Brown or White Eggs – Which Is Healthier?

liangliang XU/Getty

Eggs are a staple in many diets and provide protein, vitamins, and minerals. However, the color of the eggshell can sometimes lead to confusion about their nutritional value. Some believe brown eggs are healthier, while others swear by white eggs. So, is there a significant nutritional difference between the two? In this post, we’ll delve into the nutritional content of brown and white eggs to determine if one is superior to the other.

The Difference Between Brown and White Eggs


The primary difference between brown and white eggs lies solely in the color of the eggshell. Contrary to popular belief, there are no nutritional differences between them. Both types contain the same essential nutrients in similar quantities. These nutrients include 13g of protein, 3.3g of saturated fat, and 126g of potassium.

Nutritional Components


Both brown and white eggs are rich in essential macronutrients. They boast a high protein content crucial for muscle repair and growth. They also contain healthy fats and a negligible amount of carbohydrates. Additionally, eggs are a notable source of various vitamins, including vitamins A, D, and B12, which play vital roles in maintaining overall health.

What Changes the Color of the Egg Shell?


The color of an eggshell is influenced primarily by the breed of chicken laying it. Different breeds produce eggs with varying shell colors, ranging from white to brown and shades of blue or green. Brown eggs occur due to protoporphyrin IX, a pigment found in the shell’s outer layer.

Which Chickens Lay Brown and White Eggs?

Vvoe Vale/Getty

According to the American Egg Board, hens that have white feathers and white earlobes like the Campines and Catalanas lay white eggs. Hens like the Plymouth Rock with red feathers and red earlobes lay brown eggs.

Which One Is More Expensive?

wushoung wang/Getty

Brown eggs are often more expensive than white ones due to the larger breed of chickens typically laying them. These breeds require more food and space, increasing production costs. Consequently, farmers incur higher expenses in raising these chickens, leading to a higher price point for brown eggs in the market.

Which One Has a Better Taste?

Drazen Zigic/Getty

While some individuals swear by the superior taste of brown eggs, no factual evidence supports this claim. Scientifically, there’s no discernible taste difference between brown and white eggs. The flavor depends more on factors like freshness, diet, and cooking methods rather than the color of the eggshell.

Factors Influencing Nutritional Content

Alter photo/Getty

Several factors influence the nutritional content of chicken eggs. These include the chicken strain, with different strains exhibiting varying nutrient profiles. Age plays a role, too, as older hens may produce eggs with different nutritional content. Diet significantly impacts egg composition, as hens fed diverse diets produce eggs with varying nutrient levels.

Scientific Studies and Research


Scientific studies have shown minimal disparities between brown and white chicken eggs. Research by the American Egg Board and other institutions confirms that nutritional composition remains consistent regardless of shell color. Studies primarily focus on hen diet, breed genetics, and environmental conditions, finding negligible variations in egg quality.

What Matters More Than The Color of the Eggs?


Factors like free-range or organic farming methods significantly impact egg quality. The hen’s diet is crucial in determining essential nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids. Opting for free-range or organic eggs ensures better nutrition and reflects healthier farming practices, which is more important than the color of the eggshells.

Written by Johann H