If you’re hoping to raise chickens and have plenty of eggs, you need to focus on the best egg-laying chickens. Choosing the right chicken breeds for eggs is essential. People throughout the world consume a lot of eggs, usually from chickens.
Many people are now raising chickens on their property and in their backyards. You can save money each year by doing this, but you need enough space and the best egg laying chickens. Choose from among these high-producing chicken breeds.
Best Egg Laying Chickens
Getting the most eggs is essential so that you never have to go to the supermarket to buy them. Plus, if you do get extra, you can consider selling them or giving them to neighbors, friends, and others for you to save money, produce eggs, and keep a smaller number of hens in the yard.
Some people might choose one based on behaviors, size, or color. However, if your goal is to get a chicken to produce the most amount of eggs, then you should consider these best egg-laying breeds:
The White Leghorn could be one of the best chicken breeds for eggs. It is a very hardy breed and lays large, white eggs, and you can get about 280 each year, as long as they stay warm and have enough food and water.
They also fare well better as a penned or coop bird, but during the summer, they can go free-range and do quite well. This is because the temperature is warm, and the birds can forage a lot. They live up to their chicken name, though, because they can’t handle cold or changes very well. Generally, they are quite flighty and nervous birds.
The chicken can weigh up to five pounds, and it usually starts laying eggs around 16 to 17 weeks old. Their egg-laying far outshines their meat production. White Leghorns are crossed with Production Reds to create the California Tan chicken hybrid, another high-volume layer.
California White Chicken
California Whites are eggs-cellent layers, and they lay early. Pullets can start laying when they are 17 weeks old. They are a hybrid between a White Leghorn hen and a California Gray rooster rooster.
This hybrid is often heralded as one of the best egg laying chickens, and for good reason. They are prolific layers, capable of producing up to 300 large, white eggs per year. This makes them a perfect choice for anyone who has a high demand for eggs, be it for personal or commercial purposes. The eggs they produce are of excellent quality, with thick shells and rich yolks.
The California White chicken is striking with its white feathers speckled with black. But their appeal extends beyond their good looks. These birds are also known for their adaptability to a wide range of climates and environments. They are robust and hardy which contributes to their consistent egg production, even in less than ideal conditions.
Not only are the California White chickens excellent layers, they also have a friendly and pleasant disposition. They are typically calm and sociable, making them easy to handle. This level of friendliness extends to their interactions with other breeds, making them an ideal addition to a diverse backyard flock. They aren’t loud which makes them ideal for urban settings.
On top of all these fantastic traits, there’s another plus side to the California White chicken that often gets overlooked. They’re not just egg-laying superstars; these chickens are also a solid source of meat. As they mature and their egg laying tapers off, they offer a substantial amount of flavorful meat.
The California White chicken combines the desirable traits of high egg production, adaptability, hardiness, and friendliness. For those looking for the best egg laying chicken to add to their backyard or farm, this hybrid should be high on the list. With its high egg yield and pleasant nature, it’s sure to be a valuable and beloved addition to any flock.
Another excellent choice is the ISA Brown, which resembles the Comet. These hens lay an average of 300 – 350 eggs per year. Their eggs are large and brown. They also lay year round as they are cold tolerant. The ISA Brown chicken is a hybrid lauded for its prolific egg-laying abilities.
ISA Browns were developed specifically to in France by the Institute de Sélection Animale (ISA). The name “ISA Brown” is an acronym of the institute’s name. Being a hybrid, the ISA Brown is the result crossbreeding. It is believed to have genetic makeup from breeds such as Rhode Island Reds and Whites.
As far as egg production goes, ISA Browns are truly exceptional. They start laying eggs at a young age, usually around 18 – 22 weeks old. Hens will lay heavily for around three years. After their peak laying period, they will still lay but it will taper off.
In addition to their impressive egg-laying capacity, ISA Browns are also recognized for their feed-to-egg efficiency. They have been selectively bred to convert feed into eggs very effectively, which makes them a popular choice for backyard flocks and commercial egg production.
ISA Browns have a docile and friendly temperament, making them good choices for families and for those new to keeping chickens. They generally get along well with other chickens and adapt readily to various housing conditions. They are not flighty birds, so they do fairly well in confined or free-range settings.
Despite being primarily known as layers, ISA Browns are also reasonably meaty birds, with hens weighing around 4 – 5 pounds at maturity.
The ISA Brown chicken is an egg-cellent choice if you’re looking for a chicken breed that will provide a lot of eggs. Their high productivity, efficiency, and easygoing nature make them a favorite among backyard chicken keepers.
