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Southern Style Deviled Eggs Recipe

These deviled eggs are the perfect treat for those times when you want a snack but don’t want anything sweet. That’s why they’re so popular at picnics, buffets, and potluck dinners.

Plate of deviled eggs

Please read the entire post before you begin this recipe. You might pick up some tips to make it better and easier. However, if you’re in a huge hurry, all you have to do is click on the jump-to-recipe button beneath the title, and you’ll be taken to a point directly above the printable recipe card.

I use basic deviled eggs ingredients for my recipe that you can follow as-is. Or you can doctor them up with more things to suit your personal taste.

I like deviled eggs with pickles, but there are so many different spices for deviled eggs that you can make them fit any style of meal.

For example, if you’re serving an Italian meal, use Italian dressing in place of one of the ingredients.

Or if you’re putting them on a south-of-the-border themed snack table serve deviled eggs with jalapeños. I always like to add heat when I have the opportunity.

Classic Southern Style Deviled Eggs Recipe

The recipe I have was handed down through the generations. In fact, they were always the same, whether I was at my great-grandmother’s house, at my grandmother’s, or with my mom.

Occasionally, someone would add a little something to make the recipe her own. For example, my mother tried putting chopped olives in hers.

All of them were good, but my favorites were the simple ones from the basic recipe. Sometimes they had paprika sprinkled over them and others times they were plain. I was fine with them either way. 

Perfect for Special Occasions

I’ve always enjoyed eating deviled eggs, partly because they were in abundance at any family gathering. And the family get-togethers left me with so many fond memories.

While the cooks put the meal together, the kids (young’uns to our older kinfolk) could help ourselves to whatever was on the appetizer table.

Since all of my relatives had pecan trees, there were typically roasted pecans, a veggie tray, some sort of salty snack mix, and of course these delicious deviled eggs.

We always worked our way down the table and grabbed at least one—or a handful—of each thing.

I sometimes got a little greedy with the deviled eggs because they were so good. Of course, I wasn’t the only one.

What was funny, though, was that a lot of people never put the deviled eggs on their plate. They went straight to their mouths.

Deviled Eggs Ingredients

There aren’t many ingredients in this deviled eggs recipe. In fact, you probably have what you need in your refrigerator.

Of course, you’ll need some eggs.

For a small group, I use a half dozen eggs to make a dozen deviled eggs.

You’ll also need a little mayonnaise and mustard.

My mother added sweet pickle relish, but that’s an optional ingredient. You can also use dill relish or no relish at all.

Mustard, mayonnaise, and sweet pickle relish

She also sprinkled some paprika over the top to make them pretty.

You don’t have to do that, but if you do, people will notice them more quickly.

Smoked paprika

Alternative and Optional Ingredients

If you want to add different or even more flavor to your deviled eggs, try one or more of these:

  • Chopped olives
  • Dill pickles
  • Chopped celery
  • Onion
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Bacon bits
  • Chopped chives
  • Ground cayenne
  • Sriracha sauce
  • Jalapeno peppers

For spicy deviled eggs, you can add as much cayenne as you like. Or you might want to use your favorite hot sauce. Just make sure you warn others who might be expecting a more traditional deviled egg.

Another thing you can do is make a couple of platters of deviled eggs, one made the traditional way and the other spicy. Make it clear which is which.

For example, you might have one platter of jalapeno deviled eggs that’s labeled “spicy” and another one labeled “traditional” or “classic.”

How to Make Deviled Eggs

The first thing you have to do is boil your eggs.

I did this in my air fryer because it’s so easy and provides a consistent result.

Bowl of eggs in front of an air fryer

You don’t want to work with hot boiled eggs, one of the reasons an ice water bath after they’re cooked really helps.

It cools them off and makes them easier to peel.

Next, after you peel the eggs, carefully slice them lengthwise. And just as carefully, remove the yolks.

Then, place the egg whites on a platter. Put the yolks in a separate bowl.

Cooked egg whites on a plate

Now, mash the yolks with a fork. Once you properly, add the mayonnaise and mustard.

If you choose to include sweet pickle relish, add that now. You can add more ingredients if you choose, but I think it’s yummy just like it is.

Next, stir until well mixed. Give it a taste to determine if it needs anything else.

If you want, you can salt and pepper it, but I don’t think it needs additional flavor.

Carefully fill the egg white halves with the yolk mixture. Be careful not to tear the eggs.

I can’t even begin to count the number of times I’ve ripped the sides of eggs. But that’s okay because most people don’t care. 

