What Happens If You Bake Eggs In Their Shells?

Unless you're a fan of dangerous shell shrapnel from what is essentially an egg grenade that could end any food fight, you shouldn't microwave eggs in their shells. In all seriousness, this food hack of boiling an egg in the microwave actually sent a woman in England to the hospital with burns on her face. She tried what was billed as a "boiled egg hack" in the microwave, and the eggs exploded causing burns (via Eater). Keep in mind that steam burns are particularly bad because they essentially burn twice — once as steam on the surface of the skin and a second time when the vapor soaks through the first layer of skin where it then condenses, which is why steam can cause second-degree burns (via Science Daily).

Cooking eggs in — or even out — of their shells in the microwave causes them to explode. What happens is the rapid heating that occurs inside a microwave causes steam to build up inside the yolk faster than the steam can leak out (via Incredible Egg). This causes the steam to burst out of the shell, with quite a punch too, which is why it explodes. For this reason, it is absolutely necessary to prick the yolk of an uncooked or unscrambled egg before microwaving it. This creates something of a vent through which the steam can escape, which means the egg will not explode through the shell or the egg white when cooking.

Baking eggs in their shells

The best way to cook eggs in their shells is on the stovetop. Whether you choose to cook eggs in boiling water or steam them in a basket just above shallow boiling water in the bottom of a pot on the stovetop, both of these methods cook eggs evenly and bring the internal temperature of the egg up slowly over time as the water heats (via Pillsbury). Again, the slow rise in temperature is what prevents the eggs from building up pressure from steam inside the yolk. For easy-peel eggs, some people firmly believe in adding vinegar, salt, or even baking soda to the water.

If you need to make boiled eggs for a crowd and do not have the time to boil batches of eggs, however, there is a way to bake eggs in their shells inside the oven. Simply heat the oven (325 to 350 degrees Fahrenheit) and place eggs inside muffin tins and bake for around 30 minutes. Once the eggs come out, they should go straight into an ice bath to cool. The slow heating of the eggs in the oven should also mean they won't explode. Though this is a handy hack, it is worth noting that the eggs don't taste exactly the same as when boiled on the stovetop (via The Kitchn). 

Consider your needs and options and make the right decision for your eggs — just don't use the microwave and you'll be safe.