Can You Eat Expired Eggs Food Safety Experts Weigh In
You might want to hold off on that omelet.
Filled with protein, fat, B vitamins, and vitamin D, eggs are a versatile staple food packed into a tiny, white shell. They’re delicious any way you like them and can be whipped up in a jiffy. Basically, as far as fridge favorites go, eggs are a must-have.
You already have plenty of egg knowledge, like how to check for cracked ones before you buy them. And, you might have heard something about a float test? But if you’re a little shaky on exactly how long it’s safe to keep eggs in your fridge, look no further.
First of all, that date stamped on many egg cartons is actually a sell-by date, which is technically different from an expiration date and isn’t required to be on those cartons by federal law.
But, good news, that date isn’t a hard and fast rule. As long as the egg hasnt gone bad, there is no reason you cant still enjoy it, says nutritionist Keri Gans, RD, author ofThe Small Change Diet. So cheers to less money spent on cartons that will ultimately end up in the trash because you didn’t eat all of them before the printed date.
That doesn’t mean eggs don’t go bad, though. Just like most unprocessed foods, they totally do. So how are you supposed to know whether those old eggs are actually okay to use? Here’s what food safety experts have to say.
Interesting Facts About Eggs
- Most people think of eggs as a dairy product, but they are actually classified as animal products since they are a protein.
- Eggs are a great source of protein.
- The average hen lays between 250 and 270 eggs each year.
- If you need a substitute for eggs, check out our page for ideas.
- Make hard-boiled eggs. By boiling eggs, youll extend the shelf life of eggs by an extra week. For perfect eggs, see our article on egg cooking time.
- Make a quiche. Use the eggs to make and bake a quiche that can be micro-cracked slice by slice to extend the shelf life of the eggs for another 4 to 5 days.
Should You Wash Your Eggs
This ones easy: absolutely not. Whether theyre farm bought or store bought, you should never, ever wash your eggs. As with washing raw chicken, washing eggs can actually increase the risk of contamination.
How does this work? Well, freshly laid eggs are coated with a natural bloom, or cuticle, that seals off the fragile, porous shell and prevents bacteria from entering. Farm eggs retain this natural protective layer, which is excreted by a special gland in the hen that turns her vent inside out to keep the egg clean and separate from her waste passages. Commercially produced eggs dont have this shield because the USDA requires them to be sanitized in a special, highly regulated hot-water solution, but they are coated with mineral oil as a restorative.
Washing your eggs at home removes any protection they have, allowing more air to get into the eggs, which will degrade their quality providing gaps through which bacteria like salmonella can enter and actively sucking in contaminants from your water.
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Is It Safe To Eat Egg After Expiration Date
While it is ideal to eat eggs before this date has passed, they are often still be safe to eat after this date, but its quality may have decreased. Throw away any eggs that smell rotten or bad upon cracking the shell. The best before date on eggs will only be accurate if the food is stored correctly.
So How Long Are Eggs Good For After The Sell By Date
Eggs will last you a long time. The dates on the carton are more of a reminder of how old the they are, than a level 10 warning of when you must stop all consumption. If an egg is older than five weeks, it might be good to consider testing it before dumping it into your fried rice. If an its less than 5 weeks old, youre probably good to go.
Whether youre frying your eggs or using them to bake, you dont have to toss them out just because theyre past their expiration date. If your eggs still look and smell good, they probably are good. Dont believe me? Just watch. Or in this case, just try!
Sarah Moore has been with EggCartons.com for almost 4 years. Prior to coming here, she didnt know the difference between a rooster and a hen. Sarah spent many years in business prior to landing at EggCartons.com and has since become an egg carton connoisseur. When shes not thinking about egg cartons, shes thinking about the things that go inside of them, which is usually food and sometimes eggs. Since starting here, Sarah has tried raising chickens of her own and finally learned the difference between a rooster and a hen.
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Can I Eat An Expired Egg
You might worry that the eggs in your fridge are ticking Salmonella bacteria time bombs. But thats not always the case.
If you store eggs the following ways, theyll stay safe for several weeks:
- Store eggs below 45ºF or freeze them.
- Keep eggs at the back of your refrigerator where temperature is most consistent.
- Eat fresh eggs within 21 days.
- Avoid cooked eggs that stay out for 2 hours.
Swerve any eggs that look like this theyve probably turned:
- The shell is cracked.
- There are slimy or powdery patches on the shell.
- It smells.
