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How to Know if an Egg Is Fresh

Max. D Gray
By Max. D Gray. March 19, 2021
How to Know if an Egg Is Fresh

Eggs are one of the most consumed foodstuffs on the planet. They can be eaten on their own, but are also used as important parts of many diverse recipes. Most eggs are sold with a best before date on them, but not all are. Many people will also risk eating an egg after this date has elapsed and find they are still perfectly edible. However, this is a big risk. If an egg is rotten and we eat it, it can contain dangerous bacteria which can lead to diseases such as salmonela.

If you are wondering how to know if an egg is fresh, oneHOWTO has you covered. We provide you guidelines on what to look for if you are unsure whether an egg is good to eat and provide a simply trick to do so.

You may also be interested in: How to Know if Eggs are Free Range


  1. How to tell if an egg is rotten quickly
  2. How to tell if an egg is fresh - methods
  3. How to preserve eggs correctly

How to tell if an egg is rotten quickly

Although sometimes it is easier to see than others, there are usually characteristics that can quickly clarify whether an egg has gone off. If you want to know how to tell easily if an egg is bad, you can look at the following:

  • Broken and/or dirty shell: if the egg is broken and its shell looks dirty, it is very likely that it is a bad egg. Of course, there are always exceptions. For example, if you get your egg straight from a farm, they may not be cleaned in the same way. However, it is usually an indication that the egg contains bacteria, so we recommend that you take a good look at the color and appearance of the egg before buying it.
  • Expired date: another thing that you should take into account before buying your eggs is the expiration date that appears on the package. Although this is not an indication that guarantees 100% the good condition of the eggs, it is advisable to take into account the expiration date to get an idea of how long their consumption is acceptable.
  • Unsure of source: it is important that you purchase your eggs from a reputable source. There are various marks of quality when it comes to eggs which can differ on country, but they normally have a code printed on them to let you know their grade. If they have no code, it is perhaps because they are unregulated, which can be a risk. Also, it is best you purchase free-range, organic and quality eggs.

These factors are general considerations we should make when we want to know whether a food is safe to eat. Below we look at some specifics on how to tell if eggs are fresh.

How to Know if an Egg Is Fresh - How to tell if an egg is rotten quickly

How to tell if an egg is fresh - methods

Once the above signs have been verified, we show you the ways you can know if an egg is fresh for certain. If you think your egg might be rotten, you can try the following:

Shake the egg

Before opening the shell it is advisable to bring the egg to the ear and shake it. In this way, if strange noises such as the yolk hitting the shell are heard, it means that the egg is rotten and that you should throw it away. If the egg were fresh, the white would be dense and cover the entire shell, so you would not hear any noise.

The glass of water egg trick

Another trick that you can carry out to check the state of the egg without having to open it uses a glass of water. Place the egg in question in a glass full of water and see what happens:

  • If the egg floats on the surface: it means that it is in bad condition and is not safe to consume. The egg floats when it is rotten because its shell becomes very porous.
  • If the egg sinks quickly: it will mean that it is fresh because its shell will be intact.
  • If the egg sinks slowly: it means that it is still good but you should consume it soon, as it will expire in the next few days.

Below we explain more thoroughly how to know if an egg is fresh after you have cracked it open.

Check the status of the albumen

The egg white should always look clear and jelly-like. If, on the other hand, you open the egg and see that the white has stains or strange elements that you cannot fully identify, then we recommend not taking any chances and discarding the product.

Check the condition of the yolk

The yolk is another decisive factor in determining whether an egg is bad or not. If you open the egg and see that the yolk breaks when the shell is broken, it separates from the center of the white or has a dull color, it means that the egg is bad. If you want, you can rotate the egg slightly. If the yolk does not separate from the center and does not break, it means that the egg is fresh.

Be guided by the smells

The smell of a rotten egg is strong and unpleasant, so you can quickly identify if the food is bad or not once you have opened it. If you break the shell and smell a foul odor, feel free to discard the egg immediately.

How to Know if an Egg Is Fresh - How to tell if an egg is fresh - methods

How to preserve eggs correctly

Now that you have discovered how to know if an egg is good or not, at oneHOWTO we want to offer you some useful tips to keep eggs in perfect condition. We explain how to preserve eggs correctly:

  • Store the eggs in a cool, dry place throughout the year. The refrigerator is ideal.
  • Avoid subjecting the eggs to sudden changes in temperature so as not to damage the shell or the interior.
  • Leave your eggs in an egg holder or any other special container to avoid hitting them when you open and close the refrigerator door.
  • If you do not want to keep the eggs in the refrigerator, make sure to keep them in a place free from humidity, as otherwise the eggs can incubate bacteria.
  • Always wash the eggs before consuming them and dry them very well.
  • Never wash the eggs before putting them in the refrigerator, as it will damage the protective layer of the shell and the pores will be exposed to harmful microorganisms.

Once you know that your egg is fresh, you will want to know more about cooking with eggs. Often we might only need to use the white of an egg. In this case, you can check out our article on what to do with the leftover yolks.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Know if an Egg Is Fresh, we recommend you visit our Food & drink category.

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