The USDA shares these tips on egg safety to stay healthy and avoid foodborne illness:
- Always buy eggs from a refrigerated case. Choose eggs with clean, uncracked shells.
- Buy eggs before the “Sell-By” or “EXP” (expiration) date on the carton.
- Take eggs straight home from the grocery store and refrigerate them right away. Check to be sure your refrigerator is set at 40°F or below. Don’t take eggs out of the carton to put them in the refrigerator — the carton protects them. Keep the eggs in the coldest part of the refrigerator — not on the door.
- Raw shell eggs in the carton can stay in your refrigerator for three to five weeks from the purchase date. Although the “Sell-By” date might pass during that time, the eggs are still safe to use. (The date is not required by federal law, but some states may require it.)
- Always wash your hands with warm water and soap before and after handling raw eggs. To avoid cross-contamination, you should also wash forks, knives, spoons, and all counters and other surfaces that touch the eggs with hot water and soap.
- Don’t keep raw or cooked eggs out of the refrigerator for more than two hours.
- Egg dishes such as deviled eggs or egg salad should be used within 3 to 4 days.
If you have a question about meat, poultry or egg products, call the USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline toll free at 1-888-MPHotline 1-888-MPHotline or 1-888-674-6854 1-888-674-6854 , TTY: 1-800-256-7072 1-800-256-7072.