Why are my hard-boiled eggs hard to peel?

I have a problem with boiled eggs. I make deviled eggs and when I boil the eggs I never get the same results. Most times the shell is hard to peel and the egg sticks to the shell making it look terrible on the plate. I have tried many timing methods, fresh eggs, warm eggs, etc., but I have no "tried and true" method that will give me eggs that peel easily every time. HELP!!!! Natalie L. McKenna

Submitted by irishmoma1

We feel your pain, Natalie! Try these step-by-step tips for making perfect hard-boiled eggs:

Step 1: Place eggs and water in a saucepan

  • Arrange the eggs in a single layer in a large saucepan so they cook evenly. Do not stack them.
  • Add enough cold water to cover the eggs by 1 inch.

Step 2: Bring water to boiling

  • Heat saucepan over medium-high heat until the water comes to a rapid boil (water will have large, rapidly breaking bubbles).
  • Immediately remove pan from heat.

Step 3: Cover and let stand

  • After removing from heat, cover the saucepan and allow it to stand for 15 minutes.
  • Drain the eggs, then run cold water over them or place them in a large bowl filled with ice water until the eggs cool.

Step 4: Peel the eggs

  • To peel an egg, gently tap it on the counter to crack the shell. Use your fingers to peel off the shell.
  • Rinse the peeled egg under cold water to remove any remaining bits of shell.
  • If desired, use a thin-bladed sharp knife to chop the eggs.
Answered by BHGFood
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At least 4 room temp. eggs,(or more)- place in steamer basket, steam for 14 mins., place in ice bath for 5 mins. , peel. I use eggs that I purchase a week before wanting to devil, peel slides off with ease every time. Every time I have used newly purchased eggs from the market it turns into a peeling nightmare.
Submitted by ralphmac
Agreed with clpotts, in that it has more to do with the freshness of the eggs. My mom told me many years ago, for Easter one year, to buy my eggs early; it makes them easier to peel.
Submitted by
I always add salt to mine while they are boiling seems to work good...
Submitted by harpertj
The freshness of an egg has to do with how difficult they are to peel. The fresher the egg, the harder it is to peel. So, if possible, purchase your eggs a few days ahead of time, this should aid in the peeling process. NOTE: this is a well known fact in the egg industry! :)
Submitted by clpotts
Thank you for your advice. I have used this same procedure, with one exception. The only difference is that I was told NOT to bring the water to a rapid boil, but everything else is the same procedure I follow. I will let water boil the next time and hopefully that will do the trick. Thank you for your quick response.
Submitted by irishmoma1