Whether you’re looking to start your backyard chicken flock or expand your existing one, having strong layers is vital to the success of your egg business!
1. Rhode Island Red
The Rhode Island Red is a staple breed in most flocks, and for good reason!
They produce 250-300 brown eggs a year, or about 5-6 per week.
This breed is known for being great at foraging, tough, but still gentle! Self-sufficient and friendly, Rhode Island Reds are fantastic for beginners and well-seasoned chicken farmers alike.
You may have grown up watching the cartoon version of this breed – Foghorn Leghorn! Aside from their television fame, they are also an incredibly popular industrial breed because of their laying abilities.
You can expect Leghorn hens to produce about 5-6 white eggs per week, or 250-300 per year.
This is a nervous breed, shy and hard to tame. Despite this, it is still a popular choice for beginners – just be prepared for flighty behavior and a not-so-cuddly disposition.
3. Golden Comet
The Golden Comet is a popular hybrid breed, meaning that it is not a true ‘breed’ but rather a mix between a New Hampshire rooster and a White Rock hen.
Golden comet eggs produce about 5-6 medium to large brown eggs a week, or around 250/300 a year.
This breed’s production rate drops off noticeably around 18-24 months after they first start laying. Broodiness has been bred out of them, and they are fairly gentle & quiet birds.
Pronounced uh·meh·rau·kaa·nuh, this is a rockstar breed amongst backyard chicken keepers.
Producing up to 250 multicolor eggs per year (or 3-4 medium sized eggs per week), these are the birds behind many of the gorgeous light blue shades we love to see when we buy farm fresh eggs.
There’s a catch that comes with those gorgeous blue hues – broodiness! While you can expect almost all Ameraucanas to be broody, temperament varies a lot with these guys, so you may find them to be nervous or gentle depending on your bird.
5. Barred Plymouth Rock
Barred Plymouth Rock chickens are revered for their gorgeous black and white feathers, as well as their ultra-friendly personalities. Great with kids and adults, they are always well loved by their people.
You can expect the Barred Plymouth Rock breed to produce about 280 eggs per year, or around 4 brown eggs per week.
Best described as calm and mellow (yes, even the roosters!) this is a great bird for those looking for both egg production and a beloved pet.
6. Golden Laced Wyandotte
This pretty bird stands out for its black outlined feathers and docile personality. Known to be ‘talkative’, this bird may not be the best option for those looking to maintain a good relationship with neighbors.
This breed produces around 200 light brown eggs per year, or roughly 3-4 eggs per week. While they’re not the most robust layers on the list, their personalities and added value as a dual purpose meat bird make them a popular option.
7. New Hampshire Red
While not the most popular breed for temperament alone, this broody & aggressive breed has a place in many flocks. If you are interested in producing more chicks, these birds make excellent setters. They also make fantastic meat birds!
New Hampshire reds are solid layers who will yield around 150-200 brown eggs per year, or roughly 3 eggs per week.
8. Buff Orpington
This dual purpose breed is another fan favorite. With her friendly personality, high egg production rate, and a great tolerance for cooler temperatures, these chickens are a triple threat!
Buff Orpingtons produce around 250 light brown eggs per year, or roughly 3-5 per week.
It should be noted that this breed has a tendency to go broody!
This beautiful, black-feathered bird is a wonderful choice for beginner chicken keepers. These ladies love to be held and cuddled, and are great with kids!
Not only are they sweethearts, but their egg production is pretty impressive at 250 light brown eggs per year, or 3-5 per week (though 5 per week seems to be fairly common with this breed).
If you live in a colder climate, then this is the ideal breed for you! These ladies are known for being incredibly cold tolerant.
10. Speckled Sussex
Last but certainly not least is the Speckled Sussex. These are one of the easiest breeds to raise and is a great choice for children who are just starting out with chickens!
Speckled Sussex chickens can handle both cold and hot climates, are known for being kind/gentle, and are happy in confinement or free-ranging.
They are also champion layers, producing around 250-300 light brown eggs per year, or 5-6 per week.
|Breed||Egg Production (Annual/Yearly)||Temperament||Laying Age||Egg Color|
|Rhode Island Red||250-300||Gentle; Quiet||18-24 Weeks Old||Brown|
|Leghorn||280||Nervous; Flighty||16-17 Weeks Old||White|
|Golden Comet||250-300||Gentle; Quiet||15 Weeks Old||Brown|
|Ameraucana||250||Broody||25-30 Weeks Old||Multicolored ‘Easter Egger’|
|Barred Plymouth Rock||280||Calm||18-22 Weeks Old||Brown|
|Golden Laced Wyandottes||200||Docile||18-20 Weeks Old||Light Brown|
|New Hampshire Red||200||Aggressive; Broody||18-21 Weeks Old||Brown|
|Buff Orpington||150-200||Friendly||19-24 Weeks Old||Light Brown|
|Australorp||250||Hardy||22-24 Weeks Old||Light Brown|
|Speckled Sussex||250-300||Docile; Curious||16-20 Weeks Old||Light Brown|
Whichever bird you end up choosing for your flock, make sure you’re prepared ahead of time with all necessary poultry care supplies, as well as cartons for all the eggs you’re about to start getting!
Now that you know which chicken breeds are the best for laying lots of eggs, which one is at the top of your list? Let us know in the comment section!
Want more chicken content? Keep reading:
Backyard Chicken Egg Selling Laws by State
Green and Blue and Brown, Oh My!