Contents: Bloody Chicken Egg
Lots of Blood in Chicken Egg (Is It Safe to Eat?)
As a chicken keeper, I’ve often found blood in my chicken eggs. Sometimes, there’s a lot of blood where the egg white looks pink or dark red.
If the egg white has a pinkish color to it, don’t eat it. It might mean the egg isn’t safe to eat because of bacteria. The risk is not worth the price of the egg.
However, if the egg white is red (literally looks bloody) then it won’t hurt you if you eat it. But, my suggestion is to throw it out. Let’s face it. A bloody egg isn’t appetizing.
Small Amount of Blood in Chicken Egg (Are Blood Spots Safe to Eat?)
Yes, you can definitely eat an egg if you find spots of blood (called blood spots).
The egg is perfectly safe to eat whether or not you remove the blood spots.
If you do choose to remove the blood, take the tip of a knife and just take the spot out. You can then safely cook the egg just like any other regular egg.
Another type of harmless spots regularly found in egg whites are called a meat spots or protein spots. These spots appear as brown, red, or white deposits. Eggs with meat spots are also edible. Just take the spot out and enjoy your egg!
Why Is There Blood in My Chicken Egg?
Usually, blood in chicken eggs is nothing to be concerned about.
The cause of a blood spot is simply a ruptured blood vessel on the yolk’s surface as the egg is forming inside a hen.
Each egg includes blood vessels that, if fertilized and later incubated, will eventually benefit the growing embryo.
But a blood spot in your egg doesn’t mean that the egg has been fertilized. Even non-fertile eggs have tiny blood vessels that secure the yolk firmly in position within the egg.
In chicken eggs, the actual cause of blood spots may vary. Here are a few common reasons:
- Stress: The hen might have been startled while she’s forming the egg.
- Handling: The hen might have been handled roughly while the egg is being formed.
- Genetics: Blood in chicken eggs can be genetic and there’s little you can do about it.
- Lighting: Lighting the coop through the winter or exposing the hens to excess light could also cause blood spots.
- Nutrition: Blood spots could be caused by too much or too little vitamins and minerals in the hens’ diet. Make sure you’re feeding your hens a high-quality layer feed.
- Age: Young hens who just started laying eggs, and old hens who are about to retire their egg-laying, tend to lay more eggs with blood spots.
More dangerous, but uncommon, causes of blood spots may include fungus or toxins in the feed or a viral disease (Avian encephalomyelitis).
But in most cases, blood spots and meat spots are completely natural and there is no real way in preventing them from happening 100% of the time.
Blood in Store Bought Chicken Eggs
You’ve probably never a lot of blood in store-bought eggs. Why is that?
To reduce the risk that eggs with blood spots are sold to customers, commercially sold eggs go through a process called candling. This technique detects flaws within the egg by using a bright light. If flaws are found in the egg, the egg is discarded.
Unfortunately, some eggs with blood and meat spots aren’t caught by the candling process. For example, blood spots in brown eggs are more difficult to detect than white eggs because of their darker colored shell.
How to Candle Chicken Eggs to Find Blood Spots
People who eat farm-fresh eggs are more likely to find blood spots than people who eat eggs produced commercially. This is because local farms or backyard chicken keepers usually don’t candle the eggs.
But if you’re interested in candling eggs, check out my favorite egg candler (Amazon). It’s really cool and easy to use.
Summary: Can You Eat a Bloody Egg?
- If the egg white has a pinkish color to it, don’t eat it. It might mean the egg isn’t safe to eat because of bacteria. The risk is not worth the price of the egg.
- If the egg white is red (literally looks bloody) then it won’t hurt you if you eat it. But, my suggestion is to throw it out. Let’s face it. A bloody egg isn’t appetizing.
- If the egg has a blood or meat spot, it’s perfectly safe to eat whether or not you remove the blood spots.
- The cause of a blood spot is simply a ruptured blood vessel on the yolk’s surface as the egg is forming inside a hen.
- To reduce the risk that eggs with blood are sold to customers, commercially sold eggs go through a process called candling (you can see my favorite candler on Amazon). This technique detects flaws within the egg by using a bright light.