Egg Allergy and Baked Egg Products

Can you eat baked eggs if you're allergic to eggs?

Cake batter and egg mixture

Verywell / Cara Cormack

If you're allergic to eggs, you might be wondering: Can I still eat baked goods that contain eggs? And: If I'm allergic to eggs now, is there anything I can do to improve my chances of outgrowing the allergy? Find out the answers to these questions and more, below.

The Basics About Egg Allergy

  • What it is: An egg allergy is an IgE-mediated allergy. IgE is a natural substance (an antibody) that binds to antigens (such as egg proteins) and stimulates the immune system. Egg allergy is most common in children, yet most children outgrow the allergy by adolescence. The allergy can range from mild to severe. 
  • How it's diagnosed: If you have acute symptoms after eating eggs or egg products, an allergist will likely perform allergy testing to determine how likely you are to react to a future
    food challenge. 
  • How it's treated: Current treatments for egg allergies include avoiding eggs, taking anaphylaxis precautions (carrying an epinephrine auto-injector at all times and using it in the event of anaphylaxis), and desensitization. As a result, based on your test results and your history, your allergist may recommend 1) continued avoidance; 2) a medically supervised food challenge, in which you eat an egg or egg product, then gradually increase the amounts ingested while being monitored and treated for any reaction; or 3) home re-introduction, where you eat an egg product at home, then report back to your doctor

It’s important to note that a few vaccines (e.g., yellow fever) contain small amounts of egg protein because they're cultured either in eggs or in chick embryos. If you're allergic to eggs, talk to your doctor to see if and how you can receive needed vaccinations safely.

Can You Eat Baked Eggs If You Have an Egg Allergy?

The short answer is: maybe. Allergists have known for years that people with allergic reactions to eggs, even severe ones, are often able to eat eggs when they are in baked goods such as cakes and muffins. The reason for this wasn't clear until fairly recently.

A 2019 study analyzed how 54 children with egg allergy reacted on skin testing to raw, pasteurized, or hard-boiled eggs, egg whites, and egg yolks. The results showed that, while all of the children with egg allergy reacted on skin testing to raw eggs and egg whites, and a majority reacted to raw egg yolk, heating the eggs decreased skin response in some of the children. It appears that higher temperatures may alter the egg proteins in ways that make them unrecognizable to allergic antibodies.

Some research has even shown that eating baked egg products may help desensitize you to eggs and reduce the chance of having an allergic reaction. However, don't try this without guidance from your doctor, because you could induce a serious reaction.

The Bottom Line

If you have a history of egg allergy and you're not sure whether your body can tolerate a baked egg product, ask your allergist if you should come in for a medically supervised oral food challenge, which can be a way to figure it out. Your allergist may use blood testing, skin-prick testing, or both, and any test results will be used in combination with your history to make a decision about how to proceed. Researchers are also investigating the use of oral immunotherapy as a possible way to desensitize people to egg allergies.

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Article Sources
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