Easy to Peel Hard Boiled Eggs (Shock Method)

Posted On: May 20, 2018
Last updated: March 1st, 2024

Have you ever hesitated to make a dish that needed hard-boiled eggs because you dreaded the task of peeling eggs?  I sure have, too many times.  I’ve fought with dozens and dozens of eggs with stuck-on shells over the years.  I could just picture the struggle in my head; peeling away chunks of egg, losing half the whites of the eggs and that in itself would make me drop the idea of hard-boiling eggs.  I wanted perfect hard-boiled eggs for deviled eggs, but standard methods failed me.  

You can now look forward to enjoying easy to peel hard boiled eggs, with this shock method.  I do not believe this is any sort of official name for this method, but that’s what I call it.  This easy method will help you get perfect hard boiled eggs without an egg fight in your kitchen with stuck on shells.

This post is an update to my previous easy peel hard boiled eggs here.

Easy peel Hard boiled eggs half peeled next to shells with hard boiled eggs in bowl

What is the secret to Easy Peel Eggs?

Some recipes might say that you can only use older eggs (close to the expiration date) to get easy peel hard boiled eggs.  From personal experience, I can tell you that’s not the case.  I find the best method to be what I call, the “shock method” of hard boiling eggs.  It’s the technique of giving your eggs a hot start instead of bringing a pot of water to a boil first.  Then you shock the eggs in an ice water bath right after cooking to stop the cooking.  After 5 minutes in an ice bath, you will have easy peeling eggs.  

It is not the type of egg that makes the difference.  I’ve also heard running the eggs under cold water after boiling could work, but in my experience, that’s not enough.  For best results, The eggs literally need to be shocked with a large bowl of ice water after to make the peeling process much easier.  It also stops the cooking process. 

How to Enjoy Hard Boiled Eggs

First and foremost I think the biggest bonus of hard boiling eggs this way is to get perfect deviled eggs.  No one wants to take a lot of time to make deviled eggs and then be embarrassed to present a bunch of beat up looking raggedy deviled eggs.  

Eggs are a perfect protein-packed snack if you’re on a protein kick, on a low-carb or Keto diet. This is also a great way to make a bunch of Easter eggs.  If you need to hard-boil a bunch of eggs and want eggs that will peel easily once you serve them at a Easter gathering, this is your jam.  

Cooking eggs this way will take the hassle out of making awesome egg salad sandwiches.  Save extra hard-boiled eggs for a protein boost for salads.  Add them to potato salad too! You can enjoy hard boiled eggs if refrigerated properly in a refrigerator for up to 7 days. 

Hand holding peeled egg with hard boiled eggs cut and peeled in background

Other Hard Boil Methods

There are so many theories out there on the best way to get easy peeling hard boiled eggs.  I’ve seen people mention baking soda, using an instant pot, Some say eggs must be older, close to expired or it’s the method of peeling that makes the difference.  Some people tap or roll the eggs to release the shell membrane from the egg white, I beg to differ. You’ll find many forms of proof that it’s the cooking method and not the way you peel the egg shells. 


I have another post on easy-peel eggs and I still stand by it, but as stated in my original post I found it does not work on all types of eggs.  For this method, you need to boil water first in a covered pot, then place your eggs into  a fitting steam basket, not allowing your eggs to touch the water, just steam them.   For some reason it is not as consistent with farm fresh eggs for some reason.  It works better if you’re using store-bought eggs. 

Easy Peel Hard Boiled Eggs (Shock Method) Step by Step Collage

Pressure Cooker

I know this method works pretty well, but you really can’t hard boil very many eggs at a time using this method because the eggs have to be in a single layer.  Now, I’m sure this is great if you just need a few eggs.  I always need a bunch of eggs boiled at once. 

Cooking in Higher Altitudes

Cooking in a high altitude can change the timing of hard-boiling eggs.  I do not currently live in a high altitude location, so I can not give you personal experience with timing, but I do know that they could take a few minutes longer of cook time. 

Fresh Hard Boiled eggs with raw eggs in background peeled eggs on plate with eggs cut in half next to peels

Egg Cooking Time

There truly is no perfect cook time because egg sizes vary quite a bit, especially between store bought and farm fresh eggs.  I have cooked quite a variation of egg sizes in the past few years since we became chicken owners.  Because I don’t deal with evenly sized eggs I’ve determined the baseline measurement to be for a Standard grocery store Large Egg.  

For a typical Large Egg you would need to hard boil the eggs for 12 minutes. Below I’ve shared Egg Sizes and times for different sized eggs.  If you over-boil the eggs you will get that weird green ring around your yolk which means it’s over-cooked.  

