Even though many people eat only chicken eggs, there are many other edible types of eggs. Did you know there are over 9,000 different types of birds that lay eggs and almost all of those eggs are edible! Here are five of the more common types of eggs you can eat that aren’t chicken.
You Can Eat That! 5 Delicious Types of Eggs That Aren’t Chicken
We all know you can eat chicken eggs, but what about eggs from other birds? As a mixed flock owner who gathers many types of eggs, it often surprises people (and sometime grosses them out!) when they hear that you can eat more than just chicken eggs!
In addition to chicken eggs, we’ve eaten guinea eggs, duck eggs, turkey eggs. This is the first year we’ve had goose eggs and our goose went broody or we would have tried them too.
Quail, Guinea, Duck, Turkey, Goose – oh my! Can I eat those eggs?
If you’re curious about the different types of eggs you can raise eat, this post is for you!
The smallest of the eggs I gather, guinea eggs are really cute. They’re more of an oblong shape as opposed to oval, light brown colored with speckles. Guineas like to hide their eggs in hard-to-find locations, but if you’re lucky enough to find them, they are certainly edible and delicious!
Guineas can lay around 100 eggs per year, but they typically go broody after having laid 30 or so eggs. Their eggs are rich and nutritious if you allow them to free-range and they are very, very hard to crack! In general, two guinea eggs equal one large chicken egg and when we find them, we mix them with other eggs in scrambled eggs. I’ve also seen hard-boiled guinea eggs on restaurant menus before, but I have not personally tried them.
Duck Eggs – A Common Type of Egg
I’d say, behind chicken eggs, duck eggs are probably one of the more common type of eggs that Americans eat. We think duck eggs taste pretty much the same as chicken eggs and we mix them with chicken eggs when we make scrambled eggs, or we use them in baking as they help make baked goods extra fluffy.
Ducks are prolific layers and their eggs are great for a lot of reasons. They’re bigger and contain more nutrients, Omega 3s, and calories per gram than chicken eggs. They last longer because their shells are thicker, and people who are allergic to chicken eggs can often tolerate duck eggs.
Duck eggs are also really pretty – running from almost black or grey (Cayuga duck) to a milky-white (most other ducks). The downside to duck eggs is that ducks will lay them about anywhere and they’re often really dirty. They can take a lot of cleaning to make presentable.
Duck eggs can be used in any recipe in a two to three ratio. If a recipe calls for three chicken eggs, use two duck eggs. If it calls or one chicken egg, substitute one duck egg. If you’re scared to try eggs other than chicken eggs, try a duck egg in a baking recipe and see what you think!
Turkey Eggs – A Beautiful Type of Egg
You can also eat turkey eggs! Native Americans first ate wild turkey eggs hundreds of years ago. We don’t really eat them today because turkeys aren’t as efficient of layers as chickens. Whereas chickens start laying around five months of age, turkeys don’t mature until at least two months later. They also don’t lay nearly as many eggs in a year as chickens do.
Turkey eggs are larger than chicken eggs and they’re also much harder to crack. Like guinea eggs, they are slightly oblong and speckled too. Turkey eggs have a richer taste, and also more nutrients than chicken eggs. At around 50% larger than chicken eggs, turkey eggs have twice as many calories and fat, and about four times as much cholesterol. Turkeys are notorious for hiding their nests in difficult to spot locations, but if you happen to find a turkey egg and you’re an adventurous eater, go ahead and try it!
Goose Eggs – HUGE eggs!!
We call goose eggs the mother of all the eggs we find on our little farm. They are absolutely enormous! One goose egg equals about three chicken eggs and like duck eggs, they are also great for baking egg. Many restaurants used to sell goose-egg omelets – one egg does the trick – and their rich flavor was a hit! I’ve had people ask to buy my goose eggs for art projects.
But because geese only lay at most around 40 eggs per year, and sometimes go broody, I’ve never sold the goose eggs my one female goose recently started laying. The above pictures compares a goose egg side by side with a chicken egg.
Quail Eggs – Gorgeous, tiny eggs
The quail is another popular type of homestead poultry and their tiny eggs are not only edible but also gorgeous. One reason people like to raise quail because of how quickly they mature. Unlike a chicken, which won’t start laying for five months, quail lay within only six to eight weeks. We have not raised quail on our homestead (yet) but I would like to start. Here’s what I’ve learned about quail and their eggs from scouring the internet and knowledgeable instragrammers like Tami at Rusty Moose Farm.
Their eggs are tiny – it takes four quail eggs to equal one chicken egg. They’re also another allergy-free option, like duck eggs. Some people who are allergic to chicken eggs can eat quail eggs without issue. Quail are very strong fliers so they can’t be free-ranged like chickens or other birds. You can also raised quail for their meat as well.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on different types of eggs. Are you grossed out at the thought of eating a different bird’s eggs, or have you tried a type of egg other than chicken?
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