In an experiment, I cooked a 12 organic chicken eggs from the same batch:

A) 6 in boiling water and

B) 6 in a pressure cooker:

  • 6 eggs in a basket which is on a tripod inside the cooker
  • 5 minutes in hot steam at 117 °C
  • waited 5 minutes to cool down until the pressure was at room level
  • alternatively I cooled the cooker with cold water from outside until the pressure was gone.

In both experiments the eggs were put in the cold cooker without a hole in the shell. The eggs were put in a bowl with cold water in the end.

I found that the shell and membrane of the pressure-cooked eggs were a lot easier to remove. (The eggs also seemed to taste fresher and more intense.) I could not find a reason or explanation. I have repeated this since 2016 once a week.

The effect is remarkable, because organic eggs are often much more difficult to peel than factory farming eggs.

Is there an explanation for the pressure-cooked eggs being easier to peel?

I would like to see reliable sources (e.g. papers or other trustworthy publications), not just personal opinions.

  • @Stephie yes. Added this now to my question. Thank you for pointing me to this. Commented Jun 7, 2016 at 18:44
  • Time for the boiling water version?
    – Ecnerwal
    Commented Jun 8, 2016 at 2:27
  • 2
    My opinion is you should not give orders about opinions. Fresher and more intense is an opinion. Do you have any quantitative data to back that opinion.
    – paparazzo
    Commented Jun 8, 2016 at 7:17
  • I steam eggs in a regular pot and get great results in peelability. Check out Foodwishes soft hard boiled eggs.
    – user6591
    Commented Jan 17, 2018 at 21:51

1 Answer 1


Yes, I wrote a post about this a few years ago - the first to describe the method in a home pressure cooker. The theory goes that the pressure difference inside and outside the egg PLUS the shock of the cold facilitates the detachment of membrane from the shell. The Kitchn tried and confirmed my method and many of my readers will no longer hard boil an egg any other way but Serious Eats had different results - I don't know why.

  • 1
    I've tested it too and got results like yours. How odd that Kenji didn't.
    – Jolenealaska
    Commented Apr 19, 2017 at 19:36
  • 2
    Alton Brown says, "but recently I’ve taken to steaming the eggs in a pressure cooker for the easiest peeling I’ve ever experienced..."
    – Jolenealaska
    Commented Apr 19, 2017 at 19:41
  • I suspect that Kenji's differing result is that he did a double-blind test. Commented Aug 13, 2019 at 21:47

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