How to Make Hard Boiled Eggs That Will Peel Easily

How to Make Hard Boiled Eggs That Will Peel Easily

Making the perfect boiled eggs that are easy to peel is truly a culinary mystery, one that I have tried and failed to perform accurately for years and years until I discovered this amazing method that makes hard boiled eggs easy to peel. Every. Single Time.

hard boiled egg that is too hard to peel

Avoid This!


  • 12 Eggs (Two weeks old and pastured)
  • 1 t. Salt
  • Large Pot (Like this. Big enough to fit all of the eggs and at least an inch of water)
  • Water


  1. Choose Old Eggs: My brother David (who’s a culinary wizard) taught me that the trick to boiling eggs that will peel easily is to make sure that they are old. This is because as an egg ages, carbon dioxide (which is a weak acid) leaks out through the pores in the egg’s shell, making the egg white less acidic, and the more acidic the egg is, the harder it is to peel. We get our eggs fresh from a neighbor who raises pastured chickens, and I always set one or two dozen eggs aside to “age”. Fresh eggs need about two weeks to age, but one week will be better than nothing. If you get your eggs from the store, they will obviously not be as fresh and need less time to “age”.

    perfectly cooked hard boiled egg with shell peeling off easily

    Perfectly Cooked Hard Boiled Egg

  2. Cook Your Eggs: My dad (another culinary wizard in our family) taught me that the best way to cook your eggs is to place them in cold water, add a bit of salt (this helps to stop the whites from leaking if the shell cracks) and bring them to a boil for a just minute or two, then turn the burner off and let them sit for no longer than 13 minutes. Finally, dump the eggs into the sink to cool. You can even put them in a cold water bath to make sure they stop cooking.

    hard boiled eggs in a pot of boiling water

    Eggs Boiling

  3. Peel Your Eggs: My mother-in-law taught me how to roll eggs to gently crush the shells so that they will peel easier. If you use this method, just watch out that you don’t push too hard and crack the actual egg.

    a gently rolled hard boiled egg that will make it easier to peel

    Roll Your Hard Boiled Eggs Before Peeling

  4. Check Your Eggs: Peel one egg and cut it in half to see if it’s cooked to your liking. If so, sprinkle with salt and enjoy! Or, if you’re in the mood for some deviled eggs, check out my delicious deviled egg recipe.

    perfectly cooked hard boiled egg cut in half to show the yolks still soft

    Soft Yolks on Hard Boiled Eggs

In Conclusion

Now, even though you know that the secret to perfectly peeled hard boiled eggs is to use old eggs, you just know that there will come a time when you HAVE to have a hard boiled egg and you only have fresh eggs. So, here’s what you do. Boil your eggs as usual, roll them to get them cracked, and then soak them in a large pot water. As you’re peeling the eggs, you can keep dipping them back into the water to get the water to go under the shell and to help remove any little bits along the way. This will work on some of the eggs, but probably not all.

If you’re really feeling ambitious, you can roll the egg, put it in a shallow glass of water, put your hand over the top of the glass, and shake vigerously. See what I’m talking about here. But I’ve only found this to partially work, and I don’t really feel like any egg is worth this much trouble.

2 replies
  1. sue
    sue says:

    Yes, fresh eggs don’t peel good. Ron used to throw them, from frustration.
    A tip: Your big pot of boiled water is an instant weed killer, or any vegetation it gets on. Just be carefully transporting the pot outside.
    Also, by plunging your eggs into cold water right after they are cooked, keeps your yolks from turning green on the outer edges.

  2. Stacey Maaser
    Stacey Maaser says:

    Great tip Sue! I’ll have to give the cold water plunge a try! I can’t imagine Ron getting mad about anything, he was such a peaceful man. But those darn eggs!

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