Are Cracked Eggs Safe to Eat?

Fried, poached, scrambled, quiched, or deviled, or incorporated into cakes, brownies, cookies, and other baked goods; odds are you put a dozen eggs to your grocery cart virtually every time you go.

Many of us open the top of the carton to check the eggs inside before ringing it up. But what if you forget, or order supermarket delivery or curbside pickup, and discover a cracked egg in the carton? 

The answer depends on whether you cracked the egg yourself (during a cooking or when carrying items to the fridge) or if it was cracked when you got it home.

Is a Cracked Egg Safe to Eat?

Bacteria can easily get into the egg yolk or egg white through cracks in the shell, so the USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service suggests avoiding cartons with cracked eggs if you can.

This is backed up by science: Salmonella was much more likely to be found in eggs with weak or cracked shells, according to a study published in the Asian-American Journal of Sciences in July 2017.

If you bought eggs that were already cracked or look like they are chipping, throw them away right away so that no one cooks with them by accident. 

The rest of the eggs in the carton that aren't cracked should still be good to eat as long as they don't show any of these four signs that an egg has gone bad.

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