The 9 Best Egg Poachers

Updated January 28, 2018 by Ezra Glenn

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We spent 43 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. However you like your eggs, many believe that poaching is a healthier alternative to frying, although getting it right can be a tough skill to learn. Any one of these handy kitchen gadgets will help you make your way up the learning curve to perfect results in no time. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best egg poacher on Amazon.

9. Simply Calphalon

For quick preparation and an easy cleanup, consider the Simply Calphalon. Its double-layered nonstick interior makes it easy to remove your cooked treats with no mess, which is great for large batches, but be aware that it's also quite heavy.
  • rugged and attractive
  • includes four jumbo-sized cups
  • not dishwasher safe
Brand Calphalon
Model 1793893
Weight 3.3 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

8. Nordic Ware Insert

The American-made Nordic Ware Insert fits into one of your existing 10 to 12-inch skillets, and features a built-in handle at the center of its nonstick body. Four holes around the perimeter offer another simple way to lift it out of the water when the time comes.
  • all-over teflon layer
  • good choice for making eggs benedict
  • eggs tend to stick despite coating
Brand Nordic Ware
Model 5830
Weight 9.6 ounces
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

7. Dash Rapid Cooker

The Dash Rapid Cooker is a multifunctional option that uses interchangeable trays, so you can also rely on it for your hard or soft boiled needs, and it even makes omelettes, too. It features a simple one-button operation and shuts off automatically when it's done cooking.
  • inserts and lid are dishwasher safe
  • available in four colors
  • quite elaborate for just 2 portions
Brand Dash
Model DEC005BK
Weight 1.3 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0

6. Excelsteel 521

An all-in-one lidded frying pan, the Excelsteel 521 allows you to prepare the essential components of a pair of hearty breakfasts with ease. Its nonstick coated cups have individual handles for easy removal from the water boiling beneath as soon as your whites are set.
  • dishwasher safe and rustproof
  • works with induction stoves
  • handle tends to get very hot
Brand ExcelSteel
Model 521
Weight 2.5 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

5. FusionBrands PoachPod

The FusionBrands PoachPod is a set of two stainless steel, boat-like cradles that can be set afloat in any pot of simmering water to cook your eggs to perfection. A nonstick ceramic coating makes this a mess-free solution that keeps both your pot and water clean for reuse.
  • silicone finger grips stay cool
  • highly compact option
  • a bit expensive for just one pair
Brand FusionBrands
Model 8064
Weight 4 ounces
Rating 3.8 / 5.0

4. Norpro 10-Inch

The stainless steel Norpro 10-Inch includes five removable cups and a 3-ply pan that has a reinforced base and a polished exterior. It can also be used to sauté or steam other foods and prepare sauces to complement your breakfast.
  • great results in under 5 minutes
  • easy to clean by hand
  • plastic knobs get too hot to hold
Brand Norpro
Model 669
Weight 7.1 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

3. Cuisinart CEC-10

With a simple on-off switch, the Cuisinart CEC-10 is a straightforward electric model suitable for boiling four unshelled eggs at once, or up to 10 with their shells on. It comes with a custom measuring cup that will allow you to portion water perfectly for your needs.
  • includes omelet tray
  • built-in cord storage
  • deep cups won't ever overflow
Brand Cuisinart
Model CEC-10
Weight 2.2 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

2. Cooks Standard 02421

Prepare the perfect breakfast quickly with the Cooks Standard 02421. Its pan is constructed from heavy-gauge hard-anodized aluminum with three interlocking nonstick layers designed to provide superior heat conduction, and its glass lid lets you monitor all the action.
  • triple-riveted handle stays cool
  • cups and insert are removable
  • coating is peel and chip-resistant
Brand Cooks Standard
Model 02421
Weight 4.6 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

1. RSVP Endurance Single Set

If you tend to fly solo during brunch hours, the RSVP Endurance Single Set might just be the one for you. It comes with a full system for preparing a serving of your favorite eggs Benedict or breakfast sandwich, and it looks adorable on a pot rack when you're not using it.
  • durable all-metal design
  • long handle for ease of maneuvering
  • cooks very evenly
Brand RSVP International
Model POACH-1
Weight 1.2 pounds
Rating 5.0 / 5.0

