Hack #3: The Hard Boiled Egg


Somewhere in the world there might still be someone who doesn’t know how to boil water. There are a lot more of us fumbling around trying to hard-boil an egg to perfection.

A well-made hard-boiled egg is more than a tasty bite of protein on your toast or in a salad or sandwich. It can be a thing of beauty if cooked correctly.

There are definitely some bad eggs out there. You have seen them. Eggs which, when cut in half, have a grayish-green line around the dry-as-dust yolk. Or whites so rubbery they might bounce.

avoid gray around yolk

When ready for a good boiled egg, here is one foolproof recipe, made to perfection and ready to be consumed for nutrition and pleasure.

Because, as Woody Allen says at the end of the movie, “Annie Hall”, “We all need the eggs.”

unboiled beauties


  • Place eggs shell to shell in an uncovered saucepan as space allows.IMG_8349
  • Cover with cold water one to two inches above top of eggs.IMG_8350
  • Adding a splash of vinegar is optional to help prevent shells from cracking during cooking.
  • Turn heat on high and wait for water to boil.IMG_8402
  • When water reaches full boil, immediately turn off heat and place a lid over pan.
  • Set timer for exactly 18 minutes. At higher altitudes you should add time. 22 min. at 8300 ft.IMG_8408
  • As soon as timer goes off, drain hot water and flush eggs copiously with cold tap water while still in pan.
  • Transfer eggs to bowl and set in refrigerator to finish cooling.
  • Once cooled, ready to peel and eat.

Peeling is the often imperfect part of boiled eggs. Some people swear by peeling under running water. Others say it depends on the freshness of eggs whether they peel easily or not. I use the meditative approach and simply take my time, aiming for the smoothest release of shell and membrane from each part of the egg. Sometimes it works.

11 thoughts on “Hack #3: The Hard Boiled Egg

  1. Thanks, can’t wait to try! I would adjust the recipe at the last step: as soon as the pot is off the stove, I would drain the water and then run the eggs under the tap until they are cool. That should help in the peeling…
    BTW, a friend gave me a musical egg-timer from Holland: it’s a ceramic egg (apparently with some mechanism inside) that you pop in the water with the eggs – it’s supposed to ring a different tune at 3 minutes and at 4-minutes. Doesn’t really work because there’s no instruction on how much water etc.


  2. Yes. Agree. 100% This is the only way to do it, though I usually leave them for just 10 min. Why do I feel so righteous about this method? Despite my best intentions, I find myself scoffing at, and indeed judging in the most negative terms, anyone who deviates from this approach. At least I know of one other sane person in the world!


  3. Yup! you have the egg cooking perfectly. One thing–I do the same method but only boil the eggs for 20 minutes at 8000 feet. Works every time.


  4. “There are definitely some bad eggs out there.” A laugh out loud metaphor, which of course begs the question as to whether you are talking people, world leaders or asking us to consider who earns the rating of Grade A? Or are you maybe (and unconsciously) intimating Freudian logic and the psychology of reproduction and “contributing” an egg? Matters not I suppose– but a delightful “Hack” Wendy and funny too.


  5. Wendy, you are amazing to create a story on how to boil an egg! When I started to read it I couldn’t wait to read the rest. I always wondered why my boiled eggs had a grey edge? Previously to your blog I thought I knew everything on egg boiling? How I love your blogs my friend, keep them coming!

    Liked by 1 person

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