Deviled Eggs

January 4, 2012

Deviled eggs are one of my all-time favorite appetizers. But too often they turn out bland and pasty, or else they have a dull and unattractive look from greenish-tinged yolks. When I discovered the America’s Test Kitchen version several years ago, I knew the recipe was a winner. I love that the filling in these eggs has more kick than usual: grainy mustard (rather than regular Dijon), Worcestershire sauce, and cider vinegar all contribute tartness to offset the sweetness of the mayo.

The method ATK uses for hard-boiling the eggs is very exacting: too little cooking time and the yolks won’t be fully cooked, but too much and the yolks’ edges turn green, discoloring the whites and the filling. Based on my own experiences with hard-boiling eggs, their directions work every time! The basic premise is to bring cold eggs and water to a boil and then immediately turn off the heat and let them rest for 10 minutes before dunking them in ice water. Don’t be tempted to fill the pan with hot water from the faucet to shorten the time to bring the eggs to a boil; the yolks won’t be fully cooked.

The one piece of the puzzle that I have yet to figure out is why some eggs peel so easily, while others have very stubborn shells that stick to the whites and easily tear them. I’ve heard that this is related to the age of the egg, but I haven’t had a chance to experiment. Anyone else have experience with this problem?

Deviled eggs

Makes 1 dozen


  • 7  large eggs, cold
  • 3  tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 1/2  teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 3/4  teaspoon grainy mustard
  • 1/4  teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  • Paprika (optional)


  1. Place the eggs in a medium saucepan, cover with cold water, and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from heat immediately, cover, and let stand for exactly 10 minutes.
  2. Transfer the eggs to a bowl of ice water and cool for 5 minutes. Peel the eggs and slice each on half lengthwise. Scoop the yolks into a bowl, add the mayonnaise, vinegar, mustard, and Worcestershire, and mash until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Arrange the egg white halves on a serving platter, discarding the two worst-looking halves. Using a pastry bag fitted with a large star tip, pipe the yolk mixture into the whites. Sprinkle with paprika if desired. Serve at room temperature.


  1. My mother always says that older eggs hard-boil better. I have the worst time hard-boiling them, but I have had only success since I started using these directions:

    Eggs cooked this way always seem to peel perfectly for me.

    One reviewer says to let the eggs come to room temperature before cooking, which helps prevent cracking.

  2. I’ve had confirmation from a few people that older eggs peel easier, so next time I will have to plan ahead better and buy the eggs the week before I plan to hard-boil them. I’ve always had good luck with properly set yolks and no greenish tinge when I’ve used the Cook’s Illustrated method, but it’s the peeling that’s so unpredictable! lol

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