The incredible edible egg is flying off shelves, and ringing up at all new high prices.

Nationwide, prices are higher than ever before. Grade A large eggs hit a $1.33 last month, the highest level in 23 years.

Locally the numbers are even higher.

At Albertson's large Grade A eggs are $1.59

At Wal Mart $1.53

And at Brookshires a $1.50

"Most of us live paycheck to paycheck and when it's 2 dollars or more for a few dozen eggs, instead of dollar, well then you have to make conditions elsewhere," says one egg buyer.

The reason for the high flying prices is two fold: number one -- a chicken shortage. They're laying less, down 2 percent from a year ago according to the USDA.

Reason two: the once taboo food is now all the rage thanks to the Atkins craze. In fact consumption is up from under 250 a year per person in 1999 to 254.5 last year.

"I think its just good old American eggs for breakfast," says a restaurants general manager who says egg sales have been up.

Restaurants like Panini's in Tyler sell a lot of eggs, they say it's their specialty and a staple of almost every recipe they prepare. They say they're just proof how popular the egg has gotten, but your local grocery store is proof too -- just how expensive something popular can be.