Scrambled, fried, poached, hard-boiled—we’ve never met an egg we didn’t want to eat. But when it comes to the hard-boiled kind, the peeling part can be a real drag. Good news: There’s actually a clever hack for cooking and peeling a hard-boiled egg—one that promises to save you both time and clean-up. (In other words, this clever trick will allow you to skip the part where the egg shell flies everywhere and you realize why they call them ‘deviled’ eggs.) Follow this step-by-guide on how to peel hard-boiled eggs and you’ll spare yourself a lot of frustration...and a whole lot of mess.

RELATED: 47 Egg Breakfast Ideas to Start Your Day Right

How to Peel Hard-Boiled Eggs in 6 Easy Steps

How to peel hard boiled eggs Step1
Kaitlyn Collins for PureWow

Step 1: Place the uncooked eggs in a pot and add 1 tablespoon of baking soda.

We know it sounds weird but trust us on this one.

How to peel hard boiled eggs Step2
Kaitlyn Collins for PureWow

Step 2: Pour cold water over the eggs so that there’s just enough to cover them by about one inch.

Note: It’s important you don’t add too much water, because the added time it will take to boil can result in overcooked eggs.

How to peel hard boiled eggs Step3
Kaitlyn Collins for PureWow

Step 3: Put your pot on the stove and bring the water to a full rolling boil.

How to peel hard boiled eggs Step4
Kaitlyn Collins for PureWow

Step 4: Once the water reaches a vigorous boil, turn off the heat and cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid.

To finish the cooking process, let the eggs soak in the covered pot for an additional 10 to 12 minutes.

How to peel hard boiled eggs Step5
Kaitlyn Collins for PureWow

Step 5: Carefully transfer them to a bowl of cold water or a prepared ice bath to stop the cooking process.

Hey, nobody likes an overdone egg.

How to peel hard boiled eggs Step6
Kaitlyn Collins for PureWow

Step 6: Remove the eggs from the cold water and start peeling.

Rather than sticking to the surface of the egg, the shells should fall away easily. (Ta-da!) You are now ready to dig in—and we don’t mean with your fingernails.

Note: The above process should have you covered, but it will work even better if the eggs you’re using aren’t super fresh (read, freshly laid). Of course, if all else fails, you can always invest in one of these funky egg-peeling gadgets ($15)—just don’t ask us how it works.

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