If you want to find a perfect recipe for soft-boiled eggs that delivers tender delicious yolks and tasty firm whites, this post was created exactly for you. Boiled egg as a dish is an integral part of any cuisine. It can be used as an appetizer and a base for a snack/sandwich. It is one of the most obvious and suitable options for breakfast.

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I will share with you all the boiling techniques for eggs with soft yolks that I could think of. First, I should mention that there are two distinct types of soft-boiled eggs for me. I differentiate them by the consistency of the boiled yolk. The first type of boiled egg has a runny yolk, whites can be slightly loose (depends on the way you like to have them). The second type of boiled egg has fully hardened whites and jammy yolk that is still spreadable.

All the recipes will have boiling time for both types of eggs. So, you can easily check time for whatever eggs you are boiling for a meal of your choice. However, I can’t stress enough that this timetable is given as a baseline. As different tops of the stoves have different heat. You can choose eggs of bigger size than I have in photos and this can lead to increase of cooking time. Do not forget that 1-week eggs will be easier to peel and this is very important keeping whites of soft-boiled eggs intact.

Hope you find this instruction helpful!

How Long Do You Cook Soft-Boiled Eggs?

Cover eggs with cold water for boiling on the stove

If you are looking for a way how you can make the perfect soft-boiled egg, this cooking times chart for boiling eggs will be of great value to you. You will always be able to check boiling time for a soft-boiled egg according to presences. Whether you want to have yolk in your egg runny or to have it with, as I call it “medium”, soft yolk. I think that I do not have to describe what runny yolk means, but soft is more undefined concept. For me soft means nearly set yolk but still spreadable. You will see in the picture where I describe the cooking method how to get both this types of soft-boiled eggs.

  • How long do you boil an egg for a soft yolk? On average, you have to boil eggs for 6 minutes to get a soft yolk.
  • How long do you boil an egg to get runny yolk? You boil eggs no more than 4 minutes to have a runny yolk.

Bear in mind, that this timeschart applies to the recipe when you add eggs to cold water and get them to boil on the stove. And, of course, every little thing can affect boiling time measurements. The egg size (I used medium sized eggs, around 55 g each). The size of a saucepan, the amount of eggs (I would advise not to use more than 4 eggs in a batch) and the amount of water (it should always fully cover eggs, at least 1 inch above the eggs).

To get everything figured out just follow the recipes below. They have detailed list of ingredients with all the tips that you can come up.

Soft Boiled Egg from Cold Water Recipe

The first boiling method that I will share with you is the first method that comes to my mind when I need to boil eggs. It has simple moves to follow, no extra time for getting eggs to room temperature. Has no special twists or tricks that you need to learn. Simply boiling water and setting a timer for the necessary period of time to get eggs to the consistency that you need.

Cuisine: International Type: Ingredient/Garnish Calories: 155 kcal (per 100 g) Yield: 3 servings Prep Time: 5 min Cook Time: 8 min Ready in 17 min

Ingredients for Hard-Boiled Eggs:

Ingredeints for Soft-boiled Eggs

  • 3 eggs;
  • 1 l water;
  • 1 tbsp. salt.

Let’s see how you can boil eggs from cold water on the stove:

  • I prefer rinsing eggs before boiling under cold running water, especially if I brought them from farmers market. Then place them in a chosen saucepan. Please, choose wisely, as there should be enough space for the batch that you are going to be boiling. My advice would be not to cook more than four eggs at once, as it will be hard to guess eggs cooking time in this case.

Rinse eggs before boiling

  • Cover eggs in a saucepan with enough cold water (it definitely should at least 1 inch above the eggs). Add 1 tablespoon of salt and put your pan on the high heat on the stove.

Add a tablespoon of salt

  • When water boils, lower the heat so that water will be at a “rolling” simmer. Now is the time to set a timer. If you have the same sized pan and the amount of eggs that I had for this recipe, boil eggs no more than for 3 minutes for the runny yolk (maximum 4 minutes if you have bigger saucepan and 4 eggs in it). To get jammy soft yolk, let eggs boil for 5-6 minutes.

