5 Spectacular Ways to Use Up Leftover Egg Yolks

If you’re baking homemade macaroons and you find you’re stuck with leftover yolks without a home, maybe you whisk them together, make a quick and very yellow scramble, and call it a day.

Vertical image of whole eggs and half of one with the yolk and shells on the side, with text on the top and bottom of the image.

We’ve all been there.

But if you’re looking for other, more creative and delicious options for using up those thick, colorful, and nutrient-rich orbs instead of tossing them in the trash – or making a sub-par chef’s snack – you’re in luck!

Many baked goods call for nothing but the whites, but the rest doesn’t have to go to waste.

Not only do egg yolks add richness and depth to many of the more obvious items, such as the ever-humble hollandaise sauce, they can be whipped into various desserts, dressings, soups, and savory side dishes and casseroles as well.

In this article, not only will we steer you towards five spectacular ideas for repurposing this liquid gold, we’ll throw in some rock-star recipes too. Don’t want you to leave empty-handed, after all.

Here’s what lies ahead:

Ready? Let’s get cracking!

1. Bomb Brunch

Eggs and breakfast or brunch go together like, well, I think this one is pretty self-explanatory. But not every sunrise-inspired recipe requires you to slide an entire egg into a sizzling skillet.

These dishes keenly represent that category of brunchtime favorites where an extra yolk or two is a morning must-have.

Whole Wheat Bread Pudding with Fruit and Nuts

A divine dish for a crowd that actually doubles up on leftover items, if you have a loaf of whole wheat bread sitting on your counter slowly creeping into the stale zone, and egg yolks that need a new home, this bread pudding with apples, figs, and walnuts is for you.

A square glass baking dish with handle cutouts on either side is filled with whole wheat bread pudding, on top of a white cloth kitchen towel with scattered walnut pieces, raisins, dried figs, and two green apples, on a dark brown wood surface.
Photo Credit: Meghan Yager

It’s scented with cinnamon and nutmeg, and the yolks help to fashion the fluffy spiced custard that seeps into every crevice.

To satisfy your carb craving, find the recipe here.

The Perfect Eggs Benedict with Magical Blender Hollandaise

The name pretty much says it all, but let’s be honest. Hollandaise is magical no matter how you make it.

Horizontal overhead image of homemade eggs Benedict on a plate with a folded cloth napkin and silverware, and a glass of juice and a bowl of fruit in the background, on a brown wood table.
Photo credit: Meghan Yager

As far as the Benedict goes, the method shared here showcases do-ahead poached eggs, so the whole thing is ready in a flash.

The luscious hollandaise is pulsed into perfection with a blender (or food processor), and tastes just as delicious as if it was done by hand more slowly. No one will know the difference.

Grab your English muffins and get the goods on this classic here.

Coconut Sugar Lemon Curd

Whether you slather it over an impeccably crumbly scone or lick it straight off the spoon, this shiny spread is a tart and tangy dream come true.

Horizontal image of a spoon holding some thick and dark lemon curd next to a glass jar and whole lemons on a blue towel.
Photo credit: Meghan Yager

Made with just five ingredients, one of which is the almighty egg yolk you were looking for someplace to put, lemon curd is a snap to make, and this version is dairy-free.

Coconut sugar adds delightfully subtle caramel notes.

This is where you can find the recipe to snag a spoonful of that lemon curd.

2. Savory Dressings and Dips

Yolks are an exceptional emulsifier that stabilizes salad dressing like a pro, which helps it cling to the greens (or whatever goodies you spread throughout your veggie creations).

Not to mention the rich, creamy undertones they bring to a french fry-worthy dip.

Try these on for size.

Classic Homemade Caesar Salad

This cool, crunchy salad is a staple on many restaurant menus, but learning to make the dressing from scratch will open the door to a whole new world of scratch-made deliciousness.

Horizontal image of a large white bowl filled with a green salad topped with shaved cheese and toasted bread cubes, next to wooden spoons on a blue surface.
Photo credit: Meghan Yager

Sharp garlic and parmesan bring bold, salty bites, while the yolk enhances flavor and texture.

