Our families have been involved in the egg farming community for more than 20 years, and we understand the importance of providing safe, nutritious and wholesome eggs to families near and far to enjoy.
Eggs are known as nature’s most perfect food because of their high nutritional value. And, eggs are also the most affordable source of high-quality protein option available.
Research shows that eating eggs at the start of the day helps reduce daily calorie intake, prevents snacking between meals and helps keep an appetite satisfied.
Eggs come in a variety of colors – most often, white or brown – but, regardless of the shell’s color, each egg has the same level of quality, nutrition and flavor. Every egg also has the same characteristics, such as the egg white, yolk, membrane and shell.
When it comes to getting key nutrients in one place, it’s hard to top the small-but-mighty egg.
As an all-natural source of nutrients and an affordable and versatile protein source, eggs are a key part of a healthy, balanced diet.
- One egg contains 13 essential nutrients and six grams of high-quality protein, all for 70 calories
- Eggs contain zero carbs and no sugar
- Eggs are an excellent source of choline, an essential nutrient for brain development, and selenium
- Eggs are a good source of vitamin D, vitamin B12, phosphorus and riboflavin
- Egg yolks contain lutein and zeaxanthin, which help reduce the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration, two very common eye disorders
- Eggs are naturally gluten-free
- Research shows that eggs do not significantly impact the risk of heart disease
The majority of an egg’s nutrients are found in the yolk, including protein and immune-boosting zinc. The yolk is also one of the few foods that naturally contains vitamin D. Enjoy a whole egg to reap all of an egg’s nutritional benefits!
Have questions about how to buy, store, handle and cook eggs? We have answers. Here are 10 of our most frequently asked questions. Still want to know more? Visit www.OhioEggs.com or www.IncredibleEgg.org.
- How should eggs be stored?
- Because eggs are perishable, they need to be kept refrigerated at 45 degrees Fahrenheit or below at all times. Eggs should be kept in the main section of the refrigerator, not in the door, because that’s the coldest area. Store eggs in their original carton. The carton keeps the eggs from picking up odors or flavors from other foods and helps prevent moisture loss. It also ensures they don’t spread bacteria to other food items or from one carton to the next.
- How long are eggs safe to eat after purchase?
- Raw shelled eggs are good for 4-5 weeks beyond the Julian date on the carton, and 2-3 weeks beyond the expiration date. Raw whole eggs that have been slightly beaten are good for up to two days. Raw egg whites are good for up to four days. Raw egg yolks are good for up to two days. Hard-boiled shelled eggs are good for up to one week, but, once they’ve been peeled, they must be eaten that day.
- Can eggs be frozen?
- Eggs can be frozen out of their shells. To freeze eggs, it’s best to use fresh eggs. Crack them and put them into an air-tight, freezer-safe container, and seal tightly. It’s also a good idea to label the package with the date.
Frozen eggs (whole, white or yolk) are good for up to one year. When ready to defrost, take them out of the freezer, and put them into the refrigerator to thaw overnight.
It’s not recommended to freeze eggs in their shells or hard-boiled eggs.
- What does an egg’s grade mean?
- Egg grading represents the egg’s interior quality and shell appearance. The USDA grade shield on the carton shows the eggs were graded for quality and checked for weight under supervision of a USDA grader. USDA grading is voluntary for egg farms, and those that choose to have their eggs graded pay for this service. Egg companies that do not use USDA’s grading service are monitored by state agencies, and those cartons will bear a term such as “Grade A” without the USDA shield.
- There are a lot of egg choices at the grocery store. What are the differences?
- All eggs are equally safe and nutritious; it’s up to the consumer to choose eggs that best fit their lifestyle.
- Conventional eggs are laid by hens living in cages with access to food, water and security.
- Organic eggs are laid by hens that are fed food from ingredients grown without most conventional pesticides or commercial fertilizers.
- Cage-free eggs are laid by hens that may roam in a building, room or open area.
- Free-range eggs are laid by hens with access to outdoors in accordance with weather, environmental or state laws.
- What’s the difference between the “Julian date” and the “sell-by” or “use-by” date on an egg carton?
- The Julian date is the date the eggs were properly washed, graded and packed. This three-digit code represents the consecutive day of the year, with January 1 as 001 and December 31 being 365. Although not required, egg cartons may also carry an expiration (sell-by) date and/or a best-by (use-by) date. Expiration dates are included on some egg cartons to ensure retailers do not keep eggs on shelves past a certain date. However, eggs can be safely eaten 2-3 weeks beyond the expiration date.
- How long should eggs be cooked?
- To prevent food-borne illness, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends cooking eggs until the whites are firm and yolks are thickened. Cook egg-containing dishes to an internal temperature of 160°F (71°C). Eggs should be brought to a high enough temperature to destroy any type of bacteria that might be present in the yolk or white.
- How should I safely pack eggs when traveling?
