How to "Peel" Hard-Boiled Eggs Without Peeling


The baking soda is optional, but if you choose not to use it, be sure to move the eggs to cold water (use ice) immediately after boiling. Blow from the tip to the broader base for faster de-shelling.

My preferred eggs are Gold Circle Farms cage-free DHA Omega 3 eggs, which contain 150 mg of DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid) per whole egg. If you want to increase lean muscle mass, consider eating the yolks for their DHA and arachidonic acid content…

Do you have any cooking hacks the world should know about?


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Related and Recommended Posts:
Tim Ferriss interviewed by Derek Sivers
Tim Ferriss articles on Huffington Post

Posted on: July 2, 2008.

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249 comments on “How to "Peel" Hard-Boiled Eggs Without Peeling

  1. Not very hygenic. I wouldn’t go to your place to have Deviled Eggs.


    LOL… I wouldn’t do this with guests! Great for a quick de-shelling for eggs in the morning or solo acts.



    • To all the germophobes out there: would you rather have someone HANDLE each egg for 2 or 3 minutes while peeling it (all the time leaning over it and breathing on the egg)? Get real! Did you ever hear of rinsing something off?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Oh, come on….
        The way I figure it, you can’t completely avoid germs in life.
        I mean, I used to play in the dirt when I was little, and never used hand-sanitizer like some of y’all do, like it’s an addiction or something.
        I’ve never got sick once.
        Of course, you’ve got a point. I wouldn’t serve ‘blown’ eggs to guests, but if you’re alone at breakfast and you’re on a tight schedule, then go for it!
        I did not mean to offend anyone, if I have done so.


      • Provided they wash their hands, handling. The mouth is home to ungodly amounts of bacteria at any given time.


  2. My favorite way of cooking hard-boiled eggs is in the oven. Alton Brown recommends this, and it allows you to cook a lot of them in a more ‘gentle’ fashion outside of turbulent boiling water. You still dunk them in cold water upon completion, so this trick would still work.

    Alton recommends placing the eggs on the oven rack itself. (with aluminum foil on the bottom of the oven just in case something breaks)

    325 degrees for 30 minutes.


    • Heating your entire oven for 30 minutes has to be one of the most energy-wasteful ways to cook an egg you could come up with, aside from following it through the air with a bic lighter while juggling it I suppose…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Arachadonic acid is precisely the reason I don’t eat egg yolks. Long story short, it contributes to/triggers inflamation. This particularly bad for those with autoimmune diseases such as asthma and arthritis. Pick up a copy of Inflamation Nation for a well written and detailed analysis.


  4. cool tip i will try that.

    my trick for hard boiled eggs is i hold the egg about 4 inches off the counter and just drop it on its side. it almost always breaks/shakes all the shell lose and i can remove the entire shell in 1-2 pieces in about 1 second.

    also, cooling the eggs in an ice bath right after you boil them is important if you like a nice bright yellow color yolk when they’re done. :)


  5. Fantastic trick. It’s a bit more mainstream but when dealing with garlic and some onions if you microwave them briefly – 2-5 seconds, you can peal the outer layers off much faster/easier.

    Be careful though, the insides superheat quickly.


  6. Before cooking your eggs, you may want to make a small hole (try a pin) in the top or the side of the eggs. This helps release the sulphur compounds that sometimes develop during cooking. The shocking of the eggs in ice water will also help.


  7. I like eggs every which way except boiled, but it was still a cool trick.

    Time for me to very nervously put my money where my mouth is in regards to strategic misbehaving. So, divulging my kitchen hacks will have to wait for later.


  8. A faster way to boil eggs and not over cook them is to boil for 4 minutes then take off heat and cover for 5. Perfect every time. Going to try to peel this way.



  9. I don’t even eat eggs and I find this impressive! I have passed along to egg-eating friends.

    More kitchen hacks to keep you busy:
    1. Always add mushrooms last to heat. They’re mass is almost all water, which releases itself quickly, thus moistening the dish.

    2. Add a tiny pinch of salt to a mug of coffee. It takes out all the bitterness without sacrificing the real taste

    3. Common myth: You need to add salt to water when cooking green vegetables. Just pop them out when *just* cooked and throw them in an ice bath. Cooking halts and green colour stays bright.

    4. A complete protein can be digested by pure pinapple juice (see Harve This for more info here)

    5. Chocolate, peanut and merlot vinegar are a near perfect trio because their molecular basis are so similar. Others include apple + lavender, olives + dried figs, oyster + kiwi

    The most interesting “kitchen hacker” that I’ve been following lately is Hervé This. He has an incredible grip on molecular gastronomy which is where all the best hacks start from.

    Great post Tim!


