Yes, chickens can have peanut butter, but in moderation. This butter is very high in fats, carbohydrates, and proteins. Feeding chickens large quantities of peanut butter can have adverse effects on their health.
As a poultry owner, you can feed peanut butter to your birds as a treat and not as a main meal, despite it being high in carbs and proteins. Peanut butter contains monounsaturated fats, which are good for birds when fed in moderation.
Here is a low down on how much peanut butter you can feed chickens and how to add this high-fat food to your chicken’s diet.
Is Peanut Butter Good for Chickens?
Peanut butter is loaded with essential nutrients, including great vitamins and minerals. A cup of peanut butter contains 13% carbohydrates, 72% fats, and 15% protein.
- High Vitamin Content
Peanut butter is also loaded with vitamins A, C, D, E, K, thiamin, riboflavin, B6, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, betaine, and choline. All these are crucial nutrients that contribute to healthy chicken bones and eggs.
- High Mineral Content
Peanut butter is packed with various minerals, including iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium, zinc, copper, potassium, manganese, and selenium. These minerals boost the quality of eggs in laying hens. They also regulate the functioning of different cells in the body.
- High Protein Content
Laying hens can benefit from the high protein content in this butter. Some brands make their peanut butter with 25% protein which is quite high for egg laying hens who need a diet of 16% protein – feeding this butter once in a while can boost their egg production capacity.
The main ingredient in peanut butter is toasted peanuts. Birds can consume toasted or boiled peanuts safely. Peanuts can be given as chicken treats once a week.
Peanut butter manufacturers add oil to give it a smooth and creamy texture. Along with oil, honey, sugar, and a little salt are also added during peanut butter production to enhance the taste.
When fed in moderation, this butter is very healthy for your flock. You can give peanut butter to chickens once or twice a week to boost their health.
Can You Feed Different Foods Associated With Peanut Butter to Chickens?
Peanut butter is added to various foods such as crackers or eaten in combination with several other foods. It is one of the popular foods used as spreads in sandwiches.
But when you feed different foods associated with peanut butter, you need to check the safety quotients of the other foods as well.
Peanut Butter Crackers
Peanut butter crackers are available in the market. These crackers are made from broken grains and peanut butter. You can feed these baked goods to your flock as occasional treats.
But these crackers should not become their daily snacks. They are not as nutritious for chickens.
Peanut Butter and Jelly
A meal of peanut butter and jelly may taste delicious but is pretty unhealthy for birds. But, if you want to treat your birds with this rare treat, ensure you choose jellies with no added sugar.
You can make your chickens eat peanut butter and jelly by spreading them on bread, fruits, and vegetables. But, be mindful that regularly feeding your chickens peanut butter and jelly can diminish quality egg production and will also lead to obesity in your birds.
It is better to give chickens straight peanut butter as a peanut butter jelly sandwich can be extremely high in sugar and fat content.
Peanut Butter and Honey
Honey is power packed with micronutrients and antioxidants that can help build your birds’ immunity and bone strength.
Honey is low in protein and fats, which is compensated by the quantities of the same in peanut butter. Together, this combo is great to add to your chickens’ eat list.
Peanut butter and honey can be given as an occasional treat, but this combo can get very sticky and messy. It is best to mix these foods with citrus fruits or other foods and give them as chicken treats in between meals.
Can Chickens Eat Peanut Shells?
Yes, chickens can eat peanut shells or husks as they provide them with dietary fiber and protein. These can be given to chickens raw or toasted. You can also mix the shells with other foods like cooked beans or cracked corn for that added crunch.
Can Chickens Eat Peanut Leaves?
Yes, chickens can eat peanut leaves, flowers, and stems raw or cooked. However, these should be fed occasionally as chicken treats only as these can have a laxative effect when fed regularly.
Yes, your chickens can eat peanut leaves, stems, and flowers raw or cooked. I recommend only giving this to your chickens on rare occasions as there is evidence that the bloom can have a laxative effect.
Although peanut greens are perfectly safe, there isn’t much evidence available regarding their health benefits for chickens.
How to Feed Peanut Butter to Chickens?
As a chicken owner, you should never feed peanut butter, honey, or jelly as a straight glob from the container. All these are messy foods and chickens can end up having them all over their feathers.
It is best to feed chickens peanut butter with zero sugar content mixed with other chicken foods. Here are some ways to feed chickens peanut butter:
- Vegetable Spread
A great way to feed peanut butter to chickens is by coating it directly on fruits and vegetables and feeding them as chicken treats. This way, they can get numerous vitamins and minerals from both the foods.
You can spread peanut butter on turnip greens, lettuce, carrots, cucumbers and more. It is best not to feed chickens vegetables like sweet potato or green potato as these nightshade vegetables have a toxin called solanine, which is toxic for birds.
- Peanut Butter Sandwich
A peanut butter sandwich can be fed occasionally as chicken treats as it makes a well-balanced snack. However, the frequency of this snack should be less as the fats are generally high in this combo.
- Peanut Butter Balls
Another way of feeding peanut butter to chickens is by making small coated lumps of grains and peanut butter. Shape the chunks into large edible balls for your birds to peck.
- Trail Mix
A trail mix with peanut butter can be an excellent meal for your chickens. Make a trail mix with chicken feed, mealworms, peanut butter, and grains. This can be fed to your birds as a main meal once or twice a week.
One of the best times to feed peanut butter to chickens is when they are molting. Chickens shed their feathers in the fall season. A high protein diet at this stage can help them with feather regrowth.
To wrap it up – peanut butter is perfectly safe for chickens. This human food can be given as occasional chicken treats but not as a main meal to your flock.
Peanut butter can be added to various other foods like vegetables, fruits, bread, sunflower seeds, trail mix, etc., to make a superfood blend. It is best to feed them peanut butter with no extra sugar added.
Peanut butter has high nutritional value and can be fed to chickens once or twice a week. You can buy a few jars of properly packaged peanut butter and feed your flock this rare treat once a week.