Is the bulk of the protein in the white or the yolk of an egg?

I’m in a little debate with my wife. Please help me win. She said there is more protein in the yolk than in the white. I say there is more in the white than the yolk? Am I right?

The white.

Or maybe not. That source cites the USDA nutrition database, but a search there gives different results.
Whites, 10.90 grams per hundred grams.

Yolks, 15.86 grams per hundred grams.


According to Harold McGee’s On Food and Cooking, a shelled U.S. Large egg weighs about 55 grams; this breaks down on average to 38 grams in the white and 17 in the yolk. There are 3.9 grams of protein in the white, but only 2.7 in the yolk. This means that the majority of the protein of an egg is in fact in the white, but the yolk has more protein in it per unit weight. My guess is that you’ll have to call this argument a draw.

Edit: Contrapuntal, your sources aren’t actually in disagreement; in fact, you seem to have the same numbers as I do. It’s just a matter of whether you’re counting total protein or concentration of protein.

note: some people eat just the white to duck the cholesterol and/or fat in the yolk.

Good, a draw would mean we both win.

The other complication is the water content. The white is basically nothing but water and protein, while the yolk is water, protein, and fats. So if you removed a significant portion of the water of an egg (say, by frying it), then what’s left of the white will have a greater concentration of protein than what’s left of the yolk.

A large egg contains about 15g of yolk, and 35g of white. (here and here )