How Long Are Hard-Boiled Eggs Good For?

With a preparation that requires no cracking, scrambling, poaching, or frying, hard-boiled eggs are about as simple as it gets. They're high in protein as well as loaded with essential vitamins and can be used in a variety of different dishes for all meals of the day (via Very Well Fit). 

It can seem like raw eggs stay fresh forever, and you might think that the same concept applies to eggs once they've been cooked — but that's not entirely correct. Hard-boiled eggs do have a best-by date and they actually stay good for a shorter period of time than their fresh counterparts (via Healthline). One of the reasons for this is because when the eggs are boiled, the hot water removes the protective membrane called an egg bloom that surrounds the fresh egg (via Better Hens and Gardens).

Once this layer is gone, it causes the egg to be more vulnerable to naturally occurring microorganisms in the environment, causing them to potentially spoil and go bad. Of course, this only applies to farm-fresh eggs, as commercial eggs are cleaned after laying and before they're shipped to your grocer (which is why they need to be kept in your refrigerator).

This is how long you can keep your hard-boiled eggs in the refrigerator

According to the United States Food and Drug Administration, hard-boiled eggs can be eaten for up to one week after they've been cooked. If you are going to store your eggs after cooking them, they should be still in the shell, as peeled hard-boiled eggs should be consumed the same day that you cook them (via Country Living). 

It is recommended that you store them in the refrigerator in order to inhibit the growth of bad bacteria. They shouldn't be kept in a refrigerator door because that can cause the temperature of the egg to fluctuate due to the frequent opening and closing of the door. Because of the porous nature of the shell, you should also keep them away from pungent foods unless you want them to pick up the flavor of whatever dish is smelling strongly in your refrigerator. 

If you hard boil eggs often, it can also be helpful to write the cooking dates on the shell of each egg in order to remind yourself how long ago they were boiled.