Eager to know the answer to the age-old question, “can chickens eat parsley?” I did, too, until I consulted our local chicken expert ― he told me this:
Yes, chickens can eat parsley, which includes the leaves and stems.
Rich in vitamins and minerals, parsley acts as an immune system booster, a natural antibiotic, and a strong laying stimulant.
So, if you’re interested in cultivating this nutritious herb, and spicing up your chicken feeds, keep reading…
Table of Contents
- Parsley is a herb rich in various nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
- You can feed this herb to your chickens fresh, dried, or as a chicken feed mix.
- Don’t get too excited: feed parsley a couple of times per week ― not more!
What is Parsley?
Parsley is an herb popular in culinary cooking, either used as a fresh culinary herb or dried spice. With its mild and bitter flavor, parsley pairs well with many recipes.
Originating from the Mediterranean, parsley is an artifact of many delights from this region and an exquisite herb used worldwide to symbolize the Mediterranian spirit .
Is It Healthy For Chickens To Eat Parsley?
Parsley, the herb in your herb garden, comes with more surprises: it combats free radicals.
Although this herb is safe and helpful for human consumption, can chickens eat parsley too? And does it specifically benefit them?
The short answer is yes. Like most herbs, parsley has an abundance of nutrition. Adding parsley to chicken feeds will help keep your chickens healthy and happier.
The long answer? I’ll get to it in a minute…
Parsley boosts their immune system, making them more active, and producing quality eggs.
So, you should consider adding parsley to the chicken’s diet if you have not yet.
Below are some of the benefits you’ll get from feeding parsley to your flocks:
1. Parsley is Rich in Antioxidants
Parsley contains many powerful antioxidants beneficial to your chickens’ health .
Director of the School of Physiology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Li Li Ji, Ph.D. says this about free radicals ,
“There is evidence that free radicals are a predominant factor in the etiology of a wide range of diseases and conditions such as cancer, diabetes, atherosclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease and rheumatoid arthritis.”
But there’s an answer, and it’s called antioxidants.
Antioxidants are compounds that prevent cells in the body from being damaged by molecules called free radicals.
Thankfully, parsley, loaded with antioxidants, packs a treat that combats these free radicals .
There are three primary antioxidants found in parsley:
- Vitamin C
Parsley is rich in a class of antioxidants known as flavonoids. Myricetin and apigenin are the two main flavonoids.
Diets rich in flavonoids help lower the risk of heart disease and other heart-related problems in your chickens.
Carotenoids have two antioxidants known as beta carotene and lutein. Chickens with a high intake of carotenoids will help reduce the risk of certain diseases in the body.
Vitamin C is known for maintaining and strengthening the immune system of chickens. Also, it will keep the skin healthy and the feathers glossy.
Want to know what greens are safe for your feathered friends? Check out our article on ‘Can Chickens Have Spinach‘ for the latest info!
2. Parsley Supports Bone Health
For the bones of the chickens to remain healthy and strong, they will need specific vitamins and minerals.
Parsley is packed with vitamin K, which is essential for bone health. This vitamin builds stronger bones.
Besides stronger bones, vitamin K improves bone mineral density. Bone density is necessary for chickens. A lower bone density could increase the chance of bone fractures.
So, feeding parsley to chickens a couple of times per week will help ensure their bone is strong and healthy.
For a visual review of these PROFOUND health benefits, visit this spellbound YouTube video by Bestie:
Have you ever wondered if your feathered friends can enjoy the delicious and nutritious snack of edamame? Our informative article on “can chickens eat edamame” has got you covered.
How To Feed Parsley To Chickens
There are several methods you can try when it comes to feeding parsley to chickens:
Method 1: Chopping And Cutting Parsley
Here you’ll feed them fresh parsley. Fresh parsley contains the most nutrition and you should feed them whenever possible.
1. Wash the parsley first to remove any debris and pests on the herb.
2. Chop or cut them into smaller pieces.
3. Find a clean area on the ground and toss the parsley over it.
The result: Your chickens will peck at it and eat the herbs.
