Best Egg laying Chicken Breeds

by Jennifer Behm | Last Updated May 20, 2020

The top 10 chickens we think are best, and we’re going to be picking out the best traits, like how many eggs they lay a year, how fast they lay, how good they are with different temperatures, their hardiness, their personality, et cetera.

BreedWeightEggs per yearEgg colorStart laying
Australorp2.250–3.10 kg250Brown22 to 24 weeks
Orpington chicken3.60–4.55 kg200Brown19 to 24 weeks
Golden Comet chicken6lb250 to 300 Brown15 weeks old
Rhode Island Red3 kg (6.6 lb)260Brown18 to 24 weeks
Araucana2.2–2.7 kg250Blue or Green25 weeks to 30
Plymouth Rock chickenmin 2.95 kg (6.5 lb)280Brown18 and 22 weeks
Leghorn chicken2.0–2.3 kg280White16 to 17 weeks
Wyandotte chicken2.7–3.2 kg (6–7 lb)200Brown18 to 20 weeks
Sussex chickenminimum 3.2 kg250 to 300Tinted16 to 20 weeks
New Hampshire chicken2.9 kg (6.5 lb)200Brown17 to 20 weeks

TOP 10 Chicken Breeds for Backyard 2020

The best chicken breed for winter

Black Australorp

Black Australorp Best Egg laying Chicken Breed

The first chicken is going to be the Black Australorp breed. These chickens are super human friendly. They’re great for if you’re a beginner. Their production is fairly high, they lay about 250 eggs annually. They start laying between 22 to 24 weeks, so they are a little bit later or they take a little bit longer of time to mature in order to lay their eggs, but nonetheless, they’re still a really great breed just because of how human friendly they are.

Another great aspect with Black Australorps is that they’re extremely hardy when it comes to really cold weather. If you live in a colder region or you’re concerned about that, a Black Australorp is a great breed to include in your flock.

Pros:

  • Extremely hardy when it comes to really 
  • Human friendly

Cons:

  • Start laying between 22 to 24 weeks

Best egg laying chickens for beginners

Buff Orpington

Buff Orpington Best Egg laying Chicken Breed

So number two is going to be Buff Orpington. These are great chicken for beginners. They’re blonde, they’re fluffy. They produce about 200 eggs a year, so not as much as the Black Australorp, but again, they’re really good for beginners. They’re very hardy. They start laying around 19 to 24 weeks. Overall, these are just such a classic chicken to have on the homestead, they’re great for beginners. If you’re going to raise chickens with your kids, definitely would recommend the Buff Orpington.

Dual-purpose breed

I will add, what they lack in egg production, they actually make up with their weight, if you’re going to do a dual purpose chicken, having them as a meat chicken, basically. So they do make up with their size.

Pros:

  • Best for raising up with kids
  • They’re fluffy
  • Dual-purpose breed

Cons:

  • 200 eggs a year

Best laying chickens for the free walking

Golden Comet chicken

The Golden Comet is a sex linked chicken

Number three is the Golden Comet chicken. These chickens are particularly prolific when it comes to laying the eggs. They lay about 250 to 300 eggs annually, so that’s a lot of eggs. They also are really great free-range bird to have on your homestead. It’s great for letting them just to go out and forage and get all those bugs that you might have that could affect your garden. And they can help, with their free-range, reduce how much food they eat, so they’ll save you some money there too.

Overall, their temperament is pretty much gentle, quiet. They get along with other breeds of chickens really well, and people too, so that’s a really big plus. And another really big plus is they start laying eggs when they’re only 15 weeks old. So you’re going to start getting eggs really, really soon. So if you have these chickens available at your local feed stores, or if you can order them, I definitely recommend picking up some Golden Comet chickens.

Pros:

  • These chickens are particularly prolific
  • Great free-range bird
  • Start laying eggs when they’re only 15 weeks old

Cons:

Best laying hens

Rhode Island Reds

Rhode Island Reds

Number four is Rhode Island Reds. Now for egg production is pretty good, they’re about 260. They start laying from 18 to 24 weeks. They’re really, really good foragers. They’re very hardy. But one of the downsides is that they are a little bit more aggressive, kind of a mean chicken to other smaller chicks. Yo chicks stop bullying. Not always a good thing. It can be kind of a challenge when you have some chicks being mean and pecking at other chicks, but overall, they’re a really good chick to have around.

Pros:

  • They’re very hardy
  • Good foragers

Cons:

  • They are a little bit more aggressive

Best chickens for blue to green-hued colored eggs

AraucanaEaster Egg chicken

Araucana, Ameraucana or Easter Egger

So number five on our list is the Ameraucana or the Easter Egg chicken. These chickens lay really cool eggs. They lay blue to green-hued colored eggs. They lay about 250 a year, and they’re really, really great for a wide variety of climates. They’re very adaptable, so I would put them in that hardy zone.