It gives the dressing its signature smooth base that coats each and every leaf of romaine.

Find the tasty details for this dish here.

Garlic Aioli

This zippy sauce is a can’t-miss condiment when fried food of any kind is on the table.

Horizontal image of a white bowl of pale yellow aioli garnished with fresh herbs, on a surface topped with a white kitchen towel with a blue stripe, with french fries in the background.
Photo credit: Fanny Slater

Aioli is a term thrown around often, but don’t get it twisted: store-bought mayo mixed with other flavors and actual aioli are two different things.

In this recipe, it’s the fusion of the yolks into the oil that give this garlicky dip its luxurious body. Juicy lemon delivers a dazzling burst of citrus that cuts through the fattiness.

Get your hands on this garlic aioli recipe here.

Carrot Raisin Salad with Lemon Aioli

Sweet, refreshing carrots cut into matchsticks partner up with chewy black and golden raisins in this slaw.

Dig into a bowl of julienned carrot salad with raisins, garlic lemon aioli, and fresh parsley with our recipe. | Foodal.com
Photo credit: Felicia Lim

It’s cloaked in a bright lemon aioli that calls for straining out the garlic so you get all the sharp, pungent flavor, but none of the raw bite.

This salad comes together in about twenty minutes, and it’s perfect to serve as a nourishing side with a simple supper.

Find step-by-step instructions here.

3. Slurp-Worthy Soups and Stews

Yolks come in handy as an alternative thickener to a cornstarch slurry, and the following recipes take full advantage of that.

Licking the bowl is totally acceptable here – it’s even encouraged.

Cream of Spinach Soup

Adapted from kitchen queen Julia Child’s original recipe, this simple French-inspired treat is one you’ll want to make again and again.

Horizontal image of bowls filled with a creamy potage, with one bowl empty, on a white towel with leaves and spoons.
Photo credit: Nikki Cervone

Savory onions, leafy spinach, and vegetable stock get the flavor party started, while tempered egg yolks and cream create the soup’s velvety consistency.

And in true Julia fashion, a few dabs of butter at the end never hurt anybody, taking the richness factor over the top..

Here’s how it all comes together.

Creamy Chickpea Stew with Saffron

Hearty and loaded with earthy chickpeas and floral saffron, this soup definitely stands out in a crowd of chicken noodles.

A bowl of creamy vegetarian chickpea saffron stew with served pita chips | Foodal.com
Photo credit: Nikki Cervone

It also calls on a tangy Greek yogurt and egg yolk combo to thicken and add richness to the broth.

That’s one righteous game changer, if I do say so myself.

Dive into the details here.

Greek Lemon Rice Soup

A vat of this citrusy, comforting soup will heal whatever ails you. Particularly hunger.

Horizontal image of a bowl of white liquid with a spoon holding a spoonful of the same liquid with a small mound of rice.
Photo credit: Meghan Yager

Staple ingredients you likely already have on hand – broth, rice, cream, lemon, and leftover egg yolk – are all you need to prepare this simple and satisfying dish.

Cozy up to this classic here.

4. Potato Perfection

Potato and egg is another no-brainer of a mashup, but these recipes will make you rethink how the two ingredients can work beautifully together.

Yolks can be used not just for binding, but to parallel the potato’s buttery characteristics, and I don’t think anyone will have a problem with that.

Greek Moussaka

This beef and potato casserole may seem mysterious if you’re new to the dish, but slide your fork on in there and tell me you don’t immediately melt with happiness.

Horizontal image of two plates with a large square serving of a meat moussaka with a metal fork on one plate on top of a blue napkin.
Photo credit: Meghan Yager

In this recipe, layers of thinly sliced potato and seasoned ground beef or lamb are married with a cheesy mornay sauce infused with parmesan.

Egg yolks take the cheesy sauce straight into OMG territory.

Find out how it’s done here.

Potato Fritters with Red Pepper Relish

The yolks assist in binding these croquettes, while the fresh herbs, onion, and sharp cheddar give life to the starchy spuds.

