Storing Fresh eggs in Lime Water

As the days start to grow longer, the chooks egg production also starts to pick up. Soon we have more eggs each day than we can eat. Lime water is a traditional and affordable way to store your surplus eggs for when the chooks go off the lay again. All you need is Hydrated Lime, water, a food grade container (preferably with a lid) and of course lots of eggs.

Hydrated Lime (calcium hydroxide) is also know as Pickling Lime or Slacked Lime, it is a natural product and available in large bags from farm supply stores.

Water should be room temp and (if from a town supply) filtered.

A food grade container can be anything which has a large enough opening to gently lower the eggs into, from large jars to a large bucket with a lid. While the jars look good on the shelf, we find a 10 to 15 litre food grade bucket is more practical and convenient.

Eggs need to be clean and unwashed so they still have the protective coating (bloom) on the shell, for this reason bought egg are not suitable. Also make sure there are no cracks in the shells and that the chooks have adequate calcium in their diet for good strong shells.

Fresh eggs ready for collecting


The ratio of lime to water is about 30g to 1 litre (1oz to 1 quart) we just use a 1/3 cup of lime per litre of water, which is a slightly higher ratio but easy to measure out.

Measure the water into the container and stir in correct amount of lime. If you roughly half full the container you can top up with more lime and water mix if needed. The lime will settle, this is fine, but if topping up make sure the lime is well mixed in the new water before adding.

Mixing the lime into the water.

Gently lower the eggs into the water and position across the base of the container. If you can, try to place the eggs pointy side down as this means the air pocket inside the egg has less contact with the egg white. Some people claim this produces a better stored egg but others feel it is not necessary so don’t fuss too much.

Fresh eggs can be added as you get them, just make sure the eggs remain covered with the lime water. Once the container is full it can be stored in a cool place, out of direct sunlight. Just be aware to keep it away from extremes in temperature, like high heat or freezing.

Adding the eggs to the bucket. the lime is already settling in the water.

Generally most people will just need to store the eggs to cover the cooler months while their chooks are off the lay, but eggs can last 2 years or more if stored correctly.

To use the eggs remove the amount you need and wash the lime water off the shells. You can use the float test for freshness while washing the eggs (if it sinks its good, if it floats discard). We break each egg into a bowl first and check before using, but have not had a bad egg yet.

Eggs stored in jars looks neat in the pantry, but we find buckets are more practical for storing large amounts of eggs.

We find the eggs are just as good as fresh for most purposes. But as the time of storage extends some people prefer to just use the eggs in baking etc as they say they taste a little different. This would be something you would need to trial yourself and see if you can taste a difference.

NOTE. I saw this advice which I haven’t tried yet. “If you are going to hard boil the water glassed eggs, first do a pin prick through the shell. After sitting in the lime water solution, the egg shells are no longer porous, and will quickly pop when you start to boil or steam the eggs.”

7 thoughts on “Storing Fresh eggs in Lime Water”

    1. There are many things which are not FDA approved, sharing raw milk being one of them, overflow bottling another (which is still one of the main preserving methods used in New Zealand). There are also many things which are FDA approved, aspartame, fluoride in toothpaste, aluminum in deodorants, drugs which have serious side effects, and a vaccine which has caused untold injuries and deaths…
      Botulism cases in NZ have been 6 since 1985, some of these are unconfirmed and only one resulted in death.
      There is more risk in putting your family in a car and going for a drive.

      But I will leave the previous comment here for those who are interested.

    2. This website is in NZ, so FDA does not come into play here. Things do not need to be approved by the FDA to still be okay.

  1. Hi, thank you for this article. I am in NZ but I am not sure if the ‘pickling lime’ or the ‘hydrated lime (compost enhancer)’ in Bunnings/Palmers etc are okay to purchase? I am terrified of buying the wrong thing.
    Or is the ‘Mrs Wages’ Pickling lime okay to buy and use on food?
    Can you suggest a brand here in NZ?
    thank you 🙂

    1. Hi Paula, Mrs wages is food grade hydrated lime. Most people we know, including us, use farm grade hydrated lime. We go on the basis that if you are selling a product it has to be pretty much that product with very low levels of any contamination. Farmers don’t want contamination on the land either. You might find the levels of contamination from say machinery exhausts etc in the manufacturing of hydrated lime are no different to those in a vegetable crop paddock. But other people might disagree so it’s up to your personal preferance🤷‍♀️.


      1. thank you :). Are you able to provide some brands available in NZ of Farm grade? Googling is hard to know what is farm grade 🙂 I assume farm grade comes in huge bags tho? LOL

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