How Long Do Hard Boiled Eggs Last?



Hardboiled eggs will last up to one week in the refrigerator but should not sit at room temperature for more than two hours.

More Info: Unlike a fresh egg that can last from three to five weeks if kept refrigerated in its shell at a temperature of 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below, a hardboiled egg is edible up to one week.


Fresh Eggs Are Protected

The shell of a fresh egg is porous and susceptible to bacteria and other contaminants. Nature has remedied this by producing a natural protective coating passed from the hen to the egg called a cuticle. This protective coating keeps the egg fresher longer as it inhibits bacteria from entering the egg through the shell.

Unfortunately, the cleaning process carried out by egg processors ultimately strips the shell of its coating leaving the egg vulnerable. Some processors replace the natural coating lost during processing with a thin edible wax or oil coating to mimic the cuticle.

Why a Fresh Egg Lasts Longer than Hard-Boiled?

The boiling process required to make hard-boiled eggs strips the protective coating from the shell just like the washing process carried out at the processing plant, once again leaving it porous and vulnerable to contaminants. This is the reason that a hardboiled egg has a shorter refrigerator shelf life than a fresh egg.

Fact: Both the hardboiled egg and the fresh egg should not be eaten if left at room temperature for longer than two hours.

Fact: Egg whites and egg yolks that have been removed from the shell have a shelf life of two to four days if kept in the refrigerator at a temperature of 40 degrees Fahrenheit or below.



Bradley, Francine, and Annie King. “Egg Basics for the Consumer: Packaging, Storage, and Nutritional Information.” University of California Division of Agricultural and Natural Resources. University of California, n.d. Web. 17 Apr. 2010. <anrcatalog.ucdavis.edu/pdf/8154.pdf>.


“Facts about Eggs and Food Safety.” College of Agriculture and Life Sciences homepage. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Apr. 2010. http://ag.arizona.edu/pubs/health/foodsafety/az1077.html.


“How Long Can You Keep Hard-Boiled Eggs?.” NetWellness. N.p., n.d. Web. 19 Apr. 2010. http://www.netwellness.uc.edu/healthtopics/poison/hardboiledeggs.cfm.

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