Classic Pickled Eggs (A Family Recipe)

Hard boiled Pickled eggs in a jar with a tray of eggs nearby.

Our family favourite Pickled Eggs are simple to make and are the perfect healthy snack for those on the go. No canning required!

We do love our snacks here at Dish ‘n’ the Kitchen…whether it’s a bowl full of Ranch flavoured Nuts ‘n’ Bolts or a platter of steaming hot Pork Dumplings we find snacking is one of life’s greatest pleasures.

Hard boiled Pickled eggs in a jar with a bowl of eggs in foreground.

Pickled Eggs

Pickled eggs are super easy to make and my whole family loves them! They make a great healthy on the go ‘convenience food’ for busy days or for ‘clean’ snacks on family games nights. They keep game pieces and playing cards clean – no greasy or sticky fingerprints!

Pickled eggs are like a blank canvas. At their simplest, they soak in the vinegar and pickling spices to make a savoury treat with a bit of pucker power. However, Pickled Eggs can be so much more!

How to Make Pickled Eggs

There couldn’t be an easier or simpler healthy snack to make. Simply hard boil 8-12 eggs using the method you prefer (see below for Instant Pot method). Let the boiled eggs cool, then peel them and place them in a clean glass quart jar.

Add the salt and pickling spice to the jar and fill it 1/4 full with cold water. Next, pour in enough white pickling vinegar (5-7% acetic acid) to cover the eggs.

Hard boiled Pickled eggs in a jar with a bowl of eggs in foreground.

Seal with the jar lid, then gently invert the jar a couple of times so the vinegar and water are mixed and the salt dissolves.

Place in the fridge for 4-5 days to allow the brine to penetrate the eggs, then enjoy!

How to Make Hard Cooked Eggs in the Instant Pot

For this pickled egg recipe, the hard boiled eggs must be fully intact and have a smooth exterior. However, I am not patient when it comes to fiddly kitchen chores such as peeling eggs. If the eggs are difficult to peel, I had the job to my husband who has more patience than I do for these kinds of things.

That all changed once I got an Instant Pot. Pressure cooking the eggs to the hard boiled stage is the best way to ensure an easy to peel egg. I know there are many egg peeling tips and tricks out there (just google it!) but this is my tried and true hack.

Hard boiled Pickled eggs in a jar with a tray of eggs nearby.

Position the rack in the bottom of the Instant Pot insert. Add 1 cup of water and place as many eggs as you like on the rack. Place the lid on, ensure the valve is closed and set the timer for 5 minutes on high pressure.

Once the eggs have been cooking for 5 minutes, allow them to sit a further three minutes then release the pressure by moving the valve. Remove the eggs and place them in a bowl of cold water.

Flavour Variations

95% of the time, I make these eggs using this most basic recipe. However, I still love to experiment by adding other flavour ingredients or switching up the vinegar.

One of the most fun ways to switch them up is to add pickled beets or beet juice (in place of water) to the jar. Within 3 days, the beet pickled eggs will become a vibrant pink colour.

You can add chopped shallots, chives, red or yellow onions to the jar and have pickled onions along with the eggs. My family loves them this way!

Replace the white vinegar with apple cider vinegar, red wine vinegar, or even Chive Blossom infused vinegar for a unique flavour variation.

Add other herbs such as tarragon, dill, coriander or mustard seeds to infuse the eggs with a more intense flavour or spice things up by adding chili flakes or a sliced red Thai chili.

What other flavours have you added to your pickled eggs? I’d love to know!

Two hard boiled pickled eggs in a dark bowl.

How Long Does it Take to Pickle the Eggs?

Since the brine is very heavy and contains a large quantity of salt and vinegar, it really only takes 4-5 days for the eggs to become fully pickled. You want that awesome pickle flavour to go right through to the yolk.

I know it’s tempting to reach in and taste test an egg the next day but trust me when I say good things come to those who wait! Place the jar wayyyy back behind other things in your fridge and forget about them for a few days.

I have a poor memory so it’s always such a fun surprise to find a hidden jar of yummy snacks that I forgot I made.

Serving Suggestions

Though they make a perfect snack all on their own, I like to dip the egg into a bit of salt for extra flavour. Our family also loves to add them to chopped salads or scoop the yolks out to make extra pickle-y deviled eggs.

These are the perfect eggs to add to a large bowl of creamy potato salad or to eat mashed up with mayonnaise as an egg salad sandwich.

A jar containing eggs, pickling spices, and onions.

How to Prevent Rubbery Pickled Eggs

Once the eggs have been sitting in brine for 4-5 days they are ready to eat. Since this is a relatively heavy brine (with plenty vinegar and salt), you can prevent the eggs from becoming ‘rubbery’ in two ways.

  1. Eat them ASAP (within the next week) before they turn rubbery.
  2. Remove some of the brine and replace with water, making sure the eggs are covered in brine as they sit in the jar.
A fork holding a hard boiled pickled egg over an open jar of eggs.

How Long do Pickled Eggs Last?

When properly stored, pickled eggs will last for 3-4 months! That’s not to say they WILL be there in 3-4 months. My family typically finishes a jar with a week or two.

Always refrigerate them in an airtight container, preferably a glass jar with a plastic lid. The vinegar is very acidic and may end up reacting to the metal on a regular jar lid. To prevent this, cover the top of the jar with either plastic wrap or parchment paper before screwing the metal lid on.

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Pinterest image featuring peeled hard boiled pickled eggs in a bowl and on a fork.
Yield: 8 pickled eggs

The Best Pickled Eggs Recipe

A jar of pickling spices, some onions, and some hard boiled eggs.

