No, really

By Mir
April 1, 2013
Category Detritus

I guess this is the part where I’m supposed to tell you a fantastic made-up story and convince you that it’s true. I’ve never been a fan of April Fool’s Day—as much as I love a good story, the calculated intent to trick never sits well with me—but we may as well get it out of the way.

So: Licorice is pregnant! Also, Licorice is actually a cat. Who recently won the lottery. SWEARSIES.

We good? Okay, then. (I know. I’m not very good at the whole trickster thing.)

Instead of that nonsense, I have a VERY SERIOUS burning question which I urge you to consider carefully because this is IMPORTANT. If you like eggs, and you like hard-boiled and deviled eggs, can you please explain to me why it is now de rigueur for deviled eggs to be all fancified with weird ingredients instead of just being, you know, regular deviled eggs? DEVILED EGGS ARE ALREADY DELICIOUS. (This question brought to you by Easter dinner.)

Please discuss. I require enlightenment.


  1. Jen

    Because people are bored with deviled eggs I suppose.
    And now I’m going to go make truly boring but nom-tastic deviled eggs. Nom.

  2. Randi

    I don’t know! I’ve only tried to add something to deviled eggs once, and that was bacon. Because, ya know, bacon makes EVERYTHING better. Maybe I should wrap the deviled egg IN bacon then cook it more…wait, no, greasy mess..hmm..

  3. CIndy

    Oh, you want to start something today I see. :)

    We have an ongoing debate at our house regarding deviled eggs. I prefer them with mayo and mustard, plus a bit of relish/chopped pickle and salt/pepper. A little paprika on top for color is nice but optional.

    However, I have a plain eating contingent in my family that says mayo and a bit of salt are the only two acceptable additions.

    So I make both. I have seen recipes for all kinds of weird (-er than pickle) additions and have tried some of them but it messes with the balance of flavors too much.

    • Mir

      I believe it’s in the bible somewhere that deviled eggs are made with mayo, a touch of mustard, salt/pepper, and pickle relish. The paprika is for looks and optional, as you say. Just mayo and salt doesn’t even sound right to me, BUT this was more about the “use capers and salmon roe!” kinds of recipes. NO. Just, no.

      • Gaylin

        My mom’s deviled eggs didn’t even have pickle relish! Plain works for me.

        • Jessica

          My mom’s and my paternal grandmother’s don’t have the pickle relish either — just mayo, mustard, salt/pepper, and a dash of paprika on top. Not that it matters to me, because I don’t like hard-boiled eggs or deviled eggs…

  4. hokgardner

    In our house, ingredients for deviled eggs will always be mayo, mustard, a little vinegar and some paprika. Nothing fancy for us. Anything else is a crime against deviled eggs.

  5. Crickett

    I don’t know! I make deviled eggs for appetizers to take to parties. They are plain deviled eggs. They are always the first thing to go. The fancy ones sit there, and everyone talks about how pretty they are. They can’t talk about mine because they’re so busy EATING THEM!

  6. Beth A.

    I don’t understand either. The deviled egg has already been perfected…stop messing with it. :)

  7. Arnebya

    I have fancied up my eggs with crabmeat once or twice, but outside of that? Nope. Salt, pepper, dry mustard, Miracle Whip and paprika (and sometimes, rarely, a dash of cayenne pepper). I do like the way they look when a cake decorating thingamajig is used to put the ingredients back into the egg hole, but even that is slightly too fancy for me. It’s just a deviled egg.

  8. Beth A.

    Ok, now I have to jump in and say that I prefer my deviled eggs to NOT have chunks…so no pickle relish at our house. Mayo, mustard, salt/pepper, a dash of sugar–just to cut some of the tartness, and paprika for the top (again, optional).

    I have an aunt who puts chopped up green peppers in her deviled eggs and then tops them with a slice of green olive with pimento. She and my uncle are the only ones who eat them. My mom’s recipe (typically made by me these days) are always gone first.

  9. Amy

    Well, we like deviled eggs with bacon in them. Because, obviously, bacon. And also, if there’s bacon in them, then it makes complete sense to eat a half dozen of them for breakfast. Ta da.

    • Therese

      Well, yes, Amy. What would be more normal than bacon and eggs for breakfast?

    • Lori N

      Why have I never thought of this? Hey kids! Guess what’s for breakfast!

