A frugal egg-speriment.

When I was about to leave for my house-sitting/visiting trip to Alaska in mid-May, I had part of a carton of eggs in the fridge. Since I would be gone for two months, I decided to try something I’d only read about: freezing eggs.

Today I sampled the results.

How’d they taste? I’ll get to that.

The above link is to the National Center for Home Food Preservation, which recommends adding a little sugar, salt or corn syrup to the eggs and also suggests sieving the mixture “to improve uniformity.” I’d gotten instructions elsewhere on the Internet, and such things were not mentioned.

I’m actually glad about that, because it saved me a couple of steps. I mixed the eggs thoroughly, poured them into a small, paper-lined muffin pan and set them in the freezer.

Trouble was, I couldn’t get them back out of the pan.

Two months on ice

The little muffin liners had become one with the metal. I tried pouring hot water on the underside of the cups and then working a knife blade between the papers and the pan. No dice. I did manage to tear the paper a little, though.

The clock was ticking so I said “the hell with it,” slid the entire pan into a plastic bag and froze it wholesale. And there it sat until about 1 a.m. Friday, when I got back from my trip and took several things out of the freezer:

  • A jar of milk (read more about that in “An easy way to save on milk”)
  • Jars of iced tea and lemonade that I also couldn’t finish before I left
  • A jar of whey left from the last batch of homemade yogurt (I make oatmeal with half water, half whey)
  • The muffin pan of frozen eggs

The milk was thawed by breakfast. I drank the tea, with a dash of lemonade, during the day Friday. The eggs became a dinner project on Saturday.

After two months on ice, they’d thickened up to the consistency of cake batter. I had to coax them out of their little paper jackets. In fact, they were so gloppy that I diluted them with a bit of milk. Once in the pan they seemed to relax a bit, and they scrambled up pretty normally.

Glad I didn’t waste them

I could tell they weren’t fresh-outta-the-hen eggs. The texture was ever so slightly different, and the flavor was not quite as robust.

But they were edible enough — and I was glad I hadn’t thrown out six perfectly good huevos.

Mind you, I wouldn’t serve frozen eggs to someone I was trying to impress. But seasoned with dill and pepper, and served with a bagel and cream cheese and fruit, they made a satisfying supper.

Good thing: They’ll be tomorrow’s lunch, too.


18 Comments

  1. I freeze mine in 4 oz Ball canning/freezing jars or 8 oz Ball jelly jars, just any Ball jar with straight sides. You might like them better if you used them to bake. LOL…they were not “fresh outta-the-hen eggs” when you bought them. My really really fresh outta-the-hen eggs seemed to scramble up just fine. Maybe it was my cast iron skillet? No, you probably have one too. Or, maybe I have no taste?

    You might try greasing/oiling the inside of the muffin pan next time.

    I found my yogurt maker, hiding in plain sight.

  2. Something you can do: instead of muffin cups, use ham slices (or other deli meat). Then bake the whole thing. (That’s what we had for dinner last night, in fact.)

    • Donna Freedman

      @Nicole: Interesting! I presume you freeze the ham and eggs in a baking dish?

  3. Elizabeth

    I was going to recommend using them in baking too :) I don’t like eggs, so I have leftovers even when I buy just half a dozen to make a couple batches of muffins. I haven’t had a chance to try it yet, but I’ve heard that it’s a good idea to let the eggs come to room temperature before you bake. (I do that frozen or not!)

    • Donna Freedman

      @Elizabeth: Maybe I’ll bake something instead of scrambling the leftovers. It’s an unusually cool summer here (no sign of the 100-degree days of the past couple of years) so I don’t have to worry about heating up the kitchen.

  4. Elizabeth

    Always interesting to experiment. Thanks for sharing. In addition to freezing, another option for when you’re going out of town is to hard boil and then pickle the eggs – just like pickles, they’ll keep for quite awhile that way in the fridge.

    • Donna Freedman

      @Elizabeth: I’ve never eaten pickled eggs, but I’ll have to try that method. Thanks for the suggestion.

  5. Lazyretirementgirl

    When I am heading out of town, I crack 2 or 3 eggs into a plastic container – glad box or former cheese container – stir them enough to mix the yolks and whites and freeze. Take them out of the freezer the night before I want to use them and thaw in the fridge. They are just fine in a quiche or seasoned scrambled eggs, and just the right number of eggs for one meal.

