top of page

Nutrition of the Free-Range Egg

Roaming in the fresh air and sunshine is the most natural environment for a chicken. And when chickens are raised in their most natural environment, their eggs provide an exceptional amount of daily nutrition.   This allows for an assorted and necessary diet of insects, grasses, and other plants, giving them a variety of valuable nutrients.


Free Range vs. Caged

Eggs from chickens who are roaming free have been compared with USDA certified eggs from caged hens in several studies. The results show that free-range chicken eggs contain 1/3 less cholesterol and 1/4 less saturated fat.  Their yolks contain up to 7 times more beta carotene in them, and there is also 2/3 more vitamin A and up to three times the amount of vitamin E.  Free-range eggs also contain 3-6 times the amount of vitamin D (a vitamin many people are deficient in) than those purchased at the average supermarket. By contrast, caged hens are subject to the same daily feed, much of which is genetically modified. Hens confined to cages do not have space to move about or stretch in natural ways, causing them to become prone to skeletal problems and show signs of stress.


To Yolk or Not to Yolk?

While it is sometimes suggested that only egg whites should be ingested, this evaluation is based on the nutritional findings of caged eggs.  In reality, the yolk contains at least half of the protein found in the egg and is where the omega 3’s, vitamins E, D, and K are found. In fact, true free-range eggs contain twice the amount of omega 3's as that of a caged chicken egg. 

© 2015 Rise & Shine Farmstead

bottom of page