Eggs packed with nutrients can be a staple in any home cooking and are really easy to cook with and can be served within minutes, where you can appreciate the mildly sweet and warm taste of the yolk or the creamy and fluffiness of the scrambled egg.
Whichever way you make it, you might find after a while that the chicken eggs you buy aren’t cutting it, and you may want to get adventurous and try other types, where you could get a different kind of flavor and, in some instances, a creamier consistency.
But where do you start, and most importantly, what are these other varieties of eggs like to cook with, and are they any tasty once you’ve added them to your existing recipe?
In this article, we take a look at twelve eggs that vary in size and taste, and we can’t guarantee that you’re going to have an easy time finding them in your local grocery store.
Read on to discover how you can spruce up your recipes with these interesting egg types.
1. Duck Eggs
We start off this list with a well-known egg after the chicken variety, as they can be larger and have a yolk-to-white ratio that makes them ideal for use in baking, and they can have a more intense flavor, which some may prefer.
The dark yellow yolk contains more antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, and more vitamin A than chicken eggs, so they can be more effective in your diet as well.
You’re probably more likely to find these at your local farmers market, and they are becoming more popular in some grocery stores, so buying them fresh is going to be where you can experience the best in cooking as they have a creamier and richer taste.
2. Goose Eggs
This egg is a step up from your duck eggs, as they can have a much stronger flavor than these and chicken eggs, and when fried or poached create a nice effect on the plate, so when cooking, you’ll find they are richer and fatter than the standard egg.
A goose egg has more vitamins A, E, and D, with B-12, riboflavin, thiamin, and folate, amongst others, and as a measurement, are the same size as two duck eggs.
These eggs taste more eggier and are used to make elastic noodles, omelets, and Spanish-style tortillas, and can be fulfilling enough to be a meal on their own and even made into desert spreads such as lemon curd.
3. Hilsa Eggs
Not only does the Hilsa fish (see also ‘What Flavor Does Alligator Gar Produce? Is It Delicious?‘) have a soft and full texture, but their eggs are also something of a delicacy and are popular in areas like Bangladesh and Eastern India, where they are often incorporated into dishes such as spicy curries and even fried and eaten on their own.
These eggs are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamin b-12 amongst other fatty acids, and this is beneficial for brain and heart health and can reduce inflammatory conditions and complications.
These might be harder to find and you may have to seek them out in specialty stores and some markets, and you can usually find them sold in blocks, so you should have plenty to cook with.
4. Ostrich Eggs
To put into context just how large an ostrich egg is, if you were to make an omelet out of one, it would be equivalent to a 20-24 chicken egg omelet, so you’ll have to adjust your regular cooking apparatus to cook with one of these.
The big draw with these eggs is that they contain a lot of protein, vitamin A, calcium, iron, magnesium, and potassium, and the yolk has its own active ingredients that can promote digestion and help to regulate your metabolism.
Finding these might be an issue, as they are seen as an exotic ingredient, as some stores and farms sell them but they can be anywhere around $30, so they can be pretty costly.
5. Bantam Eggs
These eggs can look like your average egg and are often smaller than duck and large chicken eggs, as 3-4 bantam eggs usually equal two standard eggs, with a yolk that has a rich flavor that some suggest has a distinct taste, but you often get more yolk than whites as a trade-off.
Anything from cakes, muffins, and breads can be made from bantam eggs just as you can from chicken eggs as long as you get the ratio of eggs right, and you might find your cake batter is made richer when you use these eggs.
You might have to go to farmers’ markets and organic farms to see them, as their size can sometimes often put people off using them due to needing to use more in recipes than you would with regular eggs.
6. Quail Eggs
These eggs are very distinct as they have patches or specks of brown on their shells and are measured about the same size as bantam eggs, and you’ll find these types are tastier and creamier than standard eggs, which is why they can be a popular alternative.
They are also packed with nutrients, giving your daily needs of vitamin B-12, selenium, riboflavin, and choline, and all served in one egg that is only 14 calories.
You can use them in salads and even smoothies, and you can find them at a whole foods market in packs of 12-15, and you may be able to get more if you look for them in farm stores.
7. Emu Eggs
Another distinct egg, these are usually dark or light green in color and weigh around 2 pounds, which is four times as heavy than the average chicken egg, and when cooked, you’ll find that they are fuller in contents as well.
The yolk is also distinctive, with a dark orange color, and has a sweeter and richer flavor due to the high-fat content, and these less watery or dense eggs can be easier on the stomach and can be cooked just as any other kind of egg.
Like ostrich eggs, these can be difficult to find, and you might have to locate an emu farm or look online, and you’ll find these can be as expensive as ostrich eggs.
8. Rhea Eggs
These eggs have a cream color to them and are of the size of 10 hens eggs, where the yolk is around the size of a tennis ball, and you’ll find the taste is not all that different from chicken eggs, but a good-sized one can make a great omelet or a dripping egg.
They contain much of the same nutrients as an ostrich egg and contain your usual fats, sodium, potassium, and carbohydrates, and the amount of protein might not be practical for everyone.
They are about half the size of an ostrich egg, and you might have to go down to your local farmer’s store, as these can be hard to find, as well as other exotic bird kinds.
