Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs

Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs

When I was at my daughter’s not too long ago, I completely forgot how to boil an egg. And then this week, the same. I swear I’ve lost my memory and can’t find it. But you see, I’ve been making most of my hard boiled eggs in the Instant Pot lately and since I hate googling up recipes I’d thought I’d post the Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs right here. Just in case anyone else needs it, too!

Old Fashioned Tuna Macaroni Salad

Old Fashioned Tuna Macaroni Salad with the Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs

I’m kind of laughing at the idea of this simple recipe, and kind of laughing a bit of myself for the “hate googling up part” since I’m sure that’s one of ways you might have come here! (But I so I looove it when you do it and come visit! 🙂 ) And I have to tell you, I do already have the post for Instant Pot Hard Boiled Eggs along with another post for Easy Peel Steamed Eggs. How many hard-boiled egg recipes does one need? All three, I say!

About the Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs:

I’m going to say right off the bat that I do think the Instant Pot Hard Boiled Eggs are always the best, and if you’re planning on peeling, like for deviled eggs, and don’t have an Instant Pot, the Easy Peel Steamed Eggs really work well. But there is a place for the Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs, too. Like today when my IP was in use and I have no earthly idea where my steamer basket has gone!

This is the super easy, classic no-fuss method for the hard-boiled egg. It’s the method I’ve used since I learned how to boil an egg, oh, about 45 years ago. And I DO still use it, today.

What I like about this method is that there is really less chance of the egg breaking, cracking or having a blowout, and the cooking is more even throughout the egg than I get by just plain simmering. The timing doesn’t have to be as absolutely as spot on as it does when simmering, either.

Old Fashioned Tuna Macaroni Salad with the Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs

Old Fashioned Tuna Macaroni Salad with the Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs

Making the Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs:

The method is always the same. Start with cold eggs and cool tap water in a big pan. Cover the eggs with about an inch of water. Bring to a gentle boil, take off the heat and cover. Then let sit for 10 to 11 minutes, depending on how hard you like your eggs.

On this batch, I went with 11 minutes, but normally, I would go for 10…I tend to like my hard boiled eggs just a bit less dry. See that’s the memory issue right there! Here is another case, just like with the Instant Pot, where you’re going to have to find the perfect number of minutes that works for you, at your altitude you’ll want to find your ideal time where you are. No one ever tells you that, do they? Then write down your perfect number of minutes, so you have it. And if you also get in the habit of using the same pan that’s even better for consistency.

I always use extra large eggs because that’s what I bake with, and live just about 1,000 feet above sea level. The size of the egg is going to make a difference and the higher you are, the longer you’ll need to let your egg sit in the hot water to get the desired doneness.

I used to always plunge my eggs in ice water (what a production that can be!) but now I find that if I just plop the pan and all in the sink, run in cold water asap, even as I’m draining off the hot water it works just fine. I let them sit for a minute or two with tap on until the pan is cold, then let them sit in the cold water until cool, about 10 minutes.

Saving Money on the Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs:

Did you know that a dozen large eggs weigh 24 ounces and a dozen extra-large eggs weigh about 27 ounces? That makes the incredible, edible egg one of the least expensive of any protein you can buy.

The best options as far as pricing that I’ve found are at Aldi, where I last bought a dozen extra-large for $1.09 (65 cents per pound) but I’ve found great pricing at Costco, too. Just know that at Costco, you have to buy a lot of eggs! My best pricing strategy is to buy several cartons at my grocery store every time a holiday rolls around. They are usually on sale and on big brunch holidays like Easter and Mother’s Day, they’ll often be bundled with sales prices on bacon and maybe hash browns. You’ll want to check the math on those “bundle” offerings.

Eggs keep several weeks past their “buy by” date. If in doubt about an egg, place it in water. As the egg ages, the egg begins to dry out and as they shrink the space is filled with air: the newest ones will lay at the bottom of the container, slightly older will begin to stand up and the oldest will actually bob up to the top of the water. The chances of ever getting a “bad” egg are slim and a floating egg doesn’t reflect a safety issue, but I’ve found the ones that float are thick and not as nice. I don’t keep them. To learn more about eggs, see the American Egg Board, the folks known for their “Incredible Edible Eggs” ads.

Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs

Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs


Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs

The Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs

  • Author: mollie kirby
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: varies


  • Eggs, as few or as many as you’d want, enough for a single layer in a pan
  • Cold tap water to cover by one inch


Bring eggs to a gentle simmer. Cover and remove from heat. Let sit for 10 minutes for a fully cooked but slightly softer yolk or 11 mintues for a dry yolk. Remove pan from heat and place in sink. As the pan is emptied of the hot water, run cold tap water over the eggs, then fill the pan with running water until the pan is cool. Let eggs sit for about 10 minutes until cold, adding a little more cold water if the water becomes warm.

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I’ll be bringing Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs to Fiesta Friday #226, hosted this week byJhuls @ The Not So Creative Cook.

If you like the Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs, you might also like:

I can never remember how long to let my hard boiled eggs sit, so just in case that's a problem for you, too, here is the recipe for the Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs. Now your hard boiled eggs will be perfect every time! #BestHardBoiledEggs #HardBoiledEggs #ClassicHardBoiledEggs

22 thoughts on “Best Basic Hard Boiled Eggs

    • FrugalHausfrau

      I have yet to buy a jumbo egg, but I always assumed that they might take a smidge longer, but 20 minutes! Wow!! That’s very good to know.

  1. Joanne

    Oh Mollie,

    I just made a dozen hard boiled eggs yesterday, and I too lost my mind in the timing.
    I couldn’t remember anything and lost half the egg to the sink when trying to peel them. 🤣
    I am pinning this recipe for the next time I lose my memory/ mind.

    Thank you.

  2. Very useful post Mollie – I use the same method but a 6 minute rule for soft boiled so good to know that all I need is an extra five minutes for hard boiled!

    • FrugalHausfrau

      I don’t do soft much, unless it’s for ramen! But I AM eating more eggs these days, so good to know!

  3. We have the same way of cooking eggs. That’s one of the 2 methods I use. The second one I use is to let the eggs boil for about 5-10 depending on the doneness I want and place them in ice bath. Your eggs look perfect to me. Now, I am heading to the kitchen to boil some eggs. Thanks for sharing, Mollie!

  4. I put 4-6 eggs in a mid sized pan, with a lid and cover them with cold water. Bring the water to a boil. Then I take the pot off the heat, and with the lid on, let the eggs sit for 10-12 min. Then I drain off the water, and cover with cold water for another 5-10 min to cool . Refrigerate if not using immediately or peel if needed.

    • FrugalHausfrau

      That’s pretty much the same method! 🙂 My Mom taught me that as a teenager, don’t know why I can’t remember it now! You’re supposed to be able to keep your old memories, umm…I think…something like that, anyway, lol!

  5. c


    Add 1 inch of water to a large pot. Place steamer insert or basket or lay eggs inside, cover, and bring to a boil over high heat, lid emitting steam, cooking, 6 minutes for soft-boiled eggs or 12 minutes for hard-boiled.

    immediately place eggs in a bowl of ice water and allow to cool for at least 15 minutes before peeling under cool running water. Store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

  6. I’ve never tried turning the heat off–I’ve always simmered. I’ll give it a try. And for what it’s worth, I’ve found that adding salt to the water minimized the chances of the eggs breaking.

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Brilliant idea! I am going to try it next time, soon. Because I need eggs for another recipe, too, and I forgot and I ate them, lol!!

  7. I tried hard cooking eggs this way about a year ago. It is the only way I use now. They come out perfect every time, not ocer cooked or under cooked and peel easily

    • FrugalHausfrau

      Thanks Miss Judy. I do like the steamed ones for peeling, too. Especially if my eggs are really fresh and I need a lot of perfect ones like for deviled eggs. 🙂

        • FrugalHausfrau

          Hi Miss Judy, I do think the steaming (or in the IP which essentially steam under pressure) makes for an easier peeling egg. And I will never forget the day I started to make deviled eggs about an hour before I had to leave for a party and it literally took me 45 minutes to peel the eggs. That was the first time I ever ran across a real problem peeling, and I was late for the party! I’ve run across it several times since then, so that’s why when it’s important, i like to steam.

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