How Long Will Boiled Eggs Last In The Refrigerator?

Eggs are one of the easiest foods to incorporate into your meals. They're the perfect form of breakfast protein, they can be turned into a creamy salad for lunch, and they are the reason your dinnertime meatballs remain in ball form. Of course, they are a necessary ingredient in the majority of baked goods as well.

With so many ways to cook an egg, how you prepare one depends on your desired outcome. Dishes such as egg salad, deviled eggs, or a soft-boiled egg over avocado toast will all require the boiling method, which cooks an egg in boiling water for a set amount of time until it reaches your desired doneness. It's a simple cooking technique, and if you boil a few at a time, you can enjoy them throughout the week. However, if you choose to prepare several eggs in advance but aren't sure when you'll have time to eat them all, you might have one important question: How long will they last in the fridge?

Boiled eggs last about a week in the refrigerator

Once you fully cook those eggs in boiling water, you have around one week to enjoy them. The FDA gives brief but clear guidelines — use the eggs "within 1 week after cooking." Notably, there is no difference in consumption time between hard-boiled eggs that are peeled or unpeeled; whether the shell is removed or not doesn't affect how long the eggs stay fresh.

Uncooked eggs can stay fresh for up to five weeks, so why can't cooked eggs? The main difference here lies in the shell's coating. In a fresh egg, the shell better protects the egg against bacterial contamination due to its protective coating. Once you boil the eggs, though, that protective coating becomes thinner and less useful, which allows bacteria to seep in more easily. The best way to keep hard-boiled eggs as fresh as possible is to store them continuously in the refrigerator. Something to note — the one-week rule does not apply to soft-boiled eggs. Those will only stay fresh for about two days. Plus, they leave you at a greater risk of ingesting salmonella because they are not cooked thoroughly.

How to use up your hard-boiled eggs

If you found you've cooked more hard-boiled eggs but don't want to waste them (one glance at current egg prices is plenty of reason to eat every last bite), there are a few diverse recipes you can make with them.

Of course, deviled eggs are likely the most well-known use for hard-boiled eggs. Get creative with them by adding bacon, chives, or another flavor-bursting ingredient that will set them apart from other standard recipes. Egg salad is another great use for boiled eggs; a basic recipe just calls for a bit of mayo, plus some salt and pepper, though add-ins like mustard and relish can enhance its flavor. The salad can be turned into a sandwich or served on baguette slices and garnished with greens for a quick party appetizer. Beyond that, chopping a hard-boiled egg over some avocado toast makes for a protein-packed breakfast or lunch.