Delia Smith's soft boiled egg

(49 ratings)
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  • Serves: 2

  • Cooking time:

    (7 mins for a firmer yolk)
  • Costs: Cheap as chips

  • Skill level: Easy peasy

In Delia's 1998 'How to Cook' series, the book's first chapter was devoted to eggs and how to boil the perfect soft-boiled egg. When featured in the TV series, it led to an increase in egg sales.


  • 2 eggs
  • Small saucepan with a lid
  • Tablespoon
  • Egg timer


  1. First of all, have a small saucepan filled with enough simmering water to cover the eggs by about ½-inch (1cm).
  2. Then quickly but gently lower the eggs into the water, one at a time using a tablespoon.
  3. Now switch a timer on and give the eggs exactly 1 min simmering time.
  4. Then remove the pan from the heat, put a lid on it and set the timer again, using the following timings:

6 mins will produce a soft, fairly liquid yolk and a white that is just set but still quite wobbly.

7 mins will produce a firmer, more creamy yolk with a white that is completely set

Recipe taken from Delia's How to Cook: Book One by Delia Smith, published by BBC Books. Recipe reprinted by permission of The Random House Group Ltd.

Nutritional information

Guideline Daily Amount for 2,000 calories per day are: 70g fat, 20g saturated fat, 90g sugar, 6g salt.

Your rating

Average rating

  • 4
(49 ratings)

Your comments


In my experience eggs that come into contact with boiling water tend to crack & then the contents erupt...I'll stick to my method of putting them into cold water & bringing to the boil. Works for me!

mark bits and pieces

i'm pretty sure that the temperature of simmering water is always the same. even americans should be able to work that out. proudly south african.

olivia shipley

i think that if she is an ward winnning chef or whatever then she should at least say what temp you are supposed to put it on!!! Although i'am still going to use the recipe but if it gives me food poisening then i will sue you but i look forward to making my yummy scrambled eggs and eating them till i burst xxxx Olivia Shipley xxxx

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