I’ve loved chickens since childhood. Because I grew up in the city with my family, we had no chance of owning chickens, but this changed when I moved to the countryside and began keeping my own hens.
As any chicken owner will tell you, it’s essential to provide your feathered friends with quality treats they won’t get from their regular feeds. As a passionate animal enthusiast on a limited budget, I often sought ways to make homemade goodies without busting my bank account.
I finally figured out these 10 simple ways to grow your own chicken treats at home so you can keep your flock happy without spending too much time or money!
Plant Sprouted Seeds
Starting a home-grown chicken treat business doesn’t have to be difficult, and you can create delicious treats for your chickens with a bit of planning and effort. Here are some tips I’ve learned over the years that will help you get started:
Soaking your selected seeds in hot water overnight is an essential step in preparing them for planting. This will help clean any contaminants or dirt on the seed coat that may be present, allowing it to properly germinate when planted in soil.
Planting and Growing
When planting the seeds, be careful not to poke through any roots that may have developed during germination! Until your seedlings are mature, water them daily using lukewarm water. Be sure to water them appropriately, as this could cause root rot or other problems if done too regularly! Furthermore, keep a close watch on these areas for weeds; they may compete with our young plants in trying to acquire critical nutrients and supplies needed for growth – so remove them immediately if you see them!
If you feel you need more time to decide how much fertilizer should be added, speak with local farmers who grow food crops such as these and look to ensure proper amounts and timing so everything grows happily without having adverse effects downstream due to excessive nutrients present either way.
Be vigilant while monitoring daily progress, taking immediate action whenever necessary to avoid major losses. Growing our own chicken treats couldn’t be simpler when done right, giving us complete control over quality assurance while saving time and money – a win-win for everyone!!
- Soak seeds overnight in hot water.
- Plant cleanly germinated seeds.
- Water daily with lukewarm water.
- Remove weeds immediately.
- Consult local farmers for proper fertilizer amounts & timing.
- Monitor progress and take action if needed.
- Grow your own chicken treats for control, time, and money savings.
Use Leftover Kitchen Scraps
Much of the food cooked in the kitchen ends up in the trash. But why throw out perfectly functional leftovers? Instead, put them to use! Leftover kitchen scraps can be used for several purposes, like composting, feeding livestock, and making homemade stock or vegetable broth. Using these items reduces waste while getting more out of what we already have.
Introducing creative ways to treat your chickens with home-grown snacks!
Composting is also ideal for our environment! as a non-profit organization, it is not driven by profit. You can use the soil to grow greens and vegetables or just sprinkle it around the chicken coop for your birds to eat directly.
I love to grow sprouts because it’s one of the easiest and least expensive ways to give my chickens something extra. All you really need are seeds (think wheatgrass or sunflower), water, and a container! You will have fresh seedlings ready for your flock in about three days. This is often done by immersing the product in fat and pumping it into small laminated croquettes. When I don’t have space or stamina for full-size gardening but want something more than mere sprouts, I generally make the switch to microgreens instead! Simply add the seed mix to a shallow tray filled with potting soil and spread it across the floor of the coop once small leafy green sprouts begin to grow that resemble grass clippings.
Herbal teas are another great way to treat those feathered friends while also giving yourself a boost; simply steep herbs such as chamomile, lavender, or rosemary in hot water overnight, then strain before pouring into their waterer each morning (just don’t add any sweeteners)! The chickens love it so much they run up daily when they hear me making tea!
Mealworms & Insects
Mealworms and insects? You don’t need to spend more money to get worms – just grab some cardboard egg cartons packed with dirt and kitchen scraps, and you’re done!
Mushrooms are powerful little organisms that can aid your health, boost immunity, and even promote balance in your mood. Depending on what type of herb you’ve planted, followed by patience while waiting up to 2-6 months until harvest time arrives…
Citrus trees may be out of the season here, but if I’m lucky enough, I’ll find some at farmers’ markets during summertime; instead of letting them decay, I take advantage by putting together little terraria using clear plastic containers & potting soil that lets me grow miniature orange trees indoors year-round. Whenever I pass these tiny spiky fruits, the scent alone brings delight.
