Sweet • Sour • Savory

Food blog on scandinavian style food done right.

How to Poach an Egg

Breakfast, Brunch, techniqueTove Balle-PedersenComment
Poached egg

Poached egg

I really love poached eggs, the soft but firm white and the creamy and runny yolk. It's the soft boiled egg I grew up on, made better. But I have tried to make them several times, and with no luck. They turned out like hard boiled eggs to soft eggs (smilende) but still to firm to be a poached egg. I needed a fool proved method, I just hadn't found it yet. Until a day after an hour at the gym, where I really craved a poached egg. I googled and found Simplyrecipes.com and her "Easy Poached Eggs." That day I had my first perfect homemade poached egg. 

I have to spread the news on how to poach an egg.

I hope you will enjoy a perfect poached egg in you near future. 

Eggs in general: When you want poach eggs, you need to use fresh eggs. When you crack the egg you can tell that you have a fresh egg, when the yolk is firm and plump, and the white consist of two parts: a gelatinous mass around the yolk and a runnier liquid.  As the egg ages, the white becomes more runny.  So the runnier the white, -  the older the egg. 

If you don't want to crack the eggs to figure out the freshness, here's a quick guide:

Place your eggs in a cup or bowl of fresh water

  • If the egg sinks and lays flat on the bottom, it's very fresh.
  • If the egg sits on the bottom at an angle,it's a bit older.
  • If the egg stands on end but still sits on the bottom, use for baking.
  • If the egg floats, it is old and you don't want to use it.


  • fresh eggs
  • 1-2 teaspoons vinegar (I used rice vinegar)

Equipment needed:

  • Shallow saucepan with cover
  • Slotted spoon


First bring water in a saucepan to almost boiling. If the water is already boiling, lower the heat until it is no longer boiling. At this point, you can add one or two teaspoons of vinegar to the water, if you want. The vinegar will help the egg whites to coagulate easier.

Working with the eggs one by one, crack an egg into a small cup.

Use the slotted spoon to quickly stir the water in one direction until it's all smoothly spinning around like in a whirlpool. Use the whirlpool method for one or two eggs. For bigger batches do not stir. 

Place the cup near the surface of the hot water and gently drop the egg into the water. With a spoon, gather the egg white closer to the yolk. This will help the egg white hold together.

Turn off the heat. Cover. Let sit for 4 minutes, until the egg whites are cooked.

Lift eggs out of pan with a slotted spoon.

Serve immediately. Alternatively, place the egg in an ice bath and refrigerate up to 8 hours. Reheat in warm water just before serving.