If you want the best chickens for eggs, then the Golden Comet chicken is another ideal choice. It’s a cold-weather bird, so it can produce anywhere between 280 and 300+ eggs each year.
It prefers to be free-range, plus the eggs are colored brown. If you prefer this chicken breed, it would be great to add some other chicken breeds in your backyard since it can tolerate other birds quite well.
The Golden Comet can also be great pets! There is no broodiness, and it tends to be quiet and gentle with a friendly disposition. The chicken can weigh between five and 7.5 pounds and can start laying eggs at about 15 weeks old.
Rhode Island Red
When it comes to a chicken that can produce a lot of eggs, the Rhode Island Red is an excellent choice. It’s quite easy to handle and take care of and can produce up to 260+ eggs each year.
Rhode Island Red chickens are excellent foragers, so they can do well as free-range chickens, plus you can pen them up, but you have to move the pen around frequently to provide enough foraging materials. While these birds are quite hardy, they can get a little bossy at times, especially if there are smaller chickens with them.
As such, you might want to keep them separated from other chicken species. Though their temperament is a bit on the angry side, they look beautiful. The chicken weighs about 6.5 pounds and can start laying eggs between 18 and 24 weeks old.
Similar in appearance to the Golden Comet, the Cinnamon Queen chicken is a friendly and mild-mannered chicken as well as a masterful egg layer. Not only do hens start laying at younger ages than many other heritage breeds (at around 16 weeks), they lay a bountiful 300 eggs per year on average. Their eggs are brown and large and extra large.
Another benefit to raising Cinnamon Queens is that in the first generation, chicks can be sexed by color alone. Overall, this breed is hardy and is a steady, reliable layer.
Those who want a fun bird to have around are going to like the Ameraucana chicken. Typically, they are called “Easter Egg” chickens because their eggs are multicolored, and the eggs are very delicious.
If that weren’t enough, this bird can tolerate a variety of climates and can handle being penned or in a coop. You should be aware, though, that this breed does have a genetic disorder called crossed beak that occurs in about one in 100 baby chicks.
The chicken can produce around 250 eggs each year, though it has a broody temperament. It weighs about 4.5 to 5.5 pounds and can start laying eggs around 25 to 30 weeks old.
Golden Laced Wyandottes
One of many excellent chicken breeds for eggs is the Golden Laced Wyandotte. They produce huge eggs, which can work well for many households and needs. The good news is that these beautiful birds are calm and gentle with a docile temperament.
The Golden Laced Wyandotte is also excellent at foraging, which means they are one of the best breeds for free-range options. These chickens have gorgeous color, and most people can’t resist them, but they can be a bit broody.
People who want to wait and let the eggs hatch will have fun watching them protect the chicks.
The chicken can produce about 200 eggs each year. Plus, the female weighs about six pounds and can start laying eggs between 18 and 20 weeks old. Wyandotte chickens, including the Silver Laced Wyandottes and Blue Laced Red Wyandotte chickens are a dual purpose breed.
Prairie Bluebell Egger
These egg-laying machines lay up to 280 large light blue eggs per year. They are a cross between White Leghorns and Araucanas.
Prairie Bluebell Egger chickens don’t breed true and the hens don’t often go broody. As a heavy layer, with proper care (including 14 – 16 hours of daylight, nutritious food, and clean water daily) they can lay as soon as 4 – 5 months. Set out nesting boxes around this time, and you might find a lovely blue egg soon after.
Barred Plymouth Rock
If you’ve got children at home, you may want to have the Barred Plymouth Rock chicken. It’s very friendly and highly sweet and kind to everyone. It’s ranked as one of the best chicken breeds. Plymouth Rocks are ideal for beginner chicken owners. They provide a good source of eggs and meat, making them dual purpose chickens.
Barred or not, Plymouth Rock chickens are also very good at foraging, which makes them ideal for free-range chickens. Also, they’re very good at laying eggs, so you’re going to have plenty for the table.
Generally, these birds produce about 280 eggs a year, and they are peach or light brown in color. You’re also going to like the fact that these birds integrate well with other types of chickens, plus they are big and colorful, so you aren’t going to lose them.
The female weighs about 6.5 pounds and can start laying eggs between 18 and 22 weeks old.
Consider adding a Sapphire Gem chicken with is a cross between a Barred Plymouth Rock and Blue Plymouth Rock. They lay nearly 300 eggs per year, lay all year, and are cold and heat tolerant.
New Hampshire Red
Those who want a chicken that does it all might like the New Hampshire Red. It may not be considered the best egg layer out there, but if you plan to use the bird as a food source, this is a tasty one.
