How to Separate an Egg

You may have to break a few eggs to make an omelet, but if you want to make a soufflé—or an angel food cake, or a custard—you’ll need to separate them too.


  • Step 1: Crack egg Hold the egg sideways in one hand between your thumb and fingers. Gently rap the middle of the egg against the rim of a bowl or on the countertop so the eggshell cracks.
  • Step 2: Separate yolk Hold the egg upright with one hand over a bowl, with the wider end on the bottom. Pry off the narrower top half of the egg and carefully separate the two halves, making sure the yolk remains intact in the bottom half while the white of the egg spills over into the bowl.
  • Step 3: Pour yolk Now carefully pour the yolk into the narrower top of the egg and let the remaining white fall into the bowl.
  • Step 4: Pour back & forth Continue carefully pouring the yolk back and forth into the shell halves like this until all the egg white has spilled into the bowl.
  • TIP: If you need to separate a lot of eggs, separate them one at a time over a small bowl, transferring each to a larger bowl as you go in case you accidentally spill some yolk or shell into the white.
  • Step 5: Place yolk Place the yolk in the second bowl and discard the shell.
  • FACT: The color of a chicken’s diet determines the color of their egg yolks—a hen that eats all white cornmeal lays eggs with almost colorless yolks.

You Will Need

  • Two bowls
  • And an egg

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