Genius Recipes

My New Favorite Eggs—in 5 Minutes Flat

Aki and Alex at Ideas in Food have gone and changed how we cook forever (again). This time: egg salad without peeling a single egg.

January 26, 2021

Every week in Genius Recipes—often with your help!—Food52 Founding Editor and lifelong Genius-hunter Kristen Miglore is unearthing recipes that will change the way you cook.


This recipe started as a fix for faster—much, much faster—egg salad, without having to boil and peel and cool and, with maddening unpredictability, tweeze bits of eggshell.

As a happy result, we all get egg salad in even better, more customizable form—warm, with crispy bits of ham and buttery-soft yolks, if that’s your thing. One former egg salad-phobe ate it for dinner four nights in a week. (Hi. I’m the phobe.)

All because, one night, Alex Talbot—half of the team behind Ideas in Food and Curiosity Doughnuts—didn’t feel like asking his wife Aki Kamozawa (the other half, who has more patience for peeling), to make their egg salad again. I’ll let them explain:

Join The Conversation

Top Comment:
“So many options for egg salad. Sometimes curry (and maybe some cumin) and chopped green onions. Capers as many suggest are good too. Grated parmesan and truffle salt or truffle mayo. Other times fresh dill and celery seed and/or chopped celery. Different types of mustard and mayo. Cannot wait to try the variations on the theme. Thanks everyone for your ideas. Like the mushroom in particular one as I am vegetarian. Thanks Aki, Alex and Kristen! Hello Dinner!”
— E
Comment

Alex: I really like egg salad.
Aki: He loves egg salad, and he doesn’t get it enough.
Alex: I do not get it enough. And part of it is because—
Aki: He won’t make it himself.
Alex: I won’t make it for myself. I don’t like peeling eggs, and everyone’s got a thousand ways to peel an egg, right?
Aki: Even we do, right? We have the steamed eggs.
Alex: Yeah, we have a thousand ways to peel an egg, but guess what? None of the ways actually work 100 percent...Here, you crack an egg, you cook it, and you cut it up and you dress it up, and you’ve got awesome egg salad. The other cool thing is you get warm egg salad—and warm egg salad is delicious.

Like all of their posts at Ideas in Food, the process is written to be flexible and whim-accommodating. Do you have a forgotten tuft of dill or wedge of lemon in your fridge? Not anymore. Or maybe some capers or bacon to sizzle in the pan first? Or nothing but eggs, mayo, and heels of bread? This will work too (trust me).

We may never peel an egg again. Photo by Julia Gartland. Prop Stylist: Sophie Strangio. Food Stylist: Lauren Lapenna.

But even in its most elaborate form, it takes moments and is often ready before the toast. You don’t even need to chase eggs around a cutting board: Slashing with scissors makes quick work of them, much as they’re used in other parts of the world, from steak and noodles in Korean homes to pizza a taglio in Rome.

And best of all, by frying the eggs, you get to make egg salad exactly as you want it. Aki likes her eggs really tender with runny yolks, with pops of crunchy onion and celery, on soft bread. Alex goes for a more traditional egg salad texture: firmer-but-not-chalky yolks, on toasted bread. He’ll also happily eat it however Aki will cook it.

How will you make yours?

Got a genius recipe to share—from a classic cookbook, an online source, or anywhere, really? Perhaps something perfect for beginners? Please send it my way (and tell me what's so smart about it) at [email protected]. Thanks to my former editor (and new New York Times Cooking writer!) Eric Kim for this one!

This post contains products independently chosen (and loved) by our editors and writers. As an Amazon Associate, Food52 earns an affiliate commission on qualifying purchases of the products we link to.
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I'm an ex-economist, lifelong-Californian who moved to New York to work in food media in 2007, before returning to the land of Dutch Crunch bread and tri-tip barbecues in 2020. Dodgy career choices aside, I can't help but apply the rational tendencies of my former life to things like: recipe tweaking, digging up obscure facts about pizza, and deciding how many pastries to put in my purse for "later."

85 Comments

MARY W. March 29, 2021
This is delicous! Made it last night and today! :))
 
Brennan D. March 19, 2021
Love this! My usual egg salad is super simple. Eggs boiled for just 10 minutes, kewpie mayo, sea salt and fresh chives.
I tried the same ingredients with this technique and it was sublime. Reminded me a bit of Ina's chopped soft boiled eggs on toast from her new cook book that I make a couple of times a week.
 
Cheryl W. March 14, 2021
Thank you so much!! I LOVE this recipe. I watch my carbs very closing and I eat an 8/16 fasting diet. My first meal is at noon so I usually have scrambled eggs with veg, and a salad. This recipe gives me a whole new way to cook and eat eggs. Sometimes I don't even add the mayo. I drop whatever meat and veg in the pan along side the sunny side up eggs, tucking them around the yolks, cover and cook together. When its done I just dump it all out on my plate. Yummy and so easy!!
 
