How to Boil an Egg That Peels Off Perfectly

Image via smart-restaurants

It sounds so simple: hard boil an egg. But, as easy as this sounds, believe me, I’ve ruined my share of good eggs while attempting to boil them.

It is supposed to be pretty straight forward; Like how hard can it be? Put some eggs in a pot, add water, boil for a few minutes and you should have something edible right?


In my early cooking days, I had seen a couple of friends and family members churn out some pretty hard boiled eggs and I figured it looked easy enough and off I went…leaving a trail of culinary disasters in my wake.

The good news is, you do not have to suffer the same fate as I did; after many trials and almost as many errors, I stumbled on this fool proof way to nail a perfectly boiled egg.

And just before you go scurrying off in fear of another complicated cooking process, I assure you we won’t be needing any measuring spoons, cups or kitchen scales. Just eggs (hint: pick eggs that are a little older), water and a pan.

If your fears have been sufficiently allayed, then get back in here, we’ve got some eggs to boil!

1. Place the eggs in a pan

Get a pan and place the eggs in a single layer inside, no stacking. Keep in mind fresh eggs don’t peel as well as older eggs.

2. Add water to the pan

Next, pour some water into the pan; the water should be at least an inch above the tops of the eggs. The goal is to have enough water in the pot so it flows freely around the eggs, thus distributing heat evenly.

3. Bring to a boil

Place the pan on your heat source, set to medium-high heat and then bring to a rolling boil.

4. Remove from the heat

Once you’ve reached a boil, take the pan off the heat source, put a lid on top of it and keep it covered for 4-16 minutes depending on your personal preference.

If you are aiming for hard boiled eggs, then you will want to leave the lid on for a longer time. For soft boiled eggs, anywhere from 4-6 minutes will do the trick.

5. Transfer to an ice bath

After the appropriate amount of time has elapsed, transfer the eggs to an ice bath. This quickly stops the eggs from cooking any further.

6. Peel off the shell

To peel off the shells, tap the egg on a hard, flat surface and then roll it along the surface with the palm of your hand. This will quickly loosen up the shells, allowing you to get them off easily. This should leave you with a nicely cooked egg just the way you want it.

7. Serve and enjoy!

The image above shows the estimated cooking times for different levels of egg doneness. 4-6 minutes should give you a soft boiled egg with the yolk slightly runny while 12 -16 minutes should give you a pretty hard-boiled egg.

If you’ve missed out on any of the steps or you would generally prefer a more visual tutorial, simply click on the video below.

Watch the Video Tutorial

If you loved this tutorial and would love to see more tutorials, feel free to comment below letting me know.

Hard boiling eggs should be super easy. But... it can also be pretty difficult! This method is easy and just works!

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