    • Holly

      I put bacon in mine, too. Sooo delicious!

  10. suzie

    I went to a restaurant once, and ordered fancified deviled eggs. They had wasabi in them, and sushi grade tuna ON them. My daughters and I nearly died with the deliciousness. I actually had a hard time getting them to leave my eggs alone (because they were mine). Then I made them myself, at home, and they were delicious again.

    But they were expensive (that sushi grade tuna will do it), and so I’m not sure if I’ll ever make them again. Maybe for a fancy dinner-party appetizer, or something.

    The experience has not taken away from the amazingness of normal deviled eggs (mayo, mustard, relish, salt, and paprika).

  11. Patricia

    I’m with Mir and the “Biblical” recipe for deviled eggs. What is MORE disturbing to me are the ones made to look like chicks coming out of the with faces and combs and such. Seriously, I don’t want my food to have a face WHILE I’m eating it. And I should never open my fridge to a dozen “egg chicks” staring back at me.

    Oh — and since my son can eat his body weight in deviled eggs, my only question is why won’t he eat egg salad?

    • mamalang

      My son too! He loves eggs in all other forms, and will devour deviled eggs until he’s sick, but always turns his nose up at egg salad!

  12. Emily in IL

    Mayo (no Miracle Whip – that IS the devil in our house), dry mustard, salt pepper, maybe some chives & dill if we’re feeling sassy, and horseradish if we’re going ALL out (omg so delicious).

  13. Amanda

    Deviled eggs (unless you’re making them from the cookbook my grandma gave me, then they’re called stuffed party eggs) should not be tinkered with beyond the mayo to mustard ratio.

  14. Kate

    I grew up eating the plain version of deviled eggs – mayo and mustard. Then I met my mother in law, and she makes them with relish and a little sugar. I disliked them at first, but they’ve grown on me. I’m going to make some with horseradish one day, because I like horseradish, but that is as fancy as I want them.

  15. Jamie

    I LOVE deviled eggs. But simple… just Miracle Whip for the tang, relish, salt and pepper, then sprinkled with paprika. I’m not a huge mustard fan, so I typically leave it out.

  16. Jean

    I make deviled egg salad: mustard, mayo, salt pepper, a little paprika. that’s it. No relish nothing. And then I proceed to eat all of it.

  17. Sharon

    I have always made deviled eggs, and my mother before me, with mayo, mustard, relish, onion salt, and paprika on top. Thirty-seven years ago my future in-laws told me my deviled eggs were “interesting.” I had no idea what they meant and my future husband told me not to worry about it. He has always liked the way I make them. Yesterday I used organic mustard instead of Gulden’s…and don’t you know he noticed? That will teach me to mess with a good thing.

  18. Debra


    Deviled eggs (the mayo, salt, pepper, relish kind) belong on the plates of the gods! No one should mess with them. It’s just uncivilized!

  19. Karen V

    We make them with mayo, mustard and relish then sprinkle with paprika. They always are inhaled so quickly I never bother making less than a dozen. The hubby requests them often!

    Past that I have topped them with French’s onions from a can which add crunch and are yummy. My dad likes them with sliced green onions or chives instead of relish. But all of this still sounds pretty tame to me. I did read a recipe recently for pimento cheese deviled eggs and while I am tempted, I think that might be a bit too far…

    Capers and whatnot sound wayyyyy to far!

  20. Lucinda

    We are pretty basic around here but a friend of mine dyed the egg whites so they were bright neon colors. No. Just NO!

  21. Michelle

    Why mess with a good thing? If you’re going to add fancy ingredients (I’m a mayo and mustard only gal) then in full disclosure they need to be called something else. In my very narrow brain space deviled eggs don’t have anything other than mayo, mustard and and dash of paprika for color. Kind of like if you just called sweet pickles, pickles. . .I need the sweet label to know that I need to set my expectations somewhere else.

  22. The Other Leanne

    Last Christmas I had a fling with making large quantities of devilled eggs (yes, two “L”s in devilled). I have always made them as my mother did: mayo, a touch of mustard, salt/pepper, and pickle relish. I made one small batch with a smidge, a SMIDGE I say, of curry powder and all who tasted them deemed they were the best ever. But wasabi or roe or any of those other bastardizations? No.

