Check If an Egg is Fresh

How to Check if an Egg is Fresh.  Source: Wikimedia
How to Check if an Egg is Fresh. Source: Wikimedia

Ever wondered how you check if an egg is fresh? Eggs, surprisingly, remain fresh for many weeks, even a couple of months, after they've been laid, but do you know when you bought them?

One thing you can do is to check the shell and the box to see if there's a "Use By" date, or "Best Before" date. But what if your eggs were laid by your own hens, or a neighbour's hens - or you bought them from a market and binned the box? How do you check if an egg is fresh?

This simple test to check if an egg is fresh works every time!

I certainly wouldn't want to crack it open to check if an egg is fresh - that'd be awful if it were off. There'd be not only the stench of rotting eggs, but what do you then do with the egg that's in your hand and cracked open?

It's very easy to check if an egg is fresh, using just plain water! And, this works. This isn't some trick, it's actually science at work.

Check if an Egg is Fresh

Check if an Egg is Fresh

  1. Get a small bowl of cold water.
  2. Carefully drop the egg into the water.

Watch what it does.

  • If the egg lies on the bottom of the bowl - it's fresh.
  • If the egg stands upright, maybe even bounces a little before it settles, but is still at the bottom - it's close to it's use by date.
  • If the egg floats, it's a bad one and needs chucking out.

I told you it was simple to check if an egg is fresh!

Once laid, eggs do last a surprisingly long time - about 6 weeks. If your eggs, or egg box don't have a date printed on them then you will wonder how to tell if your eggs are fresh enough to use, or need to be binned. By being able to check, you can stop wasting food.

Some recipes benefit from using the freshest of eggs, others are not so picky.

Too Many Eggs - What to Do?

If you find you have a glut of eggs and don't think you will get through them before they go off, then you could cook some of them up right now to use at a later date. Ideas for what to do with eggs include:

  • Make some pickled eggs.
  • Make some omelettes and freeze them.

A good Egg Recipe Book would give you lots of ideas for how to use up a lot of eggs.


Photo of eggs by: Wikimedia

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Comments 3 comments

Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 5 years ago from London, UK

Thank you for this helpful tip.


Sue Bailey profile image

Sue Bailey 3 years ago from South Yorkshire, UK

I generally ignore the use by date on supermarket eggs. They are still usable weeks after that. But I always check using the method you mention


Beth37 3 years ago

Wow, what a great tip. Thanks. :)

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