But at about 78 calories a piece and with lots of protein and vitamin D, they can be a great part of a healthy diet and are incredibly versatile.
As times have changed, so have eggs. Now you’ve got all sorts of labels to decode, options to consider, and freshness to factor in (spare us having to peel one more fresh-from-the-farm hard-boiled egg!).
Luckily, we’ve collected 40 of the best tips to help you hack your breakfast (and just about every other meal of the day), whether you like your eggs scrambled, fried, hard boiled, soft boiled, or baked into a delicious frittata!
1. Get cracking
While most people crack eggs on the side of the bowl they’re using (or even the pan), others swear by cracking them on a flat surface so the membrane remains intact at first.
So give it one good rap on the counter or cutting board (instead of a bunch of tiny taps that can create cracks that shatter into your food), turn it over, dig in with your fingers, and then turn the egg out into the bowl.
And if you’re really worried about shells getting into your food, crack eggs into a separate small cup or bowl before adding them to the rest of your ingredients so you can do separate damage control.
And remember to always wash your hands if you get egg on them.
2. Fish out the shells with…shells
However, if you got your eggs straight from the farm and they haven’t been washed, you don’t want to stick egg shell in there for fear of salmonella contamination (or whatever else might be on the outside of it).
In that case, it might be best to grab a fork or, better yet, put wet fingers in there and slide it up the side of your bowl. Just make sure to wash your hands (and under your fingernails) afterward.
3. Fluff up your scramble
Of course, you can use plant-based milk as well – just make sure it’s not sweetened.
And remember to always whisk the eggs and milk together well unless you like a streaky scramble.
4. Quick egg muffins on the go
Just grab your muffin tin, spray it with cooking spray, and add your egg. You can put an egg in each hole if you want a simple baked egg to take with you or else whisk them together with some chopped veggies for extra sustenance.
Fill the muffin tin halfway and bake for 15 minutes at 375 degrees. (If you have a bunch of extra ingredients, you might need another 2 to 3 minutes.)
You can even keep chopped peppers, onions, or shredded cheese in the fridge to make your prep work minimal.
5. Wait, how long are these good?
Well, we do it because we have to. American eggs bought in the store (as opposed to the rare roadside seller) are sanitized before shipping to protect from salmonella – it’s the law. But this also washes off a protective layer around the shell that makes it porous.
As a result, we have to refrigerate our eggs – and once they’re refrigerated, they should stay that way.
One of the benefits of this is that our eggs stay fresher longer in cold temperatures. Eggs in the fridge could stay good for about a month (even weeks beyond the sell-by date). And anyone who has made deviled eggs knows that older eggs are MUCH easier to peel.
The best way to tell? Smell it. Just like most other foods, if it gives off an odor you don’t find appetizing, it’s time to chuck it.
6. Poach eggs in the microwave
But if you can find 2 minutes in the morning, you can poach an egg.
Just take a microwave-safe mug or small bowl, add a half cup of water, and crack in an egg. Don’t mix the egg, but make sure it’s submerged in the water and you still have about 2 inches of space between the water and the top of the dish. You must put a saucer over the top – otherwise, your egg will explode rather than poach!
Then microwave the egg for 60-90 seconds and slide it out and onto a piece of toast for an easy breakfast that will keep you going during morning chaos.
7. Contain your egg with cookie cutters
Simply grease it, put it in the pan, and add your egg to the middle for an egg in the shape of whatever your heart desires (or whatever shape you have on hand – no one is going to judge you for a gingerbread man-shaped egg).
Hopefully, we don’t need to tell you that the cookie cutter is going to be hot, so be sure to have an oven mitt nearby when you’re taking it out of the pan.
8. One trick for peeling hard-boiled eggs
The first is from Cooks Illustrated and involves shaking them up in a container full of cold water.
They say shake gently to create small cracks throughout the eggs. While we’ve never seen the shells just slide right off as they suggest, sometimes leaving them to absorb some water between the egg and the shell for 30 minutes works well.
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9. Separate eggs yolks with a water bottle
But a brilliant Instagrammer demonstrated a trick with a squeezable water bottle.
Simply squeeze the bottle, set it over the yolk of the cracked egg, and let the bottle suck it up.
It sounds like it might take some practice, but we’re willing to give it a try!
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10. Blend your scramble
Now, we’re not a huge fan of how this looks, but you gotta do what you gotta do sometimes and this trick involves putting your omelet or scramble ingredients in a blender before adding them to the pan.
Of course, you’re going to want to go SUPER light on the blending so you don’t turn it into a smoothie – you just want a good chop and mix.
We feel like this would be a particularly good method for incorporating things like spinach.
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11. Fry eggs in onion rings
Use a big chopped onion ring to contain your egg instead.
Not a fan of onion? Use a sliced bell pepper!
Now you’ve got two food groups down!
12. Cut your hardboiled egg in half
Instead, cut them right in half, shell and all, and then simply scoop out the egg with a spoon.
