I Want My Free E-Book On Egg Laying Chickens

Treats That Will Make Your Hens Lay More Eggs

Healthy, happy hens lay more eggs. Has it been proven scientifically? I don’t know, but from my experience, a healthy hen will produce more eggs than an unhealthy, miserable chicken. Chicken treats can make your hens happy and healthy.

Obviously, we can’t speed up the ‘egg clock’, but by keeping your hens in tip-top condition, you can ensure they will be producing high-quality eggs without depleting their body reserves too much.

We know that hens need lots of calcium and protein to lay a lot of eggs, so giving them an extra boost can help to keep optimal overall health.

Whilst most of your hen’s dietary requirements will be met through their regular layers pellets, a little treat now and then will help improve their egg-laying!

We’ve also shared our favorite healthy treats for chickens, but today we are going to look at treats that will help your girls lay more of those precious eggs!

chicken treats


Perhaps the most loved of all treats, mealworms- they contain over 50% protein!

DIY Chicken Mealworm Farm
Here is my homemade mealworm farm

I’m sure my girls would fight to the death for their mealworms. When the treat bag is shaken, they come running from all corners of the yard!

About a teaspoon each hen/day is sufficient- don’t listen to what the hens may tell you.

Too much protein can have a bad effect on their kidneys.

Mealworms can get very expensive if you’re feeding them to your hens every day. That’s why we made our own mealworm farm for less than $50!

Eggs and Eggshells

Really? Yes indeed! Eggs are full of goodness.

If you have a poorly hen or one that looks a bit under the weather, whip up some scrambled eggs for her- you can also look at our article on eating eggs to see how nutritious an egg really is!

Eggshells are full of calcium. I bake the shells in the oven for about half an hour at 350F, and then when they are cool I crush them up into pieces.

Crushed Egg Shell
Eggshells are ready for the chickens to eat.

The baking process kills off any salmonella or other bugs lurking in the shells.

As we know, hens are smart, so ensure they can’t recognize an eggshell as eggshell, otherwise, they may start egg-eating which is something you don’t want to happen!

To avoid this just make sure the eggshells are well-baked then crushed.


Dandelion leaves, chickweed, kale, cabbage are all high in vitamins and minerals that the hen needs to maintain good overall health.

I will often dig up dandelions and toss them into the brooder coops (with dirt attached) for the younger chicks to snack on.

Chickens eating dandelion leaves
Here are the chickens eating dandelion leaves…

If you free-range or pasture your ladies, they will happily sample grass, dandelions, and chickweed all on their own. These are tasty, nutritious morsels for them.

Filling a suet feeder with cabbage leaves, kale, and other greens can help to keep confined birds busy and healthy, especially in the winter months.

Whilst greens will help improve the number of eggs your hens lay, you need to make sure you have the right breed that naturally lays lots of eggs.

Watermelon and Fruit

Fruit is a healthy snack for your girls- in moderation.

An excess of strawberries for instance can cause diarrhea. Be warned that eating blueberries will turn their poop blue!

High in vitamin C, A, B1, and B6 and antioxidants, watermelon is a favorite treat for many hens. They will peck at it for hours- an added bonus is that melon and watermelon both have high water content.

On a hot summers’ day, cold watermelon from the fridge will help to ensure your hens will get enough water and stay cool.

Pumpkins in the Fall will keep your hens busy for ages. They love to peck at these colorful treats.

My hens are picky, so I usually cook a halved pumpkin in the oven for about 30 minutes, let it cool then feed to the chickens.

Remember: Giving your hen treats can be a very good thing, but please do not overfeed them. An obese hen is not a healthy hen!

Japanese Beetles

Are you tired of these pesky bugs eating your roses and everything else in the garden?

I wander around my yard with a jar, handpicking them off the flowers and veggies (the neighbors think I’m odd).

Once I’m done, I put the jar in the fridge for a couple of hours. This will slow the bugs down so the chickens can catch them.

Then the girls squabble over the pile of bugs I give them- apparently I never pick enough!

Sunflower Seeds

For your hens to get the most out of sunflower seeds, they should be hulled. The outer coat is thick and tough so most of the protein and fats remain locked inside the shell.

Sunflower seed

It has also been reported that the sunflower shells can cause crop problems, so best to avoid the shells all together!

This is a very cheap snack and will definitely keep your girls occupied for a while.

Scratch Grains

Scratch grains are exactly what they say- grains that can be scattered to encourage the girls to scratch and dig.

While chickens love their scratch grain, it should be noted that too much can cause obesity in hens. The nutritional content in scratch grains is low– only 8% protein and 4.5% fiber.

It should primarily be used as a training tool, occasional treat, and winter supplement.

Cracked Corn

Also known as ‘Chicken Crack’, cracked corn is by far one of our chickens’ favorite snacks.

Cracked corn

They love cracked corn, no doubt about it.

However, like scratch, it should be fed sparingly since it is low in protein.

I use it in the wintertime just before roosting time. An intake of corn helps to boost the bodies’ metabolism and so helps to keep the hen warm overnight.

Scrambled Eggs

Ok, this one may be a little creepy for some chicken lovers. But scrambled eggs have tons of protein!

