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Shallow-Poached Eggs

Photo: Jennifer Causey
Total time 15 mins

Serves 2

This approach is more about timing than finesse or technique. The key is to slip the cracked eggs into the simmering water at 30-second intervals, then after each has poached for 3 minutes, remove them in the same order in 30-second intervals. As you add more eggs to the pan, the water temperature will dip—adjust the heat accordingly to maintain a gentle simmer throughout. As with swirl-poaching, a little vinegar in the water keeps the whites close to the yolk. You can shallow-poach up to 8 eggs at a time with a large skillet—just put another 30 seconds on the timer for each additional egg.


  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 2 (2-oz.) slices whole-grain bread, toasted
  • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil

Nutrition Information

  • calories 336
  • fat 16.6 g
  • satfat 4.3 g
  • monofat 7.7 g
  • polyfat 3.4 g
  • protein 20 g
  • carbohydrate 25 g
  • fiber 4 g
  • cholesterol 372 mg
  • iron 3 mg
  • sodium 598 mg
  • calcium 116 mg
  • sugars 4 g
  • Est. Added Sugars 4 g

How to Make It

  1. Pour about 2 inches of water into a straight-sided skillet; add vinegar. Bring to a gentle simmer. The liquid temperature will dip as you add eggs; adjust heat as needed to maintain a constant gentle simmer.
  2. Break 1 egg into each of 4 small bowls or ramekins. Gently slip 1 egg into simmering water at the 12 o'clock position. Set a timer for 4 1/2 minutes. After 30 seconds, slip the second egg into simmering water at the 3 o'clock position. After another 30 seconds, slip third egg in at 6 o'clock. After another 30 seconds, put fourth egg at 9 o'clock.
  3. When the timer reaches 1 1/2 minutes left, the first egg should be done (if the white is just set with no translucent areas, the yolk will still be creamy). Gently remove the first egg with a fish spatula or slotted spoon; place on a plate lined with paper towels, and gently blot top dry with a paper towel. Sprinkle egg with a pinch of salt and pepper. At 30-second intervals, working clockwise, repeat procedure with remaining eggs, salt, and pepper.
  4. Drizzle each toast slice with 1 teaspoon oil. Place 2 eggs on each toast slice.