11 Martha Stewart-Approved Tips To Elevate Your Next Egg Dish

If there's one person who knows a thing or two about cooking, it's Martha Stewart. The illustrious television chef, cookbook author, and businesswoman has been serving up food professionally since the late 1970s. For decades, she's been helping home cooks over the airwaves through her TV shows, and more recently, her social media channels. Stewart's focus on everyday foods means that over the years, she's shared a wealth of knowledge on how to nail the basics and make the most simple meals and ingredients into things of beauty.

One food that she's particularly knowledgeable about is eggs. While eggs are one of the most widely-available and commonly-used foods out there, they can also be devilishly tricky to get just right, with chefs spending years perfecting their soufflés and omelets. Personally, we're a little more time-pressed than that when it comes to our eggs — but we still want them to be good. 

Martha Stewart does, too. That's why she's devised several tips and tricks that will help you both save time and make restaurant-quality eggs at home. We've collected them together for your future egg needs.

1. Avoid bits of shell with this peeling tip

Whether you're making egg salad, eggs on toast, or deviled eggs, you will want your food to be shell-free. But this isn't always the case. Boiled eggs can be fiendishly tricky to peel. Not only can you end up with a hard shard of shell lurking in your food, but it's also easy to end up ripping off large bits of the egg white.

But with Martha Stewart's egg-peeling tips, you'll never do this again. Stewart begins by removing her eggs from hot water and placing them in a cold water bath. Then, she recommends that you always start peeling the egg from its wider end, "which is generally where the air pocket in the egg is," Stewart advises in a YouTube video from the show "Martha Stewart's Cooking School." This will allow you to get your finger under the shell more effectively, thanks to the gap between the shell and the egg flesh that's exposed once you crack it.

Then, once you've worked your way into the egg via the air gap at the bottom, use the side of your thumb to gently peel the shell from the egg, making sure to get between the membrane and the egg white. Stewart also states that slightly older eggs are quicker to peel than brand-new eggs, as the membrane gets smaller the older the egg gets, making it easier to shell.

2. Use steam to create the perfect sunny-side-up eggs

A well-cooked sunny-side-up egg has a beauty that rivals the best artworks, in our opinion. The combination of cooked egg white, perfectly crispy bottom, and gooey egg yolk is unbeatable. Keep your Mona Lisas, a sunny-side-up egg is our idea of perfection. These eggs are just begging to be combined with toast or bacon.

But making a sunny-side-up egg is pretty difficult, not least because by the time the bottom of the egg is cooked, the top can still be liquid. This can lead to runny, inconsistently-cooked egg whites that make it a chore to eat. But our beloved celebrity chef solves all this by harnessing the power of steam. When cooking sunny-side-up eggs, Martha Stewart makes sure to pick a skillet that has a lid. Then, once the egg has had a chance to cook for a minute or two, she places the lid on her pan and lets the steam that's generated do its thing. The steam will gently cook the top of the egg, making the egg white solid while warming the egg yolk through. Check it every minute or so, and take it off the heat when the egg is your desired consistency.

No lid? No problem! A smaller domed saucepan lid or metal bowl will work just as well. You can put it straight over the egg in the pan. You can also help generate more steam by adding a tablespoon of water to the hot skillet.

3. Omelets are best with clarified butter

Making the perfect omelet is the ultimate sign of skill for some chefs. But for many of us untrained folk, it can be difficult to know where to start. Aside from knowing what consistency your eggs need to be before cooking, or whether they should be salted or not, there's also the question of fat. While most of us know that butter is better, should we be using salted or unsalted?

According to Martha Stewart, the answer is neither. Instead, Stewart favors using clarified butter (also known as ghee) in her omelets. This food is created when the milk solids in butter are removed, leaving nothing but a creamy nectar that's full of buttery flavor. "Use clarified butter, which does not burn as quickly as salted or unsalted butter," Stewart recommended in an edition of "Martha Stewart Living," via Mashed. By removing the milk solids — which is the part of butter that burns and creates an acrid taste — you can cook your omelet at a higher temperature, while still getting the maximum taste.

In a pinch, though, you can still use regular butter, Stewart says. The key, though, is being careful. Make sure you keep an eye on the butter to make sure it doesn't burn, and if you notice things starting to brown, turn the heat down a little.

