How to Make Deviled Eggs—Including Instant Pot and Air Fryer Techniques

It's time to dress up your hard-boiled eggs.

Deviled eggs
Photo: Aniko Hobel/Getty Images

Deviled eggs may sound scary (or evil?), but they're basically dressed up hard-boiled eggs. A halfway point between an egg dish and an egg salad, deviled eggs are believed to come from ancient Rome, when hard boiled eggs would be enhanced with spicy sauce. Of course, the recipe has undergone a few upgrades and tweaks over the past few centuries, but the concept is the same: Cook eggs, slice, add spice. There's plenty of room for your own riffs and preferences, so keep reading for details on how to make deviled eggs.

How to Make Deviled Eggs

First, boil your eggs. To do so, Real Simple's preferred method is to fill a saucepan with water and add the eggs. Heat over high until the water comes to a boil, then turn off heat, keeping the pot covered, and let the eggs cook. Deviled eggs require harder yolks, so you'll want to cook the eggs in this water for about 10 minutes. Then, remove the eggs from the pot and let them chill in an ice bath. Now, the fun part. Peel the eggs and transfer them to a clean cutting board. Using a sharp, clean knife, slice each egg in half.

How to Make Deviled Egg Filling

Once your hard-boiled eggs are cooked, it's all about the rich filling. For a basic deviled egg filling, follow the recipe below. Feel free to customize the filling to your liking and taste preferences.

  1. Using a spoon or your fingers, remove the yolks from each egg half, and put the yolks in a small mixing bowl.
  2. Add about one tablespoon of mayonnaise, yogurt, or a plant-based creamy substitute per egg. Feel free to mix and match your creamy bases.
  3. Add a dollop of Dijon mustard, salt, pepper, paprika, and a dash of your favorite hot sauce. You can also add cayenne, harissa, or other spices to play with the flavor. If you want to up the acidity, squeeze in some lemon juice or add a splash of good vinegar. You can also mix cheese into the filling.
  4. Stir your filling to combine. You'll know it's ready once it's creamy.

How to Stuff Deviled Eggs

To stuff deviled eggs, spoon the filling mixture back into the empty egg white halves. You can also scoop the filling into a pastry bag (or a plastic sandwich bag, and cut off the tip) to pipe the filling into the hard-boiled whites, for a fancy effect.

How to Top Deviled Eggs

While a dusting of paprika can be enough to dress up a deviled egg, the two-bite appetizer is a place to play with different ingredients and your palate. Consider dressing it up by sprinkling some fresh herbs on top, like chives or dill. You can get fancy with salmon roe or caviar scooped on top, or try adding some protein via bacon crumbles or smoked salmon pieces. Pickled vegetables, like cornichons, capers, or kimchi, also add a nice funkiness, and a sprinkle of Everything Bagel Seasoning is never a bad idea. Truly, if you think it will pair well with deviled eggs, it probably will.

How to Make Deviled Eggs in an Air Fryer

If you don't want to turn your stove on, the air fryer can also help you whip up some hard-boiled eggs—no boiling required! Just throw your cold eggs in the air fryer (don't crowd them) and cook at 250 degrees (boiling water is 212 degrees, but this is close enough) for 15 minutes. It will take slightly longer since they're not coming up to temperature in the water. Then, let the eggs cool in an ice bath, and follow the steps to make the filling, which doesn't require heat.

How to Make Deviled Eggs in an Instant Pot

Boiling eggs in the Instant Pot can also help speed up the process, though the multi-cooker will need to pressurize first. Just add eggs to the steamer basket, cover with a few inches of water, and pressure cook the eggs on high for five minutes. Once they're done, you know the routine: Ice bath, peel, slice, and fill!

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