Perfect Soft Boiled Eggs

soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago

These perfectly cooked Soft Boiled Eggs only require roughly 6 minutes of cooking time and can instantly transform any of your dishes from good to great.

Soft boiled eggs, the ones with firm egg white but creamy and still runny egg yolks, are one of my absolute favorite way to cook eggs. They are easy to make, delicious to eat, and even sexy on the eyes (yes, it absolutely excites me every time I cut open a soft boiled egg and see that luscious custard like yolk slowly ooze out).

While these eggs are often referred to as ramen eggs or Ajitsuke Tamago as they are typically served with a bowl of Japanese ramen, they are so versatile that you can add to any of your dishes – I mean literally anything ranging from rice, pasta, bread, salad, crackers, you name it – and you’ll instantly transform your meals to the next level.

soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago

Please note, in this recipe I used spices such as star anise, bay leaves, and clove to add more of a five-spice aroma similar to my Tea Egg recipe. This slight Chinese twist is really just my personal preference and in a way sets it apart from all other ramen egg recipes. By the way, in Chinese, these eggs are called 糖心蛋 or 溏心蛋.

soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago

If you prefer the flavor of the traditional Japanese ramen eggs, just skip the herbs, salt, water and add dashi and mirin instead.

As I mentioned, the possibilities with these soft boiled eggs are endless but just to give you some inspirations, here I’ll list a few of my favorite ways to serve these addictive eggs.

soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago
Ramen in pork bone broth

Serve in a ramen / soup noodles

This is a no brainer as these eggs are called ramen noodles. If you are crazy enough to make ramen from scratch at home, you deserve one or two of these soft boiled eggs! Of course, you can certainly serve the eggs in other non-Japanese style soup noodles as well.

Serve with a rice dishes

These eggs go very well with fried rice or any rice dishes. My favorite is to serve white rice with this Taiwanese meat sauce and topped with soft boiled egg

soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago
Really Not so boring pasta

Serve with pasta dishes

I find myself making pasta a lot recently – I know it’s a bit boring but it’s easy and quick and I just happen to have stocked up a few jars of pasta sauce and boxes of spaghetti. If that’s your thing, just simple add a soft boiled egg to your finished pasta and you just turned your boring pasta into a proper meal.

Lastly, why not just eat them by themselves. They make a great protein-rich snack between the meals.

What’s your favorite way of serving these soft boiled eggs? Please share with me in the comments below.

And as a general reminder, if you are looking for more egg recipe inspirations, please be sure to check out all the recipes under this Egg Recipe Series.

Before we get started, here are a few tips that will help you achieve foolproof ramen eggs.

  1. Use fresh eggs only. If the eggs are not fresh, the shells tend to stuck to the egg white and it becomes very hard to peel.
  2. Bring the eggs to room temperature before boiling. Cold eggs tend to give still running egg whites.
  3. Do not over marinate. Leave the eggs in the marinade for up to two days before they become too salty. Consume these eggs within 3-4 days after boiling.
  4. The perfect soft boiled egg cooking time depends on the size of the eggs. Use the table below as a guide but also adjust the time to your own liking:
Egg Size Approx. Time
Jumbo6 min 25 sec
Extra Large6 min 20 sec
Large6 min 15 sec
Medium6 min 10 sec

Perfect Soft Boiled Eggs

Yield: 4-6 eggs

Prep Time:5 mins

Cook Time:6 mins

Total Time:15 mins

Foolproof recipe to make these perfectly cooked Soft Boiled Eggs and they only require roughly 6 minutes of cooking time and can instantly transform any of your dishes from good to great.

Ingredients:

  • 4-6 fresh large eggs in room temperature (see notes if you use other egg sizes)

Soy Sauce Marinade:

  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • 2/3 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 bay leave
  • 1 clove
 

Directions:

