Chicken Eggs Vs. Duck Eggs.

Duck egg (left) versus chicken egg (right).

Duck egg (left) versus chicken egg (right).

We eat chicken eggs. So why not duck eggs?

With that mindset, I purchased my first package of duck eggs from the local farmer’s market. But when it came time to actually eat the eggs, I’m embarrassed to admit that I became a little squeamish. But I was pleasantly surprised.

Aside from being a bit larger in size, having a higher yoke to white ratio and a being slightly richer in flavor (which makes duck eggs a tasty substitute in recipes), the eggs are nearly indistinguishable.

According to the farmer from which I acquired the duck eggs, they’re better for you – and so I decided to dig deeper. As it turns out, there are some distinct nutritional differences between chicken eggs and duck eggs.

Duck eggs, on nearly every measure, have more nutrients and vitamins per 100 grams than chicken eggs. Whether it’s calcium, magnesium, iron, vitamin A, vitamin B12, thiamin, etc., duck eggs pack more nutritional punch on almost every count.

Duck eggs are also a richer source of omega 3 fatty acids. These fatty acids, commonly found in fish oils, are vital for normal metabolism but can’t be synthesized by the body. In other words, you have to obtain these fatty acids through your diet.

On the flip side, the duck eggs are slightly higher in calories (185 vs 149 per 100 grams) and have twice the cholesterol of traditional eggs. Keep in mind, the impact of dietary cholesterol (the cholesterol we eat) on the cholesterol in our blood is fairly small. Unless you already have high blood cholesterol levels or an otherwise unhealthy diet, the increased cholesterol in duck eggs isn’t cause for concern.

Because duck eggs have a thicker shell, they’re said to have a longer shelf life. If refrigerated, according to my local farmer, the eggs are edible for up to six weeks.

The bottom line: If you’re looking to switch things up, duck eggs are a delicious, rich substitution – and their health benefits are no yoke. I mean, no joke.

About Davey Wavey

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Comments

  1. i have heard that fertilized hen eggs have less cholesterol than unfertilized hen eggs….i wonder if it is the same for duck eggs??

  2. Is there a more precision about composition between the yoke and the white of the eggs. Normally the cholesterol is much more in the yoke, and if most of the minerals, proteins and omega 3 are in the white, it would be better to only eat the white !

  3. Steve454 says:

    Sorry if I didn’t catch this, but what is the relative price difference?

  4. Iconoclast says:

    Relax your craving for farm-raised duck eggs: They are seasonal breeders and after the season passes you will not be able to find them. (I’m uncertain if the large commercial duck farms have been able to get the hens to lay out of season.)
    Eggs naturally dehydrate during storage. The pelicle helps slow the desiccation but it is removed during washing. Perhaps your farmer doesn’t wash his duck eggs. Regardless of the source, keep your eggs in a sealed container to retain internal moisture. Shell thickness may slow the evaporation but will not stop it.
    Eggs that are not carrying salmonella or other pathogenic bacteria will remain fresh for many weeks regardless of the species of origin.

    • Please let me clarify. I am a Duck farmer and with the right living situation, Ducks lay year around. It is winter and we have an abundant supply of eggs from our Ducks. Their eggs will stay fresh as the day they were laid up to six weeks if refrigerated. We have been Duck farmers for quite a while, our eggs are washed if necessary. It’s not the washing that can cause bacteria but how the eggs are washed. There are safe practices with the washing that prevents bacteria from entering the egg. You shouldn’t make a comment if you don’t know what your talking about. Duck eggs are available and can be found year around.

  5. I love duck eggs. My neighbor when I was growing up raised ducks and usually gave my grandmother a few eggs which she always cooked for me.
    But… I feel I have to say this:
    A yoke is a wooden beam, normally used between a pair of oxen or other animals to enable them to pull together on a load when working in pairs, as oxen usually do. Alternatively, an egg yolk is a part of an egg which feeds the developing embryo.

  6. Austin T says:

    Oh neat Davey! Is your picture an optical illusion?? Which bowl is larger… hmm… I wonder…

  7. I have tried duck eggs from the farm. They are very similar to chicken eggs, but I found them a little tougher, more chewy.
    As for storage, you should try to eat eggs as freshly as possible. Long storage not advised.

  8. christopher says:

    duck eggs may be hard to shop for.possibly Asian markets sell them.its maybe worth a trip to a store.

  9. educatedscholar says:

    davey, what is a yoke???? did you mean yolk?

  10. Where would i find duck eggs? I mean, would i have to go to a whole foods or something? Ive never seen that at kroger.

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