How to Make Hard Boiled Eggs

Learn how to make hard boiled eggs perfectly every time! With this easy method, they'll be easy to peel and have vibrant yellow yolks.

Perfect Hard boiled eggs

Here’s the good news: perfect hard boiled eggs are easy to make. …And the bad news: so are less-than-perfect ones. I don’t know about you, but I’ve certainly cooked my fair share of the latter. When you try to peel away the shell, half the whites come along with it, or when you cut it open, the yolk is slightly green instead of brilliant yellow. Pretty disappointing, if you ask me.

See, cooking perfect hard boiled eggs is easy, but that doesn’t mean that the process you use doesn’t matter. After years of trial and error, I’m happy to say that this method for how to make hard boiled eggs works every time! The yolks are always sunshine yellow, and the shells slide right off. Whether you’re getting ready for Easter, prepping for Passover, or just on the hunt for a protein-packed snack, this easy hard boiled egg recipe is guaranteed to please.

Eggs

How to Make Hard Boiled Eggs

Follow these simple steps to make perfect hard boiled eggs every time:

First, boil the eggs. Place them in a pot and cover them with cold water by 1 inch. Bring the water to a boil over high heat.

How to hard boil eggs

Then, let them sit in the hot water. As soon as the water begins to boil, turn off the heat and cover the pot. Leave the eggs in the hot water for anywhere from 10-12 minutes, depending on how you like your eggs. The 10-minute eggs will have vibrant, creamy yolks, while the 12-minute yolks will be paler and opaque, with a chalkier texture.

How to make hard boiled eggs

Finally, move them to an ice bath. When the time is up, drain the eggs and transfer them to a large bowl of ice water to stop the cooking process. Leave them in the ice bath for at least 14 minutes before you peel the eggs.

If you’re not planning to eat the eggs right away, feel free to leave them in the shells and store them in the fridge. But even if this is the case, don’t cut the ice bath short! It’s crucial for stopping the cooking process and making the eggs easy to peel later on.

See below for the complete recipe!

Eggs in an ice bath

Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs Tips

  • Buy the eggs in advance. If I’m cooking sunny side up eggs, fresh eggs will yield the best results every time. But if I’m hard boiling them, the opposite is true! Boiled farm-fresh eggs are more difficult to peel than older eggs. If you want to make perfect hard boiled eggs, it pays to buy them in advance and cook them after a few days in the fridge.
  • Store the eggs upside down. This tip comes from Jack’s mom, who makes the BEST deviled eggs for family gatherings. In order for the yolks to land right in the center of the hard boiled eggs, she recommends storing the raw eggs upside down before you cook them.
  • Don’t skip the ice bath! Overcooked hard boiled eggs have an unappealing greenish ring around the yolks. We want our yolks to come out sunshine-yellow, so transfer the eggs to an ice bath to stop the cooking process as soon as they come out of the pot. This step is also crucial for making hard boiled eggs that are easy to peel. The ice bath helps separate the egg membrane from the shell, so you’ll be able to peel away the shell without ripping off chunks of egg white.
  • Peel them carefully. The ice bath should set you up for success here, but that doesn’t mean the shell will all come off in one piece. Gently rap the egg on the counter to break the entire shell into small pieces. Carefully peel it away along the fractures, leaving the egg whites as intact as possible.

Peeling hard boiled eggs

Storing and Serving Suggestions

Peeled or unpeeled hard boiled eggs will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. Enjoy them as a protein-packed snack with salt and pepper or Everything Bagel Seasoning, slice them into salads, add them to grain bowls, or top them onto avocado toast. I also love to make hard boiled eggs to turn into deviled eggs or healthy egg salad!

How do you like to eat hard boiled eggs? Let me know in the comments!

Best hard boiled eggs

How to Make Hard Boiled Eggs

rate this recipe:
5 from 16 votes
This easy method for how to hard boil eggs works every time! They're easy to peel, and they have perfect yellow yolks. Enjoy them as a snack, add them to salads, and more!

