Southern Deviled Eggs

updated Nov 22, 2022
Southern Deviled Eggs Recipe

A boiled egg base with a creamy filling made of egg yolk, mayonnaise, mustard, and spiked with sweet pickle relish.

Makes24 pieces

Prep10 minutes to 20 minutes

Cook5 minutes

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Credit: Kelli Foster

For every potluck I attend, I give myself a “clean plate challenge.” The goal is simple: Prepare an appetizer that’s so good that I leave the party with a clean plate and no leftovers. My go-to dish is deviled eggs, and now no Easter dinner, spring picnic, or outdoor barbecue is complete without a platter of these two-bite appetizers. While variations on the classic deviled egg recipe abound, nothing satisfies quite like Southern-style deviled eggs, which are made with a filling of egg yolks, mayonnaise, mustard, and sweet pickle relish.

Are Deviled Eggs Southern?

Deviling is a culinary term dating back to the 1700s in England. It referred to foods prepared with hot spices and seasonings like cayenne pepper and mustard. Appetizers like hard-boiled eggs, ham, and seafood were commonly served deviled. The practice of hard-cooking eggs and serving them split with a well-seasoned, or deviled, yolk filling also dates back centuries. So while deviled eggs are not specifically a Southern invention, what sets this recipe apart from other iterations is sweet pickle relish.

What Does Sweet Pickle Relish Add to Deviled Eggs?

Sweet pickle relish adds that all-important crunch to the otherwise smooth yolk filling. The crunchy condiment adds sweetness and acidity, which balances mustard’s spicy heat and cuts through the rich combination of egg yolk and mayonnaise.

The Best Toppings for Southern Deviled Eggs

Southern Deviled Eggs Recipe

A boiled egg base with a creamy filling made of egg yolk, mayonnaise, mustard, and spiked with sweet pickle relish.

Prep time 10 minutes to 20 minutes

Cook time 5 minutes

Makes 24 pieces

Nutritional Info

Ingredients

  • 12

    large eggs

  • 1/4 cup

    mayonnaise

  • 1 tablespoon

    prepared yellow mustard

  • 1/4 teaspoon

    kosher salt

  • 1/4 teaspoon

    freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 tablespoons

    sweet pickle relish

  • Paprika, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Place 12 large eggs in a large saucepan and add enough cool water to cover the eggs by an inch or two. Bring to a boil over high heat. Remove the pan from heat, cover, and let stand for 10 minutes.

  2. Meanwhile, prepare an ice bath by filling a large bowl with ice and water.

  3. Remove the cooked eggs from the pan with a slotted spoon, tap each gently on the countertop to crack the shell in a few places, then submerge in the ice water for at least 1 minute. Peel the eggs and slice them in half lengthwise.

  4. Gently squeeze the eggs to separate the yolks from the whites and use your fingers to remove the yolks. Transfer the yolks to a medium bowl. Arrange the empty whites on a platter, cut-side up.

  5. Mash the yolks with a fork until completely crumbled. Add 1/4 cup mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon prepared yellow mustard, 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Mash until it forms a smooth paste that isn’t too stiff. Add 2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish and stir until combined.

  6. Transfer all of the filling into a quart-sized plastic zip top or piping bag. Press the bag with your hands to push all of the filling to one corner and press out any air on the top. If using a plastic bag, snip that corner off with a pair of scissors.

  7. Pipe the filling into the cup of each egg white, filling the cups so that the filling mounds a little over the top. Sprinkle a pinch of paprika over the top of each egg before serving.

Recipe Notes

Make ahead: The eggs can be hard-boiled and peeled up to 1 day in advance and refrigerated. You can also make the filling up to 1 day ahead, but store in a piping bag or in an airtight container with plastic wrap pressed onto the surface in the refrigerator. Fill the egg white shells when ready to serve.

Storage: Leftover deviled eggs can be kept refrigerated for up to 5 days, but may not look as pretty.