There is no occasion that cannot be improved upon by a deviled egg. If you’re looking for a classic, no-frills recipe for deviled eggs, this is it.

If you have trouble peeling hard-boiled eggs, here’s a trick: Once the eggs are done cooking, drain the saucepan immediately and fill it with water and ice. Lightly crack each egg and place them back in the saucepan for 10 minutes, then remove and discard the shells under cold running water. The shells almost always come off more easily.

Classic Deviled Eggs

The filling for Southern-style deviled eggs is nothing more than egg yolks, mayonnaise (Duke’s if you can find it), mustard, and sweet pickle relish. Use a fork to mash these ingredients together until the filling is completely smooth. You can spoon the filling into the halved egg whites, or use a piping bag (or small zip-top storage bag with one corner snipped off) for a pretty, swirled topping.

A sprinkle of paprika is the traditional topping, but you can use smoked paprika for a deep, smoky flavor, or cayenne powder to add a spicy kick. If you are tasked with bringing deviled eggs to a party, transport the unfilled egg white halves and egg yolk filling separately and fill the eggs just before serving.


  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish
  • 1 teaspoon prepared mustard
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • Dash of pepper
  • Garnish: paprika


  1. Boil eggs: Place eggs in a single layer in a saucepan; add water to a depth of 3 inches. Bring to a boil; cover, remove from heat, and let stand for 15 minutes.boiling eggs in a saucepanCAITLIN BENSEL; FOOD STYLIST: TORIE COX
  2. Chill eggs: Immediately drain and fill the saucepan with cold water and ice.hard boiled eggs in saucepan with iceCAITLIN BENSEL; FOOD STYLIST: TORIE COX
  3. Peel eggs: Firmly tap each egg on the counter until cracks form all over the shell. Peel under cold running water.peeling eggsCAITLIN BENSEL; FOOD STYLIST: TORIE COX
  4. Make deviled egg filling: Cut eggs in half lengthwise, and carefully remove yolks. Mash yolks with mayonnaise. Add mustard, relish, salt, and pepper. Stir well.deviled egg fillingCAITLIN BENSEL; FOOD STYLIST: TORIE COX
  5. Fill eggs: Spoon egg yolk mixture into egg whites. Garnish with paprika, if desired.filling egg whites with deviled egg mixtureCAITLIN BENSEL; FOOD STYLIST: TORIE COX

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is deviled egg filling made of?
  • Classic deviled egg filling is made with hard-cooked egg yolks, mayonnaise, sweet relish, mustard, salt, and pepper. Paprika can be sprinkled on top as a garnish.
  • Is it better to make deviled eggs the day before or the day of a meal?
  • Deviled eggs can be made up to one day ahead. If you make them too early, the filling could dry out. For the best make-ahead results, keep the egg whites and filling separate, and stuff the deviled eggs just before you plan to serve.

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