Monday, October 3, 2011

Canning Pickled Eggs Safely

Until July of this year I have never had a pickled egg.  Papa Bear made a statement that he loved pickled eggs.  I now love them too or at least the ones I made.

In July I found myself with an over abundance of eggs so I went in search of a recipe.  All of the recipes I found said to refrigerate immediately after canning.  I wanted one that would allow me to store them in the pantry.  I kept looking and finally found this recipe.  She has two recipes, the first one does require refrigeration but the second one can be stored in a cool dark space.  She suggests a basement.  Since I don't have a basement, mine are stored in a cool dark pantry. 

I followed her directions to a "T" as I know all the nasty problems a bad egg can cause.  The eggs came out wonderful.  I told another blogger that they are almost like a spicy deviled egg without the mayo.  I am going to try some in some tuna or chicken salad soon.  

If you use this recipe, please follow all directions.  I don't know if I will ever have a batch that I can say lasted a year on the shelf but mine have been good since July.

Pickled Eggs ( 7 Quart Canning method )
Allows unrefrigerated storage in a cool, dark basement.

Canning Method:

If you are making many quarts of pickled eggs and would like to CAN them, such that they do not require refrigeration until opened, then follow these instructions:

- Use 1 Quart Canning Jars, Rings and Self-Sealing Lids (Like Mason Jars)
- Follow the manufacturers instructions for Lid Preparation (some require boiling the lids)
- Sterilize Jars, Rings and Lids


Boil and peel 8 Dozen Eggs (even though you are canning 7 dozen, sometimes you can fit 13 eggs in a jar or some eggs will be damaged during boiling or peeling process)

Never use an egg that is damaged. The surface of the egg should be flawless to prevent Clostridium botulinum from entering the egg.

If you use the ice trick to peel the eggs, you will want to re-heat the peeled eggs before packing them in jars. Place the peeled eggs back into a pot of water and raise the temperature of the water to 200 degrees to kill any bacterium on the surface of the eggs.

Canning Pickled Eggs Safely

Place your canning pot on the stove with 3 to 4 inches of water in the bottom, place your jars in the canning pot and preheat them.

In another pot, bring about a gallon of water to 200 degrees F (this will be used to cover the jars later)

Create the Brine:

In a Large Pot, Combine and boil the following:

15 Cups vinegar (5% acidity)
3/4 cup canning salt (non-iodized)
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons ground mustard
3 1/2 teaspoons dill seed or 7 sprigs of dill weed
5 to 7 Cloves garlic sliced thin
5 to 7 Jalapenos sliced thin

Stir and bring to 200 degrees F.

(note: you may add or change the spices to suit your taste, but do not change the vinegar, salt or sugar)

Packing and Canning the eggs:

  1. Strain the Dill, Garlic and Jalapeno out of the brine solution and distribute evenly inside your 7 jars.
  2. Bring the canning bath water to 200F.
  3. Remove each jar from the bath and pack each jar with 12 to 13, peeled, blemish free, piping HOT eggs.
  4. Stir the brine and fill the jar carefully with the vinegar solution at 200F. There needs to be enough solution to cover the eggs completely. Leave as little air space at the top as you can. (about 1/2 inch) Yeast and mold can grow in the air space under some conditions.
  5. Apply a lid to the jar and snug a ring down, but do not over-tighten the ring. Air needs to escape during the canning bath & pasteurization process
  6. Return the jar to the canning bath and repeat this process for all 7 jars.
  7. After all 7 jars are packed and in the canning bath, make sure there is at least 1 to 2 inches of water above the tops of the jars. If there is not, add hot water to cover the jars.
  8. Keep the jars in the canning bath until the temperature of the liquid in each jar gets above 180F. This is usually accomplished by bringing the canning bath water to a strong rolling boil, and then keeping the jars in the boiling water for an additional 15 minutes.
  9. Remove the jars from the canning bath and place on the counter to cool
  10. After the Jars have cooled, inspect each jar to ensure a proper seal. If the lids did not seal, remove the lid and check for any debris and clean if necessary. Either re-can them using the instructions above, or immediately place in the refrigerator to be consumed within the next few weeks.
Following this method should allow you to store the canned jars of eggs in a cool, dark basement for up to 6 months. We have routinely stored our canned pickled eggs for up to a year with no problems. We do however strongly urge you to proceed with caution. Do not end up like the fellow described here: Botulism in Pickled Eggs



  1. Husband keeps bothering me about doing this. But he would be the only one to eat them, and I am not sure if I want to be in the same room with him after doing so.