Bring a pot of water to a boil over high heat. Make sure the pot is big enough to fit all the eggs in one layer and there is enough water to cover the eggs at lease one inch above. Carefully add all the eggs to the boiling water. Once it hits a boil lower the temperature to medium heat.how to make perfect soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago
Turn on the timer as soon as the eggs are added. For large eggs, 6 mins and 10 seconds will produce the slightly runny yolks. See notes for time adjustments if you use a different size eggs. When the timer's up, immediately transfer all the eggs to a cold water bath. Keep water running if necessary so the water doesn't get warm. how to make perfect soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago
Remove the eggs from the water bath after 5 minutes and gently peel off the shells. Set aside.how to make perfect soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago
To make the marinade, combine all the marinade ingredients in a stock pot and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to low and let simmer for 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the marinade to room temperature. The marinade can be made ahead of time and store in the fridge over night.how to make perfect soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago
Place the peeled eggs in a Ziploc bag and pour the marinade into the bag. Seal the bag and let the eggs marinate in the fridge for at least 6 hours or overnight. Rotate the eggs at lease once to ensure even coverage.how to make perfect soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago
Remove eggs from the marinade and serve with noodles, rice, or as snacks. The eggs can be marinated for up to 48 hours before they get too salty. Consume them as soon as you can.how to make perfect soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago
Recipe Notes
  • Use fresh eggs only. If the eggs are not fresh, the shells tend to stuck to the egg white and it becomes very hard to peel.
  • Bring the eggs to room temperature before boiling. Cold eggs tend to give still running egg whites.
  • Do not over marinate. Leave the eggs in the marinade for up to two days before they become too salty. Consume these eggs within 3-4 days after boiling.
  • The perfect soft boiled egg cooking time depends on the size of the eggs. Use the table below as a guide but also adjust the time to your own liking:
Egg Size Approx. Time
Jumbo6 min 25 sec
Extra Large6 min 20 sec
Large6 min 15 sec
Medium6 min 10 sec
soy sauce soft boiled ramen egg aka Ajitsuke Tamago

10 comments

  1. 5

    I love soft boiled, eggs and
    eat them all the time. I eat them out of the shell which sits in my egg cup. I aim for a fully cooked w,hite, no clear stuff, and a liquid yoke. Letting tbe egg come to room temperature is good but I am usually too hungry to wait. I keep a bulletin board push pin stuck in a wine cork, in the drawer, just for making a pin hole in the fat end of eggs that I am hard or soft boiling. This greatly reduces the chance of the egg cracking when it hits the boiling water. You see a stream of bubbles out of the egg when it first goes in. Your cook times are on the money. Once the egg is in tbe cup I crack the shell with knife, near the top, and lift off the top. I season with salt or occasionally mustard and eat with a teaspoon. The trick is to eat the yoke without letting it run down the,side. Peeling is not an issue because I scrape the white out of the shell from the inside. I add egg to my fried rice by scrambling, frying and cutting into small strips or streaming the egg into the rice as I stir fry. It never occured to me to to serve the egg on top. Is your marinated egg similar to the 1000 year old eggs they sell in my local Asian market?

    • 5.1

      Hi Jeff, glad that you also enjoy these soft boiled eggs as well. I’ve read about the push pin trick but yet to try it. I’ll give it try next time. The 1000 year old eggs are different. They are raw egg wrap in some special solution (calcium hydroxide and sodium carbonate) for some time and let the age for a few weeks…I’ve not tried to make this at home yet.

  2. 4

    Hi Yi!

    Have a question about the marinade. Do you leave the bay leaf, and the Anis seed in the sauce when you pour on the eggs?
    Thanks

    • 4.1

      Hi Jules, yes please leave the bay leaf and start anise in the marinade. The species will continue to release the flavor 🙂

  3. 3

    I love eggs! I always have hard-boiled eggs in my refrigerator (they make a quick snack). Soft-boiled eggs are more of a treat for me — don’t make them that often, and when I do I tend to eat them right away. Really like the marinade you use — SO flavorful.

  4. 2

    HI Yi,
    Love Ramon eggs although I’m partial to Dashi and Marin, but these look just too delicious so I’m going to give them a try. So pleased you’re back and have enjoyed your your egg recipes; tomato and scrambled egg especially! I’m lazy sometimes and just use the ramon instant noodles without the seasoning packet.

    • 2.1

      Hi Jan, glad to hear that you’ve been enjoying the egg recipe series. I can totally see why the dashi and mirin combo wins but i thought it’d be different to give it a Chinese twist. Wish you a wonderful week ahead.

  5. 1

    They are PERFECTLY perfect! Runny yolks are the BEST :-))

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