Kitchen Tips

This Is Your Secret Weapon For Opening Soft-Boiled Eggs Perfectly Every Time

Meet the egg clacker.
egg clacker on purple wavy background

Only so many tools and gadgets can make the cut when you have a small kitchen. And when important appliances get first dibs on premium counter space (a prized second-hand stand-mixer, overworked espresso machine, crumb-filled toaster and I-can-pulverize-it-all blender hold court in my kitchen), you have to be choosy about how you utilize storage and workspaces. As a result, single-purpose tools are almost always unwelcome in my kitchen, unless they’re the really good at what they do. (Plus, no one likes cluttered drawers.) One of these golden finds is an odd-looking gadget called the egg clacker.

If, like me, you love soft-boiled eggs but can't open them without breaking the yolk or getting egg shrapnel all over the plate, you need to get your hands on one, too.


What is an egg clacker?

It’s the answer to an un-fussy, easy-to-eat soft-boiled egg. Also known as an egg cracker, egg topper or, best of all, an eierschalensollbruchstellenverursacher (in Germany, anyway), this small tool breaks a clean circle around the egg, allowing you to remove the top and dig into breakfast without shell bits flying everywhere.

Egg clacker and soft-boiled egg Hold the egg in your hand while you pull back the spring on the egg clacker. It diffuses the vibration for a clean break. Photo, Heather MacMullin.

How does an egg clacker work?

The spring-loaded tool is placed dome-down over your soft-boiled egg. The handle is pulled up for a sharp snap back, which sends a vibration down the handle. This wave travels to the raised edge just inside the bottom edge of the clacker's dome, cracking a perfect circle into the shell at the top of your egg. Using a knife, you can then flip off the top and get to the gooey yolk inside.

Fruit salad, soft-boiled eggs, and prosciutto and mozzarella topped focaccia on a white plate Fruit salad, soft-boiled eggs and focaccia topped with prosciutto and mozzarella. Photo, Heather MacMullin.

Hot tip: It doesn’t need to be cranked back sharply — my boyfriend accidentally exploded his egg across the table this way the first time he used the clacker. In my experience, it's actually better to hold the egg in your hand while using the tool.


Egg clackers are available online at retailers like Amazon, starting at just $10.

So abandon your egg-cup panic, stock up on farm-fresh eggs and get clackin'.

Watch: The best way to peel a whole soft-boiled egg


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