Learn how to make ramen eggs at home with this easy recipe that has only 3 ingredients! A marinade of soy sauce and mirin infuses into the eggs, which are cooked to a creamy custard texture. Not only is this ramen egg recipe wonderful with soup, but it makes a fantastic snack or even a light meal when served over rice with a drizzle of toasted sesame oil.
New ramen restaurants have been popping up everywhere in DC for a few years now, and I am living for it. I love Japanese cuisine in general, but I especially love the soups; not just ramen-based soups, but udon, soba, and pretty much anything else I can get my hands on. I’ve been experimenting with a variety of Japanese soups recently, and I always try to add at least one protein. Ramen eggs are one of my favorites because they’re easy to prepare, and the add tons of flavor and texture to the soup.
What Are Ramen Eggs?
Ramen eggs are eggs that have been soft-boiled (or cooked to a slightly firmer but still custardy texture), peeled, and then marinated for 4-12 hours in mixture of soy sauce, mirin and water. The water dilutes the intensity of the soy and mirin so they don’t overpower the egg. In Japan, ramen eggs are known as soy sauce marinated eggs – Ajitsuke Tamago (味付け玉子) or Nitamago (煮玉子).
Tips for How to Make Ramen Eggs
- If you have a preferred method for cooking soft-boiled eggs, you can use them with this recipe. I’ve found that 7 minutes is the perfect amount of time to cook them. I take the cold eggs directly from the refrigerator and then use a slotted spoon to gently lower them into boiling water. I then transfer the cooked eggs to an ice bath to halt the process after 7 minutes. This creates a perfect soft-boiled egg that’s easy to peel, with a runny yolk and fully cooked egg white.
- In my experience, the sooner you peel the eggs, the easier the shell comes off. Don’t let them sit in the ice bath for too long.
- If you keep the water slightly below a rolling boil, you’re less likely to accidentally crack the shells. Sometimes a full rolling boil smacks them against the side of the saucepan.
- Discard the marinade after 24 hours (don’t reuse it for safety reasons). The eggs can remain in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days total.
- I love having ramen eggs for breakfast! I reheat one using the hot water method below, then I slice it in half and place on some white rice that has been drizzled with sesame oil (I recommend Kadoya Pure Sesame Oil). Finally, I sprinkle some sliced scallions and furikake on top. Furikake is an amazing Japanese seasoning I recently discovered. It’s made from nori, toasted sesame seeds, salt, and a bit of sugar. It’s a total umami bomb! The brand I use, Nori Komi Furikake, has no MSG.
- You can use any brand of mirin you like, but I’ve been experimenting with better quality brands. Right now I use Mitoku Organic Mikawa Mirin, which I found on Amazon. More on mirin below.
What is Mirin?
Mirin is a staple of Japanese cooking. It’s a rice wine similar to sake, but one with a lower alcohol content, as well as a higher sugar content. Mirin is sweet, and works well as a contrast to saltier Japanese condiments like soy sauce. It’s slightly thick, with a light amber or golden color.
How Long Do Ramen Eggs Last?
Ramen eggs should be enjoyed within 3 days. If they’re cooked past the soft-boiled stage, they can technically last in the fridge for up to one week, but I find they don’t taste as good by the 4th or 5th day.
How Do You Reheat Ramen Eggs?
The best way to reheat ramen eggs is to add them directly to hot soup. Take them out of the refrigerator, slice them in half, and place them in the soup a few minutes before serving, giving them a a chance to warm up.
If you want to enjoy ramen eggs without soup, you can either let them come to room temperature before serving, or you can submerge the ramen eggs in hot water (not boiling, just hot from the tap) for 5-10 minutes. The marinade will have absorbed into the eggs, so the warm water won’t impact the flavor. But if you’re prefer to keep the water away from the surface of the eggs, you can place them in a resealable plastic bag and then submerge the bag in hot water.
More Japanese Recipes
If you like this ramen egg recipe, you may also enjoy my Spicy Cashew Butter Udon Noodles, Easy Homemade Ramen, and Mushroom Gyoza! I also love every recipe I’ve tried from Just One Cookbook, a Japanese recipe blog. I’ve learned a lot from her recipes and ingredient guides!
- 4 large eggs, cold
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/4 cup mirin
- 3/4 cup water (see notes)
- Heat water in a medium or large saucepan until it's just starting to boil (a full rolling boil can sometimes cause the eggs to crack). You want enough water to completely submerge the eggs by at least 1 inch.
- Once the water is boiling, remove the eggs from the refrigerator and use a slotted spoon or ladle to gently place them in the pot.
- Reduce the heat to medium so the water continues to simmer without snacking the eggs around, and cook for exactly 7 minutes (you can cook them for 8-9 minutes if you want a firmer yolk).
- While the eggs are cooking, combine the soy sauce, mirin, and water in a large resealable plastic bag.
- After 7 minutes, transfer the eggs to an ice bath to halt the cooking process. Allow them to cool for around 3 minutes, then peel (these will be softer than hard-boiled eggs, so peel carefully).
- Place the eggs in the prepared marinade and seal the bag. Place in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or up to 12 hours.
- Remove the eggs from the marinade, slice in half and place in ramen soup. I also love serving them over rice with a drizzle of toasted sesame oil, some scallions, and a sprinkle of furikake (a Japanese seasoning).
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