How to Make Hard Boiled Eggs



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How to make hard boiled eggs including cooking time variations, tips for perfect eggs every time and ways to use hard boiled eggs.

I have a staple recipe for you today! It’s such a simple recipe, but something that I get asked all the time.

How to make hard boiled eggs.

Hard boiled eggs being peeled on a plate.

Boiling eggs was something my mom taught me how to do early on, but there was a period of time where I definitely had to Google to be reminded of the cooking time. Now it’s second nature to whip up a batch of hard boiled eggs and I do it often as part of my weekly meal prep!

In this post I’m sharing the methods I use to make hard boiled eggs, cooking time variations, tips for perfect eggs every time and ways to use hard boiled eggs.

Why Hard Boiled Eggs?

If you didn’t grow up eating these, you might be wondering why make hard boiled eggs? There are so many reasons!

  • Quick meal or snack – Need a quick breakfast or snack on-the-go? Hard boiled eggs work perfectly!
  • Protein – One egg is packed with 6 grams of protein. I like to try to have protein with every meal and snack and adding a hard boiled egg is the perfect way to do that!
  • Meal prep stars – I love meal prepping a batch of hard boiled eggs for the week. I’ll eat them plain or enjoy them in a variety of ways throughout the week.
Pot on a stove.

What You Need

  • Eggs
  • Water
  • Ice bath

How to Make Hard Boiled Eggs

There are actually a bunch of different ways to make hard boiled eggs, but I like using the method my mom taught me which involves boiling the eggs with the water, removing the heat and letting the eggs sit in the hot water to “cook.” This method is pretty fool-proof and makes for easy hard boiled eggs every time. Here’s how to do it:

Boil water and eggs – Place eggs in a large saucepan and cover with water by at least 1 inch. Bring water to a boil over high heat. Let the water rapidly boil for 30 seconds, cover and remove from heat.

Let eggs sit – Let eggs sit in the hot water for 4-12 minutes, depending on how boiled you want the eggs.

Eggs being boiled in a pot of water.

Cool – After eggs have sat for the allotted time, carefully drain the water or use a slotted spoon to remove the eggs from the hot water. Transfer the eggs into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking and cool the eggs.

Hard boiled eggs in an ice bath.

Peel – Peel the eggs by tapping all over to crack and then carefully remove the shell.

How Long Should I “Cook” the Eggs?

This depends on your personal preference or what you’ll be using them for!

6 minutes – Jammy eggs (the whites will be fully cooked but the yolk with have a jammy consistency).

8 minutes – Mostly jammy but some more cooked areas of yolk.

10 minutes – Mostly cooked but some jammy areas of yolk.

12 minutes – Fully hard boiled eggs with a firm yolk.

Five halves of hard boiled eggs with labels of how long the egg has been cooked for, from 4 minutes - 12 minutes.

I personally like to let the eggs sit in the hot water for 6-8 minutes if I’m eating hard boiled eggs for breakfast or on a salad. I like to boil the eggs for 10-12 minutes if I’m using the egg for tuna or egg salad.

Hard Boiled Egg Tips

Don’t use fresh eggs – Sounds counterintuitive, but super fresh eggs will be harder to peel. For easy-to-peel hard boiled eggs use eggs that are about a week old.

Don’t skip the ice bath – Don’t skip the ice bath! This is super important to stop the cooking process and helps with peeling the eggs. Don’t attempt to peel the eggs until they are completely cool.

How to Store Hard Boiled Eggs

You can store peeled or unpeeled hard boiled eggs in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. I feel like they stay fresher and become easier to peel as they sit in the fridge do I typically store them in the shell until I’m ready to use them for a recipe or eat as a snack.

Halves of hard boiled eggs with different yolk textures.

How to Eat Hard Boiled Eggs

Oh my goodness, there are so many great ways to use hard boiled eggs. Here are a few ideas:

More Egg Recipes

Be sure to check out all the egg recipes here on EBF!

