How to Perfectly Boil Duck Eggs


A few weeks ago, I marveled at the extraordinary productivity of our Welsh Harlequin ducks throughout the winter season. These hardworking ladies hardly ever take a break, providing us with an abundance of eggs. And let me tell you, we’ve been on a serious duck egg spree lately, which brings immense joy to this mama’s heart. Did you know that duck eggs contain nearly six times the amount of Vitamin B12 found in chicken eggs? Not only that, but they also boast double the Omega 3’s, more than twice the folate, and approximately twice as many Vitamins A, E, and B6. These beautiful eggs are a true nutritional treasure trove!

The Decadence of Hard-Boiled Duck Eggs

While we use duck eggs in the same way as we use chicken eggs, I must say that the higher yolk-to-white ratio in duck eggs makes them perfect for decadent hard-boiled eggs. Plus, they take egg salad to a whole new level!

Master the Art of Perfectly Cooked Hard-Boiled Duck Eggs

Before we had ducks, I had never made hard-boiled duck eggs. It took some time and experimentation, but I finally mastered the art of cooking them perfectly. In this household, we won’t settle for gray-rimmed yolks or hard-to-peel shells. Here’s the fail-proof technique I developed, which consistently delivers perfect results every time. It’s simple and easy to remember, which is especially helpful for those of us with pregnancy brain!

  1. Place the duck eggs in a pan and add enough cold water to cover them.
  2. Over medium-high heat, bring the water to a full rolling boil. Boil for one minute.
  3. Turn off the heat, cover the pan with a well-fitting lid, and let the eggs sit undisturbed for 19 minutes. Yes, 19 minutes!

Quick Note: My duck eggs are of a nice “normal” size, averaging 2.7 ounces. If your eggs are smaller, like jumbo chicken eggs (about 2.2 ounces), boil for 17 minutes. For larger eggs, like turkey eggs (3+ ounces), go for 21 minutes to achieve the desired results.

  1. After 19 minutes, drain the hot water, cover the eggs with cold water again, and add enough ice cubes to create an ice-water bath. Let the eggs sit for 20 minutes.
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The Perfect Peel

Now comes the fun part – peeling the eggs. Hold the egg with the small, pointy end up, and give the fat end a firm tap on the counter. Gently roll the egg on the counter to crack the shell evenly. There’s no need to apply excessive force. Start peeling from the fat end, where the air sack is located. Peel the egg just like you would a clementine – in one long, satisfying strip. It reminds me of the old-fashioned kids’ game where you’d peel an orange and throw the peel over your shoulder, hoping it would form the first letter of your future spouse’s name.

Pro tip: I must give credit to my dear friend Amanda from Confessions of a Type B Mama for introducing me to the effective “thwack the fat end” technique. Check out her delightful how-to on hard-boiling chicken eggs for more great tips!

The Salty Dilemma

You may have heard about people adding salt to the water when boiling eggs. While salted water may boil at a slightly higher temperature than unsalted water, using different salts can result in varying salt solutions, leading to inconsistent results. To achieve consistent replication, I recommend using unsalted water and precise timing.


I hope this fail-proof technique works as marvelously for you as it does for me. If you’re looking for an even faster method, check out my Instant Pot recipe for perfectly boiled duck eggs. And if you haven’t given duck eggs a try yet, I strongly encourage you to get your hands on some. You’ll wonder how you’ve lived without them all this time.

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Family Cuisine

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