Can Chickens Eat Steak (Benefits + What To Be Aware Of)

As we all know, chickens will eat just about anything we offer them from our plates or pantries. 

But, it’s our responsibility as chicken owners to be sure we’re only feeding them what’s considered safe and healthy.

So where does steak fit into a chicken’s diet then?

Yes, for any steak-lovers out there who also own chickens, this is a crucial question. 

Here’s the truth. Here’s whether chickens can eat steak, if it matters if it’s cooked or raw, what benefits it actually has for your chooks, and how you can best serve it to your flock!

Can Chickens Eat Steak?

Look, I’m not suggesting you serve up a Wagyu beef fillet mignon steak to your flock. No no.

But, you’ll be pleased to know that it’s completely safe for chickens to eat steak, so long as it’s fed in moderation of course. 

This means if you’ve bitten off more than you can chew and you have leftover steak, you’ll always know you have some hungry mouths in the backyard that will happily accept!

Remember, chickens are omnivores, and due to their high protein requirements, they are naturally drawn to a nice piece of meat!

Feeding steak to your flock in small treat-like quantities will provide them with a tasty protein-filled snack that they literally go crazy for.

What To Be Aware Of When Feeding Steak To Chickens

Not all steaks are made equal, we know that. But, when done right, feeding steak to your chickens can be safe and even considered healthy for them.

Still, here are a few things you should be aware of before feeding steak to your chickens:

  1. Plain steaks are perfect. Avoid feeding chickens any kind of overly processed steaks, or those that have been marinated in salty or sugary marinades! 
  2. Be sure to chop your steak into small bite-sized pieces. This eliminates any potential choking hazards and ensures every chook get’s a piece too! 
  3. Feeding chickens too much steak will mean they forgo their normal formulated feed. This isn’t optimal for their health and wellbeing. So, make sure to only feed your chickens steak as a treat, not any more often than you would feed them worms or other treats. 
  4. Yes, chickens can eat steak off the bone. But make sure to discard any remaining bones or scraps. You don’t want to encourage predators or scavengers around your property. 

Benefits Of Steak For Chickens

For some reason, beef steak still seems to have a bad reputation from a health perspective. But, if you do your research it’s abundantly clear that steak has several nutritional benefits, even for chickens.

The most obvious benefit comes from steaks’ whopping 27% protein content. Chickens need protein for their egg production, feather growth, and their normal daily activity. Steak’s high protein content makes it an ideal treat for your chickens. Both delicious, but also nutritious.

Like in most animals, iron is a crucial mineral for many essential bodily functions of a chicken — and steak is a great natural source of iron. Maintaining adequate iron levels in chickens is known to help maintain egg production and also assist in the hatching of baby chicks.

It’s funny, humans often shy away from high-calorie foods and diets. But, when it comes to chickens, high-calorie foods can help give them energy and keep them warm in winter. Steak isn’t incredibly high in calories, but it is relative to a chicken’s normal feed!

Furthermore, steak has countless other vitamins and minerals which all play a huge part in the overall health and well-being of chickens, like Vitamin B6 & B12 for example.

Still, if chickens overindulge in steak (or humans for that matter!) they can experience negative effects too. So it’s important to only feed your chickens steak in moderation. This goes for other meats like hot dog, hamburger ground beef, etc.

What About Raw Steak?

I’ve personally seen one of my bigger hens hunt and chase down a mouse and eat it. So, from that perspective, I’m sure a raw steak is healthier than a raw mouse!

Chickens are known to eat snakes, frogs, mice, and other little critters that find themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time. 

So, you would think that chickens eating raw steak would be considered perfectly safe and healthy, given they consume other “raw” animals too.

Still, I would say raw steak is generally safe for chickens to eat, but cooking the steak first will simply ensure all the bacteria within it have been eliminated.

Can Chickens Eat Steak Fat?

Funnily enough, some farmers make it a habit to feed their chooks pork fat in the winter for a warming high calorie treat.

In the same way you can feed your chickens steak fat. However, this should only be in extreme moderation, as aside from the high-calorie content there is very little nutritional value in steak fat.

Nonetheless, a small bite of steak fat here and there won’t hurt.

Final Thoughts

Chickens aren’t vegetarian. Chickens aren’t vegan. Chickens are omnivores — and they love their meat!

Chickens can eat steak, whether it’s raw or cooked, and believe me, they don’t care what kind of cut of steak you’ve got either.

In moderation, steak can even be considered healthy for chickens. Naturally high in protein and calories, making for the perfect treat for your chooks.

Don’t let those leftovers go to waste! Cut your steak into bite-sized pieces and watch your chickens go wild.

But remember, everything in moderation, right?

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