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How To Cook Eggs in the Shell

Believe it or not, there's an art to cooking eggs in the shell. Find out how to cook them perfectly to your tastes without that gray-green tinge.

  1. Place eggs in single layer in saucepan.
  2. Cover with at least one inch of water over tops of shells.
  3. Cover pot with lid and bring to a boil.
  4. As soon as it begins to boil, remove from heat and let stand.
  5. For runny soft-boiled eggs (barely set whites): 3 minutes 
  6. For slightly runny soft-boiled eggs: 4 minutes 
  7. For custardy yet firm soft-boiled eggs: 6 minutes 
  8. For firm yet still creamy hard-boiled eggs: 10 minutes 
  9. For very firm hard-boiled eggs: 15 minutes
  10. When cooked to desired level, drain off hot water.
  11. Immediately cover with cold water and add a few ice cubes.
  12. Soft-cooked eggs: let stand in cold water until cool enough to handle. Serve.
  13. Hard-cooked eggs: let stand in cold water until completely cooled. Use as needed.


  • Never boil eggs. It makes them rubbery.
  • Use older eggs. Fresh ones won't peel easily.
  • To keep eggs from cracking while cooking, let refrigerated eggs sit and come to room temperature before cooking. Alternatively, you can pierce large end with a needle/pin (which will also make them easier to peel).