As you can tell from our numerous salad and breakfast concoctions, we are obsessed with hardboiled eggs. If I could have any superpower, it would be the ability to lay my own (edible chicken) eggs. We love them fresh, we love them slightly undercooked in the middle. Nothing bums our hardboiled egg high and interferes with the morning sprint, however, like the shell that sticks to the membrane, making it nearly impossible to peel. I was reading the new(ish) Canal House cookbook. They say the best solution to this problem is either 1. waiting a week until eggs are not so fresh, which doesn’t work for us because a slightly underdone yolk relies on its freshness, or 2. putting salt in the boiling water before dropping eggs in. They say, bring to a boil and put eggs in for 6 minutes. Yolanda says drop them in for two minutes once water is boiling, then turn off the heat, let sit for 7 minutes, which makes them come out just right–super yellow and a hair underdone, not pale and chalky. We’ll try the salt trick and see if it works. Does anyone have another method they’d like to share?


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Comments (9)


  1. Posted by: Gillian

    ugh please share! my whole family LOVES hard boiled eggs and frankly the salt trick hasnt worked for us. We have also tried the rinse-in-cold-water right after they’re done cooking and that’s not reliable either. It feels like a batch-specific luck of the draw thing, don’t you think?

  2. Posted by: Jen

    This is what we do, and usually the shells come off in big pieces every time: place eggs in pot, cover with cold water (cover eggs by about an inch). Bring to boil, then immediately cover and turn off the heat. Let the eggs stand in the hot water (covered) for 10 minutes or so. Drain and rinse in cold water.

  3. Posted by: B

    The only time I had sticky shells was when I followed a “How to cook perfect eggs” recipe. So i have just stuck to my own way that gives me easy to peel results every time! Boil water/ drop eggs in/ when cooking time is over immediately rinse and replace water w cold water plus drop in four or five ice cubes and let sit until the eggs are ready to be eaten! Voila…

  4. Posted by: Joanna

    My husband actually asked the cafeteria workers at the hospital their secret. They steam them! And so I have adopted this as well for perfect eggs. I put an inch of water in the opt with my steamer basket on top. Drop ll my eggs in and cover with the lid. Boil for 5 minutes then let cool for a bit more. I usually let them sit for an additional 10-15 min. No rinsing or salting required. Perfectly peelable eggs result!

    • Posted by: Yolanda Edwards

      oh love that joanna thanks so much–have to try this!

  5. Posted by: Gillian

    steamed eggs! That sounds great, Joanna. I’m trying this immediately!

  6. Posted by: Jennifer Cox

    My favorite way to hard-boil eggs is in the rice cooker, perfect, everytime!

  7. Posted by: Ashley

    Yes–steamed was going to be my proposal as well! I posted about this (life-changing would not be exaggerating) Cook’s Illustrated method for soft-boiled eggs ( and someone asked me if you could do the same for hard boiled eggs. The answer is yes, you just leave them in the steam longer. Highly recommended–and the soft-cooked method is totally fool-proof.

  8. Posted by: Katie

    I used to be hopeless when it came to boiling eggs! I was often too impatient, and also didn’t want a super hard boiled egg. So as a result, I have made plenty of grossly undercooked eggs in my time. Then my mom gave me this colour changing egg timer and that was the end of my egg troubles! I can get them just how I want them (usually between soft and medium) every time.
    As for the peeling issues, I seriously can’t stand when the membrane sticks to the shell either, but it never even occurred to me that there might be a way to prevent this. I always just assumed it was luck of the draw. I’m definitely going to give steaming a shot!

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