This Simple Trick Will Give You Perfect Sunny-Side Up Eggs Every Time

Cooking eggs is one of those activities that sounds easy, but can actually be quite tricky. Sure, scrambled eggs are simple enough (just whisk them together and pour them into a pan), but sunny-side up eggs require a little more skill and finesse. You have to get the white fully cooked without letting it become rubbery or burnt and you have to get the yolk the perfect amount of jiggly yet solid, so it breaks when it's punctured with a fork, but not before. (Runny yolks, FTW!)

Maybe you are in a rush, maybe your pan is too hot, or maybe you didn't have the right flick of the wrist with the spatula. Whatever the reason, there are a lot of things that can ruin your sunny-side up eggs. Fortunately, there are also a lot of things that can make them better — including this genius hack from chef and cookbook author Julia Turshen. Here's the easy way you can improve your sunny-side up eggs in seconds tomorrow morning.

Julia Turshen recommends adding water to your eggs

According to Julia Turshen, the secret to flawless sunny-side up eggs isn't so much in the technique but rather the ingredients. More specifically, the one ingredient you probably aren't adding to your eggs yet: water. Yes, in between coating your pan with oil or butter and cracking your eggs inside, Turshen recommends tossing in a sprinkle or two of water. A Kitchn writer tested out the unique recipe — which is from Turshen's cookbook, "Small Victories" — and found it to work surprisingly well. You add a few drops of water to the pan before adding your eggs, then cover with a lid, and voila! Perfectly cooked sunny-side up eggs in minutes.

Apparently, the method is known as steam-basting. The Cookful explains that, by adding water to your pan (and then trapping in the steam via a lid), you'll cook the tops of the eggs without having to flip them over and risk breaking the yolk. My Recipes adds that you can also flick a few droplets of water on top of the eggs at the end of the cooking process to keep them moist and prevent them from drying out. Do this 20 to 30 seconds before removing the pan from the heat (and make sure you re-cover the eggs after spritzing on the water!).

You can put ice in the pan instead of water

Water isn't the only thing that you can use to steam-baste eggs. If you want to get a little edgier — and maybe impress any potential breakfast guests you have over — the Washington Post says that putting a few ice cubes in the pan will create the same steaming effect. Toss the cubes in the pan on top of your oil or butter before adding your eggs (no need to wait for the ice to melt). Cover the pan and watch the evaporating ice steam up the glass, thus basting the eggs the same way the sprinkle of water would. Lifehacker explains that ice may be a slightly more effective method than water, in fact, as it dissolves more slowly and won't spit.

The only drawback to this method? You may not get that Instagram-worthy yolk. "This works well to cook the egg all of the way through while keeping it soft," the Washington Post food writer explains, "but it also causes the yolk to film over, hiding its beautiful glow."

Cook the eggs 'low and slow'

Adding water to the pan isn't the only way to ensure you get perfectly cooked sunny-side up eggs. You also have to pay attention to how hot your pan is and how long you leave your eggs in said pan. The blogger behind Love and Lemons says that "low and slow" is the way to go when it comes to having your whites fully cooked, yet the yolk still runny. She explains that, by being patient and letting your eggs cook slowly (rather than cranking up the heat and rushing it), you'll avoid burning the egg whites or drying out the yolks. You don't have to wait too long, though. Cooking Light says it should take just three to five minutes.

A good way to tell if your pan is too hot is if you notice the oil starting to spit and sizzle, Jamie Oliver says. If this happens, turn the heat down or take the pan off the stove for a few minutes before adding your eggs. Cracking eggs into a too-hot pan or letting the oil get to a boiling temperature can ruin your sunny-side up eggs.