How to cook a perfect hard-boiled egg

Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs

Did you grow up, as I did, believing that hard-boiled eggs had a rim of grey around the yolks? I mean, that’s just what happens when you hard-boil an egg. Right?

I didn’t become interested in food until relatively recently and it was a surprise to me to learn that eggs can be hard-boiled in such a way that there is no greyness, just bright yellow yolk against the egg white. It looks so much cleaner and more appetising, and I like the relatively gentle treatment given to the eggs with this method. No need to boil the poor thing to its death! (Not that we want it to be alive, exactly…)

As a bonus, it’s super easy (well, I mean, it’s boiling an egg, right? Not even I can manage to make that one complicated) and it’s not an exact science either, as a bit of extra time isn’t going to hurt.

Perfect Hard Boiled Eggs

Hard Boiled Egg Halves


  • eggs, at room temperature, at least a week old for easier peeling *


  1. Put the eggs in a single layer in a saucepan, not too close together, in case they knock against each other while they’re cooking, and crack. Add enough cold water to cover them, plus a bit more for good measure.
  2. Place the saucepan on the stove over high heat and bring to a boil. We want some good bubble action happening here.
  3. As soon as the water is bubbling nicely, turn off the heat and cover the saucepan. Calculate what the time will be in 12 minutes from now (or just set a timer) and find something else to do. Occasionally, glance at the time to see if it’s 12 minutes later — or more. More doesn’t seem to matter. Less could lead to an undercooked egg and we don’t want that, do we now?
  4. Choose a bowl that will easily take all the eggs you have just hard-boiled, and prepare it with cold, iced water. Drain the eggs and place them in the bowl of iced water to stop them from continuing to cook. I usually put the eggs in the fridge at this point (still in their iced water) and come back to them later when I am to use them.
  5. Peel, and serve in whatever way makes you happy. In fact, any way will make you happy because you will see there is no grey around the yolk and you will rejoice in their utter perfection.


  • * Use as many (or few) eggs as you want. I use local Mungalli Creek biodynamic, organic, free range eggs. They are mixed sizes but probably average about 60g each. If you’re using larger eggs, add a couple of minutes to the cooking time. If your eggs are smaller, it doesn’t really matter.

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