Were here to unscramble the myth that you cant eat expired eggs. Here are the deets, plus tips on safe storage, how to test for freshness, and ways to spot a bad egg.
How Long Are Eggs Good For When Prepared In A Dish
How long are eggs good for? That depends what else is in the dish. How long does cheese last? In general, eggs are good for as long as the quickest expiring ingredient in the recipe.
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So Can You Use Eggsafterthe Expiration Date
This short answer is yes, you can. If you have had a carton sitting in your fridge for a few weeks now, they are probably still safe to eat, especially if they have been stored properly. However, improperly handled eggs might contain harmful bacteria, so its important to be able to tell the difference between spoiled and expired eggs. Read on to learn everything you need to know.
Know If Your Eggs Have Been Washed
Unintuitively, once eggs have been washed, theyre more likely to transfer Salmonella or other types of bacteria from the outside to the inside of the shell. For this reason, you should try to store your eggs in the fridge immediately after washing, if possible. Cooler temperatures reduce chances of bacteria/salmonella contamination.
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What Happens If You Eat Out Of Date Eggs
What happens if I eat expired eggs? If you eat expired eggs by accident, your main concern should be salmonella poisoning. Because salmonella can build up over time, older eggs may contain more of the bacteria. In most cases, the symptoms of salmonella poisoning are stomach pain, diarrhea, fever, and chills.
Has That Carton Of Eggs Been Languishing In Your Fridge Here’s Everything You Need To Know About Whether Eggs Expire And How To Tell If They’re Safe To Eat
Like everything else these days, grocery prices are rising fast. As we look to save money and reduce food waste, many of us are taking second glances at the sell-by date printed on the sides of packages, questioning how far we can stretch our food. And with prices cheaper by the dozen, eggs are no egg-ception. But all that stocking up has us staring down our unopened cartons, wondering, Do eggs expire?
Knowing how to tell if eggs are still good can seem like a skill reserved for top chefs. For us mere mortals, who worry about removing eggs from the carton wrong and whether the stringy white stuff in eggs is supposed to be there , theres the complicating fact that eggs are dairy. Considering how long milk lasts, how seriously should we take the expiration date for eggs? Are the rumors that theyre one of those foods that never expire true? And most important: Is it worth itor even safeto stock up on eggs if theyre going to sit for a while?
For all these questions, we have answers. And best of all, youre going to like them. True to the unforgettable 1976 campaign, the eggs chilling in your fridge are likely still both incredible and edible. Regardless of whether theyre white, brown or speckled, still covered in bloom from your backyard hens or stamped with your favorite brands logo, eggs that are treated properly will remain safe to eat until youre ready to get cracking.
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What Happens If You Eat Expired Eggs
Provided the egg isnt contaminated, nothing bad will happen. Because do eggs expire? Nope. Remember, sell-by, use-by and best-by dates arent federally regulated for any foods except infant formula. The expiration date on your carton of jumbo eggs is just there to ensure quality. So if you crack em open after the date has passed, you may notice they dont taste as good, but youre not at risk of illness.
In short, you can eat eggs two months out of date. Itll be fine.
If you eat an outright bad egg, thats a different story. Eggs pretty exclusively spoil from contamination, and the signs and symptoms are pretty clear if you consume an egg thats been harboring salmonella. Youll develop side effects such as diarrhea, vomiting and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns that symptoms may be delayed by weeks following exposure. The CDC also warns that you may remain actively sick for four to seven days bowel changes may linger beyond that. Reactive arthritis in the form of joint pain and inflammation may also develop, but fortunately, those cases are relatively rare.
How Long Do Eggs Last When Prepared In A Dish
how long are eggs good for? That depends on whats in the dish. How long does cheese last? In general, eggs will be good as long as the fastest expiring ingredient in the recipe is still good.
To find out how long foods last, visit the Dairy, Beverages, Fruits, Cereals, Proteins, Vegetables and Other sections of Recetasis.
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Can You Eat Eggs Past Best Before Date
In short, yes.It is safe to eat eggs after the recommended best before date. And if you keep your eggs in the fridge, they are safe to eat up to three weeks after the given date. However, the taste and texture may be slightly different to what youre used to, and for certain dishes, freshest is best.
How Can You Tell If An Egg Is Still Good
If youre not sure how long your eggs have been in the fridge, there are several ways to tell whether they are still good or not.
The first step should be to check the sell-by or expiration date printed on the carton. If the current date is before this date, youve got nothing to worry about.
Alternatively, look for the pack date.
