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Who lays blue eggs?

Blue eggs are a rare and fascinating natural phenomenon. Unlike the standard white or brown chicken eggs most of us are accustomed to seeing, blue eggs come in a stunning azure shade that catches the eye. But what causes blue eggs, and which birds are capable of laying them?

What Causes Blue Eggs?

The blue color of these unusual eggs is the result of pigments being deposited on the outer shell as the egg develops within the mother bird. Two pigments in particular contribute to blue egg color:

  • Oocyanin – A bluish pigment found in the biliverdin family.
  • Biliverdin – A greenish pigment that combines with oocyanin to create blue.

These pigments are secreted by the mother bird’s oviduct and applied to the hardening egg shell just prior to the egg being laid. The more pigment deposited, the richer and deeper the blue color will be.

Birds That Lay Blue Eggs

While most birds lay white or lightly colored eggs, a select few species are capable of producing blue eggs. The most common blue egg layers include:

Araucana Chickens

This South American breed was likely the first blue egg layer discovered by Europeans. Their eggs can range from light blue to deep greenish-blue. Araucanas possess the oocyan gene responsible for blue egg production.

Ameraucana Chickens

Developed in America in the 1970s, Ameraucanas lay eggs in shades of blue or green. They inherited the blue egg gene from their Araucana ancestors.

Cream Legbar Chickens

An English breed descended from Araucanas, Cream Legbars lay blue eggs with a slightly more muted, pale blue tone.

Easter Eggers

This catch-all term refers to any mutt or hybrid chicken displaying blue egg coloring. Since purebred lines are carefully maintained, most casual chicken owners end up with Easter Eggers.


Certain duck breeds also produce blue eggs, though it’s rarer than in chickens. Blue Swedish ducks and Penciled Runner ducks are two duck species known to lay blue-tinted eggs.

Araucana Ducks

Like their chicken cousins, Araucana ducks also lay blue eggs thanks to the oocyan gene.


While less common, breeds like Golden Rising quail have been known to lay blue eggs on occasion.


Some parrot species within the Psittacidae family also lay light blue eggs, such as the hyacinth macaw.

Why Blue Eggs?

What purposes might blue egg color serve in nature? Here are some leading theories as to why a small number of birds evolved the ability to lay vivid blue eggs:

  • Camouflage – Blue eggs blended in better to the surroundings of the wild ancestors of chickens and araucanas. Nesting in bushes or small dark burrows, blue was natural camouflage.
  • Signaling – Blue eggs may have helped birds identify their own eggs vs. those of competitors or invaders in shared nesting areas.
  • Structural Strength – Something in the blue pigment composition may impart greater shell strength and resilience to protect the developing embryo.
  • Filtering Light – The blue hue may regulate or filter light levels for the sensitive embryo.

The true evolutionary reason is still up for debate, but likely involves a combination of factors that favored the blue egg layers.

Blue Egg Nutrition

Besides their unique appearance, many people wonder if blue eggs offer different nutritional content compared to ordinary chicken eggs. According to testing, there is little nutritional difference between colored eggs and standard white eggs. The pigments don’t seem to change the internal contents.

However, blue eggs from heritage breed chickens allowed to free range may contain more nutrients like vitamin E and Omega-3s than caged commercial layers. Any benefits would depend more on diet than egg color.

Blue Egg Yolk Color

While the outer shell may be blue, the internal yolk is usually still yellow or orange. This is because the biliverdin and oocyanin pigments are only deposited on the outermost layer – they don’t penetrate or discolor the yolk contents. You may notice some greenish, bluish, or dark streaking on yolks at times though.

Rarity of Blue Eggs

Compared to the over 5 billion chicken eggs produced daily from ordinary brown and white egg layers, blue eggs make up a tiny fraction of overall egg production. This owes to:

  • Only certain breeds carrying the blue egg gene.
  • Lower egg production in blue egg layers.
  • Smaller populations of pure blue egg strains.
  • Lack of commercial farming of specialty blue layers.

For these reasons combined, blue eggs are a rare specialty item commanding a premium price at market over conventional eggs – often 5 to 10 times the price.

Finding Blue Chicken Eggs

While available seasonally around Easter, where they earned the nickname “Easter Eggs”, finding reliable sources of blue eggs typically means:

  • Visiting small local farms
  • Attending farmers markets
  • Joining community supported agriculture (CSA) programs
  • Ordering online through specialty egg retailers
  • Keeping your own blue egg laying chicken flock

Large supermarkets may sporadically carry specialty blue eggs at certain times of year, but generally lack consistent long term supplies.

What Blue Eggs Taste Like

In blind taste testing, most people can’t discern any difference in flavor between blue eggs and ordinary white chicken eggs. The only potential changes would stem from differences like:

  • Diet – Pasture raised chickens on natural diets produce more flavorful eggs.
  • Freshness – Fresher eggs tend to taste better.
  • Cooking method – Boiled vs fried vs poached eggs.
  • Accompaniments – What the eggs are served with also influences overall flavor.

