Testing Eggs Freshness: Are Your Eggs Are Still Good

There is nothing worse than to crack an egg into a bowl of ingredients only to find out that the egg was bad. There are 3 simple methods of testing eggs freshness you can try before you ruin that recipe. Each of these methods for testing eggs freshness can be used separately or in combination to truly test the freshness of your eggs.

Many people don’t realize that it is actually very simple to figure out whether or not an egg is fresh. By trying all 3 of these methods you are guaranteed to have a farm-fresh egg every time.

fresh eggs

3 Methods of Testing Eggs Freshness

Testing with A Bowl of Water

This is the simplest method for testing eggs freshness, and the most reliable. However, I recommend you use this method only for the eggs you intend on using at that moment.

Eggs have a protective membrane or covering on the shell and submersing an egg in water will start to break down that protective layer. If you do not refrigerate your eggs, submerging them and not using them right away can cause them to go bad quicker.

To use this method you simply fill a bowl of water double deep as the egg is tall. There are 3 things that can happen with this method.

  1. The egg will float to the top of the water.
  2. The egg will sink to the bottom.
  3. It will stand straight up and down.
egg floating means the egg is no good

If the egg floats to the top of the water, it is old and must be discarded. It is not safe for consumption anymore. Please do not take the chance!

Egg in bottom of bowl means egg is fresh

If the egg sinks to the bottom and lays flat on its side, it is less than a week old and extremely fresh. These are the eggs you want to use first!

If the egg stands straight up and down, or bobs, it is probably between 1 and 3 weeks old and is still consumable.

Testing by Cracking it on a Plate

This method is done by cracking open an egg in question onto a plate, separate from other foods and visually inspecting the egg.

When testing eggs freshness with this method there are a few characteristics to look for:

  • The yolk should be round, compact, and stay in the center.
  • The “white” should be fairly thick and should not spread far from the yolk.
  • The cloudier the “white” of the egg is, the fresher it is as it clears with age.
cracked egg

If the yolk seems “flattened” or if the white is runny, resembling the properties of water, discard the egg because it is not consumable.

Testing Eggs Freshness by Sound

This method uses your hearing instead of sight. It is not really highly recommended to use this method alone. However, it can be used in combination with one of the other methods listed above.

While being in a very quiet room, place the egg by your ear, and slightly shake the egg. Listen for swishing. If there is no sound coming from the interior of the egg it is most likely fresh and consumable. 

However, if you hear a sloshing sound from inside the egg, the egg is not fresh and should be discarded immediately. If you are not sure, try the water test or the visual cracking test before discarding the egg.

Little girl listening for swishing inside an egg for testing eggs freshness.

Fertilized Eggs and Blood Spots

A fertilized egg that is fresh is healthy and can be safely consumed as long as it passes the methods of testing eggs freshness freshness above. Some people will not eat a fertilized egg as a personal choice but it is completely up to you. Wondering how to test an egg to see if it is fertile? Read How to Build a Candler so you can test your eggs.

Blood spot in a yolk

Blood spots are the tiny red or brown spots you may see in the yolk of an egg. Since the redness fades with age, these tiny spots, which are actually broken blood vessels, actually mean it is a fresh egg. They are perfectly safe to consume and will cause no health issues at all.

Some people feel uncomfortable eating an egg with a blood spot, but it will cause no harm if consumed. It is a matter of personal choice.

There are 3 main methods of testing eggs freshness to make sure your farm fresh eggs are healthy for your family, in water, cracking and listening.

Cool Tips and More Resources

Now that you know about testing eggs freshness you can enjoy farm fresh eggs daily. Read some final tips below and start enjoying those fresh eggs today!

Simple Tip: The freshest eggs are the best for sunny side up and frying over-easy. The less fresh eggs you find can be used for baking and omelets where the look of the egg itself does not matter.

Do you collect farm fresh eggs from your chickens? Are you considering chickens for your homestead but don’t know where to start? Check out Choosing Chickens for your Homestead for information on getting started.

If you already raise your own flock and want to learn how to breed them see Artificial Incubation Methods or  Hatching Chicken Eggs on your Homestead. If you just want to check your chicken eggs for fertilization then see How to Build a Candler.

You can read more about eggs and see her float test on Fresh Eggs Daily.

Final Thoughts on Testing Eggs Freshness

Testing eggs freshness is an easy process. Any of the three methods above or a combination of two of the three methods should give you a safe way of telling just how old those eggs are before consuming or cooking and baking with them.

Do you have suggestions for testing eggs freshness? Please share your tips and suggestions below for others!


  1. I haven’t heard of the sound test you mentioned. I might have to try that out just for kicks. I do like the float test though, it seems to be a pretty accurate way to determine how old an egg is. Thanks for all the info!

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