Best Egg Poacher Pans

Updated September 2021
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How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

32 Models Considered
8 Hours Researched
3 Experts Interviewed
90 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best egg poacher pans

If you’ve ever ordered that perfectly poached, Insta-worthy egg on your avocado toast, you may be inspired to attempt it at home. While there are a myriad of ways to cook eggs, poaching is one of the hardest methods to get right. Fortunately, the delicate art of poaching an egg has been made much easier with egg poacher pans.

As long as you have the right pan, you can make crowd-pleasing poached eggs every time. However, there are quite a few egg poacher pans on the market, and it can be overwhelming to know what to look for.

Not sure where to start? Our shopping guide explains these helpful kitchen accessories and their features.

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Poached eggs contain less calories and fat than fried, scrambled, or baked eggs that require oil or butter to cook.

What is an egg poacher pan?

Traditionally, poached eggs are made in a stovetop pan. An egg is broken into a separate bowl or cup, then slid into water heated to a specific temperature. If done correctly and cooked for the right amount of time, the result will be a round white outside and runny yolk inside.

An egg poaching pan eliminates the need for such exactness. These pans are wide-bottomed and have a removable inner tray fitted with individual poaching cups. Small handles are attached to the tray and to the individual cups for safe lifting from the hot water. A glass lid for easy monitoring fits snugly on top.

To use the pan for poaching, remove the tray and fill the pan with enough water to touch the bottoms of the cups. Bring the water to a simmer on the stove. Break one egg into each cup, place the tray over the simmering water, and cover it with the lid. Cook for approximately four to five minutes until the outside of the eggs is a pale white. Then carefully remove each cup and transfer your cooked eggs to a plate.

You may notice the tray of the poaching pan has smaller holes other than those for the cups. These act as vents to circulate the steam from the simmering water, and the outer lid holds in that steam to cook the eggs completely from all sides.

Eggs cooked in a poacher pan are technically steamed — something for poaching purists to keep in mind. They also produce cooked eggs that are more uniform and cuplike in shape than the organic round shape of traditionally poached eggs.

Benefits of egg poacher pans

Egg poacher pans eliminate the biggest anxiety of the traditional poaching method: that moment when you drop the egg into the water. If done incorrectly, the egg can feather and wisp into the water or lose its shape altogether. With a poacher pan, the cups help the egg hold its shape throughout the cooking process.

There are countless methods to poaching an egg, from adding vinegar or salt to the water to creating a “whirlpool” in the water right before sliding the egg in. None of these are necessary with a poacher pan. Additionally, because the egg is cooked with steam and not water in the poacher pan, the temperature of the water doesn’t have to be exact.

Lastly, poacher pans cook eggs fast, in under five minutes. Depending on the capacity of the pan, multiple eggs can be cooked at once — a huge benefit if you’re cooking for a hungry household.

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Did you know?
Eggs cooked at lower heat, such as with a poaching pan, do not produce compounds called AGEs that can cause inflammation in the body the way that eggs prepared at higher heat can.

Features to consider

Materials: Egg poacher pans are generally constructed from stainless steel. For a heavy-duty pan, look for one made from anodized aluminum. However, aluminum should not to be used on induction stoves, whereas stainless steel is safe.

Egg capacity: Poacher pans come with two to six individual poaching cups. If you’re just cooking for yourself, consider a smaller egg capacity of two or three cups. For a medium to large household, consider a pan with four to six cups.

Versatility: Some poacher pans can also be used as a stovetop pan or skillet without the insert. If you’re looking for a poacher pan with this versatility, you’ll want to consider the pan’s diameter to find the right size for your needs.

Nonstick: Many egg poacher pans have a nonstick coating on the inside of the egg cups so the eggs come out easily after cooking. This reduces the use of butter or oil to grease the cups, which is a nice option if you’re looking to cut calories or fat from your diet.

Egg poacher rack or insert: If you want a poaching cup system to fit pans you already have, consider a rack or insert. You’ll have to make sure the product dimensions fit inside your lidded skillet, frying pan, or Instant Pot.

Egg poacher pan prices

Large-capacity egg poacher pans with five or six individual cups cost $50 to $60.

Medium capacity pans with four cups costs between $25 and $35.

Small capacity poacher pans with two cups can be between $20 to $25. Bigger poacher pans can also be found at the higher end of this range, but if you opt for such a product, you run the risk of purchasing a lower-quality pan.

An egg poacher insert costs as little as $8. Egg poacher racks range between $9 and $18.

"Eggs Benedict is a popular breakfast dish using poached eggs."


  • Keep water at a simmer (and not a boil) when using an egg poaching pan for best results.

  • If you’re only using some of the cups in the poacher pan, fill the empty cups with water to avoid burning them.

  • Even with nonstick poacher pans, a cooking spray or oil applied to the cups will help the cooked eggs come out intact.

  • Always use fresh eggs when poaching to optimize results.

  • If you prefer a harder yolk, poach eggs longer: approximately six minutes.

Other products we considered

For a household of two, Eggssential’s Poached Egg Maker is the perfect fit with four egg poaching cups. This poacher pan stands apart from its competitors by using PFOA-free nonstick coating. (PFOA is a chemical with potential health hazards.) Well-constructed from hefty stainless steel, this pan is also dishwasher safe. For a poacher pan made from hard anodized aluminum, look no further than Cooks Standard 4 Cup Nonstick Hard Anodized Egg Poacher Pan. Competitively priced with high-end pans of the same material, this four-egg poacher pan is durable. Nonstick cups don’t flake, making this a reliable and smart buy.

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Eggs are a great source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids. They also contain beneficial nutrients like vitamin D, choline, and selenium.


Q. How do I clean my egg poacher pan?

A. Plenty of egg poacher pans are dishwasher safe for easy cleanup. If you’re looking to cut down on cleaning time (who isn’t?), find an egg poacher with dishwashable parts, including the cups and the pan. Poacher pans that aren’t dishwashable need to be hand washed in soapy water. For the easiest cleanup, we recommend applying cooking spray to the individual cups or greasing with butter or oil.

Q. How do I use a poacher pan safely without burning myself?

A. Steam burns are a risk when cooking with an egg poacher pan. Look for a pan with stay-cool outer handles and knobs. Position the egg cup knobs away from the inner tray steam holes. Once you lift the outer lid, give the steam a moment to dissipate before attempting to lift the cups out. Wear an oven mitt — or at the very least, use a kitchen towel — to handle the egg cup knobs or handles. Wait for the pan to cool safely on the stovetop before hand washing.

Q. I’m having trouble removing the poached eggs from the egg cups in one piece. What can I do?

A. First off, be sure to use a non-metal spatula when removing the poached eggs from the cups. A soft, narrow silicone spatula works best. Nonstick cups are designed to keep egg bits from clinging behind, but that is not always the case. Try spraying a nonstick cooking spray into each cup before cracking the egg into it.

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