Can Chicken Eat Human Food?

There are many inquiries asking if chicken can eat human food. Chicken nutrition is something that every farmer should care about. Feeding them right can yield great results and profit, while the wrong types of food will lead to thin chicken , poor production of eggs and even diseases. When you’re thinking about what to feed to chicken, you’re probably wondering if you can feed them your leftovers (which are typically thrown away) or if you can feed them your human food generally. In this article, we’re answering this question and giving some examples of popular human foods that are suitable for chicken. 

Most of your leftovers are safe to feed chickens, but they should not be relied upon mainly as daily food for chickens because they do not constitute a balanced diet for your chickens.  Although it is rich in vitamins, minerals, energy, carbohydrates, and fiber, chicken needs more protein. Protein is essential for Chickens for reproductive functions and eggs and meat production. 

You have to be moderate and provide feed that contains Vitamins and proteins to provide the chicken with the nutrients it needs.  Keep in mind that young chicks need a large amount of protein to grow and develop properly compared to older chickens, so it is not recommended to feed leftovers to chicks before the chickens are 3-4 months old.

8 Human Foods That You Can Safely Feed To Your Chicken

Chickens can eat a wide variety of human foods, but not all of them. Below are some example of popular meals that you can serve to your chicken:

  • Bread
  • Cooked meat
  • Corn
  • Fruits 
  • Grains 
  • Oatmeal
  • Vegetables 
  • Sweet potatoes 

Now, let’s dive into more details: 


The chicken craves bread and if you give them brown or seeded bread, they will love it. keep in mind that the bread should not be completely dry or it will get stuck in her throat and cause her to choke. Therefore, if you are going to serve them dry bread, it is better to wet it first.

It is not recommended to feed chickens large amounts of bread in one meal. but rather distribute it with other foods throughout the day. because bread contains yeast and sugar and may ferment in the crop, which raises the level of acidity in the chicken crop. You should also provide bread that is not spoiled or moldy for your chickens [1]. This is because moldy bread contains mycotoxins, which are toxins that cause health problems for chickens, such as:

  • Fungus or thrush in chicken crops.
  •  breathing difficulties.
  • Chicken liver tissue degeneration, which reduces the chicken’s ability to benefit from proteins and thus a decrease in egg production.

Cooked meat 

You can serve leftover meat to the chicken as long as it is not spoiled. But it should not be in large quantities. Although meat is a good source of protein, overfeeding it to chicken may be harmful. When you are serving cooked meat to your chicken, make sure to cut it into small pieces so that it is easier for the chicken to eat.


Corn is low in fiber and is one of the most easily digestible grains for chicken. Corn in all its forms, whether raw, cooked or dried. It’s suitable for chickens to eat. Yellow corn is commonly used in the manufacture of chicken feed. Corn contains about (3350 kcal / kg). Also, corn contains an average of 7.5% crude protein.

Fruits and vegetables

Most types of fruits are useful and suitable for feeding chickens:


It is a delicious fruit that chickens love and has a high nutritional value. Apples contain energy, carbohydrates, fiber, and many minerals and vitamins that chickens need.

We advice you to cut apples into small pieces before feeding it to your chicken. It’s much safer and easier to digest this way. You can also mix it with other foods to increase the bulk and the nutritional value.

Berries and strawberries

Chickens love berries and strawberries. You can serve the berries as whole or chopped pieces to the chicken and don’t be afraid of chocking problems.

Blueberries and strawberries are rich in many nutrients that are beneficial for chickens such as antioxidants, Vitamin B9, A and C. If you noticed that your chicken poop turned to blue, don’t be afraid. It’s just the effect of eating berries and it cause no harm to your chicken.


You can feed Cucumber to your chicken in its various forms including whole of sliced pieces. Thanks to its beak, it can eat the cucumber with having no worries from your side.


Cherry is a delicious fruit meal that chickens also enjoy. It also contains a lot of minerals and is full of vitamins such as vitamin K, C, E and A.


It is one of chicken’s favorite meals. Chicken loves watermelon of all kinds, like pumpkin, Melon and watermelon. Watermelon is a useful meal for chickens because it is rich in vitamins and minerals.Chickens love watermelon and its skins and seeds too. Watermelon is a great summer meal because it contains more water, which chickens need in their summer diet.


Grapes are one of the favorite fruits of chickens. It is a small fruit full of sugar, so you should not overfeed it to chickens. Adult chickens can digest grapes and their seeds, but grape seeds should not be offered to young chicks, as they may harm them.


Tomatoes are healthy and completely safe for chickens. Be careful not to let chickens eat the leaves and branches of the tomato plant because they are harmful to them as they contain harmful toxins.


Pear chicken can be eaten raw or cooked, and it is a fruit that is very rich in vitamins and minerals. It can be served to chicken, but be sure to remove the pear seeds to avoid choking.

Sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes are useful and safe for chickens and contain many nutrients that chickens need.


Many types of grains are suitable for feeding chickens, such as rice, wheat and other grains. Whole grains are more nutritious than ground grains. Oxidation of grains occurs after grinding, and their nutritional content decreases. Also they lose their nutritional value over time.


Chicken oatmeal can be served, but it should not be a main meal on its own. It is preferable to combine it with other foods.

What Human Food Can Chickens Not Eat?

3 chicken standing on the ground and eating

Here some leftovers that you probably don’t want to feed your chicken using them:

  • salt
  • processed foods
  • Raw Potato Peels
  • Onions, garlic and other strong-tasting foods
  • Avocado skins and pits
  • coffee or ground coffee and Soft drinks 
  • Very fatty foods
  • raw meat
  • Spoiled foods 
  • Chocolate

Here are more details about the foods that should be avoided in feeding chickens.


A little salt improves the palatability of food and increases the appetite of the chicken. It also supplements the nutrients needed by chickens, promotes digestion as well, and prevents some chicken diseases. Only by increasing salt can it harm them.

processed foods

It is not healthy for chickens to eat leftovers from processed foods such as luncheon meats, burgers, sausage and processed desserts. Instead, give them leftovers from home-cooked meals.

Raw Potato Peels

Although sweet potatoes and white potatoes are similar in name, they are completely different. White potatoes belong to the nightshade family, and all parts of the white potato plant contain a substance called solanine.

Solanine may be toxic to chickens and can lead to respiratory distress, convulsions or diarrhea, and it is found in large quantities in potato peelings, so it is not preferable to feed it to chickens.

Onions, garlic and other strong-tasting foods

Although Onions, garlic contain a lot of vitamins and minerals, it is healthy for chickens when eaten in moderation. They help reduce inflammation, are good for colon and bone health, and help lower blood sugar levels. when eaten in large quantities they give an undesirable taste to chicken eggs.

Avocado skins and pits 

Avocado skins and pits contain persin, a toxin that can be fatal to chickens. Avocado meat is good for chicken.

coffee or ground coffee and Soft drinks 

coffee and Soft drinks contain. Caffeine consumption may interfere with egg production and quality

Very fatty foods

It is not preferable to feed the chicken very fatty foods because it may be difficult for the chicken to digest.


Chocolate can harm your chickens because it contains theobromine, which may be toxic to chickens.

Raw meat

Feeding chickens raw meat may cause chickens to attack each other and turn to cannibalism.

Spoiled foods 

When foods are spoiled they can produce toxins that are harmful to your chickens.

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Doaa Salah
The shy one (too shy to put her photo) and the only girl in our team! Doaa is a veterinarian who is passionate about writing content. She knows a lot about animals and birds, as she has been studying them for many years now. Her goal? She is researching and learning to convey to you all the knowledge she have and what's new about farming.