Start herb gardens so your food tastes better and you have fresh herbs on hand? Herbs not only add flavor, but their fragrances keep pests away and prevent them when combined with other flowers & plants also…I am partial to oregano because it’s incredibly versatile since it adds fresh or dried pizzazz. Who doesn’t like window boxes overflowing with bright blooms adorning walls and petunias pouring out of hanging baskets, creating cheerful cascading down porch railings?? I hope so:)
- Composting: Grow healthy soil
- Sprouts: Quick, nutritious snack
- Microgreens: Nutritious treat
- Herbal Teas: Boost immunity & mood
- Mealworms/Insects: Egg cartons & dirt
- Mushrooms: Immunity & balance
- Herb Gardens: Flavor & pest prevention
- Citrus Trees: Miniature terraria indoors
- Flowers/Plants: Pest prevention, colorful blooms
- Buy Ready-Made Grain Mixtures
Ready-made grain mixtures provide one convenient way to get started with good nutrition by bundling a variety of grains, seeds, nuts, and fruits into one easy-to-prepare meal or snack. They can also be used as ingredients in recipes or eaten independently to furnish a healthy snack.
Benefits of Ready-Made Grain Mixtures
Ready-made grain mixtures are an easy and affordable way to provide your chickens with the essential nutrients, vitamins, minerals, and proteins they need. They come in various forms, from finely ground pellets to coarsely cut flakes. Many brands also offer organic options, which are even better for chickens and humans.
Choosing the Right Mix
When selecting a ready-made grain mix for your chickens, it is essential to read the labels carefully to know exactly what ingredients are included in the mix. Avoid any fillers, such as soybean meal or other unhealthy additives, which may be toxic for your feathered pals.
Adding Veggies to the Mix
In addition to ready-made grain mixtures, you can add chopped vegetables like cabbage or broccoli for extra nutrition. This is a great way to provide variety in your chickens’ diet and keep them healthy and happy.
- Ready-made mixtures of grains available at pet shops
- Mix with chopped veggies like cabbage/broccoli
- Essential nutrients, vitamins, minerals, and proteins
- Avoid fillers, unhealthy additives, and soybean meal
- Finely ground pellets or coarsely cut flakes are available
- Organic choices for healthy chickens
Grow Treats In Containers
Growing plants in containers is a great way to start gardening, even if you don’t have much experience. Containers can be placed on balconies and patios and indoors, making them ideal for those who don’t have much outdoor space. Many vegetables, herbs, and fruits grow easily in containers with little soil preparation and consistent watering. With the right plan of plants and the correct container size, you can create an attractive edible garden full of delectable edibles!
Raising your chickens is a great way to ensure they always have the freshest and healthiest food. Growing your own delicious treats can be both fun and rewarding with a little creativity and some gardening expertise!
Don’t be afraid to start with only one or two planters of herbs or vegetables that your chickens enjoy eating. This will help you adjust to container gardening before attempting something more complicated. When choosing plants, picking those safe for chickens is critical since many ornamental plants contain toxins such as nicotine or lily of the valley, which could hurt them if eaten in large amounts.
You don’t have to stick to traditional vegetable gardens, so why not try something else? I grew sunflowers in containers on my balcony, which were a hit with my flock! You can emphasize your creativity when it comes to containers—they come in various shapes and sizes, so you can get creative with them! Whether the container is a vintage wheelbarrow full of soil or recycled wooden pallets stacked together, there are countless options for choosing interesting containers for your plants.
Plant Companion Crops
Plant companion crops like friendship plants since some plants do better when planted next to each other; remember that this isn’t foolproof, though, so make sure to look at our companion planting articles before taking the plunge into this technique.
Don’t Forget Flowers
Don’t forget to bring flowers—while we are focused on what food our chickens should consume, flowers often don’t get enough attention despite providing plenty of health benefits (and they look nice too)! Try marigolds, nasturtiums, or pansies.
Choose Appropriate Vegetables
Some vegetables, such as cucumbers and pumpkins, take up a lot of room. Still, smaller varieties, like cherry tomatoes, will use less space and pack a big nutritional punch too! Herbs like parsley and basil are fantastic for elementary gardeners since they don’t require much maintenance yet have loads of flavor! Even picky eaters will not turn down these biscuits.
Learn About Container Gardening
Learning about container gardening is crucial whether you are an expert or novice – even experienced gardeners learn something new each day so keep up to date about what works best for your particular setup and circumstances…This will not only save time & money but also ensure maximum yield from whatever crop(s) you decide to grow!!
- Start small with safe plants
- Get creative with containers
- Grow vegetables & herbs
- Try companion planting
- Include flowers for health benefits
- Learn about container gardening
Utilize Common Garden Vegetables
Garden vegetables are an enjoyable way to grow your own fresh produce. Many common vegetables are easy to start with and provide a variety of flavors and textures. Some popular options include tomatoes, peppers, squash, beans, cucumbers, carrots, and lettuce. These veggies can be grown in any size space that’s been properly prepared and cared for. Different varieties of these vegetables offer different levels of difficulty for growing, so it’s critical to find the variety that best fits your environment and skill level.
