Skip to main content

It’s not rocket science: Steaming hard-boiled eggs makes them easier to peel

Easy Hard Eggs
Hard-boiled eggs are brilliant. They can be turned into egg salad, deviled eggs, or just be enjoyed as a great snack on their own. Yet, when it comes time to peel them, frustration sets in. Little bits of the shell keep sticking to the meaty egg white, leading to little divots missing from the peeled egg. Despite the many tricks floating around on the internet for making eggs peeling easier, it turns out that steaming hard-boiled eggs is the best way to go.

In an episode of Science Friday, cooking geek Jeff Potter has shared his perfect recipe for easy-to-peel hard-boiled eggs. Rather than boiling them under an inch of water, Potter’s method involves steaming them above the water.

When people think of the parts of the egg, they typically remember the shell, whites, and yolk. However, when it comes to peeling, the inner and outer membranes beneath the shell are the most important. They are mostly collagen, and are important for keeping the shell intact. With hard-boiled eggs, the trouble occurs when the shell and the membrane stick to the egg white.

By steaming an egg, the shell and membrane heat up really quickly. By “shocking” it in this manner, the membrane isn’t able to stick to the egg white. Because of this, the worst thing someone can do when hard boiling eggs is to start them in cold water. This gives the shell and membrane plenty of time to cook with the egg, making it stick.

Many people are aware that “shocking” the egg is important, but most believe it has to do with placing the egg in ice-cold water after boiling them. This trick has hardly anything to do with peeling the egg. Instead, this has everything to do with the final shape of the egg. When egg cooks, it expands inside its shell. Allowing the egg to cool down slowly cause the egg white to shrink back toward the top of the egg shell. By “shocking” it in cold water, the egg white doesn’t have time to retract, leaving a nice, round bottom.

For those who would like to try something a bit different, Orbi has a device that allows users to scramble an egg inside its own shell. It may be harder to peel, but the finished product is a golden egg.

Editors' Recommendations

Garrett Hulfish
Garrett is the kind of guy who tells you about all the tech you haven't heard of yet. He also knows too much about other…
Best washer and dryer deals: bundles from LG, Samsung and more
A washer and dryer sit next to each other in a laundry room.

Grabbing yourself a new pair of washers and dryers can be an overwhelming task, whether you want to replace something old or you're starting with an empty house. They tend to be quite expensive, and if you're already on a tight budget, it can be hard to find something good that's also relatively cheap. Luckily, there are some great deals on brands like LG and GE, and there are even some great Samsung deals if you are already in the Samsung ecosystem. To that end, we've gone out and found some of our favorite deals and bundles to help save you the trouble and get you the best return on your investment.
Best LG washer and dryer deals

LG makes some awesome appliances. We've picked some medium-sized options, including a fairly cheap package deal available at Best Buy.

Read more
How to fix an Amazon Smart Thermostat that’s unresponsive
The Amazon Smart Thermostat hanging on wall.

Few smart thermostats are as affordable and powerful as the Amazon Smart Thermostat. Clocking in well under $100 and backed by the great reputation of Amazon, the affordable thermostat is one of the most popular on the market. Yet despite its popularity, the Amazon Smart Thermostat isn't without a few issues. A common issue that crops up for users is the thermostat unit becoming unresponsive, making it difficult to use the device as intended.

Read more
How to save Ring Doorbell video without a subscription
Ring Doorbell mounted outside a front door.

Take a walk through any neighborhood, and you're bound to see a few Ring video doorbells installed next to front doors. The brand is increasingly popular, thanks to an ever-growing product lineup that makes it easy to find a device for all budgets and security needs. But one of the peskier features of Ring is the need for a Ring Protect Plan -- a monthly subscription service that unlocks the majority of the camera's most useful features.

One such feature locked behind a Ring Protect Plan membership is the ability to save Ring doorbell videos. Without a plan, you'll really only be allowed to view a live feed of your video doorbell. The plans are pretty generous, with the Basic plan costing $5 per month and offering video history for up to 180 days, making it a worthwhile investment for homes worried about their security.

Read more