It is quite broody and cold hardy, so they make excellent mom hens. Of course, the roosters can be slightly disagreeable to each other if you don’t have enough hens around.
Still, if you want a sustainable flock for meat and eggs, this should be a must-have on your list. The chicken can produce up to 200 eggs a year, and the female weighs about 6.5 pounds.
Plus, they start laying eggs from 18 to 21 weeks of age, though they are highly aggressive and competitive.
Another best chicken for eggs is the Speckled Sussex. A heavy layer, the Speckled Sussex chicken can lay between 250 and 300 eggs each year. Plus, the female can be anywhere from seven to eight pounds. You might think that this bird needs a ton of space since it can get so large, but it really doesn’t.
Just be careful when you raise this chicken with other breeds. It is very docile and curious, which means more aggressive chickens could target it. The Speckled Sussex is one of the best egg laying chickens in terms of quantity.
The Austrolorp is a very friendly chicken breed and can lay up to 250 eggs each year. Generally, they weigh between five and seven pounds, so they have quite a bit of meat on their bones. Plus, their coloring is gorgeous.
Those who are beginning as chicken farmers might like this breed best, but you should be aware that it isn’t the most ideal if you want multiple kinds in one coop.
They can be aggressive and domineering and even eat the other chicken’s eggs. Also, they start laying eggs around 22 to 24 weeks.
These chickens also lay a lot of eggs, about 180 – 200 eggs per year in the hen’s productive years.
- Cochin: Cochins are known for their soft, fluffy feathers and round bodies. They lay around 180-200 medium-sized brown eggs per year.
- Dominique: The Dominique breed, also known as Dominicker or Pilgrim Fowl, is considered America’s first chicken breed. They lay around 180-200 medium-sized brown eggs per year.
- Brahma: Brahmas are known for their large size, feathered feet, and docile personality. They lay approximately 180-200 brown eggs per year.
- Faverolles: Faverolles are a French breed, known for their beards, muffs, and feathered feet. They lay about 180-200 medium to large-sized tinted or light brown eggs per year.
- Buff Orpington: The Buff Orpington hen is big and beautiful and makes a good pet because it’s so friendly. It typically lays 150 eggs per year. It does very well in confined spaces, such as a coop or pen though free-range is ideal. The female can weigh between six and eight pounds and start laying eggs between 19 and 24 weeks old.
- Lavender Orpington: They lay around 200 medium and large-sized eggs each year. If you can find them from a reliable breeder, consider these beautiful chickens for your yard.
Factors to Consider When Choosing Which Layer to Raise
All of these chickens were bred to lay a lot of eggs and can be considered the best egg laying chickens. They are generally hardy birds. However, like all chickens, they can be prone to common poultry diseases and parasites if not cared for properly.
Maximize their egg-laying prowess by providing enough room, enough hens per rooster, balanced diet, clean water, appropriate shelter for protection from predators and weather, and regular health checks. Also minimize stress by noting the pecking order and making sure all birds in your flock are safe and have access to food and water. These can go a long way toward ensuring the health and productivity of your flock.
Here’s what to consider and to factor in when choosing the best chicken breeds for eggs:
Land and space
Consider how much land space you have and the coop size. Consider also chicken nesting boxes and how large they are. Larger breeds will need bigger boxes.
Also factor in how much time you have for them.
Chickens’ personality and disposition
You may want to focus on their disposition and whether or not they are good with kids.
Another factor is climate. Do you have cold months? Very hot months? Some breeds do better in colder climates while others do not.
Eggs year round or seasonally
Also consider if you want eggs throughout colder months. If so, consider a hardy breed that will lay in the winter as well. Two choices of dual purpose breeds (though not considered one of the best laying chickens) are Cochins and Dominique chickens.
Unique chicken egg colors
If you are looking for unique chicken eggs, consider raising Black Copper Marans. They lay copper colored eggs which can also be dark chocolate-colored. Prairie bluebell eggers lay a lot of eggs. They are pale blue.
Another thing to decide is whether you want to hatch chicks from the eggs. Chickens don’t need a rooster to lay eggs but they need a rooster to lay fertile eggs. If you want to hatch chicks, you’ll need an egg incubator and a brooding box.
How Much Space Do Chickens Need
Before choosing chickens, consider how much space you have and how much space do chickens need. In almost every backyard, you can set up the best chicken coop, though this can pose a slight problem if you live in an area without property.
You would need some yard area so that the chickens can walk and move, and this can also be the staging area for watering and feeding them.