Cooking for Chickens in the Backyard Garden With ingenuity, you can create delicious treats for your chickens right in your backyard garden! Here are some simple go-to tips for using basic farm crops to create delightful chicken nibbles.
I recently tried making zucchini chips as treats for my chickens, and they went crazy over them! Cut a few zucchini into chunks and add some olive oil, garlic powder, and salt to taste. I’m now growing more zucchini just so the chickens will love them!
Sweet Potato Fries
Who says that french fries have to be unhealthy? When you cut sweet potatoes into thin sticks, season them with rosemary, thyme, oregano, and basil, add olive oil and bake on a baking sheet at 400 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Your chickens will love these tasty treats, but you should keep an eye on them since they go fast around here!
One of the easiest vegetables to grow in your garden is a carrot, so why not give your chickens some dollars by transforming them into money? Simply cut the carrots into coins 1/4-inch thick and place them in the oven at 375 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes or until slightly browned. It’s a great way to get those birds to eat greens!
One of my favorite ways to use radishes from the garden is by baking thin slices into crisps! Peel the skin of a few radishes and slice them thinly. My chickens love these savory, crispy treats as much as I do!
Trying cauliflower bites will do the trick if you’re looking for something light yet yummy! Those who get these simply love them, and they will be gone within seconds if I add some parmesan cheese.
Green Bean Treats
Green beans are easy to grow in any size area, so why not let your hens partake? Trim off any dry ends from fresh green beans, then add to a greased pan along with olive oil and seasonings (I normally opt for Italian herb blend) then roast at 450 degrees Fahrenheit till tender crisp – about 8-10 minutes, depending on how thin you sliced them prior – hot from the pan I!
Growing pumpkins has never been easier than this delightful muffin recipe perfect for your favorite flock: combine mashed pumpkin puree, cultured plain yogurt, eggs, vanilla extract, butter coconut sugar, cinnamon nutmeg, ginger allspice cloves, salt baking soda flour and stir together add the mixture to a paper lined muffin tin bake at 350f/180c for 18 mins enjoy! 🙂
Until a few years ago, many people thought that seaweed was thrown away and didn’t realize how valuable it is!!! A perfect treat for your chooks during snacktime :).
- Zucchini chips
- Sweet potato fries
- Carrot coins
- Radish crisps
- Cauliflower bites
- Green bean roasting
- Beetroot sautéing
- Broccoli Parmesan mix
- Pumpkin muffins
Try Sprouting Legumes And Grains
Sprouting legumes and grains is an easy way to add nutritional value to your diet. They provide vitamins, minerals, and enzymes that are not present in their original form. A sprouted grain or legume makes a healthy addition to any meal with few calories. Legumes and grains can be used in salads, soups, sandwiches, or as a side dish. With the right ingredients and some patience, you can create delicious meals with them that will keep you full for hours!
Organic Feeding for Healthy Chickens
Organic feeding is becoming increasingly popular among chicken owners, providing a great way to add nutrition to their flock’s diet. With just a few supplies and good-quality organic seeds, you can easily start sprouting legumes and grains that your chickens will love!
I was somewhat intimidated when I first heard of what it takes to start a seed. However, it’s been surprisingly easy! All you need is some good quality organic seeds (I like Naturezway black bean seeds) and a few supplies such as jars or trays. Simply soak the seeds overnight in water (as instructed on the package), drain them off, rinse them daily for 3-5 days, then feed them directly to your flock when ready!
Benefits of Sprouts
Sprouts are packed with vitamins, minerals, and enzymes to help feed your flock head to toe. My hens go crazy for their daily servings of homemade sprouted goodness! One chicken mom said her chickens loved the sprouted treats so much that even if she forgot about their regular feeding routine for a day or two, they still had plenty of energy thanks to all those nutrients!
Tips & Tricks
It can be helpful to start with only one type of seed at a time when starting with organic feeding. This will help you understand how much your chickens enjoy each type before investing in larger amounts. Additionally, ensure you’re rotating the types of seeds you offer so they don’t get bored with the same thing every day. Finally, always keep an eye on your flock’s health and adjust their diet if needed.
