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Easy Refrigerator Pickled Eggs Recipe- 2 Ways- For Any Eggs!
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I’d never had a pickled egg until 2019.
My now-husband introduced me to the concept and I was pretty intrigued. Hard boiled eggs flavored like pickles.
“How have I never heard of this before?”
He explained that you hard-boil and peel a bunch of eggs, place them in a jar of old pickle brine, and eat them after a month.
Well, we had some pickles, had some eggs, and had a fridge- so why not put it all together and see what comes of it?
The day finally came, when a month had passed, and it was time to give the pickled eggs a taste.
They were tangy, salty, and amazingly delicious. A whole new world had opened up to me, and I began churning out batches after batches of pickled eggs. The recipes grew more complex, but the bones remained the same. Hard boiled eggs, a brine, and time.
Why pickled eggs?
I think that pickled eggs are a great recipe if you keep chickens, or other egg-laying critters. Pickling will both infuse a massive amount of flavor -and- extend the shelf-life of your eggs. Ready-to-eat flavorful, protein bombs just waiting in the fridge. It’s a treat that’s hard to beat.
Besides just eating the pickled eggs solo, right out of the jar, they’re a great addition to salads. If you’re packing a lunch for work (you should be!) they’re perfect for that too.
I wouldn’t necessarily go buy eggs to make pickled eggs, but if you’re facing a spring glut, this is a great way to save yourself some fridge space and save them for later. Plus, making them yourself means you won’t be spending $44 for a jar like this on Amazon!
What kinds of eggs can you use for this pickled eggs recipe?
I’ve included pictures of quail eggs in this tutorial, since they’re the most recent eggs I’ve pickled. However, you can pickle chicken, duck, guinea, turkey, or even goose eggs.
When our hens are in full production in the summer, I’ll pickle the bantam eggs and store the rest of the eggs in water glass, the fridge, freezer, etc.
(The bantam eggs are much smaller and will be infused with flavor sooner.)
Turkey, guinea, and duck eggs are all richer than a chicken egg, and harder to come by around here. I haven’t pickled many, but they’ll pickle just fine- following these same instructions.
As far as freshness goes, this pickled eggs recipe will work with fresher eggs or older eggs, it doesn’t seem to make much of a difference. I’d say that the eggs I pickle average about a week to 2 weeks old, since I usually like to store up enough eggs to fill a whole jar before I start them.
First: the easiest pickled eggs recipe (ever!)
The easiest pickled eggs recipe is with pre-made pickle brine. This isn’t some fringe product you’ve never heard of before- it’s literally pickle brine.
When we buy pickles from the store (last year was a BAD year for cucumbers in our garden, so we’ve run out of homemade pickles), we’ll eat through them, and then leave the “juice” (brine) in the jar in the fridge.
When it’s time to pickle eggs, we hard boil up a bunch of them (2 dozen probably) and then peel them.We drop the peeled eggs into the jar of brine, and then label the jar with the day’s date.
After a month of being ignored in the back of the fridge, the eggs are ready to eat.
Technically, you could eat them earlier, and you can eat them much later too. The flavor gets stronger with age, but the one month mark is a good place to start eating them.
If you don’t have enough eggs to fill the jar at once, you can keep adding to it as you get more. Once the jar is full I’ll write the date on it, so that the youngest eggs in the brine are a month old.
Second: A from-scratch pickled eggs recipe
A from-scratch pickled eggs recipe is still really simple. If you’ve made refrigerator pickles before you’ll already have the process down. If you haven’t- it’s still not complicated, the hardest part is peeling the eggs.
Start by hard boiling your eggs.
I fill the bottom of a stockpot with a layer or two of eggs, then fill almost to the top with water.
Bring the pot to a boil, and then set a timer for 20 minutes. (Honestly, the timer’s optional, and my eggs usually end up boiling for longer- doesn’t seem to matter)
After the time’s up, either turn off the stove, put on the lid, and forget about your eggs for a few hours. Or, dump the boiling water out and fill the pan with cold, cold tap water. I’ve left the faucet running long enough to overfill the pot and keep the eggs circulating in cold water, but it’s not really necessary.
Once the eggs are cool enough to handle, peel ‘em.
My “trick” is to start at the wider end of the egg. A gentle rap on the counter will crack and flatten the air-cell, allowing you to lift up the shell and membrane at that point. Then just keep working that shell membrane off the white of the egg, and eventually your egg will be peeled. I like to use the side of my thumb like a spatula to gently lift/scrape the membrane up. Fingernails are also a useful tool.
(Save those egg shells by the way. They’re a great source of calcium for your bird and your garden- you can read more about that here)
Once all of your eggs are peeled, load them into a jar. I like to do quart jars so I can do a few different flavors in a single batch of eggs, but any size jar will work.
To make the brine, we’re going to heat up some vinegar, water, sugar (optional), salt, and whatever seasonings strike your fancy on the stove. Once everything has cooked and infused together, we’re going to let it cool and pour it over the eggs. Add a lid, add a label, and check back in a few weeks.
My favorite batch of pickled eggs to date was a bit of an accident. I had made a batch of pickled beets (they’re SO good) and after eating about half of them, there was space in the jar for 8 or so hard boiled eggs.
I left the eggs and beets in the brine for about a month, and then gave them a taste. They were a bright, vibrant purple on the outside, with a sweet and tart flavor throughout. I haven’t harvested any beets recently to recreate them, but it’s definitely on my to do list this spring.
Other delicious batches of pickled eggs have been ones that were heavily flavored by dill, or by adding a bunch of diced onion and minced garlic to the brine. I’ve even taken the basic pickle-brine pickled egg recipe to the next level by adding sriracha and pepper when I add the eggs.
The flavor possibilities are only limited by your imagination; I hope you’ll give pickled eggs a try!
Thanks for reading & happy homesteading!
Easy Refrigerator Pickled Eggs Recipe
- 2 Saucepans
- Jar (or Jars) and lid
- Measuring glass
- Several Eggs
- Vinegar White or ACV
- Sugar Optional
- Sriracha Optional
- Pepper, Chili powder, Pickling spices, Dill, etc. Optional
- Onion, Garlic Cloves, Carrots, Beets Optional
- Start by warming the vinegar and water on the stove. I use a 1:1 ratio. Add to this the spices, salt, sugar, and any other ingredients (except the eggs).Bring this mixture to a boil, then turn off the stove and let it cool.
- In a separate saucepan, layer the eggs in the bottom of the pan gently. Fill this pot nearly full with water. Bring to a boil.
- Let the eggs boil on the stove for 20 (or so) minutes. After they've finished cooking, turn off the stove and allow the eggs to cool. (Running under cold water can speed up the process)
- Peel the eggs. Start by rapping the wide end of the egg on the counter, and then peeling the shell and membrane off-working towards the pointy end of the egg.
- Once the eggs are peeled, place them in your jar.
- Fill the jar(s) with the cooled brine. Add the lid. Label the jar(s) with the day's date.
- Place the jar(s) in the fridge.
- After 30 days, give the eggs a taste. Their flavor will deepen the longer they spend in the brine.