Think about insulating the hen house, so the chickens produce all year long. Chickens who can have more space, outdoor access to free range, eat insects, etc. will likely be healthier overall and produce higher quality eggs.
How Many Eggs a Day
Can a chicken lay two eggs a day? In most cases, the answer is no, though they can, under certain conditions. If it does, it’s probably going to happen to younger hens who may not have a developed egg-laying cycle yet.
Keep in mind that some of the breeds can lay up to 300 a year, which isn’t quite one egg a day, so those who want a dozen eggs a week or more may need multiple hens. Nonetheless, there are some ways so that your chicken lays more eggs than usual.
Tips to Get Chickens to Lay More Eggs
There isn’t a magical pill you can give your chickens to make them lay more than one egg a day, but here are some essential tips to help you get an egg a day from your breed of choice.
Use Quality Feed
Yes, your chickens can forage for themselves, but they need supplemental food supplies, too. Consider a diet of pellets or mash, as well as some fresh fruit, mealworms, vegetables, and other treats.
Their diet also needs plenty of calcium in it because laying eggs takes a toll on the hen’s body. If the feed doesn’t contain calcium, you may want to crush up some oyster shells real fine and mix it in with the regular food.
To encourage chickens to lay eggs, giving them access to fresh air, sunshine, the ability to forage, and space to move about will be a less stressful and happier environment for them to produce.
Clean the Nest Box
You should also ensure that the nest box is clean and comfortable. Consider soft surfaces, such as hay and newspaper shreds. The hens can make comfy spaces to lay, and they can easily be swept out and replaced as needed. Keep in mind that chickens are prone to illnesses and parasites.
Check for Mites
Mites are prevalent, and you might not even realize there’s a problem. Make sure that you are inspecting your chickens each night to check for mites. Of course, it’s possible to get rid of mites with appropriate medicine from your veterinarian. Still, prevention is always best here.
Secure the Coop
Coop security is also essential. You’ve spent a lot of money and time nurturing these beautiful birds, which means you need to protect them from predators. Cats, raccoons, and others might be able to burrow underneath the fence to get at your chickens. Use wire for chicken coops to keep chickens safe.
Make sure you inspect the space around the coop periodically.
If you want something similar to what you get at the grocery store, you want extra-large eggs. Usually, the White Leghorn, Golden Comet, Buff Orpington, Brahma chicken and Speckled Sussex lay jumbo eggs.
These tips may answer the question, How do I make my chickens lay more eggs?
What type of chicken lays the most eggs?
Types of chickens that lay the most eggs include Leghorns, Rhode Island Reds, Golden Comets, ISA Brown, California Whites (a hybrid cross between White Leghorn hen and California Gray rooster), and California Tan (hybrid cross between White Leghorn hen and Production Red).
How many years do hens lay eggs?
Most hens are productive for three years, sometimes longer. Raising prolific layers such as ISA Browns, Rhode Island Reds, or California Whites means you can enjoy approximately 900 eggs in three years… all from one hen! If you have a small flock of 4 – 5 heavy layers, that’s 3,600 – 4,500 eggs.
When do chickens start laying eggs?
Most chickens start laying eggs when they are 4 – 5 months old. Some hens, such as the California White chicken, can begin laying at 17 weeks.
What are the best chickens for laying the most eggs?
The best chickens for laying the most eggs are Sussex, Golden Comet, ISA Brown, Rhode Island Red, White Leghorn, and Plymouth Rock (Barred Rock). They are egg-laying machines!
What chicken lays 300 eggs a year?
Golden Comets and ISA Browns can reliably lay 300 eggs in a year.
What chickens lay eggs year round?
If you want chickens that lay eggs year round, choose cold tolerant chickens. Some of these include Australorps, Leghorns, California Whites, and Plymouth Rocks. With less daylight, they will lay less often but they will still produce.
Best Egg-Laying Chickens
Keep in mind that the best egg laying chickens on our list have temperaments and must be cared for properly. Also, they may have some characteristics that make them suitable or unsuitable for specific situations.
For example, broody birds may become overprotective or bully others. Consider hardy layers and birds that forage well if you plan to keep them free range.
If you also want a meat source, you’re going to desire a bigger chicken. Consider a dual-purpose breed.
Of course, you want a chicken that lays a lot of eggs. However, you also have to focus on the environment, including outdoor space, shelter, food, and interaction with other chicken breeds to ensure that your chickens fare well in the yard to produce quality eggs. Learn about the importance of choosing the right chicken breed for your goals and things I wish I knew before getting chickens.