chickens eating potato skins

Can Chickens Eat Potato Skins?

It always seems a waste to throw food of any sort into the bin, especially vegetables if you have pets or animals around the home. One of the questions I am often asked is if it is okay to feed potato skins to your pets/animals. In this article, we look at whether we can feed chickens potato skins.

Can chickens eat potato skins?

Yes, chickens can eat potato skins but there is an important point to remember – the potato skins MUST be cooked – otherwise raw potato peelings can cause digestive upset to the chicken.

Can chickens eat raw potatoes?

No, it is not advisable to feed chickens raw potatoes – neither the flesh nor the peels. Potatoes contain a toxin called solanine which is mostly found in the outer layers and the skin of the potato. Cooking lowers the levels of solanine slightly, but enough to make it safer to feed to chickens and other pets/animals.

What is solanine?

Solanine is a poison found in the outer layers, and skin of potatoes, as well as the stems and leaves of the plant. The levels of solanine rise dramatically if it is left out in daylight. After a period of being left in the daylight, the potato skin turns green – making a clear indication to the user that the potato should be discarded and not eaten.

Can chickens eat sweet potatoes?

 a sweet potato
Chickens can eat raw sweet potato skins as they don’t contain solanine.

Sweet potatoes do not contain solanine in any part of the tuber, stems, or leaves – therefore chickens can eat them raw or cooked- skins and all.


It is perfectly fine to feed chickens your leftover potatoes and potato skins if they are cooked. Don’t make potatoes their only food though, make sure to include a wide variety of other foods also – just like humans, chickens need variety in their diet. This Scratch and Peck Organic Chicken Feed is highly rated.