Peeling Hard Boiled Eggs

RenkosiewiczJune 23, 2012

Does anyone have any NEW methods for peeling hard boiled eggs that are fresh? Does anyone have experience with putting baking soda in the water? Thanks for your help. I have two dozen eggs to hard boil and peel for deviled eggs. The eggs are pretty fresh so I am anticipating a problem peeling. Please help! Thanks, Barb

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I've heard from a number of people that generously salting the water makes the eggs easy to peel.....regardless of the age. The water doesn't get into the egg, but does loosen the shell.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2012 at 1:35PM
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My sister got me a set of Eggies for Christmas and I may never peel hard cooked eggs every again.... -Grainlady

Here is a link that might be useful: Eggies

    Bookmark   June 23, 2012 at 1:38PM
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This works for fresh too ./I have a few chickens always bought eggs for deviled etc.You put cold water in pan with eggs cook on stove to boiling,take off the stove put lid on.let sit about 15 minutes ,hit on counter then roll on counter with just enough pressure ,youll feel it cracking,it peels right off.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2012 at 11:38PM
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bulldinkie, that's how I've always made hard boiled eggs too, but I put them in cold water, bring to boiling, then cover and let sit for five minutes instead of 15. I then crack the eggs and cover with cold water, let them sit until the eggs are cool enough to handle. The peel USUALLY slips right off.

I know some people here swear by steaming the eggs instead of boiling them they peel perfectly, and some put vinegar in the water. I haven't tried steaming but the vinegar didn't seem to make a difference for me.


    Bookmark   June 23, 2012 at 11:47PM
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Grainlady, do those eggies work? They have rubbish reviews on! The video looks great, though.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 3:38AM
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islay corbel-

Yep... They really work. And that should be "ever" again, not every (LOL - engage brain before moving fingers). I have used them many times and always get great results. No dark ring around the yolk. If you over-cook them the whites may get a little tough, so follow the directions, use plenty of water in the pan, watch the cooking temperature, and use a timer (so many minutes per size of egg used) to solve that problem.

I think the smelly sulfur in eggs dissipates during the cooking using Eggies, so the eggs aren't quite as noxious as those cooked in-the-shell. Which is good news if you make them into deviled eggs and need to store them in the refrigerator, or chopped for egg salad.

I use Bakers & Chefs Cooking Spray (the same professional-grade cooking spray I use on pans - I get it at Sam's Club, but it is also available from and restaurant supply stores) to coat the inside of the plastic egg holders and never have any eggs stick. You need to wipe the non-stick spray onto the Eggies (put your hand in a plastic bag and spray a little on the bag and wipe it on the Eggies - works best for me), not spray the Eggies themselves, for best results.

Yes, there are several parts to clean, but I'd rather quickly wash those in hot soapy water than peel eggs (a task I never liked doing); and the eggs come out perfectly formed. It's also a great way to use egg whites or if you are avoiding egg yolks and want hard-cooked egg whites.

I'm also a gadget-lover, so this was a great gadget gift, as I'm sure my sister knew it was. I'm certain I've made a lot more hard-cooked eggs because of the Eggies than I would have making them cooked in-the-shell. Especially a couple weeks ago when large eggs were the unheard of price, in this day and age, of 88-cents a dozen! ;-)


    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 6:41AM
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Following a suggestion I read here, I now steam eggs to make hard boiled eggs rather than boiling them. I find they are much easier to peel after steaming them.


    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 2:37PM
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Ditto on steaming. I put them in the steamer basket with cold water and put the heat on medium. I set the timer for 25 minutes. They are done. And they peel easily.


    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 3:29PM
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Ditto on the steaming! Ever since Shaun put us on to that method I have never cooked eggs that required peeing another way. Absolutely perfect peel every time!

PS : Thank you Shaun and I miss you sweetie pie.....making your wings tonight!

    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 3:39PM
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Thanks Shaun! I didn't remember who posted the steaming method. It's the best.


    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 4:27PM
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Another ditto on steaming eggs. I've tried it twice since reading the tip here and both times the eggs were super easy to peel.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 5:26PM
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LOL, Sharon, "eggs that required peeing another way". That may very well become one of my favorite typos! And here I thought that was just asparagus.

Shaun, I miss you too.


    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 5:57PM
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I also only steam eggs any more. This works only if you peel the eggs very shortly after steaming them. If you leave them in the fridge overnight, they will be as difficult to peel as if you had boiled them, but if you peel them right away as soon as they are cool enough to handle, the shells will just slip away.


    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 5:59PM
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Lars, I leave the shells on and put them in the refrigerator. I have no peeling troubles. I wonder why you have trouble? I usually do at least 6 eggs at one time. They get consumed over 5 or 6 days.


    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 7:04PM
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I'll be the dissenter here. I tried several times to steam my eggs, and had at least as much trouble peeling them as when I did the immersion method.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 11:44PM
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Thanks for all the tips. I eat a lot of eggs so am going to try the eggies.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2012 at 2:41AM
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I've found that peeling them while under water and still somewhat warm helps a great deal. After rinsing, I fill the pot with cold water, then peel them in the pot.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2012 at 7:47AM
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Annie, I always put vinegar in the water, but I've never heard that is supposed to make peeling easier. I do it because if an egg happens to leak, the vinegar keeps it to a minimum.