You can either add them to the deviled egg plater or destroy the evidence by eating them. That’s what I do.

Once you’ve filled all of the eggs, place them on a plate or deviled egg platter. They look so pretty, don’t they?

Plate of deviled eggs

Now, sprinkle them with paprika. We like the smoked paprika, but you can use the plain version if you like.

Tips for Making the Best Deviled Eggs

Follow the instructions above, and you should be fine. Here are some tips that might help:

  • Always start with well cooked eggs.
  • Put them in an ice bath as soon as you remove them from the water. This will help when it’s time to peel them.
  • Mash the yolks as much as you can before adding the other ingredients. This helps to keep the filling smooth.
  • Add your favorite flavors to make them suit your taste. Don’t be afraid to try something different. If you’re not sure whether or not something will taste good, make a couple of extra eggs and test it first.
  • Make enough for everyone to have several. Deviled eggs are always very popular at dinner parties and potluck events.
  • Remember that they don’t have to be absolutely perfect.

Deviled Egg Salad

If you’re looking for a flavorful salad, you can chop up all of the ingredients in deviled eggs (except the paprika). Combine them in a large bowl and mix them well.

Sprinkle the paprika over the top, and you have a gorgeously delicious deviled egg salad. Or you can make this yummy egg salad that delivers a lot of flavor as well. In fact, it’s very similar.

Questions About Deviled Eggs

Here are some answers to questions you might have about deviled eggs. These are the ones I hear the most.

How Far Ahead Can You Prepare Deviled Eggs?

If you have a lot of foods to make, you can prepare the deviled eggs up to 2 days in advance.

Keep the yolk mixture separate from the whites until right before you plan to serve them. That’s the best way to keep them tasting fresh.

After you stuff the egg whites with the yolk mixture, cover them with plastic and refrigerate them for up to 12 hours.

Can You Freeze Deviled Eggs?

I don’t recommend freezing deviled eggs, mainly because the texture will change. However, they’re safe to eat after they’ve been frozen, but they’ll be grainy.

How Should You Transport Deviled Eggs?

If you’re bringing deviled eggs to a potluck or any kind of get-together, you’ll need to find a way to protect them.

One thing you can do is purchase a deviled egg carrier that has indentions for one or two dozen eggs. I got one from Walmart, but I’ve seen them at a lot of different stores, including the Dollar Tree.

Or you can create your own deviled egg carrier. Keep in mind that your goal is to keep the eggs from sliding around and smooshing each other. There are several ways to do this, including some that cost nothing or very little.

My favorite type of low-cost carrier is a repurposed egg carton. Save several of them so you always have them when needed.

What I do is cover the inside with foil that I press down into each indention. Then flip the cover of them, and you have the perfect carrier.

You can also flip the egg cartons upside down in an aluminum pan. Cover it with foil and gently press down to create crevices to cradle the eggs.

Plate of egg whites above deviled eggs

More Recipes

We love a wide variety of dishes in our home. One of our favorites is this pecan crusted fish. We serve it with this yummy homemade tartar sauce.

Another dish we’ve come to love is this pesto chicken from my friend Julie’s Back to My Southern Roots blog. Packed with flavor and super easy to make, you’ll want to add it to your dinner rotation.

When we’re in the mood for something with a tomato base, we indulge in this penne with Italian sauce. Served with a salad, it’s as close to perfection as a meal can get!

Yield: 12 eggs

Deviled Eggs

Plate of deviled eggs

Deviled eggs enhance any meal, whether it's with the family or a get-together with friends.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon of sweet pickle relish (optional)
  • 1/4 teaspoon of mustard
  • Dash of paprika (optional—smoked or plain)


  1. Boil the eggs and peel them. We like soft-boiled eggs made in the air fryer, but you can make them the traditional way.
  2. After the eggs cool, peel them and cut them lengthwise. Separate the yolks from the whites.
  3. Put the yolks in a bowl and smoosh them with a fork. 
  4. Add the mayonnaise, sweet pickle relish, and mustard. Stir until well mixed.
  5. Fill the egg white halves with the yolk mixture. Put them on a serving dish.
  6. Sprinkle the tops with paprika.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 104Total Fat 8gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 6gCholesterol 188mgSodium 109mgCarbohydrates 1gFiber 0gSugar 0gProtein 6g

The nutrition information is a product of online calculators. I try to provide true and accurate information, but these numbers are estimates.

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Wednesday 31st of March 2021

These look wonderful!

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