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Oftentimes, you may not be able to use all of the eggs in the carton before they go bad. When you discover they’re well past the printed expiration date, you might immediately think of tossing the expired eggs away. Even if the Egg Safety Center mentions that eggs beyond the printed expiration date are still safe to eat, they’re still unappetizing to many people. Regardless of their edibility, however, expired eggs are still useful. So, what are the best uses for expired eggs?
Fertilizing plants and feeding hens are some of the best uses for expired eggs. If you know for sure that an egg has gone bad, you can drain the egg of its contents and repurpose the shells for their calcium content. This article discusses what to do with old chicken eggs and how to know if they are truly expired.
How To Dispose of Expired Eggs
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that eggs may last up to five weeks as long as you keep them in the refrigerator. Food experts also agree that they last several weeks past the expiration date printed on the carton. These expiration dates are more “best if used by” dates, meaning you would get the most out of the eggs if you use them before the date printed on the carton.
If you suspect that your eggs are too old, you can conduct either a sniff test or float test to see if an egg has truly gone bad. Do the sniff test only if you’re brave enough. With the sniff test, you would crack the egg open to see if it’s still good. If you don’t mind your room potentially smelling like rotten eggs, which is usually a pungent, sulfuric stench, then you may go ahead with this method to see if your eggs are expired.
The float test may be an easier, safer method to check whether an egg is still useful. All you need is a large bowl or wide glass. Fill either container with water and then gently drop an egg in the water. If it sinks to the bottom and lays on its side, it’s typically safe to use as a regular egg for any dish or purpose.
It’s a much different case if the egg sinks and stands on its end or if it floats. Here are the best ways to deal with such eggs after conducting the float test:
Sinking Eggs Standing on End
Eggs that sink to the bottom of a container full of water but stand on their end are neither rotten nor fresh. These eggs are not rotten enough for discarding and still have some usefulness. At the same time, these eggs may not be the best ingredients for cooking or baking.
What To Do With Almost Expired Eggs
You can still use these old eggs for scrambling or hard-boiling. Consider using older eggs for deviled eggs or hard-boiled eggs over fried egg dishes. Older eggs tend to be runnier than fresh eggs because they’ve been sitting in the fridge for a while.
You may have a better dish if you harden the egg by boiling instead of frying it and ending up with a runny, flat dish. In terms of baking, since older eggs are runnier than fresh eggs, they may not be the best to use as a leavening agent.
You could also use older eggs to feed pets if you don’t want to eat them yourself. Boil these eggs like you normally would and then serve them to your pet for their next meal. Like anything else when it comes to health and nutrition, always check with a doctor or nutritionist prior to eating anything you may have doubts about.
If an egg floats on top of the water after conducting a float test, the egg is ready for disposal. A floating egg contains too much gas after sitting in your fridge for too long. That accumulated gas has rotten the egg inside, making it unsuited for consumption and causing it to stink. Its stench comes from the egg white’s sulfur. Chemical reactions occur, thus producing more gas to help the egg float.
Even if it’s ideal for disposal, be sure to only throw away the rotten egg’s contents. You can still use the eggshells for fertilizer because they are rich in calcium. This is a common method that farmers employ to maintain a sustainable lifestyle.
You could crush the eggshells into fine dust and include it in your garden mulch to infuse it with calcium for your plants. You may also use the ground eggshells as a calcium booster for any farm animals you may raise at home, chickens in particular.
If you raise chickens on your property and get your egg supply from them, you can include the eggshells in their feed to help return the calcium they lost when laying the eggs. You can apply this same concept to feeding birds that visit your yard.
Conclusion: Best Uses for Expired Eggs
You can use the eggshells of expired eggs for fertilizer or feeding purposes. The eggshells are rich in calcium that may benefit garden plants or chickens you raise on your property. However, an egg that is past the printed expiry date may not exactly be rotten. You can conduct a float test to see if an egg is truly rotten before tossing it.
The foodies category on our website is dedicated to answering all your food curiosities. Just like this article where we discussed alternate ways of using rotten food, we also provide knowledge about food substitutes for cooking. From eggs for fried chicken to maple extract alternatives, our website is sure to provide alternate methods of using food that you may not have considered before.