Perfect Poached Eggs in the Microwave

Updated on December 20, 2019
cam8510 profile image

Occasionally Chris will have something to say about food preparation, but only if he has tried it and had good results.

No Poaching!
No Poaching! | Source

Achieving the Perfect Poached Egg

Perfect may be an absolute term when it comes to scientific experiments, but it is a relative term when it comes to preparing the food we eat. I've claimed that you can make the perfect poached egg in your microwave. I can say that because I'll provide some guidelines, and you will work out a few of the details. Together, we will achieve that perfect poached egg.

Poach: To cook by simmering in a small amount of liquid.

Description of a Perfectly Poached Egg

  • The yolk is mostly runny. Some of the yolk will be solid, but most will be runny.
  • White is fully cooked. The entire clear, viscous part will cook until it is totally white.
  • White is mostly solid. Most of the white will be solid, but some will still wiggle.

utensils needed to make a poached egg
utensils needed to make a poached egg | Source

Necessary Utensils

  • Microwavable coffee cup: The diameter needs to be narrow enough so that the egg can be completely submerged in 1/3 of a cup of water.
  • Measuring cup: This will measure 1/3 of a cup of hot tap water.
  • 1/4 teaspoon measuring spoon: This will measure 1/4 teaspoon of white vinegar.
  • Small saucer: This will cover the cup while the egg is cooking.
  • Slotted spoon: You will use this to scoop the cooked egg out of the cup.

If eggs are more than a week old, the whites thin out. Whites of fresh eggs will gather compactly around the yolk, making a rounder, neater shape.

— What's Cooking America,
Poached eggs on toast
Poached eggs on toast | Source


  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup water (hot tap water)
  • 1/4 teaspoon white vinegar


  1. Pour 1/3 cup of hot tap water.
  2. Add 1/4 teaspoon white vinegar to hot water.
  3. Heat the water/vinegar solution in the microwave for 10 seconds.
  4. Break the egg into the water/vinegar solution. Make sure the egg is completely submerged.
  5. With a toothpick, poke two holes in the egg yolk to prevent a buildup of pressure.
  6. Place the cup/egg into the microwave with a saucer on top and a toothpick between the bottom of the saucer and the rim of the cup. This will prevent pressure from building.
  7. Cook the egg for 45 seconds. If your microwave is more than 750 watts, microwave for 30 seconds and check the egg. Continue at 10-second intervals until finished. Remember the total time for your next poached egg.
  8. Take the cup and egg from the microwave and scoop the egg up with a slotted spoon.
  9. Place it on a plate and season with salt and pepper.


Saturated fat
egg in a little cup
egg in a little cup | Source

Why Is This the Perfect Poached Egg?

These instructions include two steps that other microwave poached egg recipes do not have. Step 1 says to collect 1/3 cup of hot tap water. Step 3 says to heat the water/vinegar solution for 10 seconds. You will begin cooking with preheated water. This is the difference between my recipe and others.

The yolk and the egg whites cook at a different rate. The whites cook more slowly than the yolks. By beginning with preheated water, the whites of the egg get a headstart on the yolk so they are both fully cooked in the same amount of time.

Questions & Answers

  • Why use vinegar when poaching eggs?

    Vinegar causes the whites of the egg to firm up faster while leaving the yolk in its liquid state. Purists won't like this, but it does work.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Fantastic eat. Saturday my boy will cook his own.

      Chris I can't remember the name of the place but it was in Zona Rosa in Mexico DF.

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      17 months ago from Green Bay, Wisconsin...for now

      Thanks, Doris. Coddled? Now I have to learn about that.

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      17 months ago from Green Bay, Wisconsin...for now

      Liz, There are three ways to blow up an egg you are trying to poach. First, fail to poke holes in the yolk. Second, create a seal between the saucer on top and the cup beneath. Third, don't submerge the entire egg in the water. Happy microwaving.

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      17 months ago from Green Bay, Wisconsin...for now

      Randi, I hope this works for your daughter. Tell her to experiment with the times until the whites and the yolk are both perfect.

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      17 months ago from Green Bay, Wisconsin...for now

      Shauna, it is fun to hear how each person enjoys preparing their eggs. Humans have been eating eggs for a very long time so we've had time to perfect our favorite food.

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      17 months ago from Green Bay, Wisconsin...for now

      Eric, I hope you had a happy breakfast. Seriously? A $30 poached egg?

    • MizBejabbers profile image

      Doris James MizBejabbers 

      17 months ago from Beautiful South

      Chris, your instructions look very easy to follow, but I like eggs cooked any way except poached or coddled. That's probably because the old folks used to have to eat them poached when they had ulcers. I do not like bare egg whites. They give me goose bumps. I do make a mean scrambled egg in the microwave though. We gals used to scramble our eggs in the microwave during morning break. They were very good with a little salsa or hot sauce whipped in. It takes about 45 seconds in my microwave of 1250 watts. I like powerful ones because they make better popcorn.

    • Eurofile profile image

      Liz Westwood 

      17 months ago from UK

      It's amazing what can be achieved in a microwave. Although I remember one of my children not poking holes in the yolk once. It took a long time to clean up the microwave.

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 

      17 months ago from Mesa, AZ

      I'm looking forward to trying this! My daughter has been on the hunt for easy methods for cooking eggs.

      Thank you for the tips!

    • bravewarrior profile image

      Shauna L Bowling 

      17 months ago from Central Florida

      I love poached eggs on English muffins with fresh spinach and tomato. I'll have to try this microwave method, Chris. I think my nuke is 900 watts, so I'll have to reduce the cook time. I like that you had hot water to give the whites a head start. There's nothing worse than an over-cooked yolk. Unless, of course it's a fried egg sandwich. I actually prefer the yolk to be completely cooked in that dish.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 

      17 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Like I am not having this for my breakfast? No way!! Now I will use a full tablespoon of ACV. And also add butter. If I mess up. I will just do it again. And I can change this up with spices. A Mexican one, perhaps an Italian -- My boy will want a fish sauce Vietnamese on rice instead of bread.

      I remember once when I was on a money roll I spent 30 bucks for one. Hmm.

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      17 months ago from Green Bay, Wisconsin...for now

      John, check your microwave to see what the wattage is. If it is more than 750 watts, then follow the instructions I gave for that situation. I would appreciate hearing the results. I have not been able to try this with a more powerful microwave oven. I hope it works well for you. I don't want you to waste any cackleberries.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      17 months ago from Queensland Australia

      I love eggs, Chris, poached, scrambled, boiled, as an omelette, but I haven’t tried poaching in a microwave. I will certainly give this a try. Thanks for sharing.

    • cam8510 profile imageAUTHOR

      Chris Mills 

      17 months ago from Green Bay, Wisconsin...for now

      Becky, it sounds as though you found your favorite egg preparation a long time ago. I love the history and heritage in your account. Thanks for visiting my hub today.

    • Becky Katz profile image

      Becky Katz 

      17 months ago from Hereford, AZ

      I have never cared for poached eggs cooked in water. My grandmother had a tiny egg poacher pan, and she would fill the bottom with water, and put butter in the little cup that sat on top of the water. She bought a big one for my mom, that would do 6 eggs. My mom got me a 4 egg poacher when I got married, and I have used it regularly. My husband used to make them in water, and I swore that they lost their flavor. I like the eggs cooked in butter, and will continue to use my little stainless steel pan to cook them in. This is my favorite way to cook an egg.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)