You Should Never Microwave Whole Hard-Boiled Eggs. Here's Why

Hard-boiled eggs are meant to be served and eaten cold (via SELF), but if you make a big batch and want to warm one up, you need this PSA alert: Do not microwave your hard-boiled eggs in the microwave to reheat them. Just don't. Others have gone before you and done the firsthand research, and it doesn't turn out pretty for the egg, your mouth, or your kitchen. Trust us when we say it's a bad idea — a really bad idea.

The microwave is clearly our friend during busy work weeks and early morning meetings when you are trying to feed the kids and get out the door. It makes reheating foods for meals in a pinch as easy as it comes. And the microwave is not going away. In 2019, retail data indicated that approximately 13.5 million microwave ovens were shipped within the United States, which was the highest sales for this product in years (via Statista). But using any technology requires a little responsibility, and sometimes even a little self-restraint, even if it means not being able to heat up your hard-boiled egg in 20 or 30 seconds flat — and here's why.

Reheating hard-boiled eggs in a microwave will cause an explosion

Reheating hard-boiled eggs in a microwave can cause an explosion of an epic nature. We're talking rubbery egg whites and yolk remnants everywhere, and not necessarily in the microwave. We're talking either all over your kitchen because you've stuck a knife or fork in it after retrieving it from the microwave, or worse, in your mouth when you bite into it. And it doesn't matter if you've peeled the eggshell off or kept it on when you microwave them (via Eat This, Not That!). 

Why does this happen, and what's the danger other than a big mess? The answer has yet to be proven why hard-boiled eggs explode after they are reheated in the microwave, but according to one theory (via JASA), "The egg yolk develops many small pockets of superheated water, leading to an increasingly unstable condition. When the egg yolk is disturbed by an internal or external stimulus, the pockets spontaneously boil, thereby releasing considerable energy." As you can probably imagine, the temperature inside the egg when it explodes, along with the burn it can cause, is pretty significant, which is yet another reason to skip this science experiment at home (via The Daily Meal).

If you do need to reheat a hard-boiled egg, Extra Crispy suggests placing your eggs in a heatproof container and pouring boiling water over them. Let them bathe in the warm H2O for approximately 10 minutes, then discard the water. Your eggs will be nice and warm — and they won't explode.