How to Make Hard-Boiled Eggs

Hard-boiled eggs are a staple in the kitchen. But many cooks find it hard to make them. Here is a simple foolproof way to cook camera-ready, and mouth-ready, eggs.

Four brown eggs in a green carton on a green counter.

The secrets to hard-boiled eggs? Good eggs and proper cooking technique. Good eggs give you beautiful bright yellow yolks. Good technique helps you avoid the dreaded grey rings around them.–Heidi Swanson

LC Day After Easter Note

Ever find yourself with such an abundance of hard-cooked eggs that it seems all the egg salad in the world can’t save you? We’ve been there. Here are some of the ways we ate ourselves out of the situation.

  • Sprinkled with salt and pepper.
  • Alongside toast
  • Pressed and passed through a sieve over steamed asparagus.
  • Halved and sprinkled with sea salt, finely chopped fresh herbs (parsley or chervil, perhaps) and bread crumbs (whether brioche, challah, day-old bread, even matzoh) that you’ve sautéed in olive oil or butter until crisp and golden.
  • As a platform for caviar. Eggs². (Eggs to the second power. Eggs squared, some may say.)
  • Deviled.
  • Made into poor man’s pasta. Just finely chop the eggs, toss with strands of spaghetti or linguine, and then gild with a delicate pour of olive oil and copious amounts of pepper.
  • Sliced atop mild-mannered mache, assertive arugula, or not-quite-a-wallflower watercress.
  • Fashioned into a faux bistro salad. Halve and perch your oeufs atop frisée along with some lardons (fat chunks of thick-sliced bacon sizzled until crisp on the outside) and then drench everything with a drizzle of warm vinaigrette (ideally made with drippings from the aforementioned bacon).
  • Crumbled over imported, oil-packed, tinned tuna and showered with freshly cracked black pepper.
  • Buried beneath shredded radicchio, anchovy vinaigrette, and bread crumbs, as per The Zuni Café Cookbook by Judy Rodgers.
  • Patted down with sausage, rolled in raw egg, dredged in breadcrumbs, and deep-fried. (We’re thinking what you’re thinking. But it’s a delicacy to some. Ever heard of Scotch eggs?)
  • Napped with curry sauce.
  • Nestled atop biryani.
  • Smothered in Peruvian papa a la huancaina sauce.

☞ Contents

Hard Boiled Eggs

Four brown eggs in a green carton on a green counter.
Have a glut of eggs? Hard boiling them will give you an on-the-go solution and an easy way to use them up.

Prep 5 mins
Cook 10 mins
Resting Time 5 mins
Total 20 mins
1 servings
347 kcal
5 / 5 votes
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  • As many large eggs as you please


  • Place the eggs in a medium saucepan and add enough cold water to cover by 1/2 inch or so. Bring to a gentle boil over medium heat, so the eggs just barely start rattling against the bottom of the pan. Turn off the heat, cover, and let sit for exactly 7 minutes. (If you’re using extra-large eggs, let them cook for 10 minutes.)
  • Fill a large bowl with ice water. After the requisite 7 (or 10) minutes, place the eggs in the ice water and let cool for about 3 minutes. Peel carefully.
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Show Nutrition

Serving: 1eggCalories: 347kcal (17%)Carbohydrates: 2g (1%)Protein: 31g (62%)Fat: 23g (35%)Saturated Fat: 8g (50%)Polyunsaturated Fat: 5gMonounsaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0.1gCholesterol: 904mg (301%)Sodium: 345mg (15%)Potassium: 335mg (10%)Sugar: 1g (1%)Vitamin A: 1312IU (26%)Calcium: 136mg (14%)Iron: 4mg (22%)

#leitesculinaria on Instagram If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We’d love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

Originally published March 21, 2018


#leitesculinaria on Instagram If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We'd love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.


  1. 5 stars
    This method works perfectly! I’ve tried several different methods through the years that mainly resulting in green ringed egg yolks or yolks not being throughly cooked. We had both large and extra large eggs in the house and timing for both were great.

    1. Wonderful, Lily! We are so pleased that this worked well for you. Please do let us know what you make next.

  2. David has the best way to make eggs by steaming them. I am 67 years old and finally have eggs that peel without being marked up!

  3. 5 stars
    Now, it may sound silly not to be able to make hard-boiled eggs, but it’s really all about the timing!! This worked perfectly!

  4. 5 stars
    I’m sure your directions as well several others work well, but I eat a hard-boiled egg most mornings, so I need to keep a supply around and find this recipe that I saw on one of the food magazine websites over a year ago works like magic.

    I make five or six eggs at a time and use a “cold start” from the fridge to cold water to high heat and then at a low boil for 13 minutes. I then pit them into a 7-cup Tupperware container ice bath for 15 minutes. I drain the ice and water and then place them into just a little water and snap the lid tight. Then, 40, yes 40, gentle up and down shakes and the eggs pretty much peel themselves. I get the biggest smile every time I do this like some mad scientist.

  5. I have tried many suggestions for making hardboiled eggs. The only one I can count on working every time is to place them the basket of your pressure cooker with about 1 cup of water. Bring it to 15 psi for 6 to 9 minutes depending on how hard you want the yolks. Removed from the heat and release the pressure. I rarely get a cracked egg and even if I do there is no mess and it is still useable. And there is never any grey layer around the yolk.

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