This Hack for Peeling Hard-Boiled Eggs Actually Works
This story originally appeared on foodandwine.com by Bridget Hallinan.
Hard-boiled eggs are notoriously frustrating to peel. If you don’t cleanly separate the skin that sits between the shell and the egg white, you can get stuck peeling off painstakingly small sections, resulting in a crater-covered egg and sticky fingers (not to mention the unpleasant smell).
While we can’t promise anything about the smell, we recently enlisted Judy Gold—comedian, podcast host, author, and self-proclaimed hard-boiled egg fan—to try out a few internet tricks for our series, Can They Hack It?, and see if any made the process a little less painful. One uses a spoon, another water, and the third involves using your mouth, much to her (and our) bewilderment.
The mouth technique is up first. You start by peeling off a small bit of the shell, grabbing the egg tightly in your hand, and blowing on it to forcefully to remove the rest of the exterior. Gold is skeptical about it from the start, and rightly so, as the hack still doesn’t work after several tries. “Who wants an egg with all my saliva all over it?” she asks.
The next hack calls for water and a drinking glass. You put the egg in the cup, fill it with water, and then place your hand over the opening, shaking vigorously until the shell comes right off. Gold watches the video twice in disbelief and says she “finds it ridiculous,” but gives it a shot anyway. After two attempts, it actually does work—the peel comes off seamlessly and Gold says she’s sold. (She is also completely covered in water.)
Last up is the spoon technique, which our Culinary Director-at-Large, Justin Chapple, has also tried to successful results. You tap the egg on a hard surface, remove only a small portion of the shell on the bottom, and then use a spoon to slide off the rest. Gold is impressed by how fast the technique seems in the video she watches, and once she tries it, she finds it’s “not bad” and very meditative. Bonus points for not getting soaked in water, either.
TLDR: The spoon hack and the water glass hack are probably your best bet the next time you’re tasked with peeling eggs. Once they’re ready to use, we have several recipes you can play around with, from deviled egg toast to curried-egg tea sandwiches.