Cooking a hard-boiled egg should be simple. It’s just eggs in a pot of water and boiling the water. Easy, right?
This simplicity is what can make it tricky. Since there are so few factors in boiling an egg, it can end with undesirable results. The eggs can crack or even burst. You can overcook the eggs, resulting in that unappetizing green-outline making the egg smell funny. You can also undercook the eggs, making them hard to peel. You might also peel them unsuccessfully, resulting in eggs with pockmarks that mar the perfect egg white.
All these mistakes have fixes, but the first fix needs to be how to cook the eggs properly.
There are many ways to cook a hard-boiled egg, including “boiling” it in the air fryer or the oven. As unique as these two methods sound, it doesn’t need to be. You can cook an egg in a small pot, in water, and with as little fuss as possible.
Prevent the start of any of these egg accidents with this one hard-boiled egg cooking tip:
Cook eggs with cold water.
It’s actually easier to start cooking the eggs in cold water because you don’t have to risk the egg breaking, cracking, and spilling its egg white when you place it in the boiling water. You can add salt or vinegar to the water to help prevent the eggs from leaking even further when it does, but that means the eggs have already cracked.
Stop eggs from even cracking in the first place with cold water. There are advantages to doing it this way instead of starting with boiling water. Here are the reasons why you should start cooking eggs in cold water:
1 Cold water doesn’t shock the egg.
The egg has a chance to slowly warm up, instead of immediately shocking it in the super hot water. This will prevent any of those unsightly egg whites from shooting out of cracks in the eggshell. What causes this? It’s not the egg white that pushes itself out of the shell; it’s the air pocket. Air, when heated, expands so the air is rapidly heated and expands just as quickly when placed in the boiling water. The air expands, so the egg white and yolks are pushed quite dramatically and crack the eggshell. It may expand some more so the egg whites are pushed out of the cracks.
2 Cold water prevents egg whites from turning rubbery.
If you hate rubbery egg whites, this cooking tip should prevent that. Since egg whites are the first part of the egg to cook, it needs to cook longer than the yolks. Prevent this by allowing the egg to slowly come up to temperature. This is gentler way of cooking the egg results in a more tender egg white.
However, there are two disadvantages to this cooking tip: the eggs will take longer to cook, and timing it may not be as accurate since the egg has already started “cooking” when you turned on the heat. You need to start timing the egg cooking time to your desired doneness when the water comes to a boil.