieces when cooking).  Transfer the strained egg into a ramekin.
  3. Poach the egg: Tilt the edge of the ramekin into the water and gently slide the egg out. Slowly and gently stir the water along the pot’s edge in a clockwise motion for 10 seconds with a wooden spoon (this helps to shape the egg more perfectly while it begins to set).  Cook for 3-4 minutes.  You can test for doneness by lifting out the egg with a slotted spoon and gently pressing your finger on the yolk.  Return to water if you prefer a firmer yolk.
  4. Remove poached egg: Scoop out the egg with a slotted spoon and transfer to a plate lined with paper towel to remove any excess water before serving.
  5. Serve and enjoy: Serve immediately while still warm.  Season with a bit of salt and pepper and dig in!


  • Tips For Success:
    • Make sure that your water is barely simmering before adding the egg!  You want to see small bubbles coming up off the bottom of the pot but no bubbles breaking the surface of the water (between 180-190F or 82-88C on an instant read thermometer).
    • Use a fine mesh sieve!  Straining the egg first removes the watery whites to create a more tightly shaped poached egg and reduces the wispy pieces that create a mess in the pot.
    • Use fresh cold eggs! Fresh eggs that are fridge cold hold their shape better
  • Poach up to 4 eggs at a time: Make sure to place each egg into separate ramekins and gently slip them one after another into the water, leaving some space between each one.
  • To Make Ahead: Transfer the cooked poached eggs immediately to an ice water bath to stop the cooking process.
  • To Store: Transfer to a storage container filled with cold water and store in the fridge for 2-3 days.
  • To Reheat: For a single poached egg, place some boiling water in a small bowl or cup and add the poached egg for about 30 seconds or until warmed through.  To reheat a larger quantity, bring a pot of water to a bare simmer and lower each poached egg into the pot.  Turn off the heat and leave them for 30-60 seconds or until warmed through.  Remove with a slotted spoon, dab dry with paper towel and serve.