    Thanks for the recipe. Might get talked into doing it.

  2. LOL Phelan....yes the after effects of those pickled eggs can be an "eye watering" experience but do make Husband some and try one yourself. You just may like them. I had to talk myself into eating the first one and was pleasantly surprised.

  3. Might I suggest using the Water Glass method for storing fresh eggs for up to a year, even 18 months? I like pickled eggs too... but long term storage that way can be risky. Could always store using Water Glass (much safer) and then boil those eggs to make pickled eggs when wanted. Just be sure to poke a hole in the end of the egg before boiling. Water Glass so thoroughly seals the egg shell that they will explode when boiled if you don't poke a hole first. Twitter: @LogicalPrepper

    1. I have heard of storing eggs using water glass but have never tried it. So far the pickled eggs have worked out great. They are wonderful in tuna and chicken salad. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

    2. This test didn't go well.

  4. After pickling beets the juice left over is marvelous tasting for pickled eggs. I add extra liquid to beets just for this purpose.

  5. I made some with a dill solution and another batch with a bread and butter recipe. I also added red pepper flakes for a little heat. Mine are kept in the fridge. Great in potato salad.

  6. My daddy has chickens laying so we have lots of fresh eggs ... I think this is my solution , thanks to u n a friend , Dorinda Stevens , who referred me here!!! God bless...

  7. Gonna try this week to do mine,thanks for the recipe

  8. Allways refigerate do not trust an untrained persoons judgement call over usda.

  9. Can you use pickling spice? And if you can how much would i use?

  10. In all the decades of people making, canning and eating pickled eggs.. there has been ONE, yes ONE instance of botulism.. that being back in 1997. As long as you use 5% vinegar and do not dilute it more than a 50/50 ratio with water or other liquid, the PH will not allow the growth of botulism. Every literature also screams "REFRIGERATE! REFRIGERATE"!!! I have been water bath canning pickled eggs for decades and store them in a cool, dark pantry.... NOT refrigerated. Evidently, no-one who writes the idiotic cautions has ever visited a bar where the eggs sit in a gallon jug on the counter for months.

    1. Jim, what a great point...and the guy didn't actually can his, he just sealed them in a jar he was reusing!
      I just canned my first batch of eggs, but am probably going to put them in the because I only did 2 quarts and also my eggs were not peeled perfectly (is there such a thing?!?!)

    2. Do you know if honey can be substituted for the sugar?

    3. Jim Goodel Can i get your recipe and how to do it please.

  11. I'm somewhat new to prepping. I'm confused and a little scared, but I'm going to try pickling my eggs using the water bath canning for shelf storage.

  12. I am a beginner at doing the canned pickled eggs... so many people saying you can or you can't!! I actually canned 3 quarts with pure white vinegar an 1/3 of canned beet juice an a pinch of sea salt. I added a Bay leaf an 1/4 sugar in one the other with garlic an the third one with a sprig of rosemary... I've seen people say you can use any spice but I'm wondering if mine are going to be inedible!!?? Also canned to store in pantry is my mixture safe? I have Crohns an surely don't want to add anything else to my health issues!! Any feedback would be greatly appreciated! Plus I will definitely try your way in my next batch

  13. I have been canning pickled eggs for decades without any issues whatsoever. The only criteria is to practice bit of food safety and know how to can food. I have challenged people for years to state why I can't can pickled eggs and have never gotten a response, other than "My sister's boyfriend' cousin knew someone who might have got sick once from canned pickled eggs"

  14. I'm wondering if the 'danger' comes from the fact this is a protein...basically a meat that is being 'canned'. It's not a vegetable or fruit. Meat needs to be under pressure to preserve. I realize the vinegar and salt/sugar add some protection but I'm personally not comfortable with using a water bath for a protein. I've been canning since 1974 and I do think it is something to be cautious about, especially for those new to canning and processing. I don't think pickled eggs have to be refrigerated if they are eaten relatively soon.... but I also don't think for long term storage a water bath is safe. My 2 cents.


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