Method 2: Mixing Parsley With Chicken Feeds
Here you’ll mix parsley with their feed. Chickens sometimes do not eat parsley from the ground or are not interested in eating the herb. If that’s the case, you can mix the parsley with their feeds.
1. Dice or finely chop the herb.
2. Mix the herb with their feeds until it’s all mixed.
Now go and feed these goodies to your chickens! They will not be able to tell the difference and will eat both the herbs and feeds.
Method 3: Letting Your Chickens Discover Parsley
Here you’ll let your chickens eat from the garden by discovering it on their own.
There’s nothing better than fresh herbs for the chickens to eat. If you have room in the backyard or the garden, try growing some parsley there.
Once the herb has matured, you can let the chickens into the garden, and they’ll peck at the fresh parsley.
If you have other herbs or plants in the garden, block the area before letting the chickens in. Otherwise, they go through the entire garden and eat everything edible.
Method 4: Feeding Your Chickens Dried Parsley
Using dried parsley as a nutrition booster. Parsley is loaded with nutrition, and one of the best ways to give them a boost in nutrition is by feeding them dried parsley.
You can either (1) buy the parsley dried or (2) dry the parsley yourself. Either way, sprinkle the dried parsley onto the feeds or fruits and veggies.
Curious about what greens are okay for your feathered friends? Check out our article on ‘Do chickens eat iceberg lettuce‘ for all the answers!
How Much And How Often To Feed Parsley To Chickens
While parsley doesn’t contain much nutrition that benefits chickens, feed this herb in moderation ― as a treat and a way to supplement their diet.
Parsley and other food besides their staple feeds should make up 10% of their main diet. The rest should come in the form of quality commercial feeds.
So, feed parsley in moderation. A couple of times per week is enough parsley for your chickens!
1. Can Chickens Eat Parsley Stems?
The parsley’s stems contain no toxins and it’s safe for chickens to eat. But cut them into smaller pieces before feeding them to your chickens.
If you don’t, your chickens can choke!
2. Can Chickens Eat Parsley Seeds?
They are toxic to the chicken and can cause harm to them. In a small amount, the seeds may not affect them much.
But if your chickens ingest it in large amounts, it could kill them!
So, can chickens eat parsley?
A nourishing treat with various health benefits, parsley offers a superb nutritious option for your backyard chickens.
For a great meal, stick with chicken feeds. Better yet, sprinkle in some parsley!
If not in meals, you can sprinkle these delicious treats across the chicken coop, leaving it with a fresh scent and overall good rhythm.
Lastly, don’t hesitate to tell me how much you enjoyed this article, so share your tips, tricks, and methods for a parcylicious chicken meal. Until next time…
1. Dr. Axe. Parsley Benefits, Nutrition & Recipe Ideas – Dr. Axe [Internet]. Dr. Axe. 2018. Available from: https://draxe.com/nutrition/parsley-benefits/
2. RGMILAN. The Amazing Cancer Prevention Health Benefits of Parsley, or, “Hey, I Shouldn’t Be JUST a Table Garnish!” | Harding Medical Institute [Internet]. 2017 [cited 2022 Dec 28]. Available from: https://hardingmedicalinstitute.com/the-amazing-cancer-prevention-health-benefits-of-parsley-or-hey-i-shouldnt-be-just-a-table-garnish-2/
3. Memon N. 7 Surprising Benefits of Parsley Root: Nutrition & Side Effects [Internet]. MedicineNet. [cited 2022 Dec 28]. Available from: https://www.medicinenet.com/7_surprising_health_benefits_of_parsley_root/article.htm
Grigorina grew up surrounded by animals – dogs, cats, cows, goats, sheep, and horses and that has shaped her into what I am today – a crazy cat lady who always has a place for one more cat (or a dog). She has two female cats – Kitty and Roni, and two tomcats – Blacky and Shaggy, but she also feeds her neighbors’ cats when they come for a visit. I just can’t say no to them. Follow her on FACEBOOK AND INSTAGRAM
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