- Soaking & rinsing organic seeds
- Feed to chickens directly
- Packed with vitamins, minerals & enzymes
- Chickens love the sprouts
- Provides energy even without regular feeding
Supplement With Insects And Mealworms
Introducing chickens into your life can be a rewarding experience. Still, ensuring they are properly fed and looked after is important. Here are 10 easy steps to help you become a master at providing treats for your feathered friends:
Step 1: Fresh Fruits and Vegetables
Give your chickens nice fresh fruits and vegetables like apples, peas, and peppers as treats occasionally. Not only will they love the variety, but their diet will benefit too!
Step 2: Pumpkins and Sunflower Seeds
If you want to give your chickens something special without breaking the bank, try sprinkling pumpkins or sunflower seeds into their feeder. They’ll love it!
Step 3: Mealworms
It is advisable to consume mealworms during your diet! Mealworms are an excellent source of protein that can help supplement your chickens’ diets. You can find them in most pet stores or even online if you don’t have one nearby. Be sure not to give the birds too much of a good thing because, in their case, too much of a good thing isn’t always ideal.
Step 4: Dried Corn
Feeding dried corn to your pet is another fun treat option that can be found in pet stores or online. It’s cheap and provides extra energy, so it’s ideal for the cold winter when food sources are low.
Step 5: Insects
There are many insects like flies, crickets, and grasshoppers that you can feed to your flock for extra protein while getting a treat that will make them think they’re smart!). Be careful where you get them – don’t take anything from areas that might have been sprayed with pesticides or other toxic substances.
Step 6: Clover and Alfalfa
Try planting clover and alfalfa near their coop or run; these two plants are full of nutrients and add greenery to their environment, keeping them stimulated while they eat.
Step 7: Herbs and Spices
Keep things interesting with herbs and spices: herbs such as oregano and basil contain antioxidants, while spices such as cumin boast anti-inflammatory properties, so why not throw some in the mix? Do they make everything taste better too? Your birds will thank you for it (even if they don’t know what’s happening exactly). Be imaginative!
Step 8: Kitchen Leftovers
Explore inventive choices for your chickens’ diets – from kitchen leftovers such as veggie stems/ends or pasta to flowers such as marigolds (which also ward off pests).
Step 9: Grit
Don’t forget about grit! When birds feed in a backyard environment, it is essential not to forget about grit which helps break down food just like teeth do for us humans, so ensure they stay healthy by providing adequate amounts throughout the year!
- Grow fresh fruits/veggies
- Sprinkle seeds/pumpkins in the feeder
- Offer mealworms/dried corn
- Feed insects/grasses
- Include herbs/spices
- Use kitchen leftovers/flowers
- Provide grit for digestion
Make Your Own No-Cook Treats At Home
Making your own no-cook treats so great that you don’t have to turn on the oven or spend a lot of time fussing in the kitchen. This can be a fantastic activity for children, too, since plenty of recipes require little supervision and use ingredients you probably already have in your pant, such as energy balls, crispy treats, and frozen yogurt bark.
Introducing the best way to spoil your chickens – homemade treats!
Preparing Homemade Treats
It can be hard to find tasty and affordable treats, but with these quick recipes, you can instantly make healthy little snacks for your feathered friends. You’ll need only some basic ingredients, like whole grains, dried fruit or vegetables, nuts or seeds, and maybe a bit of oil or honey if desired. You can get creative by adding seasoning like cayenne or garlic powder – whatever suits your flock’s taste buds best! To make small balls, combine equal parts of different ingredients in a bowl. Once you have enough rolled balls ready to go, simply pop them in the refrigerator until they set (about an hour). Here are your personalized chicken treat creations!
Benefits of Homemade Treats
My hens love their DIY snack time! Not only do they enjoy devouring their custom-made treats, but it also provides me with peace of mind knowing exactly what’s in each one – no preservatives here! I also enjoy watching my hens eat food I’ve created and appreciate how much they love it. One famous farmer said once that you will get what you deserve, so why not feed your flock some lovin’ with homemade goodies?
- Homemade treats for chickens
- Quick recipes with basic ingredients
- Mix grains, dried fruit/veg, nuts/seeds
- Add seasoning for flavor
- Refrigerate until set (1 hour)
- Custom creations – no preservatives!
Collect Wild Edibles For Chickens To Enjoy
For chicken farmers, harvesting wild greens and herbs from the garden can be a fun way to give their flock some variety in their diet. Whether gathering fallen fruit or nuts on trails or exploring paths to find new sources of greens, chickens will enjoy tasting the different tastes and textures that these snacks include. Poultry farmers need to identify what plants are safe for their hens. Still, this activity gives them many opportunities to sample new flavors that will keep them healthy by offering them something different with each bite.