Tony C. March 5, 2021
Typically, I use scallion or sweet onion, mayonnaise, diced bread and butter pickle and a small bit of Dijon.
 
E February 5, 2021
So many options for egg salad. Sometimes curry (and maybe some cumin) and chopped green onions. Capers as many suggest are good too. Grated parmesan and truffle salt or truffle mayo. Other times fresh dill and celery seed and/or chopped celery. Different types of mustard and mayo. Cannot wait to try the variations on the theme. Thanks everyone for your ideas. Like the mushroom in particular one as I am vegetarian. Thanks Aki, Alex and Kristen! Hello Dinner!
 
Dan F. February 1, 2021
I don't mind peeling HB eggs, but I'll admit they are a pain to peel if they are jammy or soft, and sometimes that's the perfect consistency for egg salad. Plus, this method does open up the possibilities to add items (like sautéed onions) that I wouldn't normally put in the dish. And warm egg salad? Sounds intriguing.

My typical adds are Dijon mustard, dill (usually dried), and occasionally capers and/or a dash of vinegar (rice wine, white balsamic, etc) if I'm in the mood. I'll use more Dijon when the egg salad is going on bread with avocado, as I think mustard is a great addition to anything avocado.
 
scooter January 30, 2021
Dill pickle is the way I grew up with egg salad... along with the other stuffs.
 
Anita K. January 28, 2021
I love capers with celery. No onion..or chopped up bread and butter pickles.
 
Monica E. January 28, 2021
Tried with diced mushrooms sautéed and lightly browned, torn spinach, light dash of flaked chilis and kosher salt, eggs next - all the same way demonstrated above. After cooked and cut up, added mayo and cayenne to up the spice. Really happy to have a new way to make eggs! Delicious!
 
Meg M. January 28, 2021
Mustard, capers, sweet pickle relish, no mayo
 
Food52 January 27, 2021
Tried this on a whim for a super speedy lunch for the kiddos before yet another zoom class. We did an open faced egg salad toast (mixed in chopped red onions, celery, pickled, Mayo, Dijon, salt/pepper) over smashed avocado - a hybrid of avocado toast if you will? Incredibly fast, satiating, and picky eaters approved. Thank you!!!
 
S L. January 28, 2021
Yours sounds yummy! I'm a huge fan of avocado toast plus they're in season so I they are on the menu almost every day in some form or another. I love your egg salad on top - it will happen tomorrow. Thank you!
 
S L. January 27, 2021
If it doesn't have sweet pickles (NOT relish) it just isn't egg salad!
 
Author Comment
Kristen M. January 27, 2021
Thank you all for the delightful egg salad conversation and tips! I think we've made Aki and Alex proud.
 
Paul M. January 27, 2021
I make egg salad sandwiches much the same way, but I use ceramic ramekins & the microwave oven. Spray the ramekins with cooking spray, crack the eggs in, and pierce the yolks w/a knife point. Microwave at 15 second intervals, till the yolks are hard or soft as desired. Chop and blend with mayo and dijon, diced onion, celery, and sweet pickle relish.... hint: cover the ramekins... no fun cleaning up exploded egg from the microwave!
 
Leslie January 27, 2021
Looks amazing! Favorite toppings I like include: chives and radishes
 
R S. January 27, 2021
what about Cornichons?
 
R S. January 27, 2021
what about Cornishons?
 
Bonniesue January 27, 2021
Reminds me of when I was in college, the dining hall hard boiled eggs were always warm. I would mash them with a fork, and eat them with butter, salt and pepper. Might try it with this egg preparation, but it wouldn’t be egg salad without mayonnaise.
 
Elise K. January 27, 2021
I recommend a pastry cutter instead of scissors, to break up the eggs. It fits the bowl, is more hygienic I think.
Also, this recipe is a prime opportunity for pickles, in place of the ham. The mustard idea sounds tasty too.
 
Don January 27, 2021
Just made this... The eggs cooked as described and slipped right out, used the scissors to cut, added dijon and mayonnaise, a bit of pepper, and topped with paprika. This is very good, but it is definitely not egg salad (in my opinion). The fried onions and ham overpower the flavor of the egg and the point of egg salad is lost. This is more of a bacon, lettuce, and tomato flavor profile in a baby food mash. I prefer the fried egg sandwich to the mashup. Also, this does not cook up in one minute. I put my bread in the toaster oven after I put the eggs in the pan and they were still not done after the 7 minute toast time (covered the whole time). So with a 10-minute, hands off boil time, and the 2 minutes it takes to peel 3 or 4 eggs a real egg salad takes about the same time with less hands-on work. I am going to continue to peel hard-boiled eggs (underwater) for my egg salad. And... The eggs are underwater when I peel them, not me, in case someone traces my antecedents :-)