can chickens eat tomatoes

5 Amazing Facts: Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes

Chickens could be referred to as being a mini trash can. Perhaps it sounds amusing, but for their health, things are not as simple as they appear. Now, they might quickly acquire this name because they can eat nearly anything that they come across or practically anything you feed them. Well, practically everything. For instance, have you ever questioned: can chickens eat tomatoes?

can chickens eat tomatoes

Normally, we can feed chickens practically anything we can discover around our house. We can provide oats, grains, fruits, seeds, and veggies. In some cases, we even provide worms to consume as supplements to balance their diet and to keep stability in the dietary worth they require to take in every day.

Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes

Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes? Are They Safe For Them?
As owners of such smart animals, it would just be typical to stress the food we are providing. It is normal to question whether the food we feed them is helpful for their health or not.

can chickens eat tomatoes

Are tomatoes safe for chickens? Tomatoes are scrumptious and healthy for us; however, do they have the very same impact on chickens?

Regrettably, tomatoes are not ideal for chickens, specifically the green ones. And, as a matter of fact, neither are eggplants. Normally, when it concerns the food you offer to your chickens, you need to absolutely keep away from all the plants that are included in the so-called nightshade family.

5 Amazing Facts: Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes

These active ingredients consist of a hazardous substance called solanine. The same compound is included in these veggies’ leaves and the potato peels (green potato peels). These foods might all be hazardous, which is why it is best if they would be prevented. Nevertheless, it is reported that you can feed the nightshade veggies to your flocks if they are completely cooked.

A Controversial Food: Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes

Tomatoes are among the questionable foods. The confusion comes since tomatoes belong to the nightshade family. The Solanaceae family consists of typical foods such as tomatoes, eggplant, chili peppers, and potatoes. The theory is that the nightshade family plants consist of contaminants called lectins harmful to both humans and animal health.

Fruits in the Nightshade Family
Fruits and Vegetables in the Nightshade Family

Lectins are believed to be hazardous since they bind the cells in a body together and can trigger swelling damage and discomfort, along with arthritis. Nevertheless, just properly cooking these foods can break down the lectins and shut off the binding properties.

Tomatoes are frequently eaten raw. In the fruit we do eat raw, the lectin amounts are deficient, and there is no conclusive proof of them triggering swelling or arthritis. In fact, tomatoes have vitamins, minerals, fiber, and polyphenols that make them healthy for us and our chickens to consume.

Can Chickens Know What To Eat and Not Eat

A great test of this theory is observing a chicken in a veggie garden. You will see them eating bugs on and around the potato, tomato, and other nightshade veggie plants. However, you will not see them eating the green leaves.

The bitter taste and a chicken’s natural impulse to not eat plants that are harmful generally guide their free-range instincts. Choose a great plump, ripe tomato and set it down around a flock of starving chicken, and see what happens to your tomato. This is absolutely another story.

Moderation is the Key: Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes

Keeping in mind that excess of any one kind of food is bad for your chickens, feeding many tomatoes can have an unfavorable result. It can harm egg production. So, if your garden is filled with ripe tomatoes and you have actually been tossing the overripe into your chickens, do take safety measures to moderate the quantity you are serving your flock.


Another circumstance in which tomatoes can be damaging to your chickens is if you are feeding them moldy tomatoes. While molds like penicillin can be useful, other kinds of molds produce toxic substances and grow on vegetables and fruits that can be extremely hazardous to your flock. In particular, the mold aspergillus flavus produces the contaminant aflatoxin which is cancer-causing to humans and animals.

5 Amazing Facts: Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes

An exceptional food safety suggestion is to never feed any food to your chickens that contain mold. This applies to tomatoes and fruits, and other veggies. It even applies to your chicken feed. Keep it dry and mold-free, as mold in any type, on any food your chickens eat, can be really hazardous.

can chickens eat tomatoes

What Other Foods Should You Cut Off The List?

If tomatoes and eggplants took you by surprise, there are more foods that you ought to prevent feeding to your chickens. Here are a few of them:

Salty foods– We understand that they are hazardous for us humans so why would they be fine for animals and chickens, in particular? Your family pets might get illness such as water-deprivation, sodium ion intoxication or salt toxicity. Chickens have truly little bodies and they can not take in lots of salt. They can endure a portion of 0.25% of salt in the water they consume. If the quantity of water they are taking in is limited, it is effortless to get salt poisoning.

