Water Glassing Eggs | Preserving Eggs For Long Term Storage

Egg season is in full swing which means if you are anything like me you have eggs coming out of your ears- water glassing eggs may just be the answer for you! Having your own flock of chickens is a huge blessing, other times they are extra blessings and you are left trying to figure out how to use them all. Trust me, we’ve been there too! For us water glassing was a terrific solution for that.  


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bucket of rainbow eggs | water glassing eggs for long term storage

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Water Glassing Eggs For Storage


Water glassing eggs is a historic egg preservation method, that dates back to the early 1800’s when refrigeration was unavailable. This method kept farm fresh eggs good for a much logger than they would be just left out. As refrigeration became more main stream this egg preservation method 


What Is Water Glassing Eggs?


What is water glassing eggs you may ask? Well we shall explain! Water glassing eggs is where you take farm fresh eggs, never washed, and submerge them in a solution of hydrated lime and water. This seals the pores in the egg preventing air from getting in and letting the egg spoil. 


Can You Water Glass Store Bought Eggs?


No, you can not use store bought eggs for water glassing. Store bought eggs (unless you buy from a friend, homesteader, or backyard chicken keeper and specifically ask them not to wash them) have been washed and the protective bloom has been removed from the egg shell leaving it unprotected.


How Safe Is Water Glassing Eggs?


Water glassing eggs is a time honored way of preserving eggs that has been safely used since the early 1800’s. 


What Does A Water Glassed Egg Taste Like?


Water glassing eggs doesn’t change the flavor of your eggs, depending on how long they stay in the water and lime solution the yokes may become a little weak and break open when cracked. But this will not change the flavor, or texture of the cooked egg.


What kind of lime do you use to preserve eggs?


For water glassing eggs you will be using pickling lime also know as hydrated lime. You can find it in the canning section in your grocery store. Is hydrated lime and pickling lime the same thing? Yes!


What is Hydrated Lime?


Hydrated lime is usually a combination of oyster shells, bones, and limestone that have been burnt in a kiln, then hydrated with water. That’s it! It’s a very natural product, it’s not synthetic, and it’s completely safe to use.


Do note that hydrated lime will be very different than the lime you’d find in your agricultural section at the local hardware store, so be sure you’re sourcing the correct product.


What Is Needed To Water Glassing Eggs?


To water glass eggs you will need:

  • Container to hold the eggs (1 gallon bottle, a 2 gallon or 5 gallon food grade buckets work well)
  • Calcium Hydroxide (also known as Pickling Lime, Slacked lime, or Hydrated Lime)
  • Water
  • Clean farm fresh unwashed eggs


Can you use tap water to water glass eggs?


If possible don’t use tap water for water glassing eggs. When using this method for preserving eggs it is best to use water that is free of chlorine, fluoride, and high in minerals.


Distilled water or natural spring water are the best options for water glassing eggs. If your city does add chlorine to the water, boil the water and allow it to cool completely before using it. 




How To Water Glass Eggs


To water glass eggs you will need:

  • 8 oz Hydrated Lime
  • 8 quarts Filtered Water
  • Fresh Clean Unwashed Eggs


Water Glassing Eggs Directions:


  1. Start off with a clean vessel to store your eggs. Depending on how many eggs you want to preserve will determine the size of your container. I’m starting with a 5-gallon food-grade bucket, but over the course of the summer, I’ll likely fill two or three of these buckets.
  2. Next, add enough water to your container that your eggs will be completely submerged, but not so much that the water will overflow.
  3. Measure out your water and lime. The ratio of water to lime is for every one quart of water you’ll use 1 ounce of lime. No matter what size container you’re using, this is the ratio to follow.
  4. Add the lime to your clean water and whisk until completely dissolved. The water will look milky white.
  5. Next, gently add your unwashed fresh eggs.
  6. When you get to the point that you can start positioning eggs, be sure you’re putting the small side down (see video for reference)
  7. When you’re ready to use your eggs, simply remove them as you need them, give them a good rinse off and use as normal.


How Long do Preserved Eggs Last?


The noted percentage of success rate for this at 8 months is about 100%, but some people have noted that even after 2 years their eggs are perfectly fine to use!


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