Three potato fritters topped with red bell pepper relish on a white plate with a fork, with more in the background on a serving platter.
Photo credit: Meghan Yager

You can serve these with sour cream, but our recipe suggests levelling up with a tasty red pepper relish. Balsamic vinegar and red onion give the condiment a complex sweetness.

Read the recipe now to learn more.

Potato Gnocchi

These adorably tiny dumpling pillows are soft, delicate, and just about impossible to stop eating.

Photo credit: Nikki Cervone

Until they’re gone, that is.

Those extra egg yolks that you’re eager to use play an important role in creating a more cohesive dough that’s easier to roll out without breakage.

The yolks also add sturdiness, which supports the gnocchi so they hold their shape while they bob around in the boiling water. Now, that’s a good friend.

Find out how to knock out these gnocchi here.

5. Dreamy Desserts

Eggs in general can help to knock any dessert dish out of the park, but yolks in particular lend a hand in creating flawlessly creamy custard bases, puddings, and more.

Your sweet tooth meter will be on high alert when you take a gander at these recipes.

Einkorn Snickerdoodle Cookies

Snickerdoodle may be a silly word, but there’s nothing funny about how delicious these chewy cookies are, with their crispy edges and cinnamon-sugar crust.

Horizontal image of half-eaten cookies on a wooden tray.
Photo credit: Nikki Cervone

They lean on einkorn flour, an ancient form of wheat known for potentially being easier on the digestive tract than wheat flour. Keep in mind, however, that it does still contain gluten.

Silky yolk in the batter helps to give the baked rounds their plush interiors.

Learn the secrets of these snickerdoodles here.

Budino al Cioccolato

If you’re unfamiliar with the term “budino,” this recipe will make you want to learn the entire Italian language and buy a villa in Tuscany like Diane Lane did that one time in “Under the Tuscan Sun.”

Horizontal image of two glass cups filled with a thick, dark brown dessert topped with whipped cream, on a towel next to metal spoons.
Photo credit: Meghan Yager

Prepared on the stove, the decadent dessert gains its thick texture from egg yolks, and its complex flavor thanks to vanilla and dark chocolate.

It’s sweet, creamy, and can even be topped with whipped cream and hazelnuts. Nom.

Get the easy recipe now.

Easy Homemade Chocolate Pudding

Skip the boxed stuff and go straight for this from-scratch dessert.

Horizontal image of two glass bowls with a cocoa pudding topped with whipped cream on a textured white towel next to candies.
Photo credit: Eddie & Katherine D’Costa

With just a short list of ingredients, you won’t be sorry you took the time to whip up a bowl of this perfect pudding.

High-quality chocolate and cocoa make all the difference, and that leftover egg yolk you weren’t sure what to do with is responsible for the custardy smoothness in the finished product.

Read more here to get the full scoop on this pudding.

The Yolk Won’t Be on You

Now that you’ve read our fabulous roundup, you’re fully equipped with a bevy of fantastic ideas for using up leftover egg yolks.

Horizontal image of whole eggs and half of one with the yolk on a wooden surface.

Remember that many of these recipes can be used as starting points for whatever personalized creations you come up with – which I’m sure are now rolling around in your head.

Maybe you’d like to use roasted garlic to perfume the aioli, or swap in some kale for the spinach in your soup. Seek out those leftovers hiding in the bottom of the fridge, and cut down on your food waste even more! Let us know what you come up with in the comments below.

These recipes are hard to beat (get it?), but if you’re craving even more eggy goodness, try these next:

Photos by Meghan Yager, Felicia Lim, Fanny Slater, Nikki Cervone, and Eddie and Katherine D’Costa, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details. Uncredited photos: Shutterstock.

Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

About Fanny Slater

Fanny Slater is a home-taught food enthusiast based in Wilmington, North Carolina who won the “Rachael Ray Show” Great American Cookbook Competition in 2014, and published her cookbook “Orange, Lavender & Figs” in 2016. Fanny is a food and beverage writer, recipe developer, and social media influencer. She was a co-host on the Food Network series “Kitchen Sink,” was featured on Cooking Channel’s longtime popular series “The Best Thing I Ever Ate,” and continues to appear regularly on the “Rachael Ray Show.”

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