This will be printed as a 3-digit number that corresponds to the day of the year that the eggs were washed and packaged. For example, January 1 is 001. If the eggs are less than 30 days from the pack date, you can be sure theyre still good .
However, your eggs may still be good for up to several weeks beyond these dates. In this case, the best way to tell if an egg has gone bad is to conduct a sniff test.
Other methods, such as candling or the float test, can only tell you if an egg is fresh but not if it has gone bad .
Before conducting a sniff test, check if the shell has any cracks or a powdery or slimy appearance. If so, toss the egg. If everything looks good, crack the egg open on a clean, white plate before using. Check for any discoloration or a funny smell.
An egg that has gone bad will give off an unmistakable odor. If everything looks normal and the egg has no smell, then it is fine to use.
However, its important to note that eggs contaminated with the bacteria Salmonella may look and smell completely normal, even though they can make you sick .
Read this article to find out more about how to tell if an egg is good or bad.
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Eggs Rarely Go Bad When Stored Properly
In the US and certain other countries, including Australia, Japan, Sweden and the Netherlands, eggs require refrigeration .
This is because eggs in these countries are washed and sanitized soon after they are laid in an attempt to prevent contamination with Salmonella, the bacteria often responsible for food poisoning from poultry products (
The presence of bacteria inside an egg is what eventually causes it to go bad, or rot.
However, keeping an egg at refrigerator temperatures slows the growth of bacteria and helps prevent it from penetrating the shell .
In fact, refrigeration is so effective at controlling the growth of bacteria that in combination with an eggs protective shell and enzymes, refrigerated eggs rarely go bad as long as they have been handled and stored properly.
Nevertheless, egg quality declines over time. This means that the air pocket in an egg grows larger and the yolk and whites become thinner and less springy. Eventually, it may simply dry up instead of going bad.
Despite these changes, an egg may remain perfectly safe to eat for a long time .
Eggs wont stay good forever though, and there is a point at which youll want to throw them away.
Summary: Eggs rarely go bad if they have been handled properly and are stored in the refrigerator. However, they will decline in quality over time, and youll want to throw them away at some point.
How Long Are Eggs Good For After The Sell By Date & More
Posted by Sarah Moore on November 16, 2021
The average American consumes almost 300 eggs a year. Whether theyre being bought to hard boil or go into a recipe, they are a staple in most every household. If youre like me and many other consumers, you are a bit overzealous with your egg purchasing at times and end up with more than you can consume by the time they expire. What do you do in these instances? That little expiration date stamped on the package can be mighty intimidating, but just because youve passed the time written there doesnt mean you should rush to toss your cartons contents into the garbage. Read on to learn about how long you can eat eggs after the expiration date, what the expired egg test is, and more.
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Know If Your Eggs Are Washed
Many people store their eggs in the refrigerator, though you might also have heard that farm-fresh eggs can be stored right on your countertop instead.
Its true that eggs can be stored safely on the countertop for a short period as long as theyre unwashed and kept at a stable room temperature.
Once an egg has been washed, its more likely to transfer bacteria like Salmonella from the outside of the shell to the inside (
For this reason, agencies like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States recommend staying away from unrefrigerated eggs completely .
If you can, avoid keeping eggs in the door of the fridge and instead place them on a shelf in the main area of the fridge. The door is often the warmest spot since its exposed to the open air most frequently.
While your eggs are in the fridge, dont place anything heavy on top of them that could damage the shells, and keep them away from raw meat to avoid the spread of bacteria.
Scientists continue to explore new ways to keep eggs free of Salmonella and other bacteria, such as coating eggs in plant-based biofilms that help keep bacteria out .
However, the best way to store eggs for safety and freshness may simply be to keep them in the refrigerator.
Exact Answer: Three To Five Weeks
There are various sources of lean protein. Eggs are undoubtedly one of the best in this long list of sources. Adding eggs to the daily dietary routine can help boost your immunity as well as overall health. Although the versatility of eggs as an ingredient for cooking can never really be overestimated, they serve raw materials when baking or making many other food products like sandwiches.
Much like most packaged food products, egg cartons are also sold with a printed sell-by date. Some people misinterpret this as the expiry date of the eggs in the carton and tend to discard the eggs as soon as this date is crossed. But it is not valid.
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How Old Are Store Bought Eggs
Heres a fun fact, the eggs you buy in the store are usually 6-8 months old before they hit the shelves. You may not realize it, but as time passes the egg becomes less nutritious. Many of the differences between store bought and farm fresh eggs all comes down to the nutrition and maturity of the chickens.