    • Instead of tricking the bitter out of coffee, have you tried good, freshly roasted coffee and the correct brewing method?

      If your coffee is bitter, it is a sign of over-roasted, over-aged beans or a brewing temp that is too high – at this point, your salt does not have any ‘real’ taste to rescue…


  10. That’s Awesome! :) Actually, think about all the gunk that may come out of people’s nailbeds when trying to peel the old-fashioned way, this may actually be a more “hygenic” method!

    Some other tips: Start with very cold water or even better, refrigerate the eggs in the pot of water overnight so they start at the same cold temp as the water. (this works great with potatoes too, peel em the night before and put them in the pot of water and refrigerate overnight) – slow boil is a good tip. Then, let them cool all the way down still in the water – refrigerate again if you have time. (for potatoes – this stops them from breaking up in the water and makes them nicely mashable).

    Also, a tip I recently read for deviled eggs, lay them on their side overnight in order to nicely center the yolk :)

    I whole-heartedly agree with the organic grass-fed eggs (“cage-free” may or may not be “grazing” chickens) – you want chickens that are not totally grain-fed, that’s what gives you the extra DHA, they ate grass, etc., not just grains. Plus, it’s better to eat animal-based foods that come form happy animals :) Good stuff!

    Great timing – I just started eating a hard-boiled egg every morning (I am not a breakfast person) because I read protein in particular in the morning can help with your metabolism all day…I sprinkle some good sea salt and cracked pepper on mine, yummy!


    • If you are going to boil potatoes for anything, the easiest and best way is to boil them with the skin. When they are tender you can rub the skin off easily. You do not throw away as much and boiling in the peel keeps more of the nutritious value inside as well as less throw away. Then make potato salad, mashed potatoes or anything else you wish.


    • While chickens may eat a little grass occasionally, they are omnivores – so they need to be pastured not to eat grass, but to get access to insects. Vegetable & fruit scraps, and seeds are also good for them. They do not graze like cattle.


  11. Kitchen hack:

    For everyday: Mix a few whole cardamom pods or seeds with your coffee beans when you grind them. Cardamom is considered purifying and is reputed to mitigate the negative effects of caffeine. Also, keep a small bowl of cardamom by your bedside. Chewing a single pod is stimulating and cleansing in all the right ways.

    For maximum indulgence: Try my favorite chai recipe. Yes, you do need to roast and grind the spices yourself. It’s well worth it.

    In the excerpt below, James Bailey explains the medicinal purpose of chai spices in a little more depth.

    “Four primary spices are used in yogi tea: cardamom, ginger, long pepper, and cinnamon. Cardamom and ginger are considered sattvic, believed to stimulate spiritual purity. These spices also help to reduce mucus, relieve gas, calm the stomach, stimulate agni, and eliminate ama (toxins). Long pepper (pippali) does all this, as well as reduces pain and rejuvenates tissue. Cinnamon is similar to cardamom and ginger in properties and is also good for the circulation and the heart.

    …some yogis may prefer drinking just a simple infusion made from only the base spices, depending on their particular dosha, without the black tea, milk, or sugar. For example, kaphas, who may be burdened by sluggish digestion, gas, or constipation or suffer from dairy sensitivities, obviously should skip milk and sugar. Sensitive vatas and easily agitated pitas should avoid the caffeinated black tea.”



  12. I like poached eggs and the easiest way to do it is to crack a raw egg into a pot of boiling water. 80% of the egg will stay intact. Boil for about 2-3 min (practice to get your version of the perfect egg) then rescue the hen’s progeny with a slotted spoon, drop onto a paper towel, pat the top dry with same paper towel and put over a toasted piece of french bread with a tiny bit of hard butter, add some salt and pepper and enjoy your trip to heaven.


    • I make a few of these at a time,, store them in cold water in the fridge and then just warm them briefly in hot water. Saves on time a bit and clean up a bit.


    • Add a tablespoon of vinegar to the water before adding the egg. It causes the unshelled raw egg to “ball up” and stay together. When they are cooked, gently remove them from the boiling water using a slotted spoon or strainer-ladle. This is a trick I learned from a hotel chef years ago — that’s how the better restaurants can serve you nicely rounded soft-boiled eggs.


  13. Tim

    Met you in Sydney at the party. I was the one asking questions about the effect of social media on your marketing of 4HWW.

    I know you avoid email like the plague and give email addresses that go to assistants and publishers, but I will try this anyway.

    I have a very simple media opportunity for you here in Oz that will take about 30 minutes to address (written answers). Obviously can’t reveal all here, but if you / or assistant could reply to the email address supplied I will forward the details. (I will also send this to your standard channels).

    Thanks in advance,