5 Amazing Facts: Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes

Citrus– Chickens can be susceptible to all the fruits that are high in vitamin C. However, this occurs in some kinds of chickens, not all of them. Some scientists think that it is because of the mix in between vitamin C and citric acid that chickens typically get feather plucking.

5 Amazing Facts: Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes

Onions– They are incredibly unsafe for your chickens since they contain a compound called thiosulphate, which damages the blood’s red cells. Obviously, you can provide a percentage of onions, every now and then however if you provide big quantities often, they may get anemia or jaundice. In some cases, this can likewise lead to death. So take note when dealing with onions near your chickens.

5 Amazing Facts: Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes

Beans– We’re not discussing all beans, just those that are not cooked or dried. Whether they are dry or raw, they all include a toxin which is called hemagglutinin. When it comes to birds, it is harmful. Nevertheless, cooked beans benefit your chickens, the cooking procedure will neutralize the effects of this toxin, making the beans safe.

5 Amazing Facts: Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes

Dry rice– Avoid feeding your chickens dry rice since it will affect them roughly when it can be found in contact with moisture. To be more particular, the rice may inflate after the chicken has actually swallowed it, triggering gut issues.

We hope that we handled to clear up your predicament related to can chickens eat tomatoes or not which we succeeded in explaining clearly why this fruit is not advised. Likewise, keep in mind to take into account all the other pieces of suggestions that have actually been discussed so that you can have a flock of healthy and happy chickens.


13 thoughts on “5 Amazing Facts: Can Chickens Eat Tomatoes”

  1. Gwendolin Jayme Rebecka

    I’m a firm believer that chickens won’t eat anything that is going to kill them. My crazy thing have stuck their heads in a can of laytex paint which is supposedly very harmful to them. You can’t tell by the x-large eggs they are still laying 2 years later.

  2. I’d have to admit that mine love tomatoes as well lol. They get all the ones that don’t make it to the kitchen and as a previous poster said, they do love watermelon! Mine will devour one .

  3. Quote:Yup, that about sums it up. I haven’t had any “volunteer” tomato plants come up since I’ve allowed my chickens to glean the garden in the fall–they get everything.

  4. Agustina Ciccarone

    I am afraid of the day when I don’t have any more buggy tomatoes from my garden for my flock. I will have to remember NOT to wear red in the run / coop area. *shudders at the thought*

    On the other hand, maybe if I put red food coloring in theie layer pellets they will eat it, cuz they sure didn’t take well to it at first…..hmmmmmm

  5. Quote:Makes chickens kinda sound like feathered GOATS :COOL:

    Actually, goats are rather picky eaters. Chickens eat WAY more things than a goat will. Any fresh, seedy-type veggies mine love – tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, etc.

  6. A little bitty mockingbird ate a tomatoe with no ill effect. Will chickens be hurt by eating tomatoes? Think about it!

  7. glad I found this post. We’ve got tomatoes coming out of our ears. The chickens loved it when we froze up a bunch of corn on the cob and gave them a few.

  8. If you LOVE your tomatoes keep them away from your free-ranging chickens!! Give them the ones that have pits, scars and look “past it.” They will think you are their hero!!

  9. I don’t know if your chickens CAN eat them, but mine do.

    The chicks get all the old/damaged tomatoes from one of the local farmer’s stands here and they LOVE it.

    Now.. The true question is how to turn pink silkies back to white?

  10. Quote:I had to put an electric fence around the family garden…but forgot to plug in the energizer after I mowed the lawn…tomatoes are history, peppers are history…yellow squash and zucchini are undisturbed.

  11. 대지 블랙잭

    I have been experimenting with two groups of 9 pullets letting them freerange my front garden since they were really little. They have learned pretty easily not to eat the plants and only to scratch for bugs etc. There are herbs, cherry and regular tomatoes (both ripe and green) and about 20 different varieties of peppers. They haven’t touched any of them even though if I pick them and cut them up for them, they will greedily eat them. They scratch alot around the plants, eat the grass, and dust bath between the rows and under the plants but haven’t hurt them yet. I couldn’t let my older groups of chickens do this with out them snitching something lol.

  12. I have the garden 2 fences and one roof “fence” from the chickens. So they eat bugs, weeds, and chicken feed plus the treats I give them. So far flying over the privacy fence hasn’t occurred. They are penned in the run a lot.

  13. They will eat tomatoes with no problem.

    They will also eat the tomato plant.

    In addition they will eat the pepper plants, zukes, beans, squash, berries, and corn when it first sprouts.

    If it doesn’t eat chickens, chickens it eat!!

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