Why Raw Chicken Smells Like Eggs?

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The usual thing that happens when you are dealing with raw chicken, whether it be frozen, fresh, or thawed, is that it has a smell that is very similar to an egg.

However, this is different because it’s not like the smell of a rotten or boiled egg. Nonetheless, it’s still a cause for concern because even if the scent is just mild, the smell is usually very overwhelming. It can even fill up the entire kitchen, or worse, home.

But why does it smell like this?

Raw Chicken Smells Like Eggs

Well, based on a number of websites, raw chicken meat has its own distinctive smell. It is also a clear sign that there is something wrong with the chicken and that it is now starting to spoil.

It is also worth noting that blood can easily spoil fast compared to the actual meat. This is also one of the most common reasons why your chicken might have smell, and that’s because of the blood.

If this is the case, then the meat is still good. Simply wash it with water to get rid of the smell.

Furthermore, the egg-like scent of raw chicken meat is usually because of Salmonella enterica. This is a bacteria that makes chickens release hydrogen sulfide gas, which has a very similar smell to eggs. This bacteria is very common among chicken products such as eggs and poultry. However, you can avoid this by simply cooking the chicken meat at very high temperatures.

When is smelly chicken still safe to eat?

When is smelly chicken still safe to eat

Good thing that even if your chicken has an egg smell, it is still usually safe to it. It also wouldn’t cause serious problems such as food posioning.

This is because all the bacteria that are commonly seen in chicken meat can be killed at moderate temperatures when cooking.

These bacteria are E- coli, salmonella, and listeria. Just cook your meat at around 150 to 170 degrees Fahrenheit or around 70 to 80 degrees Celsius, and you’re all good.

What’s more is that the egg scent you smell is because of the bacteria that causes meat to spoil. It’s not the bacteria that leads to diseases and food poisoning, so you’re safe on that. In simpler words, these bacteria isn’t really that harmful when you consume them.

Additionally, there are also some instances when the egg smell is from the gas used in the packaging process of commercial chicken meat.

This can, however, easily go away once you open the package. But if the smell doesn’t stay away for even after an hour and you already washed it, then there is a good chance that the meat is indeed spoiled.

What should you do if chicken smells like eggs?

What should you do if chicken smells like eggs

Chicken that smells like eggs is normal. And if you have already decided that it’s safe to eat, then the first thing to do is to first wash the chicken meat using running water as soon as you removed it from the freezer.

You can then pour a small amount of vinegar or lemon juice over the meat to mask the scent. Then wash it off if you don’t want to have the slightly acidic taste. But if you do like it, then you can just include that as your marinade. This will surely tone down the egg scent.

Rewash the chicken and sprinkle a bit of salt over the meat. Then boil and cook it. You can also add bay leaves on the meat after cooking to act as a garnish and to further help remove the scent.

You can also try putting the chicken meat in an open area where there is regular air flow from the outside. Or maybe try placing it in front of an electric fan. After that, wash it again with running water and see if it still has the same scent.

If not, then you are all good. But if it still has the scent, then maybe the chicken meat is really spoiled and it’s time for you to just throw it away.

How to know if the chicken is spoiled?

How to know if the chicken is spoiled

The best determinant of knowing if chicken is spoiled is the color. Fresh raw chicken that is great for consuming has a flesh that is a bit pinkish.

But if it has a a dull appearance and a grayish color, then it’s going to spoil soon. If it’s already very gray instead of it being pink, then it’s already spoiled. Cooked bad chicken won’t also look very white.

What’s more is that you can know if your chicken is spoiled if it has a rotten smell or a strong sour scent that is similar to ammonia. It can also have a sticky and slimy feel even if you already rinsed and washed it under running water.

You can also notice the chicken meat has a thick and white layer of ice crust around the meat instead of it being white. Another sign of spoiled chicken is if it has yellowing fat or grey discoloration of the meat.


Raw chicken usually smells like eggs because of many reasons. But the most common one is because of the bacteria which is common among poultry products.Any bacteria, can however, be easily killed by simply cooking the meat. But then again, you should have the decision-making skills whether you’re going to throw away the smelly meat or is a rinse on running water enough.

It really just depends on your personal judgement, but also make sure that you consider what we have to say about it.

On the other hand, if you have the mentality of safety over anything else, then there’s no harm in going to the side of caution. When in doubt, you can always just throw it out.

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