Some downsides though, to these chickens, is it can take from 25 weeks to 30 weeks to start seeing the egg production. They can be a bit broody, so you might have to monitor them sitting on the eggs and not laying eggs. They’re on the lighter side as far as weight, so I wouldn’t say they’re as good as a dual-purpose chicken as some of the others, but nonetheless they produce a really, really fun colored egg, and they’re just a nice addition to your diverse flock. The last cool thing about them is the kind of do look like Predator.

Pros:

  • Really cool eggs
  • Great for a wide variety of climates

Cons:

  • Sart laying between 25 weeks to 30

Best egg laying chickens

Barred Rock

Barred Rock obedient beautiful

All right, so number six on our list is the Barred Rock. Now the Barred Rock is probably the nicest and most docile chicken on our entire list. They lay about 280 eggs a year. They start laying between 18 and 22 weeks. They’re just such a classic chicken to have. Again, super friendly, great foragers all around. I totally recommend these chicks. You’ll definitely probably find them in most of your feed stores. They’re, again, extremely popular, and just such a great classic breed. So remember those ones, the Barred Rock.

Pros:

  • Probably the nicest
  • Docile chicken

Cons:

Best chicken breeds for white eggs

White Leghorn chicken

White Leghorn chicken

Number seven on our list is the White Leghorn chicken. These chickens are the most notorious chicken out there. They’re the white chicken that lays the white eggs. They do lay 280 eggs a year, so that is a pretty high number for that chicken. They are best as a penned type chicken, but they will free range if given the opportunity. These chickens are very flighty and nervous, so they are more of a challenge to wrangle in if there’s something you might need to do with that chicken. So if you’re looking for a more adventurous chicken and a challenge, I recommend the Leghorn.

They don’t get necessarily too big, so I couldn’t put them into the grouping of a dual purpose chicken, but for the sake of egg laying and that classic white egg, a Leghorn is sure to please and be a great addition to your flock.

The average amount of time that it takes them to start laying is between 16 to 17 weeks, so you don’t have a giant amount of time in between waiting to see those glorious white eggs come out.

Pros:

  • They’re the white chicken that lays the white eggs
  • Lay 280 eggs a year
  • Start laying is between 16 to 17 weeks

Cons:

  • Very flighty and nervous

Best backyard chickens

Golden Laced Wyandottes

Golden Laced Wyandottes

All right, number eight is Golden Laced Wyandottes. Now these chickens, again, are very docile. They don’t lay that many eggs. It’s about 200. They start laying in about 18 to 20 weeks, but they’re just very, very pretty chickens, very good foragers. Overall, very nice chicken to have. They don’t lay the most amount of eggs, but I definitely would recommend to add them into your flock.

Good for raising chicks

One other big plus is they are really good at being mothers. They’re really good at hatching a big clutch of eggs. If you’re looking to raise your own baby chicks, Wyandottes are very good mothers.

Pros:

  • Very docile
  • Very pretty chickens
  • Very good foragers

Cons:

  • Lay 200 eggs

Best chicken Dual-purpose

Speckled Sussex

Speckled Sussex Dual-purpose chicken

Number nine on our list is the Speckled Sussex. These chickens are super heavy layers. They lay around 250 to 300 eggs a year. That’s a lot of eggs.

Very flexible

But not only are they heavy layers, they also are heavy in general, so they make a really great dual purpose chicken. Their temperament is really great. They’re slightly curious and they’re also a very docile chicken. They start laying eggs at around 16 to 20 weeks, so you don’t have to wait too long to see those great eggs come out. And another thing I want to mention about their weight is on average they weigh about eight pounds. That’s a really, really big chicken, especially in your rotisserie or your oven.

One con is since they are so docile, they can be victims of bullying. No bullying. From other chickens, such as the Rhode Island Red that we talked about earlier. So that’s always some things to keep in mind, so your chickens don’t get beat up too much. But overall, they’re a really great chicken. I love to have a diverse flock and they’re one of those chickens you just want to have in your flock.

Pros:

  • Lay around 250 to 300 eggs a year
  • Great dual-purpose chicken
  • Great eggs

Cons:

  •  They can be victims of bullying

Great chick

New Hampshire Red

New Hampshire Red Chickens

Number 10. The last one on our list, the New Hampshire Red. Now these chicks, they don’t lay as many eggs, it’s about 200 a year, but they are tough chicks, they are pretty hardy. They can be a little bit aggressive, but they do start laying a little bit earlier 17 to 20 weeks. So guys, overall, they’re another great chick to have on your homestead.

Pros:

  • They are tough chicks
  • Pretty hardy

Cons:

  • Lay eggs 200 a year

All in all, this list of 10 chicks, I would love every single chicken on this list. I think they’d be really good.

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