How to use Eggshells

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As a homesteader or anyone who is working to live a simpler lifestyle, finding ways to use what we have efficiently is a daily goal. This article will do just that, showing you have to find a use for something you may have considered trash and how to use Eggshells so you are giving this valuable item a use in your home.

One of the benefits of raising chickens is their eggs, but this article is all about the shells are how they are just as wonderful. Try one of all of these tips and find more uses for what your chickens are giving you.

how to use eggshells

Have you ever thought of reusing your eggshells?

When it comes to living a more self-sufficient lifestyle reusing what you have is a crucial part. Many times people use the eggs from their backyard chicken coop and stop there. The great news is there is more you can do with the shells and we are going to break it all down.

Eggshells from backyard chickens can be reused both inside and outside of the home, from the garden to the chicken coop and even in your kitchen. The good news is, there are loads of ways to put those leftover shells to good use. The best news is, you will need zero skills to take advantage of their benefits.

What are the Benefits of Reusing Eggshells?

Eggshells have many trace nutrients in them, this makes them an amazing resource for many areas both inside and outside of the home.

a bowl of cleaned egg shells

How do I prepare eggshells for plants?

Eggshells should be cleaned and then crushed or ground into small pieces before using them in the garden. This allows them to break down more quickly in the soil, providing calcium for plants faster. Additionally, you can bake eggshells at a low temperature before crushing them, as this will help kill any bacteria that may be present on the shells.

There are three main areas for where to use eggshells. Let’s break them down.

a small pile of eggs on straw in a chicken coop

in the Garden

If you’re an avid gardener, then you’ve probably heard about the many benefits of using eggshells in your garden. Eggshells are a great source of calcium and have been known to help increase the productivity of tomatoes, peppers, squash, and other vegetables.

#1. Using eggshells as fertilizer

The high amount of calcium makes shells very useful for gardening and the soil you grow your plants in. Egg shells have calcium carbonate, something your soil needs. Adding them will help to lower the pH of the soil making it more alkaline.

Since many plants prefer alkaline soil, this is our top pick for reusing eggshells. Be sure not to use eggshells with plants that prefer acidic soil such as blueberry bushes.

The best time to add eggshells to a garden is in the fall. This will give them time to break down and compost into the soil so your plant’s roots can take advantage of all their goodness. You can also add them in the spring, just know you may not get the biggest benefits this way.

How to Use Eggshells in the Garden:

  1. Wash the shells to remove any leftover egg residue.
  2. Allow them to dry.
  3. Crush or crumble the shells using a rolling pin.
  4. Add crushed shells to the soil in your garden.
  5. Work the shells into the ground with a hoe, rake, or your hands.
  6. Allow to sit over the winter.
  7. Come spring, plant your garden as usual.
  8. If adding shells in the spring, put them directly into the hole before planting.
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#2. To Deter Pests

Eggshells are a great way to deter pests like slugs, snails, and cutworms from damaging your plants. This is a great way to help both your vegetable gardens and your flower beds. The sharp pieces of the shell helps to deter pests keeping them away from your plants.

How to Use Eggshells to Deter Pests:

  • Wash the shells to remove any leftover egg residue.
  • Allow them to dry.
  • Crush shells using a rolling pin being sure to keep them a bit larger for this tip.
  • Sprinkle shells around your plants that tend to get damage from pests.
  • Re-apply every two weeks for maximum benefits.
Crushed egg shell recycled as natural pest control

#3. For Planting Seedlings

Egg shell halves are a great container for starting seeds in for your summer garden.

How to Use Eggshells to Start Seeds:

  1. As you crack an egg to use, replace the 1/2 shell open side up in an egg carton.
  2. Continue until you have a solid shell in each holder.
  3. Fill with potting soil.
  4. Place a seed in each shell.
  5. Gently water each seed.
  6. Allow them to germinate.
  7. When ready, harden the seedlings off.
  8. Transplant in your garden.
plants growing in egg shells in an egg carton

In the Kitchen

Eggshells can be used in the kitchen as a natural scrubber for hard to get rid of stains or residue that can build up on pans.

How to Use Eggshells to Clean Pans:

  1. Rinse shells and allow them to dry completely.
  2. Grind the shells into a fine powder.
  3. Sprinkle this powder onto your pan.
  4. Add a sprinkle of salt over the shell powder.
  5. Scrub the pan using a sponge.
  6. Finish up with a wash and rinse.
egg shells drying on a rack near a blue floral bowl

In the Chicken Coop

Eggshells can be used in the chicken coop to help increase egg production. Because of the calciim found in eggshells, it is a great way to provide them with necessary nutrients and boost their calcium levels.

How to Use Eggshells in the Chicken Coop:

  1. Place shells on a baking sheet in a single layer.
  2. Back at 350° for 5-7 minutes.
  3. Allow them to cool.
  4. Crush shells to 1/4-1/2 inch.
  5. Put shells in a feeder and allow your chickens to eat them free choice.
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In Your Compost Pile

Eggshells can be added directly to compost piles or compost bins for extra nutrients, carbon, and calcium. Be sure to crush the shells into small pieces before adding them to your compost.

  1. Rinse shells to remove any leftover egg residue.
  2. Place them in your compost bucket in your kitchen.
  3. Or take them directly to your outdoor compost area.
a compost pile with chickens around the front

More composting resources:

Eggshells are a versatile and eco-friendly resource that can be used in many different ways around the home. From creating natural cleaning solutions to pest repellents, eggshells are an incredibly handy tool for adding convenience and sustainability to your life.

Keep these tips in mind for how to use eggshells for the next time you have some left over from your coop.

More Homesteading Resources:

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One Comment

  1. Kay & Son says:

    We grind up them up finely and add to worm vermicomposting bin also. Add 2 whole shells with a pound of worm scraps/food and blend/grind together in food processor for a much finer grind the worms can consume and use for grit. The rest we just grind and sprinkle into the bin.

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