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I'm having the hardest time preventing scrambled eggs from sticking to stainless steel cookware. I've tried bringing the eggs to room temperature before cooking, slowly heating the pan, loads of butter (tasted great, still stuck), adding milk to the eggs. How can I prevent scrambled eggs from sticking to stainless steel?

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Eggs are the strongest glue in your kitchen. They will stick to stainless steel, no matter what. Change the pan. – rumtscho Nov 29 '12 at 22:15
+1 @rumtscho. My favorite egg pan has become my DeBuyer Element B forged iron fry pan. – JoeFish Dec 1 '12 at 23:44
up vote -1 down vote accepted

try a cast iron pan, best alternative to non-stick

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Do you know any tricks for avoiding the discoloration of eggs when cooking with cast iron? – mghicks Nov 30 '12 at 0:15
try a small amount of lemon juice or citric acid – underarock Nov 30 '12 at 1:49
Acids in a cast iron pan will stress the seasoning... – rackandboneman Jan 11 at 0:49

Raw protein sticks to hot stainless steel as soon as it comes into contact with it. However, once the layer which is stuck to the pan cooks through, it releases from the pan. The trick is to heat the pan over a low heat before adding the eggs, then don't touch them until there is a layer of cooked egg on the bottom - about a minute or two. Then when you start stirring, the cooked egg will easily peel off the bottom and the pan will be sufficiently seasoned so that the rest of the egg doesn't stick to it.

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The worst thing you can do from a sticking point of view is slowly heat the pan with scrambled eggs, the pan must be hot enough to get them sizzling right away or they'll act like glue. That's the opposite of what you want to do of course, as the slower you cook the eggs the better they taste, which is why I always cook mine in a non-stick pan.

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Start with medium heat and get the pan hot but put a tablespoon of butter before it gets too hot. Once the foaming stops, add the eggs into the pan and stir constantly but reduce the heat to low. I add about a tablespoon of milk to my eggs.

If it starts sticking to the bottom while you're stirring, then the pan has gotten too hot. Just move it off the burner and continue stirring.

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After scrubbing out many a burned-on egg fond, and giving up and buying a cheap ceramic pan just for omlets, I finally figured out the secret to cooking even notoriously sticky egg whites in stainless:

1) Heat pan on high until water drops levitate, as usual

2) add oil or perhaps clarified butter

3) COOL IT DOWN! reduce the heat and pick the pan up off the burner for a bit

4) add eggs only when the pan is down to the same medium-low that would be used with non-stick

Tried this with the last of some egg whites on a whim after heating a frozen scallion pancake, and they released once set without the slightest sticking, completely opposite earlier disasters when the pan was too hot and the eggs reached through the thin fat layer to grab and burn.

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I knew I'd done this before, but I couldn't remember how. This answer is 100% correct. I used butter - about 1.5 tbsp in a ten inch pan, waited until it had just melted down, and poured the eggs in. The water in the butter cools the pan. The eggs immediately set on the bottom, but they don't stick during stirring. – arootbeer Mar 31 at 12:22

I've had the same problem with my pans so I now cook scrambled egg in a glass bowl in the microwave.

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Well, if you must use a stainless steel pan (you should ideally use a non-stick pan) the two things you must do is -

1/ Cook over the lowest heat you can get on your cooker hob and,

2/ Stir continuously, don't stop for a second.

It's a similar principle to making roux (fat and flour) cook over low heat and stir continuously otherwise it sticks and burns.

That's what's happening to your eggs, they're sticking and burning because they're cooking too fast (because the heat's too high) and sticking because you're not stirring enough or fast enough to stop them sticking.

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If you're willing do deviate from the traditional method, Daniel Patterson (of two-michelin-starred Coi) was tasked by his wife to scramble eggs without using a non-stick pan and developed this poaching method:

I haven't tried it myself, but it's on my todo list.

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Boil quarter cup of water, and then add 3 broken eggs. Stir well for few seconds. Allow it to cook for 3 minutes, this will prevent eggs from sticking to the pan.

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