  23. Cheryl

    Deviled eggs are disgusting no matter how you fix them. Who had the bright idea of adding anything to an egg and then serving it cold? Yuck!

    • Jessica

      I’m with you on this one. Of course, I don’t like any eggs where the yolk and the white are separated. Give me omelets or scrambled eggs any day! Keep the rest. ;~P

  24. Holly Gault

    This is too true of many foods. Popcorn. Potato chips. Guacamole.

    I resent this fancifying of Just Good Food.

    • Jean

      Pizza. What has been called pizza in some parts of the country does violence to both language and food (California, my beloved state, I am thinking of you.) Dough-with-toppings (say, blue cheese and pineapple) is not automatically pizza. Pizza can be done many ways, but even pizza can only be pushed so far and still be called pizza.

  25. Brenda

    Fancy ingredients? No thanks! Whipped salad dressing, mustard, salt, pepper, paprika. The only way I’ll EVER make deviled eggs.

  26. js

    And, let’s add macaroni salad to this discussion, too, because I have a metric ton of eggs left and am looking for ways to use them up! So many recipes for macaroni salad with pimento and black olives and roasted red pepper, sugar and vinegar. Ewwww! I second the no, no, no on that one. Now, I’m all fired up.

  27. Mary K. in Rockport

    To the several generations of deviled egg makers/eaters in our family, the essence of the deviled egg is its smoothness. Like jello. No crunchy or lumpy ingredients wanted. We do put in a tiny smidge of curry. Yesterday, we tried something new that I saw in a magazine: boil the eggs, gently crack the shells all over, and leave them in the Easter egg dye overnight. You get a colorful crackle-pattern on the agg white that doesn’t alter the taste at all – these were well received, indeed. We’re envisioning 4th of July colors and Christmas colors on our deviled eggs henceforth!

  28. suburbancorrespondent

    Well, now I’m the one who is puzzled. I had always assumed deviled eggs were a goyische thing, along with rolled sandwiches and Miracle Whip. We Jews are genetically disposed to make egg salad (with real mayo) or eat our eggs straight-up (with salt, of course). But here you are, talking about deviled eggs and your love for them. Another cultural stereotype shattered, I suppose…

    Oh, wait – I searched on your blog and found out that you converted to Christianity. Does a love for deviled eggs come with the conversion package? And now I am thinking of that silly scene in Hannah and Her Sisters when the Woody Allen character flirts with converting to Catholicism and comes home carrying a bag with a crucifix, some white bread, and a jar of mayo (while his mother wails in the background).

    There, I think I’ve managed to offend everyone now. You’re welcome.

    • Mir

      I ate plenty of deviled eggs before I converted. At temple, even. Maybe it’s a part-of-the-country thing rather than a goyische thing? ;)

      • suburbancorrespondent

        I am (was) a Jersey girl. Northern NJ, near NYC. Never saw deviled eggs at shul, so now I am thinking this might be a Reform v Conservative thing…

        • deva at deva by definition

          I was raised in a mixed-religion household and quite like devilled eggs, but I’m in the process of possibly converting. Like rice,but not quite as tasty.

    • 12tequilas

      I never thought of deviled eggs as goyische, but you’re right, plain old hardboiled or egg salad is more likely to be seen (especially now, on Passover [which yay! ends shortly]). One of my kids prefers his sandwiches with mayo, and so I’m not sure he’s really mine.

  29. not supergirl

    Here’s another supporter of the smooth deviled egg filling. No thank you to the relish. If someone in my group gets fancy, it’s with a green olive slice on top. That’s how you know we’re really living. :)

  30. Tenessa

    I have never understood why you would do anything extra to a hardboiled egg. Seriously, mayo and eggs? Bleh.

  31. Kelly

    My husband was just talking about this yesterday at Easter dinner. Ours are pretty plain–mayo, mustard, maybe a little sugar? Anyway, he was telling about one time we were at a gathering for the other side of the family and he bit into a deviled egg, assuming it was “normal.” Turns out that there were jalepenos mixed in. Not bad, necessarily, but not what he was expecting. It made him wonder, like you, why you need to mess with a good thing. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! Capers and salmon are WAY wrong! Who even thinks of this stuff?

