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Does Eggnog Actually Have Raw Eggs In It?

Two glasses are filled with eggnog and have a cinnamon stick garnish.

Hot chocolate, mulled wine, and hot toddies are just a few of the holidays’ most festive drinks. None of them, though, are very controversial—except one: eggnog. Why? Well, because of the eggs. But are there raw eggs in eggnog?

As it turns out, yes. Raw eggs are in eggnog. Before you strike it off your holiday party menu for that reason, you should know a few things.

Eggnog is a whipped mixture of eggs, cream, and sugar. It’s frothy, ultra creamy, and often accented with spices like nutmeg and cinnamon. Yes, eggnog can also be alcoholic. Many people add dark rum to their drinks for a boozy bit of fun.

All of this, though, probably leaves you wondering if egg nog is safe given its inclusion of raw eggs, and the answer is yes—mostly. Eating or drinking raw eggs isn’t a great idea for kids, the elderly, and those with compromised immune systems. For everyone else, it’s also not recommended, but you’re free to drink with the understanding that there’s a small possibility of foodborne illness.

Want to avoid the issue altogether but still indulge in some nog? Grab the store-crafted versions instead of making your own. When you craft eggnog in your kitchen, everything is unpasteurized. Store-bought eggnog often is pasteurized, and the FDA only requires it to have 1% egg solids to qualify as eggnog.

If you’ve wondered if eggnog is truly made of eggs, the answer is yes, and if you’ve wondered about its safety that decision is up to you and your personal risk factors. But if you feel fine eating homemade cookie dough, you might feel just fine with eggnog.

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