The reaction of free radicals with polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) initiates a chain-reaction process known as lipid peroxidation in living systems and oxidative rancidity in foods. PUFAs are more susceptible to oxidation, resulting in the formation of toxic products. As embryonic tissues are characterised by high concentration of PUFAs, the use of antioxidants in broiler breeder diets improves chick oxidative status. Eggs ‘in shell’ are considered resistant to oxidative rancidity, however studies showed that yolk lipids within table eggs oxidise during storage and this oxidation is influenced by time and temperature of storage and the degree of unsaturation of yolk fatty acids. Thus, experiments into supplementing laying hen diet with antioxidants have been conducted to preserve the table eggs nutritional value. The literature shows that vitamin E has antioxidant activity in the egg yolk, protecting embryonic tissues efficiently during incubation and in the first days of a chick's life. However, these studies have not considered the effect of this vitamin on incubation yield. Without this economic variable, the positive results observed in the embryo and for chick oxidative status have little value for application in the field, mainly because the concentrations recommended in studies are much higher than those used in practice. Other antioxidants, e.g. canthaxanthin, act in synergy with vitamin E, however, the high cost of these ingredients could prevent its use for broiler breeders. This review discusses the effect of vitamins (especially vitamin E) in broiler breeder's and laying hens nutrition on oxidative stability of embryonic tissues and table egg yolk lipids, respectively.