And if your birds are sick, recovering from brooding, or a long winter, scrambled eggs will provide an intense protein boost to help get them through the tough times (thus increasing their production abilities).

When my chickens are molting, they are stressed and sickly. They usually expend a lot more energy on staying warm in the cooler months of fall. So, this is the ideal time to treat them with warm scrambled eggs. They LOVE it.

Hopefully, your chickens will get through the molt faster, and get back to laying eggs on a regular basis.

If you plan it right, you can gather your shells and scrambled eggs all at once and give your chooks a real treat.

Just make sure you feed your chickens scrambled eggs, and not eggs directly in raw form (NOT directly from the egg).

Once your hens get a taste of a raw egg, they won’t want to stop eating their own eggs. So don’t tempt them, and keep egg treats cooked.

Note: If your chickens have tried these treats and still aren’t laying they might have an egg-laying problem.

Summary on Chicken Treats

So now you know the special treats to give your hens a healthy boost and help assist them in popping out those nutritious, delicious eggs.

Generally, a hen takes 24-27 hours to produce an egg. There is no way to speed up the process- Mother Nature dictates this.

The best we chicken servants can do is keep them happy and healthy with treats that are tasty and that they enjoy.

Their vocal happiness while they are gobbling up the treats always makes me smile.

Do you have special treats for your hens? We would love to hear from you…

READ NEXT:  How to Raise Chickens with No Land

Treats That Will Make Your Hens Lay More Eggs

32 thoughts on “Treats That Will Make Your Hens Lay More Eggs

  1. Another favorite treat for my chickens is Bee Moth larvae. When I feed my chicken bee moth larvae also known as wax worms they go crazy fighting over it one chicken will grab a worm and run with it and the others will chase her around it’s kind of fun to watch

    1. Thank you for the great suggestion Rick!
      I haven’t tried this but will look to try and find some wax worms 🙂

  2. Great tips! I use live mealworms. I also use Tasty grubs. I like how they have calcium in them. helps the girls out a lot.

      1. My chickens love peanuts I have a couple peanut plants in my yard they take him up and eat him is that good for them or is it bad for them

  3. My sister gives her chickens a handful of grated cheese mixed with feed. Lovely yellow yolks! Xxx

  4. My favorite chicken got sick a bit ago and lost a little too much weight. Is there something inexpensive I can give her that will help her gain back what she lost?

      1. My chickens love peanuts I have a couple peanut plants in my yard they take him up and eat him is that good for them or is it bad for them

  5. I will sometimes give them mealworms one feels like she only gets the fall of the cup the other eats directly out of it. I only have 2

  6. What can I do about some of my girls losing feathers? They aren’t a great old yet, so I didn’t know if it was melting or a pecking order thing.

  7. Thank you for your site. Love it.
    I cook up a pot of mixed beans with ham hock, shredded carrots, and onion. My husband and I eat the first meal off it with corn bread. I bag and freeze serving sizes for the girls. When it’s time for a treat I pop one in the microwave. Only long enough to thaw it out. If I get it to hot it sits to cool down. They sound like a old fashion type writer pecking at the beans. Doesn’t take them long to clean the dish. I get one egg per girl everyday. Gotta love those Australorps. Thanks again for your site.

    1. What will do if my 450 layers lay just 70 eggs a day and also the eggs are very small please tell me what to do

    2. Fact is you should never use a micro. for your self or the chicks! What little nutrish. food has now-a-days the micro will destroy! Not only that but the Radiation is also dangerous!!! I use to build the Litton microwaves in the 60’s It is best and safer to use convection oven!!!

  8. I feed my chickens and ducks bananas every 3-4 days and they love them. I hope they are good for them. Is cat food good for them? My neighbors gives them cat food twice a day. I love your advice.

  9. I love my chickens! I’m just wondering what I should feed then to make them lay many more eggs.
    Also, they always quack when I give them there food. It’s just corn, seeds, and worms, so I’m not sure why there unhappy.
    Anyway, this article was very helpful!
    Thank you so much ?

  10. I treat them with cooked rice once in a while and u see them eating with enthusiasm. Is it good for their health?

  11. i dont recommend giving egg in general because I actually used to give them some egg TILL I realize that chickens started eat the egg that they lay so I had to collect the eggs pretty quick before they eat it

  12. My 5 girls love banana skins, I peg them on their chicken wire, inside open. As they peck away the noise is like a chooky concerto lol! If skins a day or 2 old they’re softer for them to grab strips off, like worms. I’m in NZ and love this site, fairly new to raising hens

  13. My 5 girls love banana skins, I peg them on their chicken wire, inside open. As they peck away the noise is like a chooky concerto lol! Skins a day or 2 old are softer for them to grab strips off, like worms. I’m in NZ and love this site, fairly new to raising hens

  14. Instead of scrambling eggs, I make hard boiled eggs. When cooled, I crush them finely and feed it to the girls. That way they get the shell and the egg inside all in one step. Much easier than scrambling the eggs and then baking the shell! Thanx, Claire, for all your articles.

  15. I make “Jiffy” corn muffins for my chickens and load the batter with scratch feed, cracked corn and meal worms. I mix it all up and bake as directed. I then cool and freeze them and take them out of the freezer as needed. In cold weather I always serve them warm ! Talk about some happy girls !!!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *