Eating pullets (young extra hens)

Cody brown

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Nov 18, 2020
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I was wondering if anyone hers has ever eaten a young hen. Im looking into getting some dual purpose breeds and i knoe people eat the roosters but are extra hens okay aswell? Also would i be able to toast any chickens, as long as there young?
 

LadiesAndJane

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I think you can eat whatever birds you want. Most people keep the females for eggs, but often will eat them after they no longer are laying. If you have meat birds, people raise them for this purpose, both male and female.
Dual purpose are bred to be both meat and egg birds.:)
Though it may be more worthwhile selling any extra pullets you have.
 

Cody brown

In the Brooder
Nov 18, 2020
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Yeah, i will keep the hens i need but was just wondering if i could eat any extra hens. I could sell them, but i have some roosters for meat and could do with some more meat birds. I like the idea of being as self sufficient as possible so rather then selling them i would rather eat them.
 

ChocolateMouse

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I will 100% eat a pullet if I have a good reason to. Culls are part of farm life.

But I must admit - I don't USUALLY eat my pullets unless I have already gotten rid of old hens and tried to sell them. Self sufficiency is great, but you know what's better than 3lbs of bony pullet meat? $20. And that $20 can go toward something else that lets me become more self-sufficient like tools or fencing.

So eating a pullet is no different than eating an extra roo. But it doesn't fit in with my priorities very often. Much better to eat an older spent hen and keep the new pullet IMO.
 

Cody brown

In the Brooder
Nov 18, 2020
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41
I will 100% eat a pullet if I have a good reason to. Culls are part of farm life.

But I must admit - I don't USUALLY eat my pullets unless I have already gotten rid of old hens and tried to sell them. Self sufficiency is great, but you know what's better than 3lbs of bony pullet meat? $20. And that $20 can go toward something else that lets me become more self-sufficient like tools or fencing.

So eating a pullet is no different than eating an extra roo. But it doesn't fit in with my priorities very often. Much better to eat an older spent hen and keep the new pullet IMO.
Yeah thats is a really good point. The money selling pullets could got towards more things around the garden. Thnx 😁
 

3KillerBs

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It hasn't happened yet, but my intent is to sell extra pullets rather than eat them.

If I have one with a defect -- physical or temperamental -- that renders her inappropriate to sell I'll probably eat her instead. But once I've got the flock rotation going I'll be more likely to cull and eat an older hen instead of a pullet.
 

Cody brown

In the Brooder
Nov 18, 2020
34
32
41
It hasn't happened yet, but my intent is to sell extra pullets rather than eat them.

If I have one with a defect -- physical or temperamental -- that renders her inappropriate to sell I'll probably eat her instead. But once I've got the flock rotation going I'll be more likely to cull and eat an older hen instead of a pullet.
Yeah, the only problem i have with eating older hens is that you have to use their meat for soups and stews. I was thinking that with young pullets their meat will be more tender. Better for a roast chicken 😁. Is that the case or are younger pullets meat just as tough?
 

ChocolateMouse

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Yeah, the only problem i have with eating older hens is that you have to use their meat for soups and stews. I was thinking that with young pullets their meat will be more tender. Better for a roast chicken 😁. Is that the case or are younger pullets meat just as tough?

This is technically correct, but will depend on a few things...
Boneless cuts on egg pullets are TINY and usually not worth doing anything but soup out of anyhow.
A heritage or DP hen may take 8 months to start laying. By that point you're still looking at cooking in a low wet environment (some roasting is OK, frying/baking is not).
Eating an older hen (18mo+) can be just fine if you cook them in any way that covers the texture. For example, an old hen makes great ground chicken for tacos or sausage. Slow cooking an older hen and pulling the chicken for bbq chicken sandwiches is delicious.
No matter what you do a heritage/egg/dp chicken will never have the soft texture of a broiler and will always make some much chewier chicken nuggies.
 

3KillerBs

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Yeah, the only problem i have with eating older hens is that you have to use their meat for soups and stews. I was thinking that with young pullets their meat will be more tender. Better for a roast chicken 😁. Is that the case or are younger pullets meat just as tough?

A pullet would stay tender longer than a cockerel of the same breed because of the effects of testosterone. Cornish X pullets are eaten right along with the cockerels, but are smaller at the same age.

To my mind having the best possible chicken and dumplings after the egg-laying is over is a feature, not a bug.
 

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