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.
- 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)
- Choose Old Eggs: The trick to boiling eggs that will peel easily is to make sure 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 whites 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”.
- Cook Your Eggs: Place your eggs in a large pot and cover with enough cool to lukewarm water so that they are well submerged. Add a teaspoon of salt which will help the whites from leaking if the shell cracks. Turn the burner to an 8 or 9 (medium high heat) until the water boils. Turn the burner off and set a timer for eight minutes.Eggs Boiling
- Cool Water Bath: Put a strainer in the sink and empty the pot into it. Put a stopper in the sink, dump the eggs out of the strainer, and fill with cold water until the eggs are fully submerged. You can even add a few ice cubes if you want to get fancy.
- Peel Your Eggs: I usually just gently crack the egg and peel it under water, but you can also gently roll the egg instead of cracking it. There’s a thin film under the shell, and once you get underneath that with your fingernails, the eggshell should peel away easily.
- Check Your Eggs: Peel one egg and cut it in half to see if it’s cooked to your liking. You want the yolk to be soft but not runny. Shorter cooking times will help the egg to retain more of it’s nutrients. Also, shorter and lower heat cause less oxidation of cholesterol which can damage your arteries. Also notice how these yolks are almost orange, this is because these are pastured eggs and higher in nutrients.
Now, even though you know that the secret to perfectly peeled hard boiled 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.
Eggs are an amazing superfood, especially if they’re pastured, and having hard boiled eggs on hand ensures that you have a protein rich nutrient dense snack to grab at a moment’s notice. I always like having a carton of hard boiled eggs in my refrigerator for a quick snack or to put on salads. I also really like using them to make egg and potato salad and deviled eggs.
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.
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!