With the heat on the rise I have been looking for ways to help keep my small flock cool.
Fresh Eggs Daily had a great post on Beating the Heat. This is my favorite chicken site. Tons of information. The post gave me an idea. I could make Homemade Healthy Gummie Snacks for my chickens! They were such a hit with the kids, the chickens were bound to love them!
I found out that not only could chickens eat gelatin, but gelatin is actually good for them. Just like in humans, gelatin helps support health hair, skin and nails. It is also aids digestion and soothes the digestive tract. Sounds like a winning combo for chickens. And to clarify, gelatin is made form the bones and hooves of bovine. It is not made from chicken products. No cannibalism here.
You can make these treats from the herb of your choice. Or you could not use herbs at all. Maybe just use fruit. Or a fruit herb combo. How ever you make them this is a healthy treat that can help your chicken keep its cool.
2 cups herbal infusion (How to make a Water Infusion)
1 cup cold water, fruit juice, or fruit puree (I used strawberries and blackberries (this is a great opportunity to use up that frost bitten fruit you have in the freezer ;))).
4 packs unflavored 1/4 oz gelatin (you buy it here or any grocery store in the Jello section)
First thing you need to do is make an herbal infusion. Since I want to cool my chickens I decided to go with mint. It has natural cooling properties. Since mint is a strong herb, I only filled my infusion jar 1/4 of the way.
Bring your finished infusion to a boil in a 2 quart pot.
Remove from heat.
Slowly add gelatin while mixing.
Blend with an immersion blender until smooth. If you don’t have an immersion blender, just blend it by hand with a wisk or fork. I love my immersion blender and I highly recommend one. You can buy the one I have here or at walmart.
Add cold water juice (or fruit juice or puree).
Blend until smooth.
Pour liquid into a greased, 3 qt 9×13 casserole dish.
Place casserole dish in fridge.
Allow to sit for 1-4 hours (or until firm).
Cut into squares the size of your choice. I like 1/2″ squares.
Serve to chickens.
Watch the chickens steal them from each other and chase each other for the last bit! They LOVE THEM! I tried them as well. I don’t prefer mint jello but I can tell you for sure it has that great cooling effect!
If you made your own flavor and the chickens didn’t like it, you can put the cubes back into the pot and reheat them until liquid. Try adding something you know they love, like strawberries or bananas. Then re-pour, refrigerate and serve again. Have fun! Try new flavors and let me know which one your chickens like best!
Here is my flock enjoying their gelatin treat! Ravenous!
Look how sad my little Mango is. The girls stole all the treats! 😦