5 Mistakes to Avoid When Making Deviled Eggs (2024)

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Kelli Foster

Kelli FosterSenior Contributing Food Editor

Kelli is a Senior Contributing Food Editor for Kitchn. She's a graduate of the French Culinary Institute and author of the cookbooks, Plant-Based Buddha Bowls, The Probiotic Kitchen, Buddha Bowls, and Everyday Freekeh Meals. She lives in New Jersey.


updated Apr 30, 2019

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5 Mistakes to Avoid When Making Deviled Eggs (1)

Slide a platter of deviled eggs onto the table at any holiday gathering, picnic, potluck, or get-together and it’s all but guaranteed they’ll be gobbled up in no time. These two-bite snacks start with hard-boiled eggs and are seemingly easy to pull off, although there are a few common errors you’ll want to avoid.

1. Overcooking (or undercooking) the hard-boiled eggs.

The best deviled eggs start with well-cooked hard-boiled eggs. When they’re overcooked, the yolks not only have a gray-ish hue around the outside, but they also have a sulfuric odor that can be powerful and sometimes stinky.

Follow this tip: Our favorite method is to cover the eggs with water, bring the water to a boil, and then let the eggs sit off the heat for about 10 minutes. This makes whites that are firm but still tender and yolks that are set but still creamy. You can also get the same result by cooking the eggs for eight to nine minutes at low pressure in an Instant Pot or electric pressure.

  • How To Boil Eggs Perfectly Every Time
  • How To Cook Eggs in an Electric Pressure Cooker

2. Not cooling the hard-boiled eggs first.

Cooling between cooking and assembling deviled eggs is a crucial step. When the eggs are still warm, the whites are more delicate, making them easier to tear or rip, while yolks that are too warm can cause the mayonnaise or yogurt to separate.

Follow this tip: The fastest and easiest way to cool the cooked eggs is by plunging them into an ice bath for a few minutes right after they come off the stove or out of the Instant Pot. In addition to making the deviled eggs easier to prepare and assemble, this step also makes for easier-to-peel hard-boiled eggs.

3. Not breaking up the yolk enough.

The best part of deviled eggs is the creamy filling. And it’s at its best when it’s super smooth and free of lumps of whole egg yolk.

Follow this tip: For a smooth, lump-free filling, use a fork or a potato masher to thoroughly break up the egg yolks before adding the other filling ingredients to the bowl.

4. Going overboard with the mayo.

Mayonnaise (or sometimes Greek yogurt) is the ingredient that gives deviled eggs a creamy filling. But when you’re heavy-handed with this ingredient, not only will it overpower the taste of the filling, but it can also make for a loose, runny filling that’s tough to pipe into the egg white.

Follow this tip: Having just the right amount of mayonnaise in the filling makes for good flavor and good texture. Remember that you can always add more mayo, but once it’s mixed in you can’t take it away. Be conservative when when adding the mayo or yogurt, and add more as needed.

5. Preparing the deviled eggs too far in advance.

While deviled eggs can absolutely be prepped in advance, too much of a head-start can leave the taste and texture of these two-bite treats a bit lackluster and dry.

Follow this tip: The best way to get a jump-start on deviled eggs is by knowing your timeline and working in steps, if necessary. The eggs can be cooked and stored, uncut, in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to a week. The filling can be made and stored separate from the eggs up to two days before serving, while the assembled eggs can be made up to a day in advance.

Read more: Deviled Eggs: The Make-Ahead Game Plan

Try Our Favorite Deviled Egg Recipes

  • How To Make Deviled Eggs
  • Avocado Deviled Eggs with Everything Bagel Spice

  • Pimento Cheese Deviled Eggs with Toasted Pecans
  • Beet-Pickled Deviled Eggs

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5 Mistakes to Avoid When Making Deviled Eggs (2024)


5 Mistakes to Avoid When Making Deviled Eggs? ›

But when you're heavy-handed with this ingredient, not only will it overpower the taste of the filling, but it can also make for a loose, runny filling that's tough to pipe into the egg white. Follow this tip: Having just the right amount of mayonnaise in the filling makes for good flavor and good texture.