  32. Heather

    I don’t like chunks in my deviled eggs, so I use pickle juice but not relish in my filling. Mayo, mustard (I use a bit of dijon and yellow), sprinkle of sugar, salt and pepper, splash of pickle juice and that’s IT. The bacon may not be so bad, but capers are from the devil and roe? Um, ew.

    Also, re: the spelling note…this really bothered me because I was like, no, I never have seen it with the l doubled, but it would make sense with the double the consonant shorten the vowel rule….so Google came up with this: Apparently the one l is a North Americanism, which made me feel better that I have been doing it “right” all my life, lol.

    • The Other Leanne

      Apparently I read too many British novels.

  33. Pharmgirl

    Bacon is the pixie dust of the food world. It makes everything better.
    My theory is that basic home style food goes to the other side of the looking glass when a chef’s creativity &/or budget dries up.

  34. My Kids Mom

    Question for readers- if you get your eggs fresh from a backyard farmer, how do you make deviled eggs? I can’t get them to peel. I make egg salad by poaching them, but the beautifully paprika sprinkled deviled ones are impossible. And the only acceptable ingredients are mayo, pickle relish (or just the juice) mustard, salt and pepper with paprika for looks.

    • Mir

      I read on the Internet (therefore it must be true…) that you can add some baking soda to the boiling water and that will make them peel more easily.

      I haven’t tried it myself, though, because I also read on the Internet that you can bake them in the oven (in a mini-muffin tin, 325 for 30 minutes) instead of boiling, so that’s what I did with this batch. :D

      • Julie

        You made deviled eggs with these baked eggs?

        • Mir

          I did, indeed! They peeled easily, too.

      • My Kids Mom

        link to either method?

      • Melissa C

        I read the same thing! I’ll save y’all the trouble and go ahead and spoil the ending: it’s a dirty, dirty lie.

        • not supergirl

          I’m with you Melissa. I tried it, and it did not go well. Luckily, I only tried it with a few eggs. The internet is my best friend, and she tells me a million wonderful secrets, but sometimes she lies.

    • suburbancorrespondent

      You need to keep some of the eggs for a couple of weeks. The eggs need to be older to peel properly.

    • Alicia

      Let them sit in your fridge for two weeks. Works every time. I learned that trick when I started buying my eggs strait from the farm(ers market). There’s always a huge rush two weeks before every holiday for eggs and lots of the vendors take orders the week before the big rush.

    • Julie

      Farm fresh eggs are hard to peel because they are….fresh!!! Leave them out of the frig overnight or better yet, all day long. It will help them peel much easier. Also shock them with ice water after boiling (make sure each shell has cracked some first). This also helps. Yep, we’re farmers and use those farm fresh eggs. Making egg salad from Easter eggs that were bought at the store is my own little slice of heaven every year ;)

      • Anna

        Can I just point out that if farm fresh eggs are hard to peel, and store bought eggs are not…..

  35. Jess

    Smooth deviled eggs. Mayo and a touch of mustard for us. Though the past two years I did put curry powder in them – it only made them more delicious.

  36. Tracy B

    I dyed my egg whites this year and surprisely…NO ONE ate them. I was very proud of myself all festive and everything…so I’m going to stick with plain for now on. If you have time, check out my photo on FaceBook. They are very festive! :) Oh and I love your profile picture! :)

  37. Corey

    Hmm…I never realized there were even so many variations of ‘real’ deviled eggs! My mom’s recipe: dill pickle juice to dissolve the yolks better, then yellow mustard and Miracle Whip, sprinkled with paprika & sometimes an olive slice on top (used to always be green; now it’s sometime’s black).

    I don’t eat MW or mayo, so I like “guacamole eggs” instead: yolks mixed with olive oil, jalapeno, avocado, cayenne, tomato, onion (if I must).

  38. skubitwo

    mayo or miracle whip, yellow mustard, salt, sometimes pickle relish.
    the absolute best way to eat them is with shovels just all into my mouth.

  39. Tamy

    Pinterest made me do it. My poor family gagged on those guacamole deviled eggs and made me sign a contract never to alter from the tried and true of Miracle Whip, mustard and paprika.

  40. Rocky Mountain Woman

    I will eat them any way someone will make them for me because they are one of the best possible foods on God’s Green Earth!

    fancy, schmancy, plain and simple, i love them any way I can get them….

