The pressure cooker is an old-fashioned appliance that is enjoying a renaissance of sorts, and there are many good reasons why. Chief among them is the fact that it just cooks so many foods so well; if you have a pressure cooker, you know what I mean. You probably had a gateway experience that made you say Oh! This is what this thing can do.
For me, that gateway cooking experience was simple and elemental: soft- and hard-boiled eggs. The pressure cooker makes them better than any other method I know. Here's how!
On Electric Pressure Cookers
The other reason that pressure cookers are enjoying renewed popularity, in my opinion, is the rise of the electric pressure cooker. Unlike stovetop pressure cookers, which need a little more supervision, an electric model behaves like a slow cooker; set it and walk away. It's a nice blend of old-fashioned technology and modern convenience.
Read Our Electric Pressure Cooker Reviews
The only catch to electric pressure cookers is that they aren't as powerful as stovetop models, so recipes need a little adaptation. But I haven't found that to be a problem. I have a Cuisinart pressure cooker and really love it.
The Advantages of Cooking Eggs in a Pressure Cooker
Whether you're cooking with an electric or a stovetop pressure cooker, you can be assured that it's pretty fabulous for eggs. Why? Well, if you eat hard- or soft-boiled eggs daily, as I like to do, it's a great way to make a big batch at once.
But even more importantly, given the steam pressure applied to the eggs, the cooked eggs peel really easily! Here's a tip test Anjali ran that demonstrates this:
Read the tip test: Is the Best Way to Make Easy-to-Peel Eggs in the Pressure Cooker?
Ever since I acquired a pressure cooker and saw how easy this was, I was hooked. I consulted a few different sources on cooking eggs in the pressure cooker, and by far the best is Laura Pazzaglia's Hip Pressure Cooking site. If you're just getting into pressure cookers, I highly recommend her as a resource. Here are two great posts on pressure cooking eggs:
In my own egg adventures, I've found some variances from Laura's guideline — mostly because each machine is different, and also everyone has different preferences as to how runny they want their eggs. Hence the range of times below.
How To Cook Eggs in a Pressure Cooker
Makes 1 dozen eggs
What You Need
1 dozen large eggs
1 cup water
Electric pressure cooker
Steamer insert or steamer basket
Large bowl half-filled with cold water and ice
- Put a steamer basket and 1 cup of water in your electric pressure cooker: Insert the steamer basket that came with your pressure cooker, or just a generic folding steamer basket like the one shown here. Pour in 1 cup cold water.
- Add 3 to 12 eggs: I usually cook 12 eggs at a time.
- Lock the lid: It's important to know how the lid on your pressure cooker works. Make sure it is locked into place. Most pressure cookers won't start without the lid locked in properly.
- Turn on the pressure cooker and set to LOW: For eggs, you want LOW pressure (not HIGH).
- Cook your eggs: For soft-boiled eggs, set the timer for 3 to 4 minutes. For medium-boiled eggs, set the timer for 5 to 7 minutes. For hard-boiled eggs, set the timer for 8 to 9 minutes. Your ideal time for eggs depends on how you like the yolks (runny? gooey? jellied? super hard?) and also the specifics of your machine. I usually cook soft-boiled eggs for 2 to 3 minutes and get a gooey but not liquid yolk.
- When the timer goes off, release the pressure manually: Your pressure cooker will gradually come up to pressure, and then start counting down the time you set. After the time you set is up, the machine will beep or buzz. Carefully use a towel to release the pressure by swinging the pressure release on the lid. You should see steam escaping with a loud hiss. Be careful —it's hot!
- Immediately put the eggs in an ice bath: When all the steam has been released and the safety latch on the pressure cooker allows you to remove the lid, open the pressure cooker and immediately transfer the eggs to an ice bath. Let them cool there for 5 to 10 minutes, then put them in the refrigerator.
- Remember: You will need to do a little experimentation on the right time for you and your taste. These are general guidelines, but may vary slightly depending on your machine, your preferences, and how many eggs you are cooking at once.
- Have a stovetop pressure cooker? Check out Laura's links above for more info on cooking eggs in a stovetop cooker.