Whats The Difference Between White And Brown Eggs
Why are chicken eggshells different colors? Seriously, this question should be a 1,000-pointer on Jeopardy!
The color of a chickens egg entirely depends on the breed of chicken. Thats right. Like so much in life, it all comes down to genetics.
The biggest misconception out there is that all eggshells are naturally brown, and white eggs were bleached. BUZZ! Incorrect. While it is true that eggs are cleaned before being packaged and sent to your grocery store, they are not bleached.
In fact, most eggs start out white, but different breeds are genetically coded to release different colored pigments as the egg passes through the hens oviduct. Voilà! You have different colored eggs. Just like when you dye Easter eggs, the pigment doesnt penetrate the shell. Inside, eggs all look more or less the same .
This cheeky Bovans Brown hen above lays the brown eggs you see in Organic Valley cartons. Sometimes you might come across a speckled egg for a bit of variety.
Have you ever heard someone say brown eggs are organic and white eggs arent? This isnt necessarily true. Remember, organic refers to how the chickens are raised and how the eggs are handled — whether an egg is organic or not has nothing to do with its color.
Some of our farmers may raise wacky breeds of chickens on the side just for fun or for their own familys consumption, like this fun crested chicken seen during a photo shoot with the DeKam family, one of our Organic Valley dairy farmers in Michigan.
What To Consider When Buying Eggs
Today, the choice of what eggs to buy goes beyond just white and brown. Here’s what some of those common labels you see on your egg cartons mean, according to Klippen:
- Free-range: Eggs labeled free-range come from hens that have unlimited access to food, water, and outdoor spaces during their laying cycle.
- Cage-free: Eggs labeled cage-free are from hens that have unlimited access to food and water, plus some room to roam.
- Omega-3 enriched: These are eggs from hens that have been fed a diet with flaxseed, which contains omega-3 fatty acids. The eggs, therefore, have more omega-3, but much less than a serving of fish.
- Organic: Organic eggs originate from chickens that have been fed a wholly organic diet. They usually have access to the outdoors as well, Klippen says.
Many eggs sold in the US are from caged chickens, Klippen says. These chickens have space to move around, Klippen says, but being in a cage with only a few other hens protects them from the violent pecking that hens do to each other. Spending on free-range or cage-free eggs doesn’t necessarily guarantee a more humane experience for the chicken, he says.
Some people opt to buy local or backyard eggs produced by a household or small farm. These eggs are not subject to the same refrigeration requirements as FDA-regulated commercial eggs, Klippen says.
“If the eggs sit in the sun for any length of time you could be exposing yourself to problems,” he says.
Does The Color Of The Egg Matter In Baking
The color of the egg doesnât matter. What is important is the quality of the egg.
You might notice that most chefs and bakers use brown eggs instead of white. This is most likely because brown eggs tend to be fresher than white as they come from local farms.
But another practical answer is that itâs easier to see and remove brown shell bits from a bowl or pot.
The quality and nutrition you would get from white eggs are not different from brown eggs. But if youâre trying to save money, stick with the cheaper white eggs.
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Do Eggs Need To Be Refrigerated
In the United States, fresh, commercially produced eggs need to be refrigerated to minimize your risk of food poisoning. However, in many countries in Europe and around the world, it’s fine to keep eggs at room temperature for a few weeks. … If you’re still unsure, refrigeration is the safest way to go.
Does One Color Of Egg Taste Better
Some people swear that brown eggs taste better, while others prefer the taste of white eggs.
But just as with nutritional content, theres no real difference between the taste of brown- and white-shelled eggs.
However, that doesnt necessarily mean that all eggs taste the same.
While the shell color doesnt make a difference, other factors such as the breed of chicken, type of feed, freshness, and cooking method may affect the way it tastes .
The diet of a home-raised hen is not the same as that of a conventionally raised hen, which may also affect egg flavor.
Additionally, the longer the egg is stored, the more likely it is to develop an off-flavor. Storing eggs at a stable, low temperature, like in the refrigerator, can help preserve their flavor for longer.
These reasons may be why some people believe that eggs from home-raised chickens taste better than those from conventionally raised chickens.
Backyard eggs dont go through processing and shipping like conventional ones do, so they may end up on your plate more quickly than eggs bought from the store. Because theyre fresher, they may taste better.
The way an egg is cooked may affect its flavor, too.
One study looked at how fish oil, which is used in chicken feed to raise omega-3 levels, changed the flavor of eggs. It found that scrambled eggs from hens fed fish-oil-enriched feed and those fed conventional feed tasted the same .
So, while many factors may affect egg flavor, shell color does not.
