Egg in a Cup

This recipe is a slight twist on the traditional ‘poached egg on toast’ as it is served in a cup or mug. It makes a tasty hot breakfast within a matter of minutes.

Cooked egg in a mug

Serves 1

  • 100ml water
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 slice wholemeal bread
  • 10g polyunsaturated margarine
  • 1 x 5ml spoon malt OR white vinegar


  • Measuring jug
  • Kettle
  • Small bowl
  • Toaster
  • Knife
  • Measuring spoons
  • Cup or mug x 1
  • Sharp knife
  • Dessert spoon or slotted spoon
  • Oven gloves
  • Kitchen paper


  • Boil the kettle with at least 100ml water.
  • Break the egg into a small bowl.
  • Toast 1 slice of bread and then spread the margarine thinly on top. Cut into approximately 5cm squares.
  • Fill the cup one-third full with boiling water and add the vinegar and then the egg. Prick the egg yolk with the tip of a sharp knife.
  • Place the cup in the microwave for 30 seconds on full power. If you hear a popping sound you should check the egg immediately as it may be cooked.
  • Remove the cup and gently turn the egg over using a dessertspoon or slotted spoon. Put back in the microwave and heat for a further 10 seconds on full power.
  • Remove the cup, lift out the egg using a slotted spoon and rest on a folded piece of kitchen paper. Pour away the water and dry the cup with kitchen paper before popping the egg back in.
  • Add the toast to the cup, mix in and serve immediately.

Top Tips

  • Check that your mug or cup is safe to use in the microwave.
  • If you are cooking for more than one person, cook the eggs one at a time as it is difficult to judge the timing of more than one egg.
  • This recipe is based on using a large egg at room temperature. You will need to vary times if using smaller eggs or if they come straight from the fridge.
  • The vinegar helps to stop the egg white spreading in the water and does not affect the taste of the egg.

Something to try next time

To turn this into a light lunch, try the following: half-fill the cup with fresh spinach (washed and dried on kitchen paper) and 1 mushroom (finely chopped).

  • Cover with cling film (pierced) or a plate and heat on full power for 1 minute.
  • Break in the egg and prick the yolk with the tip of a sharp knife.
  • Top with 1 x 15ml spoon of grated cheese and some black pepper, cover as before and heat on full power for 30 seconds.
  • Leave to stand for a minute and check that the egg is cooked. If not, cook for another 10 seconds. Serve with bread or toast.
  • Mix in 25g smoked salmon trimmings, smoked haddock or ham hock and serve with the toast on the side.

Eggs should not be frozen whole in their shells, but when broken out they can be stored in a freezer for up to 6 months. Freezing temperatures affect yolk proteins which change the texture of the egg.

If you freeze the yolks you will need to mix in ½ teaspoon of sugar per yolk to prevent this. Egg whites can be frozen as they are.

See Also
Egg Muffin Recipe
Egg Muffins
Baked muffins
Autumn Feast Muffins