Wondering how to boil eggs perfectly? Our comprehensive guide will ensure your eggs are perfect, every time.
Learning how to make perfect hard boiled eggs at home is one of the easiest things you can do and is a great kitchen skill to have. Not only are eggs incredibly nutritious and delicious, they are versatile and can be used in a variety of recipes.
However, knowing how long to boil eggs for can be tricky. It also depends on what you want to do with the eggs once they’re cooked. Soft, jammy eggs are perfect for serving with ramen or in a Caesar salad whereas hard-cooked eggs are perfect for deviled eggs, egg salad and potato salad.
Table of Contents
How to boil eggs
Bring a large pot or saucepan of water to a rolling boil over medium-high heat. Place eggs in the hot water with a slotted spoon, in a single layer, and allow to cook for the amount of time needed to ensure the eggs are done to your preference. Keep in mind that eggs will cook quicker at sea level than at high altitude so you might need to remove the eggs a minute earlier than what my testing times are. Once the correct amount of time has passed, remove the eggs from the water and place in an ice bath (a large bowl of ice water) to cool. This prevents the eggs from overcooking and makes them easier to peel.
How long to boil eggs
Cooking time can be influenced by the size of the eggs as well as the altitude you live at. Eggs will cook much faster at sea level than at high altitude so cooking times will need to be reduced by a minute. I used extra-large eggs so reduce the cooking time slightly if using smaller eggs.
- Soft-boiled eggs: 5-6 minutes.
- Jammy eggs: 7 minutes.
- Firm egg whites with creamy egg yolks: 8-9 minutes.
- Hard-boiled eggs: 10-12 minutes.
Tips for making the perfect boiled eggs
- Fresh eggs might be great for frying or poaching but using eggs that are a few days old are the best because they peel much easier.
- Use an ice-bath to prevent overcooking. If your eggs ever have a green ring around the yolk, you’ve over-cooked them. Using an ice-bath halts cooking immediately delivery perfectly boiled, creamy yolks that aren’t chalky due to over-cooking.
- If you ever struggle peeling your eggs, join the club. Even when using older eggs, I sometimes struggle to get the shell off smoothly. Even though the eggs are still perfectly edible and delicious, they won’t be quite as pretty. There are quite a few tips and tricks online that promise to make peeling eggs easier. Adding a teaspoon of baking soda or vinegar to the water before adding the eggs are both said to ease peeling. I prefer tapping the cooked eggs on the counter, cracking the shell all over and adding it to the ice bath to cool to room temperature before peeling. This allows a much smoother peel and prevents bits of egg coming off with the shell.
Storing and making ahead
Boiled eggs are great to make ahead and can be kept in the fridge for up to 5 days. I prefer keeping the eggs unpeeled and only peeling once I’m ready to use them. Peeled eggs can be kept in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.
Boiled eggs are great served sprinkled with salt and pepper as a quick protein-packed snack. Adding a dollop of kewpie mayonnaise and a drizzle of chilli crisp elevates this snack and makes eggs absolutely delicious.
I prefer placing eggs in boiling water. This allows the eggs to cook faster and delivers perfect eggs, every time.
No, you can leave the pot uncovered. The eggs will cook in the same amount of time.
Boiled eggs are fantastic served in a variety of ways. Whether on their own as a protein-rich snack, served in salads or used to make deviled eggs.
How To Boil Eggs
- 1-2 eggs per person
- salt and black pepper
- butter or mayonnaise
- chilli crisp
- Bring a pot/saucepan of water to a rolling boil over medium-high heat.
- Once boiling, place eggs in the water with a slotted spoon.
- Boil the eggs according to the times below for desired doneness: Soft-boiled eggs: 5-6 minutes. Jammy eggs: 7 minutes.Firm egg whites with creamy egg yolks: 8-9 minutes. Hard-boiled eggs: 10-12 minutes.
- Once cooked, remove the eggs then add to an ice bath (a large bowl filled with ice water) and allow to cool for 1-2 minutes.
- Tap the egg on the counter, creating cracks all over the shell, then carefully peel.
- Discard the shells and serve with your favorite condiments or use in a recipe.