From jammy ramen eggs to deviled eggs or Easter eggs, this is how to make perfect hard-boiled eggs with an easy peel every time.
Let’s talk about the incredible egg. Is there any food more versatile? And how about healthy? Science proves eggs are one of the most nutrient-rich foods we can eat. Eggs are an excellent source of protein (especially great for vegetarians), but they’re also full of vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. One of my favorite ways to cook eggs is by hard-boiling them. They’re perfect for breakfasts, a grab for a snack, adding to salads for a protein boost, or mashed-in sandwiches. And of course, it’s essential to know how to make them for the best deviled eggs recipe ever. I spent years trying to make the perfect hard-boiled egg with a soft, creamy yolk and a shell that would effortlessly slip off like a dream. I’m happy to say I’ve finally cracked it!
How Long Will It Take to Hard-Boil an Egg?
Use this guide to base your hard-boiled eggs’ cooking time. Time may vary depending on your stove.
How long to cook hard-boiled eggs:
- 6 ½ minutes = firm egg whites with jammy centers, perfect for ramen noodles
- 8 minutes = jammy centers ringed with firm yellow yolks
- 10 minutes = eggs with more solidified centers
- 12-14 minutes = hard-boiled eggs with creamy centers just right for egg salad sandwiches and deviled eggs
Are Old or Fresh Eggs Best for Hard-Boiled Eggs?
There’s been much debate on whether it’s best to use old eggs or new eggs to get hard-boiled eggs that peel cleanly. The latest reports I’ve seen go both ways. Some say old eggs are the only way to go while others suggest avoiding old eggs for several reasons listed here.
What is the Secret to Easy Hard-Boiled Eggs?
Here are the tips that I think make for the easiest (and best) hard-boiled eggs:
- Use fresh, cold eggs straight from the refrigerator
- Add your eggs after the water boils (starting the eggs out in cold water causes the egg proteins to adhere to the shell, and harder to peel)
- A cold plunge in an ice bath post-cooking ensures an easy peel
How to Cook Hard-Boiled Eggs On the Stove Top
Use cold eggs straight from the refrigerator. I use cold eggs straight from the fridge as a baseline so my cooking times are consistent every time.
Add eggs after the water boils. Use a spider strainer or slotted spoon to gently drop the eggs in a single layer into boiling water. Cover the eggs with the hot water by at least 1 inch. With this method, the proteins shrink and the egg lining immediately pulls away from the inside of the shell so it’s easier to peel later.
Cook the eggs uncovered on high heat and set to a rolling boil. Set the timer for your desired doneness listed above. There’s no need for a lid.
Immediately plunge the cooked eggs into a large bowl of ice water. An ice-water bath stops the eggs from cooking and makes them easier to peel. Chill the eggs in the ice bath for about 5 minutes before peeling.
How to Steam Hard-Boiled Eggs on the Stove
Instead of boiling the traditional way, steam up to a dozen eggs in a steamer basket suspended over a pot filled with 1 inch of boiling water for 15 to 16 minutes. Similar to cooking them in the Instant Pot, the shells slip right off.
How to Cook Hard-Boiled Eggs in the Instant Pot
Similar to steaming, a pressure cooker creates an egg where the shells separate easily from the egg.
Follow the 5-5-5 rule to cook hard-boiled eggs in the Instant Pot.
- Place 5 eggs on a metal or rubber rack in the basket of the instant pot.
- Set to HIGH for 5 minutes
- NATURAL RELEASE for 5 minutes
The Easiest Way to Peel an Egg
- Chill the eggs in an ice bath for about 5 minutes.
- Remove the egg from the ice bath and gently tap the bottom of the egg on a hard, flat surface, like a cutting board or countertop.
- Continue tapping while rotating to the top of the egg then gently tap all the way around the circumference.
- Gently cover the egg with the palm of your hand and lightly roll the egg.
- Under running water or in a bowl or pot filled with water, slowly begin peeling at the bottom of the egg where an air pocket should have formed during cooking. The water helps the peeling process move along stealthily.
Does Vinegar or Baking Soda Tricks for Easy Peel Boiled Eggs Really Work?
In the pursuit of the best easy-peel eggs, lore swirls about how adding baking soda, vinegar, or salt to the boiling water makes hard-boiled eggs a snap to peel. Science hasn’t proved it to be true and because I get a killer peel without adding anything extra, I skip the extra ingredients.
How to Perfectly Slice a Hard-Boiled Egg
Sharp knives, fishing lines, or dental floss are common remedies for getting a clean-cut egg. But my favorite gadget for the cleanest cut egg is a cheese slicer with wire. It’s so slick and quick and always comes out clean.
When making egg salad sandwiches or macaroni salad, this is my favorite egg slicer that does double duty for strawberries.
Recipes to Make with Hard-Boiled Eggs
- Bacon Egg and Cheese Biscuit Sandwiches
- Classic Egg Salad Sandwich
- THE BEST Nicoise Salad
- Avocado Toast with Tomato and Hard Boiled Egg
- My Grandma’s BEST Potato Salad Recipe
- Curried Egg Salad Sandwich
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ rating on this recipe below and leave a comment, take a photo and tag me on Instagram with #foodiecrusheats.
How to Cook a Perfect Hard-Boiled Egg
- 4 large eggs , cold from the fridge
- Fill a medium saucepan with water and bring to a boil. While the water heats up, fill a bowl with water and plenty of ice cubes and set aside.
- Use a spider or slotted spoon to slowly drop the cold eggs in a single layer into the boiling water. Cook the eggs at a rolling boil for 14 minutes. Use the spider to immediately plunge the eggs into the ice water bath. Chill the eggs for 5 minutes. Remove the eggs from the water.
- To peel the eggs, gently tap the bottom of the egg on a hard, flat surface, like a cutting board or countertop. Continue tapping while rotating to the top of the egg then gently tap all the way around the circumference. Gently cover the egg with the palm of your hand and lightly roll the egg. Under running water or in a bowl filled with water, slowly begin peeling at the bottom of the egg where an air pocket should have formed during cooking. Eat or refrigerate for up to 3 days.
More Amazing Egg Recipes to Crack
- How to Make Poached Eggs
- Microwave Egg Breakfast Sandwich
- Scrambled Egg and Roasted Asparagus Toasts
- Ham and Cheese Overnight Breakfast Casserole
- Bacon Broccoli and Potato Frittata
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