Freezing Chicken Eggs – The Complete Guide
Sometimes you can pick up a bulk pack of eggs at a bargain at the shops. You buy the eggs, get home and realize you have bought more than what you can eat before the eggs will spoil. Is there a way to keep them for longer?
So what’s the deal with freezing boiled eggs? While you are able to freeze chicken eggs, you really only want to be freezing boiled eggs, and even then, just the egg yolks. The egg white will turn rubbery and inedible in the freezer, and really will be a waste. Remove the egg yolks from the egg whites after boiling, pop them into a freezer container and leave them for up to 3 months in the freezer for the best quality possible, preventing any eggs from spoiling before you can use them.
Separating the yolk from the egg whites might be a bit of a process, but it is definitely worth it in the long run.
How to Prepare Chicken Eggs for Freezing
Once your eggs begin to reach their sell-by date, it is time to consider how to make them last, without wasting the money you have spent.
You will not be able to save all of the egg, as egg whites have an unpleasant texture when frozen, and tend to turn different colors. You will be able to save the egg yolk, and if we’re honest, that is everyone’s favorite part of the egg!
You will first need to boil the egg:
- Place the eggs into a pot of cold water, ensuring there is enough water to fully submerge the eggs.
- Turn on the stovetop and allow the water to come to a boil.
- Once the water begins to boil, remove the pan from the stove and leave the eggs to sit in the water for around 10 minutes.
- While the eggs sit in the boiled water, prepare a bowl with ice water.
- After the ten minutes, transfer the boiled eggs to the ice water.
- This cold temperature will stop the eggs from cooking further and prevents the sulfur from the egg whites transferring to the egg yolks.
- It is a good idea to peel the eggs while they are in the cold water, as this will stop the shell from sticking to the inner membrane.
- Crack the egg under the water and peel them.
- You can use a tablespoon to shell the eggs, without having to use your fingers.
Next, separate the eggs you will be eating that day, and then the rest that you will be freezing.
For the eggs that you will be freezing, you will need to slice at the whites of the eggs. Do so only a little bit to ensure that you do not damage the yolk. Separate the yolk from the whites of the egg and place them aside.
Freezing the Yolks
Once you have gathered up all the yolks for freezing, you need to place them into a freezer container as soon as possible. The longer you leave the egg yolks out, the more chance there is of bacterial growth.
You will need to choose the best freezer container that will suit your needs, and there are three options to choose from which are best for egg yolks.
Heavy-duty plastic freezer bag – Heavy-duty freezer bags are popular to use to freeze many different types of food. They are affordable, and they work well in smaller freezers, or for when there is not much space, as they can be laid flat and stacked one on top of the other.
Make sure that the freezer bag is indeed heavy-duty, to give the egg yolks enough protection to prevent freezer burn. The only downside is that the plastic freezer bags are often single-use, however, there are some that can be used over again.
Airtight container – An airtight freezer container is a good option. If it is good quality, the airtight seal will keep the egg yolks properly protected, ensuring no additional moisture or air is let in to destroy the quality of the egg yolks.
Freezer containers come in all shapes and sizes, so you are able to choose one that will fit the number of egg yolks you wish to freeze, and the great bit is that you can use them over and over again to save some money.
Wrapping – This should be your last option if you do not have a heavy-duty freezer bag or plastic container to freeze the egg yolks in. You can place the egg yolks onto plastic wrap, and gently wrap them up.
You need to be careful not to do so roughly, as this might crush the delicate yolks.
Once wrapped, you should add an extra layer of plastic wrap, and then wrap them finally in aluminum foil for an additional layer of plastic. This can be placed as-is into the freezer.
Make sure not to squash the wrapped package with other foods in the freezer, or you will land up with a mushed egg yolk pancake.
How Long Will Boiled Eggs Last?
Egg yolks, stored in a protective container, can last in the freezer for up to 3 months. While they will be fine to be eaten after this time, the quality will not be great and they will lose their texture and taste.
If you are planning to use the hard-boiled eggs in the next few days, you can keep them in the fridge. Hard-boiled eggs can be kept in the fridge for up to a week.
These should be refrigerated in shallow airtight containers, or in a sealable plastic bag, or wrapped tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil.
To ensure maximum quality and taste, the hard-boiled eggs should be placed in the fridge within two hours after cooking.
Bacteria begin to grow rapidly between temperatures of 40 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit.
If hard-boiled eggs are left out at room temperature for longer than 2 hours, they will be exposed to this bacteria growth, and should rather be discarded of. They should be refrigerated or frozen before reaching the 2-hour mark.
Freezing Raw Chicken Eggs
It is never a good idea to freeze eggs in the shell. The water content in the egg will cause the shell to shatter as it freezes, and this will not only ruin the egg but cause a proper mess in the freezer.
It is best to hard boil them first, or if you are freezing the egg raw, separate the egg whites and the yolks to freeze independently of each other.
This offers more flexibility when it is time to use them, as you can use them on their own or re-mix them to suit your recipe.