What happens if you put too much mayo in deviled eggs? ›

But when you're heavy-handed with this ingredient, not only will it overpower the taste of the filling, but it can also make for a loose, runny filling that's tough to pipe into the egg white. Follow this tip: Having just the right amount of mayonnaise in the filling makes for good flavor and good texture.

What causes deviled eggs to get runny? ›

One of the most common deviled eggs mistakes people make is making the filling too runny. The obvious reason why your eggs end up like this is you've added too many wet ingredients. From an excess of mayonnaise to too heavy a pour of pickle juice, there are a lot of potential culprits.

How to get yolks smooth for deviled eggs? ›

Once your eggs are cooked, making deviled eggs is easy!

Peel and cut your eggs in half, and then scoop the yolk into a bowl. I use the back of a spoon and smoosh the egg yolk. Since we cooked our eggs perfectly, they should break down easily. Then, we can stir in our mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, salt, and pepper.

Why is vinegar added to deviled eggs? ›

Deviled eggs are a naturally rich, decadent food so adding something acidic such as vinegar or lemon juice in the mixture can brighten the flavors and keep them from tasting too rich.

Why put paprika on deviled eggs? ›

The paprika will determine the depth of flavor of each bite. You can garnish with any kind (hot or sweet Hungarian, or hot or sweet smoked), but the better the quality, the more complex the flavor.

What are church lady deviled eggs? ›

Disney Springs' Chef Art Smith's Homecoming Church Lady Deviled Eggs are a Southern-inspired delight, boasting creamy yolks blended with tangy mustard, mayo, and a sprinkle of paprika, offering a nostalgic and flavorful twist on a classic appetizer.

How do you make deviled eggs easier to peel? ›

Adding white vinegar or apple cider vinegar to your pot of water allegedly results in softer, easier-to-peel eggshells. That's because the acid in vinegar dissolves some of the calcium carbonate that makes up the egg's hard exterior.

Is it better to make deviled eggs day before or day of? ›

Prep deviled eggs too far in advance, and you'll have dried out filling and stinky boiled egg whites. For the best results, prep your deviled eggs up to two days in advance and keep the egg whites and filling separate until you're ready to serve. This prepping method also applies if you're not even leaving the house.

How to fix too much mayo in deviled eggs without? ›

Be sure to add something acidic and spicy to your filling to balance out the richness of the yolks and mayonnaise. Dijon mustard, vinegar, hot sauce, and pickle relish are all good options.

What is a thickening agent for deviled eggs? ›

Instant mashed potatoes (which doubles as a surprising thickener for soups) can save your deviled eggs. To pull this off, all you need to do is add the flakes directly to your filling in small doses, mixing well each time.

Why are my deviled eggs bland? ›

The longer the deviled eggs sit, the more likely they will lose flavor and dry out.

How long should eggs boil for? ›

Gently lower in fridge-cold eggs. Lower the heat slightly – so the eggs don't crack due to being bashed around but water is still at a gentle boil. Start the timer – 6 minutes for runny yolks, 8 minutes for soft boiled, 10 minutes for classic hard boiled, 15 minutes for unpleasant rubbery whites and powdery dry yolks.

Why are my deviled eggs not creamy? ›

How do you make deviled eggs creamy, not lumpy? Get out your food processor: If you mix the yolks in your food processor with the mayonnaise and mustard, it will make the filling light and fully emulsified, like a mousse.

How to get deviled eggs centered? ›

1) To center the yolk so that when the egg is halved, the egg does not look lopsided, place the egg on its side overnight. The yolks get repositioned because they're no longer sitting up, but rather lounging sideways. I tried it out twice and it worked!

What happens when you have too much mayonnaise? ›

Eating too much mayonnaise can cause high blood pressure problems. Actually, the amount of omega-6 fatty acids in mayonnaise is very high, which can increase blood pressure. Excessive consumption of mayonnaise can also increase the risk of diseases like heart attack and stroke.

Can you over mix mayonnaise? ›

When blended too long, the emulsion that brought the spread together is more likely to break, either from overprocessing or overheating. Follow this tip: To keep the emulsion from breaking and the mayo from separating, process just until the ingredients are combined and emulsified.

How much mayonnaise does it take to equal an egg? ›

Mayonnaise. Eggs are a key ingredient in mayonnaise, so it makes sense that it can be a perfect substitute when you're out of eggs. Use 3 tablespoons of mayo as an egg substitute.

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