Yes, You Can Freeze Eggs — With One Caveat

updated May 1, 2020
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Credit: Joe Lingeman

Eggs are something that have a surprisingly long shelf life in the refrigerator: A carton will keep for up to five weeks from the purchase date, regardless of the sell-by date. However, because we’re all stocking up in order to limit our grocery trips, you may be wondering if you can keep eggs fresh for even longer than that. The short answer is yes, but it comes with a catch.

If you want to hold eggs for longer than five weeks, you can, but you should freeze them. Freezing eggs might seem unconventional, but they actually hold up incredibly well in the freezer. The only trick is how you freeze them. Here’s what you need to know.

Avoid Freezing Eggs in the Shell

Eggs freeze well, but you want to take them out of their shell first. That’s because when frozen in the shell, the shells can crack as the liquid inside freezes and expands. Sure, freezing can make for a great fried egg, as we’ve mentioned, but it doesn’t come with the risk of cracking. Also, when frozen as is, the texture of the yolk changes and becomes thick and gummy.

Instead, for successful long-term storage, your best bet is to either freeze whole, lightly beaten eggs, or freeze the yolks and whites separately.

3 Methods for Freezing Eggs

  1. Freeze whole, lightly beaten eggs. If you’re planning on using your eggs for scrambles, frittatas, omelets, and egg bakes later on, you’ll want to freeze the yolks and whites together. Leaving the yolks intact can cause them to thicken in the freezer so you’ll want to gently beat the yolks and whites together to protect them. Place the eggs in a freezer-safe container labeled with the amount of eggs inside. Or for easier measuring, place a beaten egg in each well of an ice cube tray, freeze, then pop out the frozen cubes into a zip-top bag and return the bag to the freezer. Frozen eggs will last for up to a year and can be defrosted overnight before cooking.
  2. Freeze egg yolks: Separate the yolks from the whites if you’d like to use them to make pudding or ice cream down the line. This is also what you should do if you’ve used the whites for something like angel food cake and have a few yolks you don’t immediately have plans for. Eggs yolks can thicken and become pasty in the freezer. To prevent this, gently beat each yolk with either a pinch of salt or about 1/3 teaspoon sugar, depending on whether you plan to use them later for something savory or sweet. Freeze individually in ice cube trays or combine them in a freezer-safe container that’s marked with the quantity. They’ll be good for up to a year and should be defrosted in the refrigerator overnight before using.
  3. Freeze egg whites: Separate the whites from the yolks if you plan to scramble them on their own, would like to later use to make meringue or macaroons, or just have some left over from using the yolks for homemade ice cream. Egg whites are the easiest to freeze because you don’t really have to do anything to them. Drop each into ice cube trays or a freezer-safe container that’s label with the quantity of whites and freeze for up to a year. Defrost in the refrigerator overnight before using.