If you are wanting to freeze raw eggs with both the yolk and the egg white, you should place them in a freezer container and blend them together until just mixed.
Place them in the freezer this way and they will be ready to use when the time comes.
Many diets require the inclusion of egg whites into breakfast, and there is a really easy way to freeze these for use later on.
Using an ice cube tray, spoon in two tablespoons into one ice cube square. Cover the ice tray either with a lid or with plastic wrap. Place this into the freezer and simply pop out a cube or two to enjoy for breakfast.
If you are freezing raw egg yolks, you should consider adding in some sugar or salt to the egg yolks to prevent them from thickening too much and becoming gelatinous.
Mix in 1 ½ teaspoon of sugar, or 1/8 teaspoon of salt for every ¼ cups of egg yolk. This is around 4 yolks.
Freezing Different Types of Chicken Eggs
There are so many different ways to cook and enjoy eggs, and a few of these egg meals can be frozen for later use. Here are a couple of different egg meals that you can freeze for an easy meal.
Deviled eggs – Just like with hard-boiled eggs, the egg white of deviled eggs will not freeze well and turn rubbery. You should only freeze the yolk mixture once all the ingredients have been mixed together.
You will obviously have to cook up some new egg whites to enjoy with the egg yolk mixture, or you can place the deviled egg yolk mixture onto baguette slices or onto cucumber slices.
Place the deviled egg yolk mixture into a plastic freezer bag.
Once it has been thawed, you can snip a piece off the bottom corner to use to pipe the egg yolk mixture onto a base of your choice.
Scrambled eggs – Scrambled eggs freeze really well, and taste just as delicious when reheated after freezing.
The key to ensuring the scrambled eggs do not turn rubbery is to cook them so they are still a little runny, this allows them to keep a soft texture when they are reheated.
Allow the scrambled egg to cool fully before placing them into a freezer container, to prevent any moisture in the container. They can be thawed in the microwave, but will then need to be eaten immediately.
Egg casserole – Freezing frittata or an egg casserole is a really ideal way to ensure you have quick breakfasts throughout the week, or when you don’t have time to whip up something in the morning.
You should cook the egg casserole before freezing, but just until it is barely cooked, with the eggs still being slightly runny.
You can then choose to freeze the egg casserole as one large dish, to provide breakfast for the whole family, or as individual portions.
Freezing it in individual portions lets you enjoy a single serving for breakfast without having to defrost the whole lot.
Thawing Frozen Hard-Boiled Eggs
When it is time to use the hard-boiled egg yolks you have in the freezer, you will need to thaw them safely. The best way to do this would be to leave the egg yolks to thaw in the fridge overnight.
This way, the egg yolks are not exposed to temperatures that might expose the yolks to temperatures that might promote bacterial growth, which could render the food unsafe to eat.
This does take some pre-planning, as the yolks do need a good few hours to thaw through.
If you are desperate and need to use the yolks right away, you could try placing the container in warm water to quicken the thawing process, or you could place the egg yolks to defrost in the microwave.
If you choose to thaw the egg yolks using a warm method such as in warm water or in the microwave, they will need to be eaten immediately and cannot be placed back into the fridge or refrozen.
Egg yolk that has defrosted in the fridge, and which have not left the fridge, can be kept there for up to 2 days before needing to be thrown away.
When it comes to refreezing the egg yolks, you need to be careful. While the common rule is that you should not refreeze food that has thawed, there are some exceptions.
If the egg yolks have been kept only in the fridge, and for less than 2 days, you are able to refreeze them. It is even better if there are still some ice crystals on the egg yolks, and the sooner you refreeze them, the better.
Place the egg yolks back into the freezer container and place them back into the freezer are soon as possible, and use them within 1 month for the best quality.
However, no matter the conditions, you should not refreeze them a third time!
How do you preserve hard-boiled eggs?
Other than freezing the hard-boiled eggs, you can keep them in the fridge for up to a week. One way to do this is to peel the hard-boiled eggs and place them in a bowl of cold water. Cover this with plastic wrap or a lid and store it in the fridge.
You will need to change the water daily, but kept this way, it can last for 7 days.
Alternatively, you can place the boiled eggs into a sealed container without water, and cover the eggs with a damp paper towel to prevent them from hardening too much and becoming rubbery, these can be kept for the same length of time.
Should you peel the eggs before refrigerating?
If you are only refrigerating the eggs, and not freezing them, you can choose to keep them in the shell or peeled.
If unpeeled, leave the eggs to reach room temperature and then place them in the fridge within 2 hours of being cooked. If the eggs are peeled, place them in cool water in the fridge to keep them from drying out.
How long should I boil eggs?
If you are wanting to use the method of boiling the eggs on the stove, you should place the eggs into cool water and place this on the stove to bring to a boil.
Once the water has reached a rolling boil, set a timer for 6-7 minutes. Leave this on medium-high heat. 6-7 minutes is the right amount of time to ensure perfectly hard-boiled eggs.