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Cooking Tips

For the Richest Scrambled Eggs, Add Extra Yolks

Regular scrambled eggs aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. 
By Published Aug. 5, 2022

Most people are used to eating good-enough scrambled eggs. Maybe they're a bit watery or overcooked, a little lean or rubbery. They're usually a supporting player, second fiddle to the bacon or home fries. So, they're . . . fine. 

But “fine” isn’t really our brand.

We believe everyone deserves scrambled eggs that are great—fluffy and tender, with big billowy curds. That's why Cook's Illustrated editor in chief Dan Souza scrambled hundreds of eggs in pursuit of the perfect technique. 

One component of his final recipe for Perfect Scrambled Eggs? Extra yolks.

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There’s no need to go overboard—1 yolk per four eggs is the ideal ratio. Much like in fresh pasta or custard desserts, added yolks provide richer flavor, creamy texture, and bright yellow color.

Why It Works

As the proteins in eggs heat up, they unfold and bond together. If they bond too much, the eggs turn tough. The high proportion of fat and emulsifiers in the extra egg yolk is a check on this process, raising the temperature at which the proteins bond, helping to stave off overcooking and deliver fluffy, moist curds.

Watch Dan walk you through the key steps for the best scrambled eggs.

Give it a try, along with these two other tips that take scrambled eggs from fine to fabulous:

  • Use a smaller skillet. Instead of the usual 12-inch skillet, opt for a 10-inch skillet. It keeps the eggs in a thicker layer, thereby trapping more steam and producing heartier curds.
  • Add a splash of dairy (or even water). The extra liquid dilutes the proteins to further prevent them from coagulating too tightly.

And don't throw out that egg white! Save it for a heart-healthy omelet or freeze it for a cocktail or future batch of Financiers.


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JC
JOHN C.
16 days

Absolutely the best chicken ever, even the breast meat was moist! It's the only way I'll cook a whole chicken again. Simple, easy, quick, no mess - perfect every time. I've used both stainless steel and cast iron pans. great and easy technique for “roasted” chicken. I will say there were no pan juices, just fat in the skillet. Will add to the recipe rotation. Good for family and company dinners too. I've done this using a rimmed sheet pan instead of a skillet and put veggies and potatoes around the chicken for a one-pan meal. Broccoli gets nicely browned and yummy!

Absolutely the best chicken ever, even the breast meat was moist! It's the only way I'll cook a whole chicken again. Simple, easy, quick, no mess - perfect every time. I've used both stainless steel and cast iron pans. great and easy technique for “roasted” chicken. I will say there were no pan juices, just fat in the skillet. Will add to the recipe rotation. Good for family and company dinners too.

MD
MILES D.
JOHN C.
9 days

Amazed this recipe works out as well as it does. Would not have thought that the amount of time under the broiler would have produced a very juicy and favorable chicken with a very crispy crust. Used my 12" Lodge Cast Iron skillet (which can withstand 1000 degree temps to respond to those who wondered if it would work) and it turned out great. A "make again" as my family rates things. This is a great recipe, and I will definitely make it again. My butcher gladly butterflied the chicken for me, therefore I found it to be a fast and easy prep. I used my cast iron skillet- marvellous!

CM
CHARLES M.
11 days

John, wasn't it just amazing chicken? So much better than your typical oven baked chicken and on par if not better than gas or even charcoal grilled. It gets that smokey charcoal tasted and overnight koshering definitely helps, something I do when time permits. First-time I've pierced a whole chicken minus the times I make jerk chicken on the grill. Yup, the cast iron was not an issue.