Your Egg Glossary: Definition & Differences In Eggs

Buying eggs should be a simple thing to do, but these days, it’s just gotten harder. There are just so many different types of eggs! In order to figure out the definition and differences in your eggs, you’ll need our egg glossary. It’ll help you figure out what you actually want for your family, and whether it’s worth it!

different types of eggs

Egg Grades:

First, you’ll have to know what the egg grades are. A grade is just how “good” an egg is. There’s B, A, and AA. Most of the time you’ll see A and AA, and won’t know the difference. Really, the only difference is how pretty they are (shell quality and looks) and whether the batch has a higher or lower percentage of defects. This doesn’t mean much to you, and shouldn’t be a problem. Both A and AA are fine, while B is better for baking.

Egg Size:

There are different sized eggs, and they don’t need a definition. It’s just how big they are! The only reason to spend more for a larger egg is because your recipes usually specify large eggs, and extra large or jumbo eggs have more protein. Otherwise, if that’s not much of a concern for you, you don’t have to pick a specific size.

Brown Eggs:

Obviously they’re brown, not white. There’s not much of a difference when you choose brown or white eggs, it just came from a different breed of hen. They’re not healthier or different in any way but the color, so you’d probably choose this for just aesthetics or price.

Cage-Free Eggs:

This is a rather odd one. Basically all this means is that the hens spend no time in a cage, and are either housed in a large building or open area. It doesn’t change the egg at all, but many people choose this type because they feel strongly about how a chicken is treated.

Free-Range Eggs:

Isn’t that the same as cage-free? Actually, no. A free-range chicken has partial or total access to the outdoors. A cage-free chicken just doesn’t have a small cage, though it still lives in one giant cage with its friends. A free-range chicken has more space, and gets to roam wild for most of its life.

100% Natural Eggs:

All it is is an egg that hasn’t been tampered with. It goes straight from the chicken to you. There’s no difference as to how the chicken is treated, or what the chicken eats, and so on, there’s just no flavor or brining added to the actual egg.

Organic Eggs:

This is a much more regulated term than “natural” is. The USDA Organic label means that the chicken was cage free, allowed to roam in a large area and outdoors, and fed with a purely organic diet. Unless you’re a huge organic fan, or have any qualms about how chickens are treated, there’s no actual reason to pay extra for organic eggs.

Which are your favorite types of eggs?