All About Food Allergens: Eggs

(FN1827, Reviewed March 2022)

This publication deals with food allergies and is intended for the use in parent education programs and by high school teachers.

Lead Author
Lead Author:
Alyssa Athman, NDSU Dietetic Intern (former)
Other Authors

Julie Garden Robinson, Ph.D., R.D., L.R.D, Professor and Food and Nutrition Specialist

Web only
Publication Sections

What are the symptoms of an egg allergy?

Common symptoms include hives, congestion, difficulty breathing, cramps, nausea, vomiting, tightness in the chest, shortness of breath and coughing.

What foods should I avoid if I am allergic to eggs?

Egg is a common ingredient in many foods, including baked goods, mayonnaise, frostings, processed meats, meat loaf, meatballs, puddings, custards, ice creams and egg noodles. Egg substitutes usually contain egg whites. In addition, eggs may be used in the foam topping on some specialty coffee drinks, so ask questions. Read the food labels to avoid allergic reactions because eggs can be disguised by many names. Some names include albumin, globulin, lecithin, lysosome and anything starting with ova- or ovo-.

How much egg can cause a reaction?

The severity of egg allergy symptoms can vary among people. Their reactions can range from mild to severe.

How soon will a reaction start after eating a food?

Allergic reactions can occur from a couple of minutes to several hours after consuming eggs.

What are businesses and food manufacturers doing to avoid reactions?

In 2004, Congress passed the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act. This is regulated by the Food and Drug Administration and requires manufacturers to place statements such as “may contain” or “made in a factory that uses” under the ingredients label as a warning. Consumers with allergies can identify the allergens and avoid them.

Many substitutions are available to help you make your favorite recipes. The following ingredients may be substituted for one egg, but you will need to experiment with your recipes:

  • ¼ c. applesauce
  • ¼ c. mashed banana
  • ¼ c. vegetable oil

The following are common substitutions for binders, equivalent to one egg;

  • 1 Tbsp. ground flax seed + 3 Tbsp. water
  • 2 Tbsp. water + 1 tsp. oil + 2 tsp. baking powder

Food allergies can be life-threatening. If you or someone you know believes he or she has a food allergy, the individual should contact his or her local health-care provider for further testing.

What is the best treatment for a severe reaction to a food allergy?

Severe reactions require immediate medical intervention, so call 911. Epinephrine is the first-line treatment for anaphylaxis, a rare but severe whole-body allergic reaction that causes severe symptoms, including tightening of the airway. After a food allergy diagnosis is made, your allergist likely will prescribe an epinephrine auto-injector and teach you how to use it.


Key to abbreviations:

c. = cup

Tbsp. = tablespoon

tsp. = teaspoon

g = gram

mg = milligram

oz. = ounce

Note: Be sure to check the ingredient statements on food package labels to avoid allergens in these recipes.

Banana Blueberry Bread (Egg-free)

Banana Blueberry Bread
Photo Credit:
NDSU Extension
Banana Blueberry Bread

¼ c. vegetable oil

¼ c. butter

1 c. sugar, granulated

2 tsp. vanilla extract

2 c. all-purpose flour

1 tsp. baking soda

½ tsp. salt

1½ c. ripe bananas, mashed

1 c. fresh blueberries

In a large bowl, cream butter, oil and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the banana and vanilla.

Beat mixture until well combined and smooth. Meanwhile, combine flour, baking soda and salt.

Gradually add dry ingredients to creamed mixture and beat just until combined. Dust blueberries with flour to prevent sinking and fold into the batter. Pour batter into two greased 5¾ inch- by 3-inch by 2-inch loaf pans. Bake at 350 F for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Makes 32 servings. Each serving has 90 calories, 3.5 g fat, 1 g protein, 15 g carbohydrate, 0 g fiber and 70 mg sodium.

Yogurt Chocolate Chip Cookies (Egg-free)

Yogurt Chocolate Chip Cookies (Egg-free)
Photo Credit:
NDSU Extension
Yogurt Chocolate Chip Cookies (Egg-free)

½ c. brown sugar, packed

½ c. sugar, granulated

¼ c. butter

½ c. shortening

½ c. plain, nonfat yogurt

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1¾ c. all-purpose flour

½ tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. salt

2 c. semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 F. In medium bowl, cream brown sugar, sugar, butter and shortening until light and fluffy. Stir in yogurt and vanilla. Combine flour, baking powder and salt; stir into creamed mixture until incorporated. Mix in chocolate chips. Drop by rounded tablespoonfuls 2 inches apart onto greased cookie sheets. Bake eight to 10 minutes until edges begin to brown. Cool for a minute on cookie sheet before removing to wire rack to cool completely.

Makes 36 servings. Each serving has 150 calories, 8 g fat, 2 g protein, 19 g carbohydrate, 0 g fiber and 30 mg sodium.

Carrot Muffins (Egg-free)

Carrot Muffins (Egg-free)
Photo Credit:
NDSU Extension
Carrot Muffins (Egg-free)

2 c. all-purpose flour

2 tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. cinnamon

¼ tsp. ginger

1 c. sugar, granulated

½ c. butter, melted

½ c. applesauce

1 tsp. vanilla extract

½ c. carrots, grated

1 (8-oz.) can crushed pineapple, drained

Preheat oven to 375 F. Line muffin tins with paper cups. In small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, cinnamon and ginger. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar. Add applesauce, vanilla, carrots and pineapple. Add dry ingredients and stir until combined. Scoop the batter into muffin cups. Bake 20 to 25 minutes.

Makes 18 servings. Each serving has 150 calories, 5 g fat, 2 g protein, 25 g carbohydrate, 0 g fiber and 0 mg sodium.

More Information

Visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Information Center at https://www.nal.usda.gov/legacy/fnic/allergies-and-food-sensitivities.