Ingredients

  • Large eggs

Instructions

  • Place eggs in a medium pot and cover with cold water by 1 inch. Bring to a boil, then cover the pot and turn the heat off. Let the eggs cook for 9 to 12 minutes, depending on your desired done-ness (see photo).
  • Transfer the eggs to a bowl of ice water and chill for 14 minutes. This makes the eggs easier to peel. Peel and enjoy!

Notes

*Eggs may vary based on size, type, and freshness. In the photos above, I used Vital Farms Eggs.

25 comments

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  1. wildbill
    04.05.2020

    You might Confirm what temp the eggs are to start. Are they straight out of the cooler or room temperature?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      04.05.2020

      Hi Bill, I start them cold from the fridge.

  2. Janet
    04.05.2020

    I am actually looking forward to making perfect hard boiled eggs for the holiday.

  3. Sarah
    06.24.2020

    Just wondering, how can you store an egg upside down? Which way is the right way up for an egg?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      06.24.2020

      Hi Sarah, put the smaller tip side down in the carton.

  4. Meaghan
    07.22.2020

    Thank you so much for this!!! side note, WHERE is that beautiful spoon rest/platter thing from!?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      07.22.2020

      Hi Meaghan, it’s vintage, I think I found it on Etsy.

  5. Sherri Pallick
    07.24.2020

    5 stars
    I have been trying to make hard boiled eggs forever. Simple thing right? Wrong! I tried your way and I had THE most perfect boiled eggs ever! Thank you so much . No more frustration on should be the sinplimplist thing ever!!!

  6. Sonia
    07.30.2020

    This is kind of a dumb question. I have an electric flattop stove. Do I leave the pot on the burner (which still has residual heat) or do I move it to another burner?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      07.30.2020

      Hi Sonia, I would move it to another burner.

    • Ali
      10.14.2020

      Not a dumb question- I had the SAME thought! Thanks for clarifying

  7. Zozo
    08.24.2020

    Thanks! Making deviled eggs 😋 my family is getting tired of all the sweets i bake.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      08.30.2020

      I hope you enjoy!

  8. Barbara
    09.01.2020

    5 stars
    I’ve tried lots of different methods for making hard boiled eggs, including baking them in the shell. But this method is the best! At 12 minutes, the yolks were completely cooked, but it overcooked. And every egg pealed perfectly. Happily, my quest for the period method can end..

    • Barbara
      09.01.2020

      5 stars
      My comment should say, the yolks were completely cooked, but NOT overcooked.

      • Jeanine Donofrio
        09.01.2020

        Hi Barbara, I’m glad your eggs were perfect!

  9. Char S
    09.24.2020

    5 stars
    This method is great! I found that straight from the fridge yielded a couple cracked shells. So I put the eggs in the pan covered in cold water and let them sit on the counter for 30-45 min to balance the temperatures. Then I followed the recipe and Voila! No cracked shells and perfect HB eggs! Thank you 😊

  10. drey samuelson
    10.08.2020

    5 stars
    perfect directions–thanks so much for posting!

  11. Maria
    10.09.2020

    5 stars
    Perfect! This is my go to recipe for hard boiled eggs. Never fails!
    Thank you!

  12. Diana
    10.12.2020

    5 stars
    Just tried this recipe for lunch today – it came out perfectly! Thanks so much! I’ve always had so much trouble with hard boiled eggs. I will use this recipe from now on! 🙂

  13. Natalie
    10.15.2020

    At what point do you consider the water boiling? When little bubbles form as in simmering or a full rolling boil?

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      10.15.2020

      Hi Natalie, when the surface starts to ripple – past the point where the little bubbles form on the sides, but not long enough for a huge rolling boil.

  14. Chris
    10.17.2020

    This recipe ruined every single one of my eggs. None of them peeled correctly.

  15. Kareema
    10.22.2020

    I was taught to poke a tiny hole in the large end of the egg before boiling them….this sometimes works so the shells don’t crack, but sometimes they still do. I have never seen this method before, so I’m about to try it in a few minutes….I hope they turn out OK! I love hard boiled eggs, deviled eggs & egg salad, so….if this method works for me, I will be thrilled!

    Wish me luck!

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.