  41. Carrie

    Well, I am shocked by this question. I have never encountered fancified (is too a word) deviled eggs — possibly because our egg related holidays are all spent with family and we all use the same recipe. These have always been served on our Easter table and (oddly enough) occasionally at Thanksgiving (a family joke). So I am stunned to read all the variations in the comments here — and a bit scandalized.

    To add to the conversation, however, I saw on the food network that 24 hours before boiling your eggs you should flip each egg upside down in the carton. This settles the yolk in the center of the egg. I tried it, and it worked, so our deviled eggs were well centered.

    • My Kids Mom

      now that is cool

  42. Peggy Fry

    At last, a topic I have researched and am a Certified Expert in…..ha. Deviled eggs are made with mayo, dry mustard, a bit of vinegar (I use the malt vinegar that is used for fish & chips) pickle juice or relish, lots of salt (mmm, bacon salt!!!) and decorated with paprika. Put all the yellow stuff in a baggie and zip it shut. cut the corner off and squish it out like a pastry filler into the little empty egg whites. I’ll have to try the turn the eggs over thing but I don’t really worry about un-centered eggs. The thing w/ the baking soda in the water is true – it WORKS!!! so help me God! An amazing trick I learned from the internet. OOoooh… sometimes I put dill in, too. That’s it.

    This is one of those topics that is a conversation starter at parties – like how do you make meatloaf and are the pretty towels in the bathroom to look at or to use.

  43. Peggy Fry

    oh, and don’t forget the topic of which way to put the toilet paper in the holder – so the new paper rolls off the top or the bottom. People become very passionate about these topics, and it is usually because they do things the way thier mom taught them. It makes a great conversation starter at a table with folks you don’t know. Probably lots of other things out there like that. (How to fold towels the Right Way, fold laundry or stuff it in the drawer, the Right Way to wrap a present, that sort of thing…..) Suggestions?

    • Jessica

      The funny thing is that I put the toilet paper on backwards from my parents (and my husband’s parents, but my husband and I agree which is the “right” way for us). I also fold my towels, pants, socks, and sometimes shirts differently than my parents. I do fold my underwear the same way, but I had to teach my husband how to do that (he has two brothers, so I’m guessing he never folded women’s underwear before).

      Oh, and the right way to wrap a present is to get a gift bag and some tissue and stick it all in the bag. ;~)

      • deva at deva by definition

        for toilet paper: the proper way is the way the cat cannot unroll it. so it goes under.

  44. Rosie

    Nobody is addressing the April Fool’s Day thing? Personally, I despise it. Pranks, practical jokes, whatever you call it. The purpose is to embarass someone and make them feel stupid or foolish or gullible so that you can laugh at them. Not funny. I consider myself to have a pretty great sense of humor, but not at the expense of someone else.

  45. Amy

    If you add a little vinegar and some finely diced shallots to deviled eggs THEY ARE DELICIOUS.

  46. Melissa C

    Okay, that does it. I’m headed to the fridge to finish off the leftover deviled eggs. (Which were made with salt, pepper, pickle relish, mustard, and Duke’s mayo. Just the way Jesus intended.)

    • Kelly

      What are “leftover” deviled eggs? Never heard of them! ;-)

  47. Melissa

    With only two of us in the house, we have discovered that mixing it up a bit when the carton of eggs hits the expiration date can be a good thing. I like mine with dijon mustard, mayo, onion salt, pepper and smoked paprika on top. He likes mayo, mustard, sweet pickle relish (YUCK) and smoked paprika. We both like mayo, dijon mustard, a sprinkle of ranch seasoning and regular paprika. I am going to have to try adding bacon salt to the ranch ones!

  48. Kelly

    I did try a recipe this weekend that mixed avocado with the egg yolks to mainly cut back on the amount of mayo and it was delicious… tasted pretty much the same. :)

  49. Billie

    Hahahahahahahah!!!!! So funny that you bring deviled eggs up. I have 4 sisters and have banned 2 of them from ever making the deviled eggs for our family functions. My parents make an extra deviled egg bowl at family functions for my little family because we love them so much. My version is with REAL mayo and Gulden’s Spicy Brown Mustard. Nothing else is needed.

  50. Katie in MA

    I know you had a zillion comments, but really, I stopped reading after I heard about adding bacon. I am totally using the rest of the dyed Easter eggs tonight. Mwa ha ha.

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