Why are my hard-boiled eggs hard to peel?

In the brief guide, we are going to answer the question ‘Why are my hard-boiled eggs hard to peel’ with a deep analysis of what consequences are present behind them.

Why are my hard-boiled eggs hard to peel?

The eggs are more difficult to peel the fresher they are. This is so because a fresh egg’s egg white, or “albumen,” has an acidic pH that is relatively low. These fresh egg whites adhere firmly to the membrane of the inner shell when cooked.

How are eggs steamed?

The results of steaming and boiling eggs are identical, however, steaming has the advantage of much simpler shell removal. The procedure is simple. What you’ll need is as follows:

Kitchen utensils:

a heat-resistant metal colander

a fitted-lid pot big enough to accommodate your colander

a large bowl (for ice bath)


Place your colander in the saucepan and then add the eggs.

A few inches of water should be added to the pot. The water level should be maintained above the colander’s base (not touching the eggs themselves).

Bring the water to a boil, cover the saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, and then simmer.

Once the water has reached a rolling boil, set your timer and keep the lid on the pot to prevent steam from escaping (if it appears that you will run out of water, carefully add a little warm water to the pot as needed to ensure that steam production doesn’t stop).

Remove eggs from the pot and submerge them in an ice bath after letting them steam for 12 minutes.

Why does the shell of my egg stay in it?

The issue with putting your eggs in cold water first is that the slow temperature shift makes the proteins in the egg stick to the shell’s membrane more than when it is placed in hot water.

How to remove the shell from hard-boiled eggs without making it stick?

After the water boils, add the egg

Cooking your eggs in cold water first and then peeling them afterward is a formula for catastrophe. 

The issue with starting your eggs in cold water is that because of the slow temperature change, the proteins in the egg will adhere to the shell’s membrane more than they would if you dropped them in hot water.

Therefore, steaming eggs over an inch of boiling water or putting them in the saucepan after the water has reached a mild boil are the two finest ways to prepare easy-to-peel eggs. When boiling, it is always advised to place the eggs in a saucepan with an inch of water above them.

Add salt to the boiling eggs

Adding salt to the kettle before starting to boil your eggs is a simple tip that might be helpful. To help with your peeling problems, they advise adding a cup of salt to a pot of water before boiling. 

Others advice adding vinegar to your boiling water for greater outcomes, although doing so may cause your eggs to lose their pearly white appearance.

Put eggs in an ice water bath.

Many advise immersing freshly hard-boiled eggs for a minimum of five minutes and a maximum of fifteen minutes in icy water. The eggs are intended to be swiftly cooled and hardened using this procedure, making them easier to handle and quicker to peel. 

The finest results might be obtained by peeling them right away from the ice bath as opposed to storing and peeling them afterward.

It’s a good idea to crack your eggs before putting them in the ice bath since the cold water will help the egg whites become somewhat harder to separate from the shell.

After draining the boiling water, put the eggs back in the saucepan and gently shake the eggs against the pot, rocking it back and forth. But beware—the icy bath actually made it more difficult to peel the eggs when it was put to the test by The New York Times.

Peel from the wider end

Peel the shell off your eggs starting at the larger end once they have cooled. It will be much simpler to put your fingers underneath the shell and remove it in larger portions because that is where the air pocket is situated.

One method is to make an opening with your fingers and then slide a spoon under the shell at the base. until the egg’s shell is exposed, move the spoon along the egg’s curve.


In the brief guide, we discussed answering the question ‘Why are my hard-boiled eggs hard to peel’ with depth analysis of what consequences are present behind them.





Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.