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I Bought Brown Eggs Instead Of White Ones Am I Healthy Now
My Denver omelet never seemed so slimming
The first time I saw a brown egg at a grocery store, Im certain that I asked my mother if it was laid by a brown chicken. Yeah, I know that sounds problematic. But in my defense, even my young mind had deduced by that point that the skin shades of human parents were a factor in the shading of their children. So, I thought, Why not with eggs, too?
Admittedly, all these years later, it still sounds stupid. But it does beg the question: What is the actual difference between brown eggs and white eggs and are those differences any more than shell deep?
Does Colour Affect The Taste Of The Egg
Some individuals believe that brown shelled eggs taste better. In contrast, some others prefer white ones. Although, just like the nutritional value, there is no difference between the taste of the two. Nevertheless, it does not necessarily mean that all eggs taste similar. Other factors that affect the taste of eggs include:
- Differences in diet patterns of hens
Moreover, if you store the eggs for longer, they might develop an off-flavour. On the other hand, storing eggs in the refrigerator at a stable and low temperature can preserve the flavour. That is why some people believe that eggs from home-raised hens taste better.
Furthermore, backyard eggs do not undergo processing and shipping. Therefore they often end up in your basket quicker. As a result, they are fresher and often taste better. Although several factors affect the flavour of an egg, shell colour doesnt.
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So What Youre Saying Is
that while the brown eggs you scored from your local co-op market might have an enhanced essence of egginess when compared to the white eggs from your chain supermarket, the flavor variance is due to the way the chickens who laid those eggs were raised, and not to the differences in shell color.
Now that weve cleared that up, lets talk about the way you were raised so that youll know better than to steal your roommates egg next time thief.
Do Brown And White Eggs Taste Different
Inside the shell, most eggs look the same with a clear membrane and a yellow or orange yolk. Some chickens do produce larger and brighter yolks. Yet, white and brown eggs pretty much taste the same.
You may notice that pasture-raised eggs taste slightly richer. This is simply based on their diet/environment and the fact that they lead less stressful lives than eggs from commercially farmed chickens.
If you are looking for a more flavorful and vibrant egg, you might want to gravitate toward humanely raised birds, no matter the color of the outer shell.
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White Eggs Or Brown Eggs
When you ask people their opinion about the difference between white and brown eggs you get all kinds of answers.
The ones I hear the most are:
- Brown eggs are farm eggs and are dirty
- Brown eggs are more expensive
- White eggs taste better
- Brown eggs are healthier
- White eggs come from a poultry farm
For a long time, I had the same opinion as many others. I decided to dig a little deeper and try to find the answer to the question of what is the real difference between white and brown eggs.
Why Are Brown Eggs Often More Expensive
Theres a perception that because brown eggs are more expensive, they must be more natural or healthier. Thats not necessarily true. Brown eggs tend to have a higher price tag simply because the reddish-feathered chickens that lay brown eggs are larger than the breed that lays white eggs, and as such, they require more feed. That extra cost is offset by you guessed it a higher price at the grocery store.
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Whats The Truth About Eggs And Cholesterol
Its a fact that eggs provide a significant amount of cholesterol. For example, one large egg contains about 186 mg of cholesterol and its recommended that you consume no more than 300 mg of cholesterol a day. However, cholesterol in eggs may not be as bad as one may think. In fact, heart disease is more commonly associated with a diet high in saturated and trans fats, and eggs have a minimal effect on blood cholesterol by comparison. Some studies have shown that a diet of up to seven eggs a week may prevent some types of strokes.
When you consider all the nutrition in an egg, the amount of cholesterol is not a good reason to eliminate eggs from a healthy diet. As long as the eggs are prepared healthily, arent served with sides like home fries and other foods high in saturated fat, and are consumed in moderation, they should not pose a risk to your health.
The healthiest foods on the planet can be unhealthy when consumed in high amounts. For example, superfoods like broccoli, kale and other cruciferous vegetables can hinder the bodys ability to absorb iodine if consumed in large amounts. This doesnt mean its a good idea to skip a side of greens at dinner. Instead, it means that even the good things in life call for moderation.
Did you know that your body needs cholesterol to build cells, too? There are two types of cholesterol: LDL and HDL . Too much LDL cholesterol can narrow and stiffen arteries and increase the risk for heart disease.
- An unhealthy diet
What Do Different Egg Labels Mean
You know eggs are healthy and that eggshell color has nothing to do with nutrition, but when you go to the grocery store, do you still feel unsure which eggs to buy? With so many different labels, its easy for egg shopping to become a complicated ordeal. Heres a quick rundown of what different labels mean:
- Hormone-Free: All eggs are hormone-free. Its been illegal to add hormones to a chickens diet for many years.
- Antibiotic-Free: Eggs rarely come from hens who take antibiotics. If an antibiotic is used, farmers must comply with Food and Drug Administration guidelines.
- Organic: Eggs must meet strict standards for example, hens must be fed organic feed. They may have the same nutritional value as conventional eggs.
