Novel, Quick Steamed Egg

A one-of-a-kind, quick steamed egg method that produces soft, silky, jiggly steamed eggs. Steamed eggs are a comforting dish evocative of chicken soup. A soothing dish for sick days. This steamed egg is fast, unconventional and passed down from mom, who devised this novel method many decades ago. 

What is the traditional Steamed Egg

The conventional method of steaming eggs begins by bringing water to a boil in a steamer, before lowering to a gentle simmer. Next, a bowl of beaten eggs is carefully placed inside the steamer, covered, and left to steam for approximately 10 minutes. After turning off the stove, the steamer is allowed to sit on the burner for an additional 5-6 minutes to ensure thorough cooking of the eggs.

The traditional method introduces the fewest air bubbles or holes into the egg, as simmering generates less vibration than a roiling boil. However, air bubbles can still arise where the egg contacts the bowl. Using a thicker bowl or less heat-conductive bowl -- such as a glass bowl -- addresses this issue, reducing bubbles along the edges, where the egg touches the bowl. Another tactic is to steam more eggs simultaneously to minimize bubbles.

The quick steaming method breaks conventional rules. Not only is water brought to a boil while the bowl rests inside the steamer, but the egg also partially steams as the water reaches full boil. This rapid steaming method is perfect for the impatient and rushed. The result: A steamed egg that is a hair more jello-like and firmer than the traditional method. Though air bubbles do arise, steaming multiple eggs and using a thicker bowl or less heat conductive bowl cuts down their occurrences.

Tips for making Quick Steamed Egg

Broth matters. Opt for homemade chicken or turkey broth for their rich flavor and thicker consistency. Mom prepares very thick, intense chicken or turkey broth from whole chickens and turkeys. Leftover fish broth, like that from steamed fish in soy sauce, can also substitute for chicken or turkey stock. Another novel twist is trying soy milk.

Add salt. Salt firms up the egg. While chicken broth and other types of broths may supply enough salt, it is important to add some salt when using water as the base.

Use warmed chicken broth. This is crucial and can make or break the perfect steamed egg. Cold broth leads to uneven cooking, a poorly formed egg, and a longer steam time.

Monitor the egg as it steams. Once a light yellow layer forms over the surface, shut off the stove. Cover the steamer with a clean, dry flat plate to facilitate a flat, smooth egg surface. Allow the egg to rest undisturbed for an additional 5-12 minutes (the time is dependent on number of eggs being steamed) until the center is firm.

The type of bowl matters. Using a heatproof bowl that conducts heat poorly or more slowly, such as a thick ceramic bowl or glass bowl, minimizes bubble formation along the edges and can even eliminate bubbles entirely.

The number of steamed eggs matter. Steaming multiple eggs at once causes fewer bubbles to arise, lessening the bowl's importance. If steaming a single egg, exercises such as choosing the type of bowl, removing bubbles, straining the egg, tapping the bowl on the counter to remove internal bubbles are all activities that can lessen the number of bubbles.

Do you need to pass the egg through a sieve?

For a consistent, flawless and no-surprises steamed egg, the answer is yes. Straining, that is passing the egg through a sieve, reduces unwanted bubbles caused by beating the egg, and ensures a seamless texture without solid egg white remnants tucked inside the steamed egg. If imperfections are no concern, beating the eggs thoroughly suffices.

How much broth to use for quick steamed egg?

For one large egg (57g), we prefer using 6 tablespoons of broth. Using excess broth prevents the steamed egg from solidifying. However, the  consensus among most blogs is that the broth volume should equal twice the volume of the raw egg(s).

Ideas for add-ins

  • Snuggle scallops or other seafood into the egg before popping into the steamer.
  • Add dried shrimp or drop in some shrimp; wild-caught shrimp, as opposed to farmed shrimp, tends to come out dryer after the steaming process completes.
  • Add Korean red chili pepper flakes!

Ideas for garnishes

  • Dash of soy sauce and sesame oil — the traditional approach
  • Chili oil
  • Seaweed
  • Green onions or chives
  • Cooked mushrooms
  • Other cooked protein
  • Pickled radishes
  • Diced pickles

Serves: 2
Prep Time: 5 minutes – Cooking Time: 5-12 minutes minutes/batch – Total Time: 17 minutes

Helpful equipment

  • A heatproof bowl that conducts heat slowly
  • A steamer or deep pot with lid that can hold the heatproof bowl and a steaming rack
  • A large, clean and dry flat plat that can cover the steamer
  • Heatproof gloves
  • Sieve if using


  • 2 large eggs
  • 12 tablespoons chicken or turkey broth
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of white pepper


Step 1
In a bowl add eggs, broth and salt. Beat with chopsticks or a fork until well blended.

Step 2
Pour about 1/2 inch of water into a steamer or deep pot with a steamer rack installed. Lower bowl into the steamer and cover.

Step 3
Turn stove on and bring water to a boil on high.

Step 4
Watch for a thin, uniform, yellow semi-cooked layer to form on the surface (occurs a few minutes after boiling begins) of the egg. Once the layer forms, shut off the heat.

Step 5
Cover the pot/steamer with a large, flat, and dry plate, leaving the original cover off.

Step 6
Leave the pot/steamer on the burner for about 5-12 minutes. The residual heat will rapidly steam the egg.

Step 7
Once the egg's center is firm, carefully remove the bowl using heatproof gloves.

Step 8
Garnish with your desired toppings, serve and enjoy!


  • For steaming 2 eggs, I allow the eggs to rest for 10-12 minutes after shutting off the stove. 
  • For minimal bubbles, opt for a slow heat conducting bowl, such as a thick walled bowl or glass bowl.
  • Additionally, for an even smoother texture, consider straining the eggs before steaming to remove any bubbles and unwanted egg white parts.

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