Can Chickens Eat Bread or Should It Be Avoided?

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You may have seen your chickens pecking at some bread that fell on the ground and wondered if it’s okay for them to eat it. Chickens can eat bread, but it should only be given in small amounts as a treat because it doesn’t provide much nutritional value. Let’s take a closer look at why bread isn’t the best food for chickens and what types of bread are safe for them to eat.

Can Chickens Eat Bread?

The answer is yes, chickens can eat bread. In moderation, bread can be a healthy treat for your flock. However, there are a few things you need to keep in mind if you choose to give your chickens bread as a treat.

First, remember that chickens are primarily grain-eaters. Their bodies are designed to digest grains better than other types of food. That being said, too much bread can lead to an upset stomach or even crop issues like sour crop. So, it’s important to feed bread sparingly and in small pieces.

Second, make sure the bread you’re feeding your chickens is fresh. Stale or moldy bread can make them sick, so only give them bread that you would eat yourself.

Finally, don’t forget that water is essential for proper digestion. Make sure your chickens have access to fresh water at all times, especially if you’re giving them treats like bread.

Why Bread Isn’t the Best Food for Chickens

Bread is made from flour, water, and yeast, and it’s usually fortified with vitamins and minerals. However, the milling process strips away most of the nutrients, so bread is not a very nutritious food for chickens. In addition, chickens have a different digestive system than humans, so they can’t digest some of the ingredients in bread, such as gluten.

What Types of Bread Are Safe for Chickens to Eat?

While bread isn’t the best food for chickens, some types of bread are safe for them to eat in moderation. The safest option is whole wheat bread because it hasn’t been processed as much as white bread. You should also avoid giving your chickens moldy bread because it can make them sick.

How Much Bread Can Chickens Eat?

Chickens should only be given a small amount of bread at a time as a treat. Too much bread can cause digestive issues for chickens, such as an upset stomach or diarrhea.

How a Chicken Digests Food

Chickens are interesting creatures, and their digestive systems are no exception. Chickens don’t have teeth, so their food is ground up in a muscular organ called the gizzard. This is done with the help of small pieces of grit, which chickens will swallow as they graze.

The Gizzard

The gizzard is a muscular organ located just behind the chicken’s crop. The crop is a pouch at the base of the chicken’s neck, where food is stored before it goes to the gizzard. Once in the gizzard, the food is mixed with grit, and muscles contract to grind the food into smaller pieces. The gizzard can store up to 2 tablespoons of grit at any given time.

The digestive process continues as the smaller pieces of food move into the small intestine, where nutrients are absorbed into the bloodstream, and waste products are eliminated.

Grit and Digestion

Grit is essential for chickens because it helps them grind up their food in the gizzard. Grit is usually made up of small stones or sand, and chickens will consume it as they graze. Chickens will also consume grit if it is available in their feed. It is important to make sure that your chickens have access to grit because, without it, they will not be able to properly digest their food.

Feeding Chickens Bread as a Treat

Chickens love bread! It’s a tasty treat that they go crazy for. However, you need to be careful when feeding them bread. If you give them too much, it can cause problems. This is because bread is high in carbohydrates, and chickens don’t have the natural ability to process carbohydrates as we do. This means that eating too much bread can end up fermenting in their crop and causing issues like diarrhea.

How to Feed Chickens Bread Safely

If you want to give your chickens bread as a treat, then the best way to do it is by breaking the bread into small pieces. This will help them digest it better and prevent them from overeating. You should also only give them bread sparingly as a treat and not make it a regular part of their diet. This is because, even though they love it, bread isn’t the most nutritious food for them, and they need to eat a balanced diet to stay healthy.

In Conclusion

Bread isn’t the best food for chickens because it’s not very nutritious, and they can’t digest all of the ingredients. However, whole wheat bread is safe for them to eat in moderation. Avoid giving your chickens moldy bread because it can make them sick.


Shanna is the 2nd half of Top Outdoor Survival. Like Forest, she has a passion for guns and knives. They love to go on a survival trip at least once a year. They love to go camping, hiking, and traveling.

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