4. Use your cappuccino machine to make scrambled eggs

Some of the best kitchen hacks involve taking a piece of kitchen equipment and flipping it on its head, thereby revolutionizing a dish that's stuck in a rut. That's exactly what this next egg tip from Martha Stewart does. Stewart's trick for scrambled eggs involves none other than her cappuccino machine, to make eggs that are "buttery, and fluffy, and light, and delicious," as she shows via Facebook.

Stewart begins by going through the regular motions of making scrambled eggs, beating her whole eggs together with a little salt and pepper, as well as a few cubes of butter, in a heatproof glass. But instead of pouring them into a pan, she then positions them under the steam wand on her cappuccino machine and inserts that wand right in. When she turns the wand on, the egg is blasted with hot steam, and the eggs cook in no time.

While this may sound like a frankly bizarre way to cook eggs, there's a method to Martha's madness. Steaming them like this allows the eggs to become aerated, increasing their fluffiness factor considerably. As well as this, if you're making individual portions of eggs, it's a serious time-saver. Just make sure you clean that steam wand very carefully before you make your next cappuccino — unless you want flecks of scrambled egg in it.

5. To make baked eggs, it's a two-stage operation

Baked eggs are sometimes viewed as a luxurious treat. But in truth, they're a great way to feed a crowd with minimal effort. All you have to do is crack your eggs into some ramekins, put them in the oven, and wait.

We admit that it can be a little more complicated than that. Anyone who's made baked eggs before will know the annoyance of having an end product that hasn't cooked through properly or has cooked through too much. But Martha Stewart has come to the rescue, people. In a YouTube video, she recommends baking eggs in two stages. After cracking your eggs into their ramekins or custard cups, place them in a deep baking dish, and pour hot water from a kettle around them to make a water bath. Then, cover the dish with some kitchen foil, and stick them in the oven to partially cook them.

Later, add your chosen toppings to the eggs and cover them once more, before putting them back in your oven. By adding the toppings slightly later on, everything will finish cooking at the same time, with fluffy baked eggs and cooked-through toppings. Additionally, it means that your toppings won't sink into the raw egg mixture when you add them.

6. Put avocado in your egg salad

Everyone has their own version of egg salad, and Martha Stewart is no different. But while some people add in crunchy elements like dill pickles or celery to contrast the richness of the eggs and dressing, Stewart likes to double down on the creaminess. In her egg salad, Stewart likes to use avocado, mashing up some of it to help it give additional bulk to the dressing, and cubing up the rest of the fruit so that it stays chunky, and the salad still has some bite to it.

While this might sound a bit heavy, we'd recommend you give it a try. Not only does adding avocado taste excellent — and complement the flavor of the eggs — but it also delivers a hit of extra nutrition. Avocados are packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber, according to the Harvard School of Public Health. If you wish to lighten things up, you can always make substitutions elsewhere, like using a light mayonnaise in the dressing, or a low-fat Greek yogurt. Remember, too, that adding in avocados can make things quite dense, so be sure to include other ingredients that will give a bit of zing to counterbalance it, like fresh lemon juice or chopped-up pickles.

7. The best scrambled eggs require constant movement

Scrambled eggs take a lot more work than just dumping them into a pan and hoping for the best. While they seem easy, endless pages of cookbooks have been devoted to figuring out the best egg-to-fat ratio, the optimal time to salt them, and how long you should cook them.

But Martha Stewart has managed to distill her scrambled eggs down to a seemingly simple process, with one key suggestion to get them just right: Keep them moving. After Stewart beats her eggs together, she pours them into a pan coated with melted unsalted butter, over a low heat. Then, she keeps working the egg mixture with her spatula constantly, moving the eggs into the pan's center repeatedly, until they're just firm. By keeping the eggs continually moving, you stop them from becoming too firm in one spot or drying out.

Stewart keeps one more trick up her sleeve with her eggs, too. She saves her salt and pepper until the very end of the cooking process. Then, she sprinkles it on after the eggs have set — just before serving. By doing this, you stop the egg structure from changing too significantly in reaction to the salt and ensure that they stay flavorful.