For easy peeling, I bring the eggs and water (and vinegar) to a boil, remove the pot from the burner, cover and let set for about 10 minutes, drain, put about 2 cups of ice cubes into the pot, run cold water into the pot, then swirl the eggs around to cool the eggs a bit. This also cracks the egg shells and lets the water seep in between the egg and the shell. That makes peeling much easier.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2012 at 4:07PM
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The last time I hard boiled eggs, I followed the instructions at Simply Recipes. That was the only batch of hard boiled eggs I've ever had peel easily!

Here is a link that might be useful: How to Make Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs

    Bookmark   June 25, 2012 at 5:05PM
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That's how I do my hard-boiled eggs, too Jessicaml.
Also, thanks for the link to the great blog! It's in my favourites now.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2012 at 7:37PM
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You will see a ton of methods of "Easiest way to peel hard boiled eggs".

OTOH, you will see also comments that those methods do not work.

Fresh eggs vs. old eggs, boil, steam, salt, baking soda, vinegar ----whatnot. You can lose friends arguing about it.

The fact is, whether the shell sticks or not probably depends on the breed of the hen, what the hen is fed with, when the hen lays the eggs, old hen, young hen, fat hen, skinny hen ------- too many variable for a single effective method to deal with.

That said, perhaps there are scientific constants which apply to all egg types.

1. Egg shell is actually permeable. Moisture can evaporate out or percolate in thru the shell. Old egg white can be slightly smaller due to evaporation.

2. Egg white and yolk expands if heated.(why eggs crack when cooked)

3. Egg white and yolk expands if water is absorbed thru the shell.

4. When two smooth surfaces are in close contact with a thin film of water in between, there will be about 14 lbs/sq in of atmospheric pressure acting on the surfaces. (try pulling two pieces of glass apart with a drop of water in between them).

With the above understanding, I have come up with my method which seems to work very well:

1. Put eggs in air-tight plastic bag and steam or boil. ( No water will get inside the eggs)

2. Once eggs have been hard boiled, immediately put them in the refrigerator to chill. This will shrink the egg white and the refrigerator will help the hot eggs to evaporate.

3. Once the eggs have been chilled, put a few inside a sealed container and shake with moderate force to break the shell. The shaking impact will cause the shell to delaminate from the egg white.

4. The shell should peel off relatively easy at this point.


    Bookmark   June 25, 2012 at 7:56PM
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I tap the large end of each egg (where the air bubble is) with a metal skewer, gently, to make a little hole in the shell.

Then I put the eggs in a saucepan with enough cold water to cover them, bring them to a boil, put the lid on and switch off the heat.

After 13 minutes, I pour out the hot water and re-fill the saucepan with cold water. After 2 or 3 minutes, I crack and peel the eggs under the cold water in the pan.

This method works pretty well for me, and I agree that the eggs should not be too fresh.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2012 at 11:42AM
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The biggest complaint about the "Eggies" that I've read is 4 parts per unit. Really, is that necessary? Anyway, you do need to spray them. I've seen a lot of complaints that they leak. I imagine you need to really crank them down to seal.

Other things I've read and learned about eggs. First, NEVER boil them! People insist you need to boil eggs. It should only be a simmer. For a variety of reasons, including the boiling makes them jump around and crack which causes problems. And I use the method of bringing them to a simmer and shut off the heat and let the water cook them. Start running cold water into the hot and let it pour out and do a couple flushings with cold water then peel. I don't usually keep hard cooked eggs around but seldom have major trouble with shells.

Vinegar might help but too much makes for a sulphur smell. Baking soda changes the pH and helps, and a little salt generally helps for the coagulation that the vinegar is supposed to assist.

Peeling techniques vary too but I see so many people who insist on snapping off little pieces rather than actually peeling them. They bang away on the counter and break the shell into hundreds of pinhead size pieces and then complain that "it's hard to peel eggs!" Well DUH! Of *course* it will be when you do that! LOL Crack the egg, best to do it on the large end to use the air pocket to help you. Get a hold of the membrane - many try to leave it as part of the egg. Go slowly and let the suction release and as the air gets in there it always makes it easier for me. Trying to remove little bits and pieces of shell is a PITA. It takes a whisker of patience but I can usually remove the shell in 3-4 pieces. Easier peeling and easier cleanup too.

There's a "On TV" gadget out there that is a big plunger thing that works much like the blowing of eggs. I guess if I'm eating the egg myself, to try blowing it isn't a big deal but I don't really like someone else spitting on my eggs. Though reviews of that haven't been the greatest either, it'd be a lot easier to clean than 4 pieces of "eggie" per egg! There's also arguments out there about cooking in plastic but I won't go into that. I usually can taste plastic from things but I might be more sensitive than others.

All in personal preference. I don't really mind peeling eggs when they're cooked right, have good eggs for peeling and have a little luck. Seems like there's always one or two in there that are tough to peel no matter what you do.

Also, if I just want some chopped egg in a salad or something, I usually don't simmer (never boil) them. I'll fry an egg and chop it up to add. Or even microwave it. Which reminds me, my sister and her boyfriend bought those microwave egg cookers. I use a little glass Pyrex dish.

    Bookmark   June 29, 2012 at 7:34PM
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I am linking a fun video, it's only about a minute. I haven't myself tried the method shown.

Here is a link that might be useful: Peel Hard Boiled Eggs without Peeling

    Bookmark   June 30, 2012 at 11:16PM
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