Does hard-boiling an egg kill salmonella?

This week, the Food and Drug Administration issued a recall for 206 million eggs due to salmonella contamination. A reported 22 cases of salmonella have been linked to Rose Acre Farms in North Carolina, and according to the FDA, nine states — including Colorado, Florida, New Jersey, and New York — were most likely to be affected. 

Even if you don’t live in any of those states, you never really know if your food is contaminated with salmonella or any other bacteria until someone gets sick. But you don’t have to wait for symptoms to hit. According to nutritionist Vanessa Rissetto, you can kill salmonella in eggs before you consume them. 

“Hard-boiling an egg can kill salmonella, Rissetto tells HelloGiggles. “The bacteria gets killed at a high heat, so the internal temperature of the egg has to be 160 degrees in order for that to happen. 

So if you’re someone who likes to have your eggs soft-boiled or sunny-side up, she says, you can be at risk for getting salmonella. It may not be the easiest switch to make if hard-boiled eggs aren’t your preference, but it could prevent you from getting sick. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, salmonella infections cause about 1.2 million illnesses and 450 deaths each year in the United States alone. Most people infected will develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps about 12 to 72 hours after becoming infected. The illness usually lasts about four to seven days, even without treatment. In more severe cases, hospitalizations may be required. 

Honestly though, if you have contaminated eggs, just get rid of them. Don’t even bother trying to kill the salmonella by hard-boiling.

As FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb tweeted on Saturday, “Consumers with these eggs shouldn’t eat them. Throw them away or return them to place of purchase for credit or refund.” false

Although hard-boiling can kill bacteria, it’s still in your best interest to throw bad eggs away. Regardless of where you live, it’s important to check your eggs just in case. 

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