Believe it or not it is possible to preserve eggs without refrigeration for up to nine months. There are several methods that are tried and true. The method used, the quality of the egg and the conditions under which the egg is kept, all play a part in how long an egg can be stored without being refrigerated.
One of the first factors that help determine how long an egg can be stored is the condition of the egg when it is put into storage. The fresher the egg, the longer it will keep. That much is common sense. However, what may not be as commonly known is that an egg that has come directly from the chicken without being washed will also keep longer. A 1977 article from Mother Earth News documented an experiment in which several groups of eggs were stored using various methods. The experiment used both unwashed farm fresh eggs and store bought eggs which undergo a sanitization process. The Mother Earth experiment found that unwashed eggs kept longer than their store bought counterparts. This is likely to be due to the fact that eggs come from the chicken with a thin coat of natural sealant known as bloom. When the bloom is washed away, it makes the egg more susceptible to aging.
An old method for keeping fresh eggs was simply to place them in the cellar. According to one egg seller, fresh eggs placed in a cool, dry, dark place, can keep for as long as six months.
In general, the best methods for preserving eggs long term, involve coating the egg or packing it in a substance that will keep air from penetrating the shell. One of these methods is to coat the egg in a solution of one part sodium silicate to ten parts cooled boiled water. Eggs should be stored in a stone crock with two inches of the solution covering them. Similar methods include coating or packing eggs in lard, coating them in Vaseline and coating them in mineral or vegetable oil. Kellene Bishop of Preparednesspro.com recommends mineral oil and says that eggs should be stored small side down. She says that she has been able to keep eggs up to nine months in a cool dry place when using this method.
Bishop also says not to worry about feeding your family a spoiled egg. She says that your nose will let you know right away when an egg has gone bad. If you are still uncertain about whether an egg is good or not, simply give it the water test. In a pot of water a good egg will sink, while a bad one will float. This is because as an egg ages, oxygen permeates the shell, breaking down the egg.
There are a number of reasons why a person may want to preserve eggs without refrigeration. Those who embrace frugality may find a great deal on eggs. If they can find a way to preserve their find without taking up valuable refrigerator space, they can stockpile and have inexpensive eggs for a long time. Those who identify with the preparedness movement may be concerned that in an emergency situation, the electricity needed for refrigeration will not be available. There are, also, those who simply seek to live closer to the land and be as self-sufficient as possible. Whatever the reason, it is possible to store eggs without refrigeration for several months.