Many people remain unaware of the benefits of organic eggs. These eggs come from hens that are fed completely natural ingredients, which are certified organic and produced without pesticides, fungicides, herbicides, commercial fertilizers, or any other chemical agents. No organic eggs contain hormones, antibiotics, or any other artificial substances. Also, the USDA mandates that hens that lay organic eggs must be raised in a cage-free environment and have access to the outdoors.
The Benefits of Organic Eggs
According to Eggland's Best, the American Egg Board, and several other organizations, organic eggs do not have any nutritional benefits over commercially produced eggs. However, many consumers and organic advocates believe that there are many benefits of organic eggs, including a better taste and a healthier product.
- Some consumers advocate for organic eggs because the chickens who lay them are often healthier. Birds who lay commercially sold eggs can be raised in cramped environments, kept in cages for all their lives, and fed a pre-mixed collection of feed that is made from ingredients grown with pesticides and other chemicals.
- Many people believe that traces of the chemical agents used to produce chicken feed for hens that lay commercial eggs can end up in the eggs and pose harmful health risks for consumers who purchase and eat those eggs.
- The Chicken Coop Source reports that a varied diet leads to a better-tasting egg. Since hens that lay organic eggs have access to the outdoors and are permitted to eat a variety of grains, insects, worms, and other natural substances, their reasoning follows that those hens' eggs taste better.
- Eggs have a somewhat porous surface that can absorb outside odors. Chickens that are raised on organic feed often live in cleaner environments than chickens that are not free-range or cage-free, so there is a lesser chance of organic eggs absorbing unpleasant odors or chemical agents.
How to Use Organic Eggs
Most organic eggs have a clean, fresh flavor and are good to use in a variety of recipes. They don't need to be treated any differently from commercially produced eggs, and they should be stored the same way (in the refrigerator). There is a risk of salmonella contamination with organic eggs just as there is with conventional eggs, but the risk is likely lower because healthier birds have a smaller chance of laying salmonella-contaminated eggs. Still, you should use caution and understand the risks if you are planning to consume raw or undercooked organic eggs.
- Use the eggs for baking to mix up a more natural final product.
- Make a quiche, frittata, or omelet that is only delicately flavored with other spices or ingredients. The flavor of the organic eggs will really shine through in a dish that makes them the main attraction.
- Whip up a Cooking with Organic Egg Whites: Expert Interview egg-white omelet or use whites to make meringues or light, fluffy soufflés.
- Enjoy a single fried egg or scrambled egg with toast and fruit for breakfast.
- Use organic eggs as a meat substitute in many dishes. They're rich in protein and will add a welcome diversity in texture. Try including them in stir fries, fried rice, or tortillas.
- Eat hard-boiled eggs in salads, sandwiches, or as a snack.