These 1-Minute Microwaved Poached Eggs Are a Brunch Hack for the Ages

Poaching eggs are a lunch staple, but can be difficult to prepare at home without overcooking or breaking the yolk while dropping it into a pot of boiling water. I recently learned about microwave poached eggs and it might just be the ultimate brunch hack.

Making poached eggs in the microwave requires no skills, no cookware, and no mess to clean up. It’s also impossible to go wrong once you learn the exact number of seconds — yes, seconds — required for yours microwave to make it just the way you like it.

Stick that fluffy piece of protein on a piece of toast with some spinach, sprinkle it all with salt, hot sauce or hollandaise and you have a cafeteria-quality breakfast in less time than it takes to make a pot coffee.

For poached eggs cooked to perfection in less than a minute with no mess to clean up, we turn to microwavea small bowl and a few ounces of water.

Read more: Oven vs Microwave: Which Kitchen Appliance Uses Less Energy?

How to make a poached egg in the microwave

Stage 1: Fill a ramekin with about half a cup of room temperature salted water. It should be enough to completely submerge the egg.

egg in water in a ramekin egg in water in a ramekin

You’ll want enough water to submerge the egg but not spill over the top of the ramekin.

David Watsky/CNET

Step 2: Break an egg and drop it carefully into the water, being careful not to break its structural integrity.

Step 3: Place the ramekin in the microwave and cook on high for about 45 seconds or longer if you prefer a firmer yolk.

microwave egg microwave egg

Cook the dipped egg for 40 seconds for a runny yolk and about a minute for a hard one.

David Watsky/CNET

Step 4: Carefully remove the egg from the water with a slotted spoon or wire skimmer.

egg in a colander egg in a colander

Carefully lift your egg out of the water with a slotted spoon or mesh strainer.

David Watsky/CNET

Step 5: Serve on toast or veggie canapés with avocado, hot sauce, chili chips and other toppings.

poached egg on a plate. poached egg on a plate.

With a try or two, you’ll be able to fine-tune your poached egg to your perfect doneness and then nail it every time.

David Watsky/CNET

Note: The core temperature for each microwave oven will vary and therefore the cooking time may as well. Try 40 to 45 seconds for your first effort, then add five-second increments for subsequent attempts until you reach your desired readiness.

Want more genius kitchen hacks?

The the best kitchen tricks they happen in the space between hungry and unmotivated to do extra work. Cooking bacon in the oven is the cleanest method and results in even crispier strips with no greasy surface to clean up afterwards. Rapid boiling of water with these two pantry ingredients removes stubborn stains from your the best cookware without all the manic scrubbing. And here they are nine more cooking tricks that save time, energy and money.

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