Here’s How To Tell If Your Eggs Are Fresh

11th April 2019

A recent study by food waste app, Too Good To Go, has shown that Britons bin 720 million eggs every year. That’s three times more than in 2008 and at a cost of £139 million. The reason has been put down to people over-relying on best-before dates to tell whether they have fresh eggs. But did you know that best-before dates are only an indicator for shops to rotate their stock (see our handy guide on the difference between use-by and best-before dates).

Use your instincts with these top tips to help you work out how fresh your eggs really are.

1. Do the water test

how to tell if eggs are fresh

Some recipes call for really fresh eggs. Here’s how to spot how fresh your eggs are: fresh egg on the left, stale egg on the right.

Fill a tall glass with water and pop the egg you want to test in.

If it sinks and lies horizontally at the bottom, it’s fresh and perfect for poaching and whisking into soufflés.

If the eggs floats a little vertically and tilts halfway, it’s not so fresh but is fine for scrambled eggs and omelettes.

If it floats, it’s stale.

2. Crack it open and have a look

how to tell if eggs are fresh

Stale egg on the left, fresh egg on the right.

Break the egg onto a plate. Firstly, check out the yolk. A fresh egg’s yolk will be wonderfully plump and sit up proud from its white.

A stale egg yolk will sit flat and look a little deflated and flabbly. It’s not much good for anything and definitely not for poaching.

how to tell if eggs are fresh

Stale egg on the left, fresh egg on the right.

Next, take a look at the shape of its white. If fresh, the white will hold its shape in a sharp, defined inner ring. There will be a thinner outer ring too and the yolk should be easy to separate from the white in a fresh, happy egg. The less defined the inner ring and outer ring become, the less fresh the egg is.

Sick of stale eggs? 

Purton House’s organic farm-fresh eggs

The fresher your eggs from the time you buy them, the longer they’ll last. Our farmers’ eggs come direct from the farm and are graded and packaged right on site. The eggs laid by our producers’ free-roaming hens can be laid as freshly as the day before they land on your doorstep. There’s no time wasted in travelling between farmer and processor, distribution centre and shop shelves, meaning you get the freshest eggs you can get your hands on (outside of popping to the farm!).

When in doubt, do the fresh egg test so you can enjoy recipes at their eggy best. What’s your favourite way to cook eggs and do you have any tips and tricks we’ve missed?

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