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Dash Rapid Egg Cooker review: Rapid Egg Cooker is a snap to use but far from swift

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Eggs are an unforgiving ingredient to master. There's a razor-thin line between preparing them raw or horribly overcooked. The $20 Dash Rapid Egg Cooker takes a lot of the risk out of handling this finicky item by automating the process as much as possible. It also lets you tackle particularly delicate preparation styles such as boiling, poaching and steaming.

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7.3

Dash Rapid Egg Cooker

The Good

The Dash Rapid Egg Cooker offers an affordable way to poach, boil and steam eggs without much effort. It’s easy to use, clean and doesn’t make a mess.

The Bad

It’s calibrated to cook large eggs, so preparing extra-large and jumbo eggs properly takes practice. Eggs take longer to cook than on a traditional stovetop. Its alarm buzzer is loud, unpleasant and not very accurate.

The Bottom Line

The Dash Rapid Egg Cooker is worth a look if you’d like to prepare breakfast eggs with hardly any effort or without making much of a mess, but for best results you’ll still have to use a separate timer.

An almost comically tiny appliance constructed almost entirely from plastic, the Rapid Egg Cooker measures just 6 inches tall by 5.5 inches wide with a depth of 5.5 inches. The toylike machine is round, pot-shaped and split into two main sections. The lower half of the gadget contains a 360-watt electrically powered heating plate and a simple power button. The top portion of the Egg Cooker is a clear-domed lid that resembles a miniature cloche service platter.

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This little machine steams eggs many different ways.

Tyler Lizenby/CNET

Essentially, this device is a fancy countertop steamer. To use, first fill the product's included measuring cup accessory with water to match the type of egg you'd like. The cup has premarked fill lines for, "hard," "medium," and "soft" on one side and another labeled "omelette/poached" on the other.

Next, pour this water amount into the machine's metal warming plate and set the boiling tray (a plastic disc with six egg-sized holes) into its slot, which rests on top. Eggs for boiling (a max of six) go into the tray in their shells bottom up. The cooker comes with two other trays, one for poaching and another making omelettes.

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Pour water into the heating plate.

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The manual recommends to spray either tray with a bit of cooking oil too to avoid sticks and make cleanup easy. It also instructs to wash the appliance's parts by hand. Even so, I found that keeping the machine tidy was a cinch since the pieces are so small.

Not so rapid or automatic

Despite its name, the Dash Rapid Egg Cooker takes its sweet time to heat ingredients. Boiling two jumbo eggs with enough water for "medium" required almost 8 minutes. The results were disappointing with uncooked yolks and partially raw whites. Similarly, poaching two jumbo eggs and shooting for medium yielded undercooked eggs that took over 9 minutes to reach my plate.

After poaching for 13 minutes though, I enjoyed eggs cooked more to my medium tastes. Even so, it's a long time to wait compared to the 6 minute, 30 second boil I usually do on the stove (two eggs in a pot). Likewise I can whip up scrambled eggs, weirdly textured but edible, for 1 minute in the microwave.

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Eggs for poaching go into a special tray.

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It was only after I followed advice tucked away inside the Dash's manual that I achieved spectacular results. The manual explains that the gizmo is calibrated for large eggs and suggests cooking times to match. As a result, extra-large and jumbo-size eggs will take longer to cook.

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Steam under the lid poaches eggs gently.

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Two large eggs I hard boiled as advised (12 minutes) were truly excellent with firm yolks that were also creamy at their centers. Two more large eggs I boiled to medium were absolutely fantastic, too. Their custard-like yolks were a perfect mix of slightly runny and creamy, while their whites were firm yet pliant. Delicious.

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When I got the hang of the Dash, boy, was I in for a treat.

Brian Bennett/CNET

In both cases, though, the Egg Cooker's buzzer rang minutes ahead of when it should have. That means you'll either have to babysit the machine or use a timer for consistent results. The alert is also obnoxiously loud and jarring.

Conclusion

Whether you'll deem the $20 Dash Rapid Egg Cooker all it's cracked up to be or not depends on how deep your fanaticism for eggs goes. Mine is near boundless, so a gadget with the power to make superbly cooked eggs without much mess or fuss is definitely worth $20. I'd even pay a little extra if it had a built-in digital timer.

Of course you can probably accomplish all of the Egg Cooker's tricks with kitchenware you already own, so if you don't eat huevos often, this appliance isn't worth your while. Just don't forget to do the dishes when you're done. 

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7.3

Dash Rapid Egg Cooker

Score Breakdown

Performance 7Usability 8Design 7.5Features 7