Welcome to the The Incredible Edible Egg™ Eggcyclopedia, where you can access the latest egg information from A-Z. The Eggcyclopedia was developed by the American Egg Board (AEB) on behalf of America's egg farmers who are committed to caring for their hens and producing high-quality eggs for you and your families.

Just click on any letter below to bring up a list of egg terms and their related definitions.

Tartar Sauce

A mayonnaise-based sauce with chopped pickles and onion, traditionally served with fried fish.


The technique used to blend uncooked eggs into hot mixtures. To temper, beat eggs and stir in a little of the hot mixture to warm (temper) the eggs. Then stir the warmed eggs into the remaining hot mixture. Tempering helps to prevent the eggs from curdling.

– See Curdling

Thousand Island Dressing

A mayonnaise-based with chili sauce, chopped pickles, onion, hard-boiled egg, green olives and green pepper.

– See Mayonnaise


Spanish term for a frittata.

– See Frittata

Treatment of Hens

Laying hens represent an egg producer’s living and are treated with care. Like humans, hens seem to be more productive when they’re healthy. In 1945, the average hen laid 151 eggs per year. Now as a result of breeding and better nutrition, housing and general management of facilities, the average hen lays between 250 and 300 eggs per year.

America’s egg farmers believe in consumer choice. Hens are raised and lay their eggs in a multitude of housing systems subject to consumers’ demand. No matter the system used, farmers are committed to the health and well-being of their hens. Without deference to the manner in which the eggs are produced, America’s egg farmers follow guidelines to ensure the hens are provided with adequate space, nutritious feed, clean water, light, and fresh air.

The farming practices range from cage systems, cage-free, free-range, to organic systems. Proper lighting, housing, and diets are critical to the production process to ensure high-quality egg production. Scientifically balanced feed insures that the birds are protected from improper or inadequate diets – a vast improvement over the days when hens foraged for food in barnyards or ate household scraps.

Chickens, like some other animals, may exhibit cannibalistic tendencies. To protect the birds from each other, part of their upper beaks or both lower and upper beaks are trimmed. The trimming process is done by a special machine which cauterizes the beak and may be compared to clipping a dog’s claws. The birds are still able to eat and drink.

– See Beak Trimming, Production