Introducing wild edibles into your chickens’ diet is a great way to provide them with natural nutrition and variety. Not only does it save you money, but it’s also a fun activity you can do with the whole family!
Dandelion Greens, Chickweed, Plantain Leaves, and Clover Heads
Dandelion greens, chickweed, plantain leaves, and clover heads are great additions to a chicken’s diet. They provide plenty of vitamins and minerals that are essential for their health. When given something new, chickens seem to enjoy it – there’s nothing cuter than watching them peck at the new treat as if it’s the best they’ve ever had. If you collect enough, they will often have enough left over to feed another day, making it a nice change from their regular diet.
Purslane and Lamb’s Quarters
Purslane and lamb’s quarters are two rare edible plants that can be harvested for chicken treats. These tasty greens are great supplements for laying hens due to their high protein and mineral contents, helping create strong egg shells. Both plants contain antibacterial properties, which boost immunity in chickens (and humans!).
It is crucial to keep in mind any dangers associated with eating wild edibles when harvesting them for your flock. It’s also important not to collect from areas where pesticides may have been used, such as roadways or fields close to industrial sites. For obvious health reasons!
- Wild edibles incredible for chickens’ diets
- Variety and natural nutrition
- Dandelion greens, chickweed, plantain leaves, clover heads
- Purslane, lamb’s quarters, bee balm, mint
- Avoid areas with pesticides
- Health enhancer/money saver
Encourage Natural Foraging Habits
The perfect way to keep your chickens happy and healthy is to grow their own treats!
The plants that chickens love are oregano, thyme, basil, dill, parsley, and sage. If you don’t want to start from the beginning, you can simply buy seeds or little plants from a garden center. When cooking, it’s nice to have herbs, so humans appreciate them too! Growing wheat berries, oats, or barley is a labor-intensive task but once up and running, the farm can begin to earn money back from the chicken feed produced. Instead, try growing them yourself? You will only need a sunny space with well-draining soil and some grain seed; just make sure it’s organic if possible!
Planting Fruit Trees
Fruit trees like apples, pears, or even cherries make great snacks for your flock (just watch out for pits)!). If space allows, consider planting one or two fruit trees; they will provide plenty of food for years to come! Make sure not to overcompensate and give chickens too much sugar because excessive sugar is bad for chickens.
Setting Up A Bug Buffet
Set up a bug buffet for chickens – insects are a tasty treat that chickens love, and they get lots of nutrients from them as well! To make the best bug buffet, simply cover some grass with wet hay, then sprinkle it with organic mealworms or crickets (available from pet stores). Then you can relax and observe your feathered friends going wild!
Growing Leafy Greens
Leafy greens like lettuce, spinach, and kale are essential components in any balanced diet – including those of our feathered friends! You can easily grow these delicious greens on balconies or decks using potting mix & fertilizers explicitly designed for this purpose (just check labels first). It’ll only take a few minutes daily, but it’ll give you fresh veggies ready at home in months!
Sunflower seeds offer fantastic sources of protein and nourishment while at the same time offering hours of entertainment during which they search for every last seed in sight! Not only that, sunflowers can be grown at home by simply sprinkling them into existing flower beds when temperatures resume cooling in the late summer/early fall…
When heading out for a free-range time, simply hide treats around the coop so that something is interesting to anticipate each day! Your flock will love these deliciously nutritious & colorful fodder crops that sprout in water like barley grass, which makes it ideal for growing indoors too!”?! All you do is melt lard in a double boiler, then stir in birdseed once melted before pouring it into molds to let it harden overnight…simple right?
- Forage treats: oregano, thyme, basil, dill, parsley & sage
- Growing grains: wheat berries, oats & barley
- Plant fruit trees: apples, pears & cherries
- Make a bug buffet with mealworms/crickets
- Leafy greens: lettuce, spinach & kale
- Sunflower seeds for protein/entertainment
- Sprout fodder crops in water, e.g., barley grass
- Hide lard treats around the coop
Congratulations! You’ve now explored the top 10 easy ways to grow chicken treats. Growing your own treats can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience as you watch your chickens thrive on the natural goodness of fresh produce.
Not only will this provide your feathered family with delicious snacks they love, but it also allows you to bond with them. In no time, you’ll begin to enjoy homemade treats for your flock using these simple steps and a bit of patience.