Curious fact: this is what counts when cooking eggs

Whether for breakfast, as a side dish or with a snack – boiled eggs are popular in Germany. But there is one curious aspect that is crucial to a perfectly boiled egg. We also show you how to store eggs properly in the video.

The average consumption per capita in Germany is almost 240 eggs a year (Statistics, 2020). And almost everyone likes their egg differently. Whether boiled, with a soft core or completely hard-boiled – how the perfect breakfast egg should be is an unresolved question of faith.

What you can say with certainty instead: How long an egg has to be in simmering water to reach the desired degree of doneness is well known or can be researched on the net in a few seconds.

However, the times not only change with the size of the eggs, they also depend on two other exciting circumstances that we will discuss later. Basically, the following rules apply when boiling eggs.

Hard, soft and everything in between

These cooking times apply to medium-sized eggs at room temperature.
These cooking times apply to medium-sized eggs at room temperature.


Eggs come in three different sizes, each of which is indicated on the carton: S, M and L. Some markets, farms or village shops often stock XL-sized eggs. However, the most common chicken eggs in supermarkets and discounters are size M eggs, which weigh 53 to 63 grams. Size M eggs at room temperature have the following cooking times:

  • Soft-boiled – runny yolk, beaten egg white: 4 ½ minutes
  • Medium cooked – Waxy yolk, hard egg white: 7 minutes
  • Hard boiled – Hard yolk, hard egg white: 10 minutes

Depending on the size, the times vary by 30 seconds. S eggs take less time, L and XL eggs accordingly more.

In addition to the size, the cooking time also depends on other conditions. While one of these should be familiar to most, the second fact to consider is a bit more curious:

Check out the egg cooker on Amazon

temperature & altitude

When boiling eggs, it comes down to the temperature of the ice. If you refrigerate your eggs, it may take up to a minute longer for the egg to reach the desired doneness than indicated above.

On the other hand, the Heightyou are on will affect the cooking time. Water normally boils at 100 degrees Celsius, but this temperature applies at sea level. For example, if you are in a mountain hut in the Alps, the boiling temperature of the water will drop. The eggs then have to be cooked longer.

background: Water boils at 100 degrees Celsius only at normal pressure (at sea level). If the external pressure drops, the boiling point also drops. The boiling temperature drops by around 1 degree Celsius for every 300 meters of altitude SWR knowledge. With increasing altitude, the water molecules need less energy to escape into the air; To put it in everyday terms: water boils in the mountains at under 100 degrees Celsius.

The perfect egg

However, you don’t have to make a science out of boiling eggs on a regular basis. Egg cookers also help with this. In theory, these work very simply: you fill in water, plug in the device and fill it with eggs. Then just select the degree of hardness you want, wait for the beep and you can enjoy your perfectly boiled eggs.

However, there are countless egg boilers on the market and not all keep the promise of the perfect egg. Our partner All the best regularly tests different egg cookers. In the clear table you can see at a glance which models score well in the test at AllesBeste and which do not convince. All further information can be found in our detailed purchase advice.

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