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Duck Eggs (Pasture Raised)


Orange Star Farm (WA)

These mighty eggs are about twice the size of chicken eggs and packed with all sorts of proteins, vitamins and minerals. The white tends to be nearly transparent, lacking the slight yellowish tint some chicken eggs have. Its yolk, though, is what’s so prized by chefs: a duck yolk is much bigger than a chicken yolk and is higher in fat content, making them great for particularly recipes (crème brulee mmmmm).

Pasture-raised ducks forage for insects and greens on lush pasture to lay nutritious eggs. 

Duck farmers and enthusiasts believe that the duck egg’s thicker shell gives a duck egg a longer shelf life than a chicken’s egg. Because they’ve been washed, Duck eggs keep for about 2 weeks if kept cool and for about 6 weeks refrigerated.

Freeze for up to 6 months. To freeze, crack them, beat them lightly, pour into a container, then label the container before you freeze it as to how many eggs are in there.

Duck Eggs offer a bit more protein than a chicken egg (9g vs 6g) and are a much more concentrated source of omega-3s, which helps fight inflammation. They’re also higher in vitamin D (48 IU compared to 41 IU for chicken eggs), which is essential for bone health and can support a healthy immune system and blood sugar. They also deliver more choline (185 mg compared to 147mg), a trace mineral that’s important for liver and brain health.

Since duck eggs are bigger, their yolks are larger. That means that the eggs are a more concentrated source of calories, fat, and cholesterol. You’ll get 130 calories, 9g fat, and 619 mg cholesterol from a duck egg, compared to 72 calories, 5g fat, and 186 cholesterol from a large chicken egg. This cholesterol is what might prevent you from wanting to integrate duck eggs into your daily routine.

Duck eggs taste like chicken eggs, only more so. Their flavor tends to be more reliably intense than a chicken egg because of the duck’s diet. Farmers tend to love ducks because they prefer to eat bugs, snails, slugs, and other high-protein critters over plant matter, and that diet impacts the flavor of their eggs significantly.

You can cook duck eggs the same way you’d cook any other egg; there’s nothing a chicken egg can do that a duck egg can’t. But because it’s larger and has a higher fat content, a recipe designed for a chicken egg won’t always work with a duck egg substitution but many people say that works completely fine. You’ll find them much creamier and richer than scrambled chicken eggs.

Duck eggs are most popular in various Asian cuisines, especially Chinese and Vietnamese. The most popular way to prepare them there is by salting them: the eggs sit in a brine of some sort and cures, pulling out moisture to preserve them and alter their texture. They’re typically added to stir-fries or sometimes as a filling with rice.

Ducks lay their eggs later in the day than chickens do, often not until 9:30 or 10:00 am in the morning. They will lay their eggs all over the place, and if there is water nearby, they will often drop them in the water at the water's edge.

High production ducks will win over high production chickens: 32-52 lbs of eggs per year vs. 22-34 lbs of eggs per year for chickens. They are productive much longer than chickens partially because they’re less susceptible to diseases and parasites and can live to be over 10 years old (sometimes nearly 20 years)!

Ducks see in color. Their quack does echo but they also squeal, squeak, chirp, growl…Ducks don’t mate for life but do remain monogamous for each breeding season.

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