Dear Test Kitchen

How to Cook Eggs Perfectly, Every Single Time

This week's Dear Test Kitchen is all about the incredible egg.

April  4, 2019

Master how to cook eggs and you’ll never be at a loss over what to make for breakfast, lunch, or dinner—like, ever again. From turning leftover frittata into sandwiches to plopping a sunny-side up on a salad, eggs are one of the most cost-effective, quick-cooking, versatile proteins around.

This week in Dear Test Kitchen, our test kitchen director Josh Cohen teaches us his go-to techniques for four classic preparations.

Good Eggs

Eggcelent Supplies

Do you agree with Josh's strategies? Have another method you swear by?
Tell us in the comments below!

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Cindy Foreman
    Cindy Foreman
  • Caitlin Barry-King
    Caitlin Barry-King
  • Jennifer Tonti
    Jennifer Tonti
  • Dede
  • Nina Koritchneva
    Nina Koritchneva
Emma was the food editor at Food52. She created the award-winning column, Big Little Recipes, and turned it into a cookbook in 2021. These days, she's a senior editor at Bon Appétit, leading digital cooking coverage. Say hello on Instagram at @emmalaperruque.


Cindy F. August 18, 2019
How do you adjust for high altitude on the times to cook a boiled egg. I have found about 20 minutes is like your 10 minute egg at 7300'. Is that way off? Is there a standard per 1000' like in baking? I haven't figured out how to make your 8 minute egg, it is always either too hard, or too soft. thanks.
Caitlin B. April 5, 2019
Please make an effort to have closed captioning/subtitles on your videos if you're not going to share an article with the same information. There are plenty of passionate home cooks with accessibility issues!
Jennifer T. April 5, 2019
Would love to see this for omelets and scrambled. Every time I set out to make one, I wind up with the other. Also, I imagine I should stop trying to be a hero with my stainless All-Clad and just get a nonstick already.
Dede April 5, 2019
Hmmmm....kind of some weird advice here. A frittata is not just baked eggs . . . It’s meant to be make in a skillet, like soft scrambled, then fillings added and finished in the broiler. Just baking it is not right!
Re vinegar in poaching eggs? I don’t like the taste of’s very noticeable. Josh should try poaching eggs in a bowl of water in the microwave. Perfect shape, no mess, no fuss. Easy -easy.
Nina K. April 5, 2019
I was really hoping for an article I could read on the topic! Not a fan of the video format.
gandalf April 4, 2019
What about taking eggs out of the refrigerator and putting them into a pan of tap water, then turning up the heat to a boil from that point -- as opposed to dunking them into water that's already boiling? Are there textural or other differences?
Lyrajayne April 4, 2019
I go from a straight boil, but that's because I'm appallingly bad at getting the heat and the pan the same every time - at least when I'm making a 7 minute egg in the ten minutes I have before I have to chivvy the kiddo out the door. Slow and easy is for people who are waaaayyy more together than I am.
HalfPint April 4, 2019
Boiled eggs peel easily when put into boiling water, regardless of their freshness.
Sharon April 7, 2019
Gandalf - After much trial & error, that's the method that works for me. If you take an egg from the fridge and put it into boiling water, I guarantee it will break 99% of the time. It also seizes up the protein in the whites, making it rubbery. Whether soft or hard boiling, starting them in tap water and then slowly heating yields superior texture for both.
M April 8, 2019
If I want soft-boiled, I put eggs (tap-warmed or 30 min on counter) in at the boil for a specific # of minutes.
For hard-boiled, I just put them in the pot, bring it to a boil for 30 seconds or so, cover it, and take it off the heat. By the time I'm ready for them (after prepping ingred for salad, sandwich, etc), they're done.
Glynn M. April 4, 2019
PLEASE stop offering recipes and photos featuring runny, half-cooked eggs. There is nothing as unappetizing as eggs that haven’t been cooked solid. That might be a thing in some parts of the country, but not in our part of the South. Otherwise, I love your content. Thanks for listening.
HalfPint April 4, 2019
Or you can always just skip the article if it doesn't appeal to you. Vegans and vegetarians don't ask that Food52 stop posting pictures and recipes of meat dishes because they don't find them appealing or appetizing. This is national and even global food site, so it's not specific to your part of the South. Please continue to enjoy the content that speaks to you and skip over the stuff that don't. There are other readers here too and quite a few of us happen to like runny eggs :)
witloof April 5, 2019
Just don't look at them if you don't like them.
Carl-boston April 7, 2019
Which is your "part of the South"? Personally, I find rubberized egg yolks unappetizing, but I have never thought it was a preference based on geography. I have had absolutely wonderful Eggs Benedict in South Carolina, with yolk running all over the plate. And, how dare you tell the web site to stop showing things that bother YOU!! Maybe you need to go to a yolk-appreciation-conversion camp!!
Sharon April 7, 2019
Looks perfectly delicious to me! And, I'm quite sure that your entire "part of the South" does NOT share your preferences. (South planet Jupiter, perhaps?) How 'bout you just close the article and go find something else to read? Adios!
Diana M. April 27, 2019
My mom was from Texas (no idea if that is your "part of the South" or not) and she wouldn't eat any egg (or meat for that matter) that wasn't cooked until uniform in texture through and through. As a kid, I copied her, but I well remember the first time I ate a runny egg with toast and how delicious it was. Also now prefer my beef and lamb very rare. She would have the vapors just to see it.