Get water to boil and cook eggs for 5 minutes

  • Prepare a bowl with cold water and ice in it. When boiling time passes, move boiled eggs to the bowl right away. Let them sit for several minutes before serving!

Do not skip cold water bath

I tend to use eggs with a soft yolk in salads and eggs with a runny yolk together with buttered toast for breakfast.

How to boil egg with soft yolk

The best way to eat your soft egg with a runny yolk is directly from its shell. Place an egg in a special eggсup; get rid of its pointed top using a small knife and enjoy it with a teaspoon (or a toast slices).

How boil egg with runny yolk

Soft Boiled Eggs Recipe from Boiling Water: Two Options

Soft-boiled eggs recipe from boiling water

Let’s have a look at how you can boil soft eggs by adding them to already boiling water. Do not forget to pay attention to the boiling time of eggs. If you want to have yolks runny, you will have to spend less time for boiling eggs in water and vice versa to get the yolk soft set time for one more minute to boil:

  • This recipe requires some prepping time. Take eggs out of the fridge and let them warm up to the room temperature. We do this to avoid cracking. You can also leave them in a bowl with warm water for several minutes (but I keep avoiding this step and just leave them on the kitchen counter before boiling).
  • Boil water in a large saucepan on the high heat on the stove, add a tablespoon of salt and lower the heat so that water will be “confidently” simmering.
  • Add eggs to the simmering water using any in handy utensil. Let eggs cook for 5 minutes for a runny yolk and 7 to 8 minutes for a soft yolk. If you want to have not only runny yolk but also a loose white, boil eggs for not more than 4 minutes.
  • Use a cold bath to cool down eggs before servings.

Here is another recipe, but now you can get only runny yolk after cooking. There is no enough heat to get yolk hardened. It is a foolproof method for boiling eggs to get that nice loose yolk for your sandwich or salad.

  • Repeat first two steps from the first recipe. Let eggs warm up before boiling. Water in a saucepan on the stove and get it to boil. Add a tablespoon of salt and lower the heat to simmering water.
  • Now, place carefully eggs in simmering water and let them cook for one minute.
  • In a minute, cover the pot with a lid and set aside from the heat.
  • Let eggs sit in hot water for 5 to 7 minutes (as always time depends on the size of the saucepan, the size of eggs and their amount).

When I cook eggs this way to get that delicious runny yolk I keep skipping the last step that I have not mentioned in the recipe. I do not use cold bath to cool them down. I find it may be somewhat tastier to have soft-boiled eggs with runny yolk in this way.

Soft Boiled Egg Recipe without Boiling

Soft-boiled egg recipe without boiling

This is the last recipe that I will share with you today, I promise. You won`t find easier and simpler recipe to follow to get that soft-boiled egg with yummy runny yolk plus a loose white:

  • Take a deep bowl or a saucepan and transfer eggs there.
  • Boil water in a kettle and pour it into the pan with eggs to cover them fully.
  • Cover the pot with a lid and leave eggs for 10 minutes.
  • Boil necessary amount of water again.
  • Carefully drain water and pour boiled water once again to the pot.
  • Keep eggs in hot water for additional 5 minutes. Enjoy!

I would like to repeat myself one more time, as you need to remember, that not only yolk but white also stays slightly runny. Use only this recipe if it fully meats your requirements.

I think you have already noticed that I always add a tablespoon of salt to boiling eggs. I use it in case an egg cracks as salt will help to keep whites from running during the process of cooking.

How many calories is a soft-boiled egg?

Soft-boiled egg provides about 87 kcal (nutrition amount given for 55 g egg). 

I think that boiling eggs can be difficult only the first time you are doing it. First thing is to understand how you can get water with eggs to boil without cracking. You figure out what saucepan to use, among all the pans that you have which one fits best. Then you need to keep an eye on the level of the heat to prevent extreme boiling. The best advice I can give is just keep trying until you figure it out. Cooking is like that with every meal.

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