But when it comes to the blue coloration itself, this doesn’t seem to impact egg taste or quality. So you can enjoy the fun visual appeal of blue eggs without sacrificing any flavor!

Uses for Blue Eggs

Their rarity and striking appearance makes blue chicken eggs perfect for:

  • Everyday meals – Add some color to your breakfast plate with blue scrambled eggs or omelets!
  • Baked goods – Blue eggs lend character when used in cakes, cookies, muffins, and other baked recipes.
  • Crafts – Make colorful natural Easter eggs or ornaments.
  • Dying – The blue canvas takes dye exceptionally well for decorative eggs.
  • Gifts – Make a unique gift by collecting blue eggs in a basket or carton for friends.

Don’t limit yourself – blue eggs function just as well as any regular egg. Let them inspire you!

Blue Egg Breeds

Here are some of the most popular blue egg laying chicken breeds and their traits:

Breed Origin Egg Color Egg Size Temperament
Araucana South America Light to deep blue Small to medium Avoidant, shy
Ameraucana United States Blue to green Medium to large Active, curious
Cream Legbar England Sky blue Medium Active, flighty
Easter Egger North America Varying shades Medium Can vary

There are also rarer Swedish, Polish, and South American breeds that occasionally produce blue eggs but are harder to find from breeders.

Cooking with Blue Eggs

Making the most of blue eggs in the kitchen comes down to two key tips:

  1. Highlight the color – Cook and serve blue eggs in ways that show off their unique shade. Poach, fry, or soft boil to keep the blue shell intact. Or separate eggs when baking to fold in vibrant blue yolks as a final garnish.
  2. Pair with contrasting colors – Accompaniments in yellow, orange, red, or green help make the blue pop even more. Think red tomatoes, orange cheese, avocado, or dark toast.

Beyond that, blue eggs can be substituted into any recipe that calls for regular chicken eggs without issue. The only difference is cosmetic – they’ll add a fun pop of color!

Blue Egg Breakfast Ideas

Breakfast is a perfect opportunity to enjoy blue eggs. Try:

  • Blue egg salad sandwiches – Hard boil and slice over greens.
  • Blue berry pancakes – With fresh or frozen berries.
  • Blue southwest breakfast tacos – Top with salsa and avocado.
  • Blue omelets – Filled with cheese, meats, and veggies.
  • Blue egg benedict – Poached eggs over ham and orange hollandaise.
  • Blue huevos rancheros – Topped with salsa.

Blue Egg Dinner Ideas

Even for dinner, blue eggs provide festive color:

  • Blue egg pasta – Spin into carbonara or toss with homemade noodles.
  • Blue egg drop soup – Beat eggs into hot broth.
  • Blue fried rice – Scramble eggs into rice with vegetables.
  • Blue egg pizza – Finish Margherita pizza with a cracked blue egg.
  • Blue quiche – Make mini broccoli, bacon, or Lorraine quiches.
  • Blue egg bites – Use a muffin tin to bake eggy mini frittatas or muffins.

Blue Egg Baking

For baked goods, blue eggs lend character. Bake blue:

  • Pancakes or waffles
  • Muffins – Like blueberry or cornmeal.
  • Breads – Especially banana blueberry or lemon blueberry.
  • Cookies – Blue chocolate chip, sugar, or butter cookies.
  • Cakes – Vibrant funfetti or blue velvet are perfect.
  • Cupcakes or macarons
  • Pies – Blueberry or lemon meringue shine.

Get creative with blue in all kinds of baked goods!

Common Blue Egg Questions

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about blue chicken eggs:

Are blue eggs larger than white eggs?

Egg size depends on the individual breed. Some blue layers lay extra large or jumbo eggs. But on average, blue egg size is similar to ordinary white eggs – medium to large.

Do blue eggs taste different from brown eggs?

No major taste difference exists between white, brown, or blue chicken eggs. The interior contents are the same. Only the outer tint of the shell changes based on pigments.

Are blue eggs healthier?

There’s no nutritional difference between colored eggs vs white eggs. But home raised blue layers may produce more nutritious eggs than factory farmed chickens fed processed diets. The key is old fashioned diets and humane living conditions.

How much do blue eggs cost?

As a specialty item, blue eggs typically cost $3-5 per dozen retail. That’s 3 to 8 times the price of ordinary white eggs from supermarkets. But for their novelty and uniqueness, many consider them worth the premium.

Can you buy blue eggs in stores?

It’s challenging to find blue eggs in major supermarkets. HOWEVER if they do carry them in season. You’re more likely to source them at natural food stores, co-ops, farmers markets, or directly from local farms.

Do blue eggs taste different in baking?

Blue eggs are indistinguishable from white eggs in recipes for baking, cooking, or cocktails. The only difference will be their appearance as a fun colorful ingredient!


With their beautiful blue shells, these special eggs brighten up any dish. If you get the chance to buy or cook with blue eggs from heirloom breeds, take advantage of their whimsical charm. Scrambled, poached, baked, or dyed – blue eggs are full of festive spring flavor, and their vibrant color symbolizes new beginnings.