4.41 from 5 votes

How to Hard Boil Eggs

Hard boiled eggs are such an easy, high protein snack idea! One egg has 6 grams of protein!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 17 minutes
Servings: 4 eggs


  • 4-6 eggs
  • Water
  • Ice


  • Place eggs in a large saucepan and cover with water by at least 1 inch. Bring water to a boil over high heat. Let the water rapidly boil for 30 seconds, cover and remove from heat. Let sit 4-12 minutes. 4 minutes for jammy eggs or 12 minutes for fully hard boiled eggs and 8 or 10 minutes for somewhere in between. I like 6-8 minutes for hard boiled eggs that I’m going to eat for breakfast or but some where around 10-12 for hard boiled eggs I’m using for egg salad or tuna salad.
  • Once eggs have sat for the allotted time, drain water or use a slotted spoon to remove the eggs from the hot water. Transfer eggs to a bowl of ice water or place the eggs in a colander and run cold water over them. Either of these methods will stop the cooking process and cool the eggs.
  • Peel eggs by tapping all over to crack. Remove shell, starting at the larger side of the egg (with the air pocket). Serve/use immediately or peel + chill and enjoy once cold.


Serving: 1egg | Calories: 72kcal | Protein: 6g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 186mg | Sodium: 71mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: hard boiled eggs
Did you make this recipe?Mention @eatingbirdfood and tag #eatingbirdfood!

Photos by Ashley McLaughlin.

About Brittany

Hey there, I’m Brittany, the creator of Eating Bird Food, cookbook author, health coach and mama of two littles. Here you’ll find quick and easy recipes that make healthy fun and enjoyable for you and your family!

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Recipe Rating


    1. I had the same confusion. The script says to add the eggs AFTER the water has boiled. The recipe has them in the cool water before boiling. That’s gotta make a big difference in outcome.

    2. Oh my goodness, I’m so sorry for the oversight. I have updated the blog post to the correct method!

  1. HI Brittany, In step one it says to remove the pan from the heat after boiling and let sit for allotted time. In step two it again says to remove from heat. I’m going with the “remove from heat” in step one since the narrative confirms that one. Eggs are cooking as I type! I’m going for the avocado egg salad.

    1. Sorry, Erin. I could see how that could be confusing. I just updated the post! You did the right thing. 🙂 Let me know how the avocado egg salad turns out for you!!

      1. Avocado Egg Salad? Unbelievably delicious! I saved some for my husband who worked late. Unfortunately he worked too late and I ate it all. It was calling me from the refrigerator and I succumbed.

        1. So glad you loved the avocado egg salad recipe, Erin!! Thanks for coming back to leave a review, I so appreciate it.

  2. When it comes to boiling eggs, the biggest problem is that people can easily over-cook them, leading to a dark green color around the yolk, and a somewhat sulphuric taste. By doing above you can avoid this scenario. Thank you so much for sharing the tips!

  3. 5 stars
    I’ve been cooking for 5 years and never come across a recipe for poached eggs with all these great tips incorporated into one sash. The process has always frustrated me, with wispiest, overcooked yolks, bare yolk tops, completely separated white and yolk, or when tried in a ramekin, inability to clean the ramekin and still not a good result! But this morning, a perfect hard boiled eggs with Hollandaise, wow, wow, wow. Thank you!!!

  4. Forget boiling eggs…rather STEAM (double boiler or steam insert) your eggs (same amount of time, but with no water touching the eggs)FOOLPROOF method when it comes to removing the shells — fresh or old

  5. 5 stars
    Hi there! Phew, I’m so grateful for your explanation regarding how we could also consume hard-boiled eggs with toast and avocado to get a more flavorful taste. My daughter wants to lose some weight by trying some recommended diets by her friends but she’s not really into eating plain eggs. I’ll simply share this trick with her so she won’t have any problem after this.

    1. Of course! I hope you both enjoy, Amy. Thank you for your review & star rating, I so appreciate you being here!