Did They Eat Eggs in Ancient Greece?

In ancient Greece, eggs were a common and integral part of the diet. They were not only consumed as a standalone dish but also used in various recipes and preparations. Let’s explore the significance of eggs in ancient Greek cuisine.

The Importance of Eggs

Eggs held great importance in ancient Greek culture. They were considered a symbol of fertility and rebirth, often associated with the goddesses Aphrodite and Demeter. This symbolism made eggs an essential part of religious ceremonies and festivals.

In addition to their symbolic significance, eggs were highly valued for their nutritional benefits. They provided a rich source of protein, vitamins, and minerals, making them a valuable addition to the Greek diet.

Egg Preparation

Ancient Greeks prepared eggs in various ways to suit different tastes and occasions. Let’s take a look at some popular methods:

Boiled Eggs

Boiled eggs were a simple yet delicious way to enjoy this versatile ingredient. They could be served on their own or used as an ingredient in other dishes.

Poached Eggs

Poached eggs were another popular preparation method. The eggs would be gently cooked in simmering water until the whites were set but the yolks remained runny.

Fried Eggs

Fried eggs were commonly enjoyed for breakfast or as part of a larger meal. They could be cooked sunny-side-up or over-easy, depending on personal preference.

Egg-based Dishes

Eggs weren’t just consumed on their own; they also played a crucial role in various Greek dishes. Here are a few examples:

  • Greek Omelette: A delicious combination of eggs, feta cheese, herbs, and vegetables.
  • Frittata: Similar to an omelette but often baked in the oven and filled with a variety of ingredients.
  • Egg and Lemon Soup (Avgolemono): A popular Greek soup made with chicken broth, eggs, and lemon juice.

These dishes showcased the versatility of eggs and their ability to enhance the flavors of other ingredients.


Eggs held significant importance in ancient Greek culture as a symbol of fertility and rebirth. They were not only highly valued for their nutritional benefits but also used in various preparations and dishes. Whether enjoyed boiled, poached, or fried, eggs were a staple part of the ancient Greek diet.