How to Cook an Egg in the Microwave

How to make poached, scrambled and baked eggs in the microwave.

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Oefs en cocotte (Individual baked eggs) with spinach, feta, bacon, eggs, and slices of bread


Oefs en cocotte (Individual baked eggs) with spinach, feta, bacon, eggs, and slices of bread

Photo by: Westend61/Getty Images

Westend61/Getty Images

Maybe you’re short on time or maybe you don’t have access to a full kitchen (office breakfasts, anyone?). Whatever the case, microwave-cooked eggs are a very convenient and legitimate preparation. They take just a minute or two to make and are often cooked in the same vessel that you’ll eat them in, meaning there are fewer dishes.

One note: Your cooking times might vary depending on how powerful your microwave is, the number of eggs you use and the size of your cooking vessel. Don’t worry though, the techniques detailed below walk you through how to check for and tailor for doneness. Read on for three different ways to cook eggs in the microwave, including poaching, scrambling and baking.

Microwave Poached Egg

It’s no exaggeration to say that microwave poached eggs are every bit as fabulous as stove-poached eggs, and perhaps even better: they’re so much easier to make and come out looking perfectly round (no scraggly edges in site). Their texture and flavor is exactly the same as stove-poached eggs.

  1. Crack a large egg into a small microwave-safe bowl, ramekin or mug. Note that you can only poach one egg per bowl, but if you’re making poached eggs for a crowd, you could use several different bowls and microwave all of them at the same time.
  2. Top the egg with 1/3 cup water and a splash of distilled white vinegar. The water should cover the egg completely.
  3. Cover the bowl with a microwave-safe plate.
  4. Microwave the egg for 30 seconds. Remove the egg and check for doneness by gently poking it with your finger. If you’d like your egg more well done, microwave it for 10 more seconds and check it again. Continue microwaving it in 10 second increments until it reaches your desired doneness.
  5. Remove the poached egg from the water with a spoon and season with salt and pepper.

Microwave Scrambled Eggs

You’re not going to get perfectly creamy French-style scrambled eggs in the microwave. For those, you need a nonstick pan and the ability to finesse the heat (see Food Network Kitchen’s Best Scrambled Eggs). But you can still achieve super light and fluffy scrambled eggs in the microwave that are different but just as good.

  1. Grease a small oven-safe bowl, ramekin, mug or ceramic egg maker with your oil of choice — any oil you like works.
  2. Crack your eggs into the bowl and whisk them until they’re combined with a fork. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Microwave on high for 30 seconds. Remove from the microwave and stir with a fork, bringing the edges of the egg inwards. If you like cheesy scrambled eggs, you can add some shredded cheese at this point (or any other goodies you like for that matter, like bacon bits or chopped up veggies).
  4. Return the eggs to the microwave and cook for 20 more seconds. Remove from the microwave and check for doneness; continue cooking in 20 second increments until the eggs are just set.

Microwave Baked Eggs

You could bake your egg plain, but if you like experimenting with other ingredients, this technique is for you. Here’s what we mean. Line the bowl with slices of bacon or ham, then crack the egg on top — the egg will set into the meat. Or dollop in a pool of pesto or marinara for saucy eggs. You get the drift. If you're looking for some flavor profile ideas, check out Food Network Kitchen's Mushroom Spinach Baked Eggs, Baked Eggs with Salsa Verde or Swiss Chard Baked Eggs.

  1. Oil a small bowl, ramekin or mug. Add any additional ingredients you’d like (such as a slice of ham).
  2. Crack an egg into the bowl and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Cover the bowl with a microwave-safe plate. Microwave the egg in 15-second increments, checking for desired doneness. It’s okay if you hear some sputtering and popping. You shouldn’t have to go longer than 1 minute.

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