How To Tell if an Egg is Bad

Eating spoiled food can result in food poisoning from Salmonella. It is easy for someone who does not eat eggs frequently to forget when they purchased the carton in the fridge. If you are unsure if your eggs are safe to eat there are some things you can do to reduce your risk. Follow these steps to tell if an egg is bad.

Clear glass bowl
Eggs to test
Room temperature water

  1. Check the sell by or expiration date. If the egg is still in the carton you purchased it in, there should be a sell by or expiration date. If there is a sell by date, this is the date that the grocery store needs to sell the eggs but they should be fine for you to eat up to two weeks after this date as long as they have been properly refrigerated. If the carton has an expiration date, don’t eat the eggs after that date.
  2. Smell the egg. Rotten eggs smell horrible. Lift the egg to your nose and take a whiff. If there is a sour or sulfur-like smell, get rid of the egg.
  3. Look inside. The inside of healthy eggs will have meat spots or a small, white, stringy strand. The egg white will be clear. If the egg white is cloudy or has yellow or green color sheen to it, don’t risk eating it unless it passes the next step. There are instances when fresh eggs will have a slight color difference so you need to test this further.
  4. Try the water test. This is an easy test for checking your eggs for freshness. In a clear glass bowl, place the uncracked egg on the bottom of the bowl. Fill the bowl with water then step back and watch the egg. Fresh eggs will stay on the bottom of the bowl. If the egg floats to the top of the water you know it is bad and should not be consumed.

Eggs are not expensive so if you are in doubt about the eggs in your kitchen consider tossing them out. Follow these instructions to tell if an egg is bad but if you still are unsure, don’t risk eating an egg you don’t trust.


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