Hard To Peel Hard Boiled Eggs? – Steam Them

Allison : Hi Gina. Being new to keeping chickens I have a lot to learn. I have had two girls for around six weeks now, both are laying, one starting a week after the other. The eggs are small but beautifully formed and very delicious. My problem is that when I hard boil them I cannot get the shells to come off cleanly, always fetching quite a lot of white with it. Is there a lack of something in their diet that causes this? Any advice would be gratefully received BTW the girls are free range having a run of around 15 square mtrs, they have access to the garden daily for a couple of hours before roosting time. Thanks Allison

My Reply : It is probably a good sign 🙂 The freshest eggs are usually the hardest to peel (and if the shells were soft, it may indicate something like a lack of calcium in their diet). Fresh boiled eggs are usually easier to peel if you steam them – a subscriber offered details in the September 2011 issue here : http://www.keepingchickensnewsletter.com/Newsletter/september11/keepingchickensv2_pg06.htm Hope that helps!



  1. Laura Latimer May 15, 2017 at 4:10 pm

    I keep my eggs in the fridge for at least 2 weeks before I boil and peel them. keeping them for this time, does not impair the flavor or nutritional value. Also, when they are cooked, rinse in cold water and then drain. Shake them in the pan till the shells get all fractured and crazed, and then run under cold water again. The shells should slip right off.

  2. sue gerry May 16, 2017 at 1:27 am

    I date the eggs as they come in and when a few are a week or more old, the I hard boil them and they’re easy to peel.

  3. Carike May 17, 2017 at 4:27 am

    I’ve tried every trick I’ve read–letting the eggs age, steaming, salting boiling water, peeling under running water, bringing to a boil slowly, pricking the eggs with a needle–you name it. I’m lucky if I can get 10 out of 12 to peel well enough to make decent looking deviled eggs.

  4. Beth May 20, 2017 at 5:11 pm

    I have tried all the tricks for peeling fresh, boiled eggs and have finally found one that works every time. I boil the eggs as usual. Drop the boiled egg in a canning jar, cover with water, screw on the lid, give it a good brisk shaking. The egg shell is covered with fine cracks when it comes out of the water if you have shaken it enough and the shell slides right off. Works EVERY time! I was amazed!

  5. Lois May 22, 2017 at 3:45 am

    I have the same issue, I’ve done everything but stand on my hands. They peel horribly.

  6. Bernice June 13, 2017 at 3:43 pm

    The answer to hard to peel boiled eggs is don’t boil them – STEAM them. First poke a hole in the fat end of the egg with a push pin. I find holding the push pin pointy end up on the counter and bringing the egg down on it works the best for me. Bring the water to a boil in the steamer. Put the eggs in, cover and steam for about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for another 10 minutes or so. then you can cool and peel. If you have some you have already boiled and now can’t peel you can always scoop out the inside with a spoon for making potato salad, egg salad, creamed curried eggs, etc.

Leave A Comment