Eggs are one of the most versatile and nutritional foods out there. They can be fried, boiled, scrambled, poached, baked. . . the list goes on! However, like all foods, eggs have a limited shelf life. So what happens when they expire? Let’s take a look at the spoiled truth.
How Long Do Eggs Last?
The shelf life of an egg depends on several factors such as storage conditions and the expiration date stamped on the carton. Generally speaking , eggs can last up to 5 weeks from their pack date if stored properly in a refrigerator that maintains a consistent temperature of 40°F or below . However, this doesn’t mean that you should consume them after this time frame has ended.
The best way to determine whether an egg is still fresh is to perform what’s commonly known as the “float test” . Simply place an egg in a bowl full of water and observe its behavior – fresh eggs will sink while old ones will float due to air pockets forming inside them as they age .
What Happens When Eggs Expire?
When an egg expires it essentially means it has gone bad and shouldn’t be consumed by humans or animals . As mentioned earlier, older eggs will float due to air pockets which form inside them through natural processes called gas loss .
Some common signs that your eggs might be bad include:
- An unusual smell
- Discoloration of either the yolk or white
- Peculiar texture/sliminess
- Presence of mold
It’s essential not to consume expired/expiring eggs because they can house harmful bacteria such as Salmonella Enteritidis which causes food poisoning symptoms such as diarrhea .
Can You Freeze Eggs?
If you find yourself with more eggs than you can consume before their expiration date, the good news is that eggs can be frozen! However, this isn’t as simple as popping them into the freezer in their shells .
To freeze raw eggs without shells, first crack them into a bowl and mix them together well . Transfer the mixed eggs to an airtight container or plastic bag and leave some space for expansion when they freeze. Label with the pack date and store in your freezer.
Thawed frozen egg whites may become watery but they will still beat to stiff peaks while yolks may become slightly thickened and need to be re-mixed before use .
Q: Can I still cook with eggs that are past their expiration date?
A: No, it’s not recommended because expired eggs could cause food poisoning.
Q: What should I do if I suspect my egg is bad?
A: Dispose of it immediately by throwing it out in the trash where pets won’t get access to it.
Q: What’s the best way to store my eggs?
A: Store your eggs in their original carton on one of your fridge shelves instead of on the refrigerator door . The temperature at which they’re stored should also be kept consistent between 33°F -35°F.
Eggs are nutritious and versatile foods that provide numerous health benefits when eaten fresh. However, consuming expired or expiring ones can cause food poisoning symptoms such as diarrhea due to harmful bacteria like Salmonella Enteritidis living within them .
Always perform a “float test” before cooking with old/floating/expired-looking-in-overall-bad-condition-foul-smelly disgusting eggS – just because they’ve passed their “Best Before Date”, doesn’t mean they’ve properly spoiled.
Finally, if you have any doubts about the freshness of an egg, it’s always better to err on the side of caution and just bin it . Your stomach will thank you for it!