- Cage-Free: Hens are free to roam around the inside of a barn.
- Free Range: Hens have some access to the outdoors.
- Pasture-raised: Hens are raised outdoors and have the option to go indoors at night or for protection against weather or predators.
None of these labels mean that one method of egg production is better than the other. All systems present pros and cons. For example, a cage-free environment might allow hens to move around more, but it also allows hens to act out their aggression toward each other. The eggs you choose depend on your personal preference.
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Different Regions Feel Differently About Brown Vs White Eggs Just Ask New England
Theres a regional preference for shell color, Jones explained. People have all kinds of hangups about food, and the egg industry is very cognizant of it and they ensure that whatever the needs are in that region, its what youre seeing in your egg case.
The proof is in the numbers. Nielsen tracks U.S. egg sales in nine regions. All heavily favor white-shelled eggs, except one: New England .
In New England, 51.1 percent of the eggs sold in December 2017 were brown eggs.
The region with the next-highest ratio of brown-to-white egg sales was the Middle Atlantic , where 11.2 percent of the eggs sold were brown. The percentage declines in other regions.
What makes brown eggs so popular among New Englanders?
It could be in part because they may have more red hens in New England, Dresner guessed. So it could simply be that locally those eggs are more accessible.
How Do You Prepare A Healthy Egg
Different methods produce different results when it comes to whipping up some eggs. Some of these cooking styles are healthier than others and retain more of an eggs nutrition.
In general, the best way to prepare an egg is to cook it just enough that the whites are cooked all the way, but the yolk is still runny. A runny yolk means the nutrients are still intact. Cooked whites allow our bodies to absorb the protein easier.
For these reasons, soft-boiled eggs or poached eggs are the healthiest ways to eat an egg. Boiling or poaching eggs also only require heat and water, so no high-fat butter or oil is needed. Try these recipes to enjoy eggs in their healthiest form:
You can soft-boil eggs right from the fridge with the Jammy Soft-Boiled Eggs recipe:
Enjoy a soft-boiled egg with toast for breakfast, atop a salad for lunch or with pasta and a rich tomato sauce for supper.
For a gluten-free, nutrient-dense meal, skip the Eggs Benedict recipe and instead try Skillet-Poached Eggs with Spinach:
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Why Are Eggs Brown Or White
All eggshells start off as white and are made of calcium carbonate. It takes 24 to 26 hours for a hen to form an egg.
In the process of developing an egg, usually, around four to six hours before hatching, the egg is ‘dyed’ according to the hen’s pigment gene. Hens that lay white eggs, like Leghorns, do not have pigment genes at all.
Eggs can be brown, blue, pink, and green, all of which may vary in shade. A brown egg is caused by a pigment called protoporphyrin which is applied at the end process of forming an egg this is why the egg is brown on the outside but white on the inside. While the pigment, called oocyanin, that makes blue eggs is applied earlier in the egg-making process which is why the eggs are blue inside and out.
Is There A Difference Between Brown And White Eggs It All Depends On The Chicken
Typically, when youre shopping for eggs to whip up a quiche, an omelet or even an angel food cake, white-shelled eggs are the norm. But eggs do come in other colors, and brown eggs are at the top of that list.
Is there a difference between brown and white eggs? Its time to find an answer to this scrambled question.
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The Price Of Brown Eggs Vs White
Here is where there is a difference. Brown eggs do often cost more when compared side by side with white eggs in the market. The reason for this can be traced back to the breed again. Breeds that produce brown eggs are often larger birds that require more food than hens that produce white eggs.
Farmers who raise these larger chickens that produce brown shelled eggs have to offset the cost of feeding these birds by putting a higher price on the eggs. This is reflected in the price you will see at the market. To sum all of this up, here is a video that explains why brown eggs cost more than white eggs.
Are Brown Eggs Healthier Than White Eggs
Often, people who prefer brown eggs do so because they believe brown eggs are healthier and more natural than white eggs.
However, the truth is that all eggs are nutritionally very similar, regardless of their size, grade, or color (
However, scientists have compared eggs with brown shells to those with white shells to see whether theres any difference. Several studies have found that shell color does not significantly affect egg quality or composition .
This means that the color of an eggs shell doesnt have much to do with how healthy it is. The only real difference is the pigment in the shell.
However, other factors can affect the nutritional content of an egg.
For example, the hens environment can have a major effect. Eggs from hens that are allowed to roam in the sunshine contain 34 times the amount of vitamin D youd find in eggs from conventionally raised hens .
The type of feed a hen eats can also affect the nutrient content of her eggs.
Hens fed a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids produce eggs that contain much higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids than normal. The same effect has been found with vitamin D when chickens eat vitamin-D-enriched feed .
There is no nutritional difference between brown and white eggs. However, a hens diet and environment can affect an eggs nutrition.
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