Awaken Unlimited

About Bresse Chickens

Bresse Chickens have been described as the best-tasting chicken in the world. Terms like "the queen of poultry" and "poultry of kings" commonly applied to Bresse chickens are a reflection of the unique richness of this breed.

Nor are they slouches regarding egg-laying. With reason they are called a dual-purpose breed. (I call them "triple-purpose," because of their taste and richness.)

Overview of the American Bresse Chicken

American Bresse are a medium sized dual-purpose breed. They grow very rapidly until they reach their adult weight of up to 8.5 pounds.

Additionally, the drive to forage appears to be built into their genetic code. The long-standing French practice of feeding low protein feeds has resulted in birds that forage heavily for bugs, worms, and other nutrition. Give them a pasture, and the feed bill will drop. 

Ideal for Colder Climates and the Intermountain West

Bresse are an exceptionally hardy bird. They do well living in colder climates at altitude. Our Bresse regularly endure 20° below zero days here at our farm which lies at over 8,500 feet in altitude on the front range of Colorado.

Meat Production

Meat production is where the American Bresse shine, as compared to other chicken breeds. Multiple sources describe them as "the most delicious chicken in the world"; how do you beat that? 

Two factors contribute to the heavy praise.

Fat-marbling. Preparing the bird for market in the time-tested methods utilized by French farmers before butchering (known as finishing) results in the famous, Angus-steer-like, fat-marbling throughout the meat for which the Bresse chicken is known. This is a big reason why gourmet chefs have a love affair with Bresse chickens. The fat that melts while cooking contributes to the melt-in-your mouth explosion of chicken flavor even when prepared with minimal herbs or spices. (Is fat bad for you?)

Flavor. American Bresse chickens have "intense flavor, leaving you begging for more." That rich flavor may be due to feeds, air-drying, fat-marbling, or possibly genetics.

American Bresse as Egg Layers

American Bresse chickens are also very good egg-layers, although certain breeds like leghorns may have them beat on the numbers. However it is not unusual for an American Bresse pullet to start laying her first eggs at 16-17 weeks of age. The typical egg count per season per hen is around 250, although some of our hens are laying up to 280 or so. 

White American Bresse

American Bresse comes in Blue, Black, Grey and White. The white American Bresse is the variety that has achieved commercial recognition in France, and is therefore more popular, imported in greater numbers, and is most common in North America. Our chickens are all White American Bresse.

Here is a brief description; see the standard of perfection for more detail:

  • Feathers: White from top to bottom.
  • Legs and feet: Unfeathered (clean). Leg color is "blue," which ranges in hue from light gray, to gray, to a distinctly blue-hued gray. Deeper hues are preferred.
  • Combs and wattles: In males, a large, stiff, single comb and large wattles. The bottom line of the comb should not hug the head line, but should go straight out from the back of the head. In females, combs are average in size, and are expected to droop a bit.
  • Ear lobes: White. 
  • Body: Broad and meaty, not too tall. Skin is white and somewhat thin. Bodies should not scream "leghorn." 
  • Weight: White American Bresse cocks can be expected to weigh in at around 6-7.5 pounds (2.5-3 kg). Hens weigh less, or around 4-6 pounds (1.8-2.5 kg). 
  • Egg Weight: 2 ounces (57 gms). 

Additionally, the recessive white gene has unfortunately snuck into the gene pool. This increases the chance of a combo of one dominant white gene with one recessive white gene in individual birds, leading to leakage of black pigment into white feathers. Learn more: American Bresse Genetics Questions.

American Bresse Chicks

American Bresse chicks of all varieties are remarkably fast-growing. They forage early and well since they have been genetically encouraged to forage heavily. 

They are born with yellowish legs, which slowly take on the steel blue hue over a period of a couple weeks or so.

Is American Bresse the Best Chicken in the World?

Well, this is a call that one must make for oneself, since the "best chicken in the world" is, for you, the breed that meets YOUR needs the best. Some breeds are excellent egg-layers, and some are great meat birds. The American Bresse chicken was clearly bred to provide the best traits of both egg-layers and meat birds, while being very hardy and excellent foragers. That makes it very hard for any other breed to compete.

American Bresse are:

  • Really good egg layers, but not quite as prolific as leghorns
  • Excellent meat birds, bar none, because they are meaty without being freaky or prone to early death, they are fat-marbled, and they have intense flavor and moisture. But - they won't be ready for market nearly as fast as the Cornish Cross are.

Because of these characteristics, it may be difficult for any who need or appreciate a very good all-around chicken breed to find a more balanced or desirable breed. 

Here at Eagle’s Nest Farms we understand the value of self-sufficiency. We chose to specialize in this breed because of its superior characteristics for homesteaders or anyone who would like to ensure their family with the healthiest, most enjoyable gourmet chicken around. If that is you, we highly recommend you look carefully at American Bresse Chickens.

Shop for American Bresse Here

Hatching Eggs

12 Hatching Eggs: $80

Day-Old Chicks

6 Chicks (straight run): $90

Starter Birds

Starter Birds: $25

Adult Birds

Hen or Rooster: $40


The prices we charge include shipping for eggs and day-old chicks. For starter birds the prices listed are for birds picked up at our farm and do not include shipping. Shipping is calculated based on our actual cost for proper packaging and postage which varies based on the type of chicken and the number ordered. As an estimate add $25 per order but it can vary up or down a bit.

To insure safe arrival, chicks are only shipped on Mondays and Tuesdays by USPS Priority mail (1 - 3 days delivery guaranteed.) They are shipped in sturdy, well-ventilated boxes with pads, with a small container of Gro-Gel to ensure proper hydration and nutrition during their journey.

Juvenile and adult birds are shipped Express Mail (1 - 2 day guaranteed delivery.) They are shipped in sturdy, well-ventilated boxes with pads, with a small container of Gro-Gel to ensure proper hydration and nutrition during their journey.

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