January 4, 2021
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In today’s post, you’ll find every tip, trick, and secret on how to boil eggs with perfectly cooked yellow centers and shells that glide off in one piece.
There are so many delicious reasons to make hard-boiled eggs, everything from an avocado egg salad sandwich to a fun deviled egg bar to serve at parties; which is why it’s important that the process is as easy as possible.
Below you’ll find several methods for making hard-boiled eggs, as well as tips to keep in mind that make them easy to peel and ready to use in all your favorite recipes. Let’s get started.
Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs
After lots of testing, trial and error, and wasted eggs, I consider the perfect hard-boiled egg to be:
- easy to peel
- has a firm, evenly cooked egg white
- has a tender, bright yellow yolk
If you’ve experienced the common problem of overcooked eggs (where the yolk feels dry), grayish green yolks, and shells that cling to the egg white, you’re not alone.
Here how to avoid all of those issues and make sure your future hard boiled egg batches come out perfect:
Follow Cooking Instructions
It’s important to follow the recipe’s cooking times to a T. Keep them a minute too long in hot water, and the yolks will develop that greenish color and chalky texture- a sure sign of an overcooked egg.
You’ll notice in almost every hard-boiled egg method, the eggs are finished in an ice bath. This stops the cooking process and makes the eggs easier to peel by shocking the membrane in between the egg-white and the eggshell.
Use Week Old Eggs
The best eggs for boiling are at least a week to ten days old. Fresh eggs have a low pH, which causes them to stick to the shell membrane, and you know what this means, boiled eggs that are half mutilated.
Hard-Boiled Egg Methods
There are several ways to make hard-boiled eggs, and it can be as basic as a microwave or in your new Instant Pot. I’ve tested them all, and true to the recipes, each method yields perfectly cooked hard-boiled eggs.
Stove-Top Hard-Boiled Eggs
The classic method of bringing the eggs to a boil and letting them steep in hot water. It’s the one I’ve used for years and never fails to yield a perfect batch of boiled eggs.
Instant Pot Hard-Boiled Eggs
If you have an instant pot, this 5-5-5 method is worth trying, it’s a great way to make a large batch that is cooked evenly and easy to peel.
Oven-Baked Hard-Boiled Eggs
All you need is a dozen eggs and a 12-count muffin tin. This is the longest method, right at 30 minutes, but the most convenient since there is no monitoring of a hot stove or fancy gadget.
Microwave Hard-Boiled Eggs
By far the quickest way to make hard-boiled eggs, and they turn out perfectly cooked. However, this method is good for smaller batches, about 4 eggs at a time.
Air Fryer Hard-Boiled Eggs
Another simple way to make perfect hard-boiled eggs is by using your air fryer. 16 minutes at 250 degrees should do the trick!
For best results, be sure to follow correct preheating instructions if your air fryer requires preheating and start with a small number of eggs to test that the timing is right for your specific fryer.
How Long to Boil an Egg
Depending on how you prefer your eggs, below are the timestamps for cooking hard-boiled, soft-boiled, and medium-boiled eggs on the stove-top:
|Yolk Texture||Cook Time|
|Soft-Boiled (Runny)||5 Minutes|
|Creamy Hard-Boiled||10 Minutes|
How Long to Bake an Egg
If baking is your thing and want to make hard boiled eggs in the oven, you’ll want to follow these time stamps for the oven method.
|Yolk Texture||Cook Time|
|Soft-Boiled (Runny)||22 Minutes|
|Creamy Hard-Boiled||28 Minutes|
Hard Boiled Egg Timing
Once you choose your method, it’s good to get an idea of how much time you’ll need for the method you’ve chosen. Boiling time for hard boiled eggs varies dramatically by method, so make sure you have enough time for your preferred method.
|Boiling Method||Approximate Time|
|Instant Pot||5 minutes cooking (+5 min release)|
|Air Fryer||16 minutes|
Keep in mind that time may change slightly based on wattage and other temperature variables. The above is the timing that has provided the best hard-boiled egg results for me through the years. You make experience some slight variation in timing depending on the specifics of the machine you are using to boil eggs.
Peeling Hard Boiled Eggs
There are a few different methods to peeling hard-boiled eggs, and I’ve tried everything from cracking and rolling, a spoon, and shaking in a container of water. You can check out which method worked best in the video below:
Regardless of which method you choose, easy to hard-boiled peel eggs boils down to using those week-old eggs. Don’t skip that tip; it’s the difference between perfectly smooth egg whites and a giant mess in your kitchen sink.
How to Tell if an Egg is Boiled without Breaking it?
Want to tell if an egg is fully cooked without cracking it open? Easy, carefully grab an egg, place it on a flat surface and give it a spin. If it wobbles and keeps spinning, it’s still raw. If it spins, stays upright, and stops, it’s cooked!
How to Store Hard Boiled Eggs
Hard-boiled eggs are a meal prep staple in my house and family meal plans. They last up to 5 days when refrigerated in an airtight container and used in several recipes or as a quick snack.
But be sure to keep them in an airtight container to prevent any eggy smells from overtaking the fridge.
Can You Reheat Hard-Boiled Eggs
Instead of creating an explosion in the microwave, you can reheat hard-boiled eggs by placing them in hot water and covering them for 10 minutes. Once the time is up, drain the water, and the eggs should be heated through.
Avoiding Green Circles on Boiled Eggs
Those green-grayish circles on the cooked egg yolks are a sure sign of an overcooked egg; that’s why it’s important to keep track of how long your eggs sit in hot water and making sure to soak them in an ice bath after cooking. The ice water makes them easier to peel, but it brings the cooking process to a halt and keeps the center tender and soft.
Cracked Boiled Eggs
Every so often, eggs will crack while boiling. You’ll notice white wisps of egg white in the water. However, this doesn’t spoil the egg, and I usually use these mishaps in an egg salad or potato salad. Otherwise, cracked boiled eggs can be prevented by not overcrowding them in the saucepan or Instant pot.
What to Make with Hard-Boiled Eggs
Now that you know everything about making perfect, hard-boiled eggs, below are a few delicious ways to use them up for lunches:
How to Boil an Egg
- 12 eggs
- 1 tablespoon salt
- Place the eggs in a medium saucepan and cover with at least 2 inches of cold water.
- Add 1 tablespoon of salt.
- Place the saucepan over high heat until it reaches a boil.
- Remove the saucepan from heat, cover with a tight-fitting lid and let sit for 13 minutes.
- After 13 minutes, transfer the eggs to the ice-water bath. Allow them cool for 5 minutes.
- Once the eggs are at room temperature, carefully crack the shells (making sure the majority of the shell is cracked) and gently begin removing. If needed, you can dip the eggs in and out of the water to remove any slivers of the shell.
- Serve immediately or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
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