13. Use a waffle iron for a unique omlette
You’ll need to use non-stick spray the same way you would with waffle batter, but this unique trick lets you add your ingredients and step away for a moment without having to babysit your food and attempt the dreaded omelet flip and fold.
14. Make fluffier omelets
One quick way to add a more volume to your omelet is to add a pinch of baking soda.
15. Avoid dents in hardboiled eggs
Simply pierce your egg with a tack before boiling to allow trapped air in the egg to escape.
This should also make the shell easier to remove!
16. Bake your eggs
Just crack an egg into a buttered ramekin, add salt and pepper, a dollop of cream, and bake in a water bath for a fancy french eggs en cocotte brunch.
17. Foolproof your frittata
Use a half-cup of your dairy item of choice for every six eggs that go into your recipe and don’t overlook options like yogurt or crème fraîche!
18. Undercook your eggs
If you’re multitasking, try undercooking your eggs by a minute or so. That way, when you’re ready to transfer them to a plate, they won’t be overdone.
19. Use seltzer in place of dairy for fluffy eggs
If you want fluffy eggs without the milk or cream, use seltzer water instead!
Simply use the same amount as you would milk and let those air bubbles do their work.
20. Sheet pan eggs
Grease your sheet pan, pour on the eggs, and bake to your desired consistency – then enjoy a big batch of eggs that also have some crisp around the edges.
21. Use a splash of vinegar when poaching
This should help the egg cook into a more compact shape.
And we promise you won’t get a vinegar taste in your final product!
22. Cook eggs over low heat
High heat might give you the crispiness you like, but your eggs are more likely to be tough and dry as a result.
So keep your eggs light and fluffy and avoid uneven results by keeping the burner on low.
23. Check the Julian date for freshness
This number ranges from 1 to 365 (1 being January first) and tells you when the eggs were actually packed.
You can use this easy tool to easily calculate your date once you find the number.
24. Pass eggs through a strainer before scrambling
This will also get out any tiny bits of shell that might have snuck in.
The result is creamier, dreamier scrambled eggs!
25. Never stop scrambling
As soon as you add your eggs to the pan, keep stirring.
This will break down the eggs and give you a creamier scramble.
26. Assume your eggs are cold
If you’re boiling eggs, grab them straight from the fridge or knock a few minutes off the cooking time to keep from overcooking your eggs.
27. Peel eggs right away
And always start peeling from the air pocket to keep from tearing into the egg right away.
28. Get creative with deviled egg filling
If you want a non-dairy option, try avocado – just use 1 whole large avocado per 12 yolks.
Or for a tangier flavor, try sour cream or Greek yogurt – just use 1/2 cup per dozen yolks.
29. Keep your deviled eggs from sliding around
Try trimming a little of the white off to make it flat, nestling them on a bed of shredded lettuce, or piping a small amount of filling onto the serving tray before placing the eggs on top.
30. Keep your yolks centered
This will allow the yolk to center itself in the egg white.
31. Use your ugly eggs for salads
Store them in water in the fridge and save them to use in egg salad, a Cobb salad, or simply pop them in your mouth when no one is looking!
They don’t have to be pretty to be edible!
32. Salt your scramble first
Adding salt 15 minutes before cooking will also help lock in moisture so your eggs aren’t clumpy and dry.
33. Bedazzle your breakfast
Try fried beans as a side dish to go British, chop up your favorite veggies, treat yourself to a cheesy topping, add fresh herbs from your garden, or pile on the salsa or hot sauce to spice up your morning routine.
34. Butter or bacon up your pan
Most people swear by using butter, but if you like a side of bacon and you’re not watching your fat intake too closely, you can also cook the bacon first and then use some of the bacon grease to lubricate your pan and make your eggs taste great.
35. Baste your fried eggs while cooking
But then you run the risk of having undercooked egg whites.
To avoid this while using medium-high heat, baste the whites with your butter or cooking oil as they cook. This will not only puff them up but help them cook all the way through faster.
36. Make your eggs ahead of time
From casseroles to quiches, there are plenty of ways to get the work done ahead of time so all you need to do in the morning is pop something in the oven.
Try these 20 make-ahead recipes for starters. We’re big fans of the big batch breakfast burritos that you can pop in the microwave each morning.
37. Sunny side secret
But remember that you want to cook the eggs on a lower heat setting, so reduce the heat to medium-low before you pour them in.
38. Set your yolks
39. Up your protein ante
For the ultimate high-energy, high-fiber breakfast, try baking an egg inside half an avocado and then seasoning it with salt and pepper.
Just preheat your oven to 425°F, pit your avocado (you might need to scrape out a bit extra in the center so your egg will fit), place the avocados (skin on) in a baking dish, and bake for 17-20 minutes.
You can eat them warm or refrigerate them and have them cold later in the day!
40. Don’t be duped by fake egg-vertising
The way an egg looks is dependent on the chicken and has almost nothing to do with taste and neither color has more protein or nutrients than the other.
White eggs are laid by hens with white feathers, and brown eggs are laid by brown or red hens. That’s it.
The only other difference is price.
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