Dehydrated and freeze-dried foods are among the easiest foods around for both everyday cooking and long-term food storage. One handy item in that category is dried eggs and knowing how to use them is important.
At first glance, a pouch or can of this powdery substance may not be very appealing, but I can recommend it for so many different reasons. Here are just a few:
- With dried eggs on hand, you won’t ever have to worry about running out of fresh eggs at a critical juncture, whether baking a cake or serving scrambled eggs for breakfast.
- In a disaster or other worst case scenario, fresh eggs may be hard to come by. With dried eggs, you’ll always have this staple on hand.
- Dried eggs do not need to be refrigerated.
- Dried whole eggs are a God send for those on low carb diets, and dried egg whites are perfect for making low fat recipes.
- A #10 can of dried whole eggs contains around 70 eggs. Try storing 70 fresh eggs in the same amount of space!
Chances are, you’ve already eaten dried eggs and didn’t even realize it. Many restaurants, school cafeterias, and the military use dried eggs because of their versatility, ease of storage, and convenience. (Restaurants also often use liquid eggs in a carton, and those will probably contain additives. Plain, dried eggs do not.)
For the purists among us, the only thing you’ll find in most containers of dried eggs are…eggs. Some companies may add a small amount of an anti-caking ingredient, but other than that, what you see is what you get.
Forms of dried eggs
Dried eggs are sold by all the major food storage companies, including my long-time sponsor, Augason Farms, as well as companies that sell packaged meals convenient for camping, hiking, hunting, and the like. One such company is Mountain House.
You’ll find dried whole eggs, dried egg whites, and different versions of scrambled eggs. In my research, dried scrambled eggs were the only dried egg product that contained numerous additives, such as bacon, ham, or dehydrated peppers. Some brands also contained preservatives, flavorings, and artificial coloring.
Dried scrambled eggs will produce something that looks and tastes like scrambled eggs, with a scrambled egg consistency, and they’re very handy for quick, tasty meals. Check out the ingredients on different brands, though, to make sure nothing has been added to the eggs that might cause an allergic reaction to someone in the family.
Dried whole eggs are the most versatile of all the dried egg products because only dried and powdered eggs are in the container. You can use this egg powder in place of fresh eggs in your baking, in casseroles, frittatas, and for use in the breading process. Dried eggs can be added directly to most recipes without having to be reconstituted with water first, but do add a little extra water to the recipe equivalent to the amount required for reconstituting the eggs.
In most cases, equal parts water and dried egg powder will equal one egg, but be sure to double check the label.
Tips for how to use dried eggs
- Dried eggs come in small pouches, #2.5 cans, #10 cans, and buckets. Pouches are handy for sampling the product before buying a larger quantity. #2.5 cans are best for households with only 1 or 2 persons or for those who seldom use fresh eggs. The #10 can will hold about a gallon of dried egg powder but since the can, once opened, will have a shelf life of a year or so, it’s not an overwhelming size. Most households easily consume 70 eggs per year.
- To calculate how much dried egg powder you should keep in your long-term storage, start keeping track of how many eggs your family consumes per month. Every time you record 70 eggs, or 6 dozen, that’s the equivalent of one #10 can.
- Always, always store food in a cool and dark part of the house. This will help extend its shelf life.
- If you make homemade pancake mix, add dried eggs, and store the mix in a cool cupboard. Each morning when you want pancakes, just scoop out the mix, add water, and you’re ready to go!
- Dried scrambled eggs will likely contain vegetable oil, which goes rancid over time. I recommend storing extra scrambled egg powder in a jar with a tight fitting lid and keeping it in the refrigerator for longest possible shelf life.
- Not sure what a #2.5 can or a #10 can is? Read this tutorial!