9. Crocodile Eggs
When first laid, these eggs can be almost transparent and turn into a creamy white and opaque color, where it becomes a chalk white color before it hatches, and the taste is said to have a strong and fishy flavor, which can be improved by boiling them.
These eggs have a lot of nutrients, such as lecithin, which can help lower blood cholesterol and help prevent Alzheimer’s while improving your memory as well.
Surprisingly, they don’t contain an egg yolk but are enjoyed as a delicacy all over the world, and you might have to go to a crocodile farm and enquire over the availability of their eggs, as these, too, can be difficult to obtain.
10. Gull Eggs
These are a rarer type of egg, mainly because the gulls and their eggs are a protected species in countries such as Canada, the UK, and Australia, so it can be illegal to relocate, destroy, or harm seagull egg nests, but they are considered a delicacy in countries such as Japan.
The egg is notably larger than a chicken egg and usually has a bluish or greenish-blue color on its shells, and the flavor is described as fishy, so it might not be a good idea to consume a large quantity of these.
Depending on where you live, only licensed pickers can harvest these eggs to ensure the process is sustainable, so you might be limited to where you can purchase these, so buying online is often the best means of getting your hands on these eggs.
These eggs are usually one of the most sought after and expensive, and are even more costly when produced by endangered species such as the Beluga sturgeon, and are sometimes matured to give the richest and buttery flavors.
You can get many varieties, such as Ossetra, Sevruga, Hackleback, and Kaluga, and they can even come in the form of roe if you want a cheaper alternative to caviar.
You can purchase caviar at high-end stores or gourmet food stores, but be prepared to pay around $40 to over $100 for the best quality and tasting caviar, but you can get cheaper alternatives at your local supermarket, but they might not give you the flavor you’re looking for.
12. Pigeon Eggs
These types might sound obscure, but these eggs have been enjoyed as a delicacy for centuries, but if you’re looking to make an omelet out of them, you may need a few as these are often smaller than chicken eggs but are a good source of protein and fat.
Their taste has been disputed, as some say these eggs taste like chicken eggs, but you do need to check these eggs are disease-free and will take longer to cook than a regular egg.
These eggs are often served whole to experience their rich taste, and you might be able to purchase them from those who own a pigeon hatchery, which you might have to go online to find.
You could be lucky and find some yourself from an unsupervised nest, but however you get them, you’ll have to ensure that you cook them well and they’re safe to eat, as many feral pigeons carry infectious diseases that can pass on to the eggs.
Are There Any Eggs To Avoid?
Many of the egg types above, as long as a host of others, are a delicacy in many cultures, and over time they have been able to perfect the cooking process to extract the most amount of flavor from them, with the Philippines being a good example.
However, there are some eggs from species such as Nudibranch, cabezon, the hooded Pitohui, and the Ifrita Kowaldi that are known to have eggs that are toxic and should undoubtedly be avoided.
However, some standard eggs might show signs that might make them inedible, or could make you quite ill if you were to consume them.
Below are a few things to look out for when you get your next pack of eggs so you can cook and consume them safely.
- Shells That Don’t Come Off Easily – This extends to any eggs you have that show cracks in the shell, as bacteria can enter through this way, and it is often caused by eggs being stored for too long.
- Eggs With A Heavy Odor – This will tell you that a large amount of bacteria has entered the egg and could cause food poisoning if eaten, but the smell alone is going to be enough to put you off from consuming an egg like this.
- Eggs With Broken Yolk – This can happen if bacteria or fungi have entered the egg through the pores on the shell and affect the protein structure of the egg as a whole.
- Eggs With Mildew – Any eggs that have black spots or are showing signs of mold should be avoided altogether, as whatever stage it’s at, you won’t be able to kill the bacteria through the cooking process.
- Eggs Eaten Raw – A popular choice of consumption among many, but if the egg contains salmonella, it can cause diarrhea, fever, cramps, and vomiting, but this could be pretty rare as it may only affect one in twenty thousand eggs.
Health Benefits Of Eggs
We know that people consume eggs for various reasons, either for dietary needs or for better portion control.
But if you’re on the fence about the debates over how healthy eggs are for you, below are a few benefits that might make these more favorable to you.
- Packed With Nutrients – As well as having a lot of protein, you can find selenium, phosphorus, choline, vitamin B-12, and multiple antioxidants, which can keep cells healthy, and their availability and ease of use make them desirable by many.
- Help With Cholesterol – There is such thing as good cholesterol, but this does mean that the bad kind can rise as well, but this good kind can protect you from all the bad stuff hurting you by flushing it all out of your system.
- Good For Your Heart – Eating more eggs doesn’t appear to raise your chances of developing heart disease, and this can work the same for those who have diabetes and may reduce your risk by up to 20%.
- Help To Sharpen The Brain – The vitamin D found in eggs is great for your grey matter and can be challenging to get from other foods, and the choline can help your nerve cells communicate with each other.
As long as you consume eggs at a healthy amount, so no more than 4-5 eggs per week, and this could be fewer for those with high blood cholesterol or those with diabetes, or those most at risk for heart failure, so getting the right amount in your diet is very important.
It’s suggested that you consume these alongside a healthy and balanced diet with fruits and vegetables, dairy, oils, spreads, and foods high in fiber that should make up the rest of your diet.
Of course, you can still incorporate eggs into many main meal and dessert recipes and still get the rich fullness of the egg which is bound to spruce up your home cooking.