- When transporting eggs, whether it’s raw eggs, hard-boiled eggs or egg dishes (casseroles, deviled eggs, etc.), use ice or coolant in an insulated bag or cooler to keep cold foods cold (40° F/4°C or lower) and thermal containers to keep hot foods hot (140°F/60°C or higher). Once you’ve arrived at your final destination, eggs should be served or refrigerated immediately. If bringing eggs to picnics or outdoor events, keep them in a cooler in the shade until ready to eat. Discard hard-boiled eggs that have been left out for more than two hours.
- Do eggs contain hormones?
- Under federal law, neither laying hens nor any other type of poultry can be fed hormones. Some egg cartons may say the eggs are “hormone-free,” which is often a marketing ploy. The FDA requires a qualifying statement on the label for shell eggs, which is “Hormones are not used in the production of shell eggs.”
- How often does a hen lay an egg?
- Almost once a day. It takes a hen about 25 hours to lay an egg, and it takes a half hour to start forming another egg. According to the USDA, the average hen lays 286 eggs each year.
Recipes and Links
Eggs are one of the most versatile foods. They can be hard-boiled, scrambled, baked, fried, poached, shirred, deviled, made into omelets, frittatas, hashes and so much more! Check out some of our favorite recipes, from our families to yours.
Discover more about egg nutrition, farming, safety and more from the following organizations:
- 4 T. margarine or butter
- 14 to 18 well-beaten eggs
- ¾ lb. shaved and chopped boiled ham
- 1 can cream of mushroom soup
- 8-oz. can mushrooms, drained and chopped
- 5-oz. Evaporated milk
- 1 c. shredded cheddar cheese
Melt butter or margarine over low heat and cook eggs until barely set (not dry). Spread ham in bottom of buttered 9 x 13-inch pan. Spread eggs on top. Mix remaining ingredients and spread over eggs. Refrigerate overnight, covered. Bake, uncovered, at 350° approximately 50 to 60 minutes.
- 3 c. frozen hash browns
- 15 eggs
- 2 c. grated cheese
- 1 c. milk
- 2 c. cottage cheese
- 2 tsp. salt
- 1 onion, diced
- ¼ tsp. pepper
- 8 drops Tabasco sauce
- Ham, sausage or bacon
Put potatoes in bottom of greased 9 x 13-inch pan. Mix together everything except meat; pour over potatoes. Sprinkle cooked meat on top. Bake at 325° for 1 ¼ to 1 ½ hours. Delicious! Seems to go over well, especially with men!
Sauté in 2 T. oil for 10 minutes:
- 2 c. frozen hash browns
- 1 c. chopped ham
- ½ c. chopped onion
- 6 eggs
- salt and pepper to taste
Pour into hash browns and cook until set. Stir occasionally. Remove from heat; add 1 cup shredded cheese and sprinkle with chives. Serves 4.
Cheese ‘N Sausage Strata
- ½ lb. bulk pork sausage
- 1 c. sliced mushrooms
- ½ lb. Velveeta, cubed sm.
- 4 c. bread cubes
- 1 T. minced onions OR ¼ c. green onions, sliced
- 1 ¼ c. milk
- 8 eggs, beaten
Brown sausage and mushrooms; drain. Stir in Velveeta, bread cubes and onions. Spoon into greased 8 x 12-inch baking dish. Beat eggs add milk. Pour over sausage mixture. Cover and refrigerate several hours or overnight. Bake at 350° for 40 to 50 minutes until set with a loose foil cover over it. Let stand 10 minutes.
- 1lb cooked ham or sausage
- 1 can cream of potato soup
- 2 cup or 16oz shredded cheddar cheese
- 1 dozen eggs beaten
- 1/3 cup sour cream
- 1 tsp onion powder
Mix all together and pour into greased 9 x 13-inch pan. Bake uncovered 25 min at 350 degrees, or until eggs are mostly set.
Holiday Brunch Casserole
If you’ll be having overnight company during the holidays, you may want to consider this hearty casserole. Guests will be impressed with it’s bountiful, filling and scrumptious flavor.
12 Servings. Prep: 15 mins. + chilling. Bake: 30 min. + standing.
- 4 cups frozen shredded hash brown potatoes
- 1 lb bulk pork sausage, cooked and drained
- ½ lb bacon strips, cooked and crumbled
- 1 medium green pepper, chopped (I used ½ pepper finely chopped)
- 2 cups (8 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese, divided
- 1 green onion, chopped (I used finely chopped onion, 2 or 3 tablespoons)
- 1 cup reduced-fat biscuit/baking mix
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs
- 3 cups 2% milk
In a large bowl, combine the hash browns, sausage, bacon, green pepper, 1 cup cheese and onion. Transfer to a greased 13x9 baking dish.
In another bowl, whisk the biscuit mix, salt, eggs and milk; pour over the top. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Bake, uncovered, at 375 degrees for 45 minutes, or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting.
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 cups vinegar
- 2 jars red beets
Add enough water to beet juice for 2 cups. Mix sugar, vinegar and beet juice – heat to boiling. Pour the juice and beets over your hard boiled eggs and refrigerate.