Wondering Why?

Why is cooking an egg a chemical change?

A chemical reaction occurs while cooking. It is the process where the cooked material will not  revert to its previous state. The substance that is subjected to change chemically will lose its former identity due to the transfer of heat to and from the surroundings. The heat will bring some changes to the material and helps in breaking the chemical bonds in the particles. Melting is the physical response because the material will not change, but its state will change. It turns into water at higher kinetic energy levels. As the cooked egg cannot be returned to its uncooked condition, the chemical change also cannot be reversed. Cooking an egg is considered a chemical change.

If the cooking of an egg is just the physical change, the cooked state of it has to be able to be converted back to the previous form which existed earlier. The physical change is similar to the conversion of water into ice and vice versa which represents a change in the state but not in the chemical nature. While the egg that is cooked will not change its state, it does change its uncooked chemical composition into the cooked, chemical composition. The proteins in the egg will become denatured and change their shape after cooking. Hence, they are chemically altered. The denaturation of proteins indicates that the protein can no longer carry out its functions in the body’s metabolism.

Proteins are the energy source available in the egg. They absorb heat from cooking, and their shape becomes altered. The heat absorption will bring changes to the appearance and texture of the egg after it is cooked. For instance, the white part of the egg will become hard, and its color will change to white while it was transparent earlier.


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