A long standing family tradition, these simple to make Pickled Eggs are a must have during card games and games nights. No canning required! 

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 6 minutes
Total Time 21 minutes

Ingredients

  • 8-12 eggs
  • White vinegar (5-7% acetic acid)
  • water
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp pickling spice (includes mustard seed, bay leaves, peppercorns, coriander seeds, allspice, etc.)
  • 1/3 to 1/2 yellow onion; thinly sliced in rounds (optional)

Instructions

INSTANT POT HARD COOKED EGGS

    1. Position the rack in the bottom of the Instant Pot insert. Add 1 cup of water and place as many eggs as you like on the rack.
    2. Place the lid on, ensure the valve is closed and set the timer for 5 minutes on high pressure.
    3. Once the eggs have been cooking for 5 minutes, allow them to sit a further three minutes then release the pressure by moving the valve.
    4. Remove the eggs and place them in a bowl of cold water.

    FOR THE PICKLED EGGS

    1. Pack eggs and onions (if using) in clean quart size or larger jar depending on how many you are using.
    2. Add pickling spice and salt.
    3. Fill 1/4 jar with water, then top up with vinegar.
    4. Seal with the jar lid, then gently invert the jar a couple of times so the vinegar and water are mixed and the salt dissolves.
    5. Place in the fridge for 4-5 days to allow the brine to penetrate the eggs, then enjoy!

    Notes

    *For best results, allow the eggs to sit in the brine for 4-5 days before eating.

    Nutrition Information:

    Yield:

    8

    Serving Size:

    1 egg

    Amount Per Serving:Calories: 110Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 279mgSodium: 253mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 0gSugar: 1gProtein: 10g

    Nutritional calculation was provided by Nutritionix and is an estimation only. For special diets or medical issues please use your preferred calculator.

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    33 comments

    1. cathyandchucky

      I’ve always wondered how you make pickled eggs 😊. I also love soused fish, pickled onions, and brawn or potted meat. I grew up on it too. Yummy!

      Reply

    2. Ginni

      Reminds me of the fish and chip shops in England!
      Nice on Bernice !

      Reply

      1. dishnthekitchen

        They sell pickled eggs in the fish n chips shops? I had no idea.

        Reply

        1. Ginni

          Yes, pickled eggs and a Savaloy with a portion of fries used to be quite popular with the kids.

          Reply

    3. Jeanne

      Love your thoughts on how food triggers memories. These eggs sounds delicious.

      Reply

    4. sukih

      i have never heard about this! looks new 🙂

      Reply

      1. dishnthekitchen

        hmmm. It depends how you are raised I guess. It was a staple in my house growing up.

        Reply

        1. sukih

          Oh is it 🙂 Yeah 😉 true! 🙂

          Reply

    5. Ayngelina

      This sounds crazy but I’ve never had a pickled egg, I think I should fix that with this recipe.

      Reply

      1. dishnthekitchen

        Ayngelina you are definitely missing out! Give them a try and let me know what you think. They aren’t for everyone 🙂

        Reply

    6. SeattleDee

      Haven’t pickled any eggs in years, almost decades – not since the Capt. took a large jar along on a sailboat race with friends. The guys blamed seasickness on the eggs, but I think it was the beer they drank the night before. It might be time for a small batch – they sound SO tempting to me

      Reply

      1. dishnthekitchen

        haha, that sounds like a recipe for disaster too many beers and pickled eggs for breakfast. I can’t say that was my excuse when I chundered over the edge of our boat! I’m just a prairie girl, landlubber!

        Reply

    7. Corine Anderson

      Table salt or pickling salt? Hi Bern! Love your blog!

      Reply

      1. Bernice Hill

        oh my gosh!! I just saw this now. So sorry Corine. Hope you had a wonderful Christmas. Did you got back to Sask? BTW I always use pickling salt for my eggs. Thanks for stopping by!

        Reply

    8. Whitney

      How long do these keep for? Can you can them to preserve them longer?

      Reply

      1. Bernice Hill

        They’ll keep for a few months in the fridge covered in their brine. Not sure on the canning, whenever I have seen them in the stores, they’ve always been in the refrigerated section.

        Reply

    9. Ashley

      Yum! I can’t wait to try this. Can I use a red onion or would you recommend sticking to a yellow onion for this recipe?
      Thanks for sharing!

      Reply

      1. Bernice Hill

        Oh, for sure…bear in mind that a red onion may turn the eggs slightly pink.

        Reply

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    15. nancy

      i’ve never pickled eggs before this is interesting. How does it tastes like? how does it compare to shoyu eggs?

      Reply

      1. Bernice Hill

        They are less salty, more acidic than shoyu eggs.

        Reply

    16. AmyG

      I love eggs as a snack idea but never knew that it was so easy to make pickled eggs. Thanks for the details you make it look so easy!

      Reply

      1. Bernice Hill

        Yes! It’s VERY easy. I don’t even boil the brine.

        Reply

    17. Cindy Mom the Lunch Lady

      Omg I love this recipe! I have such fond memories of pickled eggs due to my late uncle. Growing up he always had some pickling when we would visit and I always asked to have some. So delicious!

      Reply

      1. Bernice Hill

        They are such a treat…I’ll be making another batch soon.

        Reply

    18. Sean

      So many great tips here! Glad to have the tip about watering down the brine for texture, but I’m especially intrigued about the easy-peel Instant Pot idea! I too get annoyed with peeling eggs, and I tend to rush them a bit much. The promise of a quicker method has me very excited! Hah. Cheers, and thanks!

      Reply

      1. Bernice Hill

        lol. It is 85% what I use my Instant Pot for! We eat a lot of eggs.

        Reply

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