8. You can make perfect soft-boiled eggs without water

Getting a soft-boiled egg just right is hard, people. While hard-boiled eggs are arguably a little easier to judge, obtaining a perfectly liquid center with a firm egg white requires your method, timing, and water temperature to be spot-on.

But what if we told you that making a soft-boiled egg was easier than it seemed — and that you don't have to boil them at all? That's what Martha Stewart discovered, with her soft-boiled egg hack that uses steam to cook them gently. To steam your eggs, you'll need a steaming rack or basket and a pot of already-boiling water, Stewart says to Tasting Table. "Put the eggs in the rack over the boiling water, cover, and do either three minutes, three and a half minutes, four minutes, or five minutes."

The delicate cooking that steam delivers means that not only will you end up with a tender, delicious result, but your egg will also be easier to peel. If you want to cook your eggs like Stewart, aim to steam them for four minutes total before removing them from the basket or rack. "The white is set, but the yolk is still beautiful, gold, and runny," she says. That's just how we like them.

9. You can make multiple poached eggs at once

One of the most annoying things about poached eggs is how long they take to cook. Sure, the actual poaching process may only take a few minutes, but your eggs will need a lot of attention. For this reason, eggs are generally poached one at a time. This slows down the whole endeavor and can cause your cooked eggs to get cold. 

Luckily, Martha Stewart has come to the rescue, with a time-saving technique to poach multiple eggs simultaneously. The secret is in the preparation. Make sure that you have a small ramekin or bowl for each egg that you're cooking, and crack your eggs into them separately. Then, prepare a large pot of just-simmering water. Tip each egg into the pot, one by one, making sure that you have enough space between them. Try not to leave too much time between doing this, so that your eggs all begin cooking at roughly the same time.

Then, you just need to let the pot simmer for two minutes until the egg white is firm, but the yolk is still golden and runny. The pièce de résistance: Instead of taking them out and putting them onto a paper towel, first transfer them to a pot of room temperature water. This will be cool enough to stop them from continuing to harden, but not so cool that they'll get cold and unappetizing.

10. When making a dish with poached quail eggs, avoid the salt

Chickens are far from the only birds that lay edible eggs. If you want your meal to have a touch of class, quail eggs are a great option, offering a bite-size alternative to the regular kind. But understandably, people who have never cooked with quail eggs might be slightly unsure where to start. That's something where Martha Stewart comes in.

In a YouTube video, Stewart recommends serving quail eggs on toast, with the eggs lightly poached in water. Begin by cutting the top end off the egg with a serrated knife (cracking the eggs isn't recommended, because of their small size), and empty it into a bowl. Given their teeny nature, you can plop multiple quail eggs into the same bowl, and poach them together.

Bring a pot of water to a rapid boil, and then give it a small stir to create some motion, which will help cook the eggs all over. Your water should have a little vinegar in it, but crucially, you shouldn't add any salt, as this will make your egg whites break apart. Pour your eggs into the hot water, and let them cook without touching for a minute or two. Then, fish them out with a slotted spoon, and dunk them in ice water to stop them from cooking. Finally, use scissors to trim any ragged bits off the egg, so the final result is a perfect pearl shape.

11. Don't add liquid to your scrambled eggs

If you've ever wanted to know where Martha Stewart stands on adding liquid to scrambled eggs, we've got the answer right here. Liquids like milk, half and half, and cream are frequently added to scrambled eggs, in the hopes that it'll make the final result richer and fluffier. But in Stewart's book, this is a serious no-no. If you add liquid to scrambled eggs, they just end up getting too thin, and the evaporation of the liquid as they cook may steam the eggs, making them tougher.

Instead, Stewart states that you should focus on getting the best-quality eggs possible. If you get yourself top-quality eggs, you shouldn't need to add anything extra, as they should be able to become fluffy without outside help. Instead, you should focus on your cooking technique, and keeping the eggs moving around the pan constantly, which will help keep them light.

Having said this, Stewart does advise adding one extra ingredient to scrambled eggs to make them ultra-delicious: Butter. A pat of butter added to your egg mixture will add silkiness as it melts and the eggs cook, leaving you with the most delicious eggs you ever made.

Static Media owns and operates Daily Meal, Tasting Table, and Mashed.