Everyone knows that egg freshness is important to ensure that you and your friends and family do not get sick. However, especially with raw eggs, it can be hard to tell when an egg or an egg recipe has gone bad. That is where we come in; with all the great recipes on our website, we thought it would be important to share the proper storing for any left-overs of your eggs as well as the “shelf” life for these eggs and egg concoctions.
To begin, we will start with the refrigeration of a raw egg. A raw egg is an egg that is uncooked and still in it’s shell. On the packaging, the expiration date is 45 days after the eggs have been packaged. Typically, eggs are packaged 1 or 2 days after they are laid (for more information, check out our “Farm to Table” article here). Raw eggs, in a cool refrigerator, usually remain fresh for about 4 to 5 weeks. If you are still unsure, try floating the egg in water: if it is fresh, it will sink; if it is not as fresh, it will float in the middle; and if it is bad or expired, the egg will float.
As for cooked eggs, the length of freshness varies on how the egg is cooked. A cooked through, hard-boiled egg can last about a week in the fridge before it is expired. However, despite being thoroughly cooked and hard boiled, Deviled eggs cannot be kept for any longer than 48 hours. As for Scrambled eggs, also cooked all the way through, they can last about 72 hours in the refrigerator. Any egg not cooked through all the way–for example, over-easy, sunny side up, soft boiled, and poached eggs–should NOT be stored after cooking. It is not recommended because it has not been cooked all the way, and therefore, there is potential that any bacteria has not been properly destroyed.
|Eggs||Refrigerator (35°F to 40°F)|
|Raw whole eggs (in shell)||4 to 5 weeks beyond the pack date or about 3 weeks after purchase|
|Raw whole eggs (slightly beaten)||Up to 2 days|
|Raw egg whites||Up to 4 days|
|Raw egg yolks||Up to 2 days|
|Hard-boiled eggs (in shell)||Up to 1 week|
|Hard-boiled eggs (peeled)||Use the same day for best quality|
Next, Freezer storage: if you have more eggs than you can use within a few weeks, you can freeze them, out of their shells. Freeze only clean, fresh eggs. Place them in freezer containers, seal tightly and label with the number of eggs, whites or yolks and the date. Defrost frozen eggs overnight in the refrigerator.
Egg yolks thicken (or gel) when frozen. To hinder gel formation, beat in either 1/8 teaspoon salt or 1-1/2 teaspoons sugar or corn syrup per ¼ cup yolks (4 Large) before freezing. Indicate “with salt” (main dishes) or “with sugar” (desserts) on the label. The following chart shows how long hard-boiled eggs and raw eggs last when stored in the freezer.
|Eggs||Freezer (0°F or colder)|
|Raw whole eggs (in shell)||Not recommended|
|Raw whole eggs (slightly beaten)||Up to 1 year|
|Raw egg whites||Up to 1 year|
|Raw egg yolks||Up to year|
|Hard-boiled eggs (in shell)||Not recommended|
|Hard-boiled eggs (peeled)||Not recommended (the white become tough and watery)|
For any other questions on proper egg storage or freshness, check out our website at www.ncegg.org!