How To Use An Egg Poacher

Before egg poachers came to be, making this dish was quite complicated. Without a special device, eggs are poached by cracking an egg and dropping it into a pan of simmering, swirling water. This process, however, can be rather messy. Your yolk can break entirely when you crack the shell, and you can end up with a big blob of eggs in the pan. It can also be hard to remove the finished poached eggs from the pan without breaking the yolk. An egg poacher eliminates these issues. Because egg poachers use steam to cook the eggs, you don't have to fish your finished product out of the water. An egg poacher also has individual cups for each egg so that they won't stick together.

Egg poachers are usually comprised of a regular pan and a plate that houses the egg cups. To poach your eggs, you remove the egg cup plate and fill the bottom pan with just enough water to touch the bottom of the egg cups. It's usually a good idea to brush oil or butter inside of each egg cup as well, so your eggs don't stick. Break an egg inside of each little cup, and place it back inside of the pan. Put the entire unit on the stove, and turn a burner on high until the water boils. You only want the water at a simmering boil; if it's any less than that, the whites will separate from the yolks, but if it's any more than that the eggs can break apart entirely.

Once your water is boiling, you can put a lid over the pan, and bring the heat down to medium. Cook the eggs for two and a half to three minutes. Those who prefer harder yolks can cook their eggs for one more minute. Runny yolk fans can rejoice, though, because reports say that these are safe to eat. When the eggs are done, use oven mitts or tongs to remove the egg cups. The eggs should slide easily out of the pan and onto a plate.

Special Features To Look For

Egg poachers that are lined on the outside with stainless steel will be the easiest to clean, and incredibly durable. As for the inside, you can find egg cups that are made with the same non-stick Teflon you find in full non-stick pans. These are ideal for people who want to reduce their butter and oil usage. Some egg poachers have egg cup trays with small handles on each individual cup, which makes it easy to lift your eggs out. For the best heat conduction, look for a pan made from anodized aluminum--this is more durable than regular aluminum.

There are a few egg poachers that are capable of making other complicated egg dishes, like the omelet. If you're also struggling to master the omelet, save yourself the trouble and buy a poacher with an omelet tray. These more advanced devices usually have built-in timers, too, and let you know the second your dish is done. This is very helpful since overcooking eggs by just half a minute can ruin their consistency.

Make sure your lid and your pan have a heat-resistant handle so you don't burn yourself when removing it from the stove. To get the most out of your egg poacher, make sure the skillet beneath the egg cups has properties you like, such as a large, non-stick surface. This way you can remove the egg cups and use the pan to make other dishes.

The History Of Eggs As Food

Birds have existed on this planet since long before humankind came to be. Historians believe that the first birds that humans retrieved eggs from for consumption were a jungle species. In East India, people domesticated jungle fowl as early as 3200 BCE. But at the time, people would save most of the eggs for hatching, in order to keep the fowl population alive. Chinese and Egyptian societies in 1400 BCE also domesticated fowls and ate their eggs. Each society has favored different types of bird eggs; the Chinese were originally most fond of pigeon eggs, ancient Romans ate peafowl eggs, and the Phoenicians used to eat ostrich eggs.

The Ancient Romans and Egyptians are thought to be the first to use eggs in baking because they discovered the food's binding properties. Roman nobles would be served dozens of varieties of bread and pastry that all called for eggs, and a recipe found for one of their ancient sacrificial cakes calls for an egg. The wealthy Roman merchant Marcus Gavius Apicius was allegedly the first to use eggs to make a custard.

While hen eggs have become the most common today, there are still various other delectable varieties available in stores. The choice to sell eggs by the dozen comes from an old system of measurements. In the 1800s in England, one shilling equaled 12 pennies. So people could either by an egg for a penny or a dozen for a shilling.

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Last updated on January 28, 2018 by Ezra Glenn

Ezra is a writer, photographer, creative producer, designer, and record label-operator from New York City. He's traveled around the world and ended up back where he started, though he's constantly threatening to leave again.

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