  6. jestjack

    Welcome back to the “lower 48″ Donna. Your story about the eggs brings to mind one of my DF’s “adventures”. When I was small he bought a case of eggs (30 dozen) for a great price somewhere. Of course we couldn’t eat them before they would go bad. So DF bought ice cube trays …like 100 of them, placed the contents of the eggs in the trays and into the freezer they went. Later we took them out and tried to use them…they were awful. DM cooked them up and set them out for the cats…..must have been bad …. because they wouldn’t even eat them!

  7. @Donna In a muffin pan, same as you did.

  8. My parents used to buy milk on sale and put in the freezer when we kids were children. I always tasted the difference then (I don’t drink milk or eat dairy now) and hated it. Interesting that you like it. I thought the texture was off and color more yellow which threw me off and semi-turned me off drinking milk from a glass. I am glad however, that you were able to keep your food and use them.

    • Donna Freedman

      @Rhona: I don’t particularly “like” it because I don’t like milk, period. I just use it for cooking and oatmeal. Thus the texture doesn’t bug me one way or the other.
      Kids’ palates are a little more tender, I think — any change in texture, color or smell grosses them out. Now that I’m a boring grownup, not only have some of my taste buds died off, I think more about “Do I want to waste this?” vs. “I’ll just pour the milk down the drain before I go away for two months.”
      Thanks for reading, and for leaving a comment.

  9. I’m supposed to get LESS picky with age? Well crap. I think that gene skipped a generation. Which means that you just hogged it. So I blame you.

    But I’m glad you didn’t waste anything. A gal has to have something to feel vaguely guilty about not doing as well as her mom at!

  10. As mentioned in your article, you can easily freeze milk. I’ve been doing that for years. You can’t beat Costco for a cheap gallon of milk; it’s around $2.05 now, I believe, compared to over $3 at most grocery stores. My side by side freezer’s not that big, but I can squeeze in 2 gallons, and altho it expands a bit, i don’t bother opening the gallon to remove any of the milk. The only caveat i would add is that it takes quite a while of milk sitting in the fridge to dethw, like 3 or 4 days, so you need to anticipate when you’ll want it. Often, it dethaws only partially and then there’s a big chunk of ice in the container, and yes, even with skim milk, if it’s not completely dethawed, different portions of the thawed liquid taste different becus it’s not all mixed together. Still, it’s worth it to me do do, not only becus of the cheaper price at Costco but becus it’s a 20-minute ride to Costco and it save me rrepeated trips and the gas, just for the milk.

  11. That is truly interesting! Claro, if the frozen eggs are palatable when scrambled, they’d be just fine for baking and the like. I use eggs in cooking — while I’m apparently not allergic to them, they don’t agree with me when I try to eat them just cooked (ick!). So I hardly ever buy them, because even a half-dozen goes mostly to waste. This means I rarely bake or cook things that ask for eggs. It would be great if I could freeze the things! Definitely going to try it.

    Also interested in Fern’s description of freezing milk, another substance that makes me barf if I try to consume it straight but that works just fine when used in cooking. What if you froze it in ice cube trays; then transferred the cubes into baggies or Tupperware in amounts of about a cup apiece? A smaller amount might thaw more evenly, getting you around the challenge Fern describes.

  12. I think you get less picky with age because, as an adult, you have to buy the food. As a child, you don’t.

  13. How funny that a trip to Alaska inspires you to experiment with freezing things.

    Can I make a completely random remark? When I first clicked on this post, and my eyes saw the blue link at the bottom of your first paragraph that hyperlinks the phrase “freezing eggs,” my first thought was about … well … freezing a very different type of egg.

    Which, by the way, costs several thousand dollars to do. One of my roommates has looked into it.

    Far cheaper to freeze the eggs you’ll eat for dinner.

  14. christy

    with anything you freeze you don’t want to just put it in the freezer if it will be “exposed” to the air in there. You get that stale taste so I keep a box of arm in hammer in there. For freezing eggs I suggest using a wax coated container reusing a rinsed out milk carton or even a plastic frozen meal tray should work. (think of how Eggbeaters are packaged) I think using a freezer bag should work to, just thaw and snip the corner of the bag when ready to use.

    NExt time make and freeze cookie dough, just roll it into a log wrap well and freeze, then when ready to make you slice off some dough and bake.

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