If you want soft-boiled eggs, I find that you would halve the time exactly.  So, let’s say for a standard Large Egg which is 12 minutes to hard-boil, for soft-boiled you want to remove the egg from the pot at 6 minutes.  The same will go for all the other sized eggs if you want runny soft-boiled egg yolks. 

  • Peewee Eggs– Up to 1.25 oz.(15 oz. dozen) 9 Minutes
  • Small Eggs– Up to 1.5 oz. (18 oz. dozen) 10 Minutes
  • Medium Eggs– Up to 1.75 oz. (21 oz. dozen) 11 Minutes
  • Large Eggs– Up to 2 oz. (24 oz. dozen) 12 Minutes (Closest to Store-bought Large Egg Size)
  • X Large Eggs– Up to 2.25 oz. (27 oz. dozen) 13 Minutes
  • Jumbo Eggs– Up to 2.5 oz. (30 oz. dozen) 14 Minutes
4 images of Farm-fresh eggs on the Whole Made Living Homestead: upper left in basket from the side, center top and right from above, bottom in egg holder on kitchen counter.
Our Farm-fresh Chicken Eggs from our Backyard Chickens

Farm-Fresh Eggs

If you haven’t had the joy of tasting true farm fresh eggs yet, you absolutely must.  Store bought commercial eggs just don’t have the same flavor.  We luckily have our own flock of happy hens that give us a bountiful supply of farm fresh eggs.  Eggs have great nutritional value and farm/backyard fresh eggs are far superior nutrition-wise as well as taste.

Our venture with chickens keeps giving us the endless gift of batches of delicious fresh eggs right from our backyard.  If you want to learn more about what it takes to start your own flock of egg-laying hens, check out our Beginner’s Backyard Adventure post here

My Egg-Cellent Conclusion

 The “shock method” as I call it in this post is my go to foolproof method I use all the time now.  Every time I hard boil eggs this way 9/10 eggs peel beautifully, without any issues.  That’s why this is my #1 way to hard boil eggs now.  I call it the shock method.  You are shocking the eggs when you put them into already boiling water, then shocking them once more when you place them in an ice bath after cooking.  It really works!!  It’s now the only way I hard boil eggs. Give it a try.

You Might Enjoy these Recipes as Well!

Give this easy peel hard boiled eggs method a try and let us know how it works out for you in the comments below or on Social Media, @WholeMadeLiving.


Peeled eggs on deviled egg dish with some peeled shells and hard boiled eggs in background

Easy-to-Peel Hard Boiled Eggs (Shock Method)

Easy to Peel Hard Boiled Eggs are the product of the cooking method, not the peeling method. One the most sure fire methods I've ever used is this "shock method" as written below. Shock your eggs and they will cooperate with you when it's time to peel them.  If you live in a high altitude location the timing will vary and you might need to hard-boil your eggs a few more minutes. 
5 from 8 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 22 minutes
Course How To
Cuisine World
Servings 6
Calories 126 kcal


  • 12 Raw Large Chicken Eggs Our preference is Cage Free Organic Farm Fresh when possible


  • Bring a pot of water to a boil, enough water to cover the eggs with about 1 inch of water. (I start with about 8 cups of water if I'm making a dozen or less eggs, 10 plus cups for more than a dozen)
  • Once the water is at a full rolling boil, gently add eggs into the pot with a large slotted spoon.
  • Set a timer for 12-13 minutes (depending on the size of your eggs, ***SEE NOTE Below) and lower heat to a gentle boil for the remaining time.
  • While the eggs are boiling make a large ice bath with a mixing bowl. (About ¾ of the bowl ice cubes)
  • After the time is up gently transfer the eggs into the ice bath and let them sit in the ice bath for 5 minutes.
  • After 5 minutes you may start peeling the eggs. I gently tap on the eggs with the flat side of a knife or just give the egg a gentle tap on the counter to get them started.
  • Refrigerate or enjoy as you wish.



***For smaller eggs, 11 is sufficient. For regular store-bought "large" eggs, 12 minutes is good.  We have chickens that lay XL sized eggs and Jumbo eggs that don't even fit in cartons and they take 13-14 minutes. 

Nutrition Disclaimer:

The nutritional information provided is only an estimate based on a third party nutritional plugin. Different online calculators may give different results depending on their own sources. The estimates may also change based on the ingredients you use. If you have dietary restrictions and need to accurately calculate the nutrition of this recipe, Whole Made Living recommends consulting a professional nutritionist.


Serving: 2eggsCalories: 126kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 11gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 2gMonounsaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0.03gCholesterol: 327mgSodium: 125mgPotassium: 121mgSugar: 0.3gVitamin A: 475IUCalcium: 49mgIron: 2mg
Keyword Easy Peel, Farm Fresh Eggs, Hard Boiled Eggs
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Easy Peel Hard Boiled Eggs (Shock Method) Pinterest Collage


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