Can You Eat Canned Chicken While Pregnant? Is It Safe?

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Yes, you can eat canned chicken while pregnant, but it’s essential to ensure it is consumed in moderation and properly handled to avoid any potential health risks. Always check for signs of spoilage, adhere to the expiration date, and ensure the canned chicken is from a reputable source.

Pregnancy often brings a wave of dietary concerns and questions, one of which revolves around the safety of eating canned chicken. Canned chicken offers a convenient source of protein, but its safety during pregnancy is a common query among expectant mothers. This article aims to provide a comprehensive look at the nutritional benefits, potential risks, and expert opinions on consuming canned chicken during pregnancy.

Is Canned Chicken Safe During Pregnancy

What is Canned Chicken?

Canned chicken is pre-cooked meat sealed in an airtight can, typically preserved in water, broth, or juices. It offers a convenient and long-lasting protein source, requiring no additional cooking before consumption. Available in various forms such as chunks, shredded, or whole pieces, canned chicken is versatile and can be used in many recipes, making it a popular pantry staple.

Nutritional Benefits of Canned Chicken

Nutritional ValueBenefits
High in ProteinSupports muscle development and repair
Low in FatAids in maintaining a healthy weight
Rich in VitaminsProvides essential nutrients like B vitamins
Contains MineralsIncludes important minerals like iron and zinc

Is it Safe During Pregnancy?

Canned chicken can be safe during pregnancy if it is consumed correctly. Ensuring the canned chicken is fresh, stored properly, and heated thoroughly can minimize potential risks. Pregnant women should also be mindful of the sodium content, as excessive sodium intake can lead to complications such as high blood pressure. Always opt for brands with lower sodium content and check the expiration date to ensure the product’s safety.

Potential Risks of Eating Canned Chicken During Pregnancy

High Sodium ContentExcessive sodium can lead to hypertension and fluid retention
Risk of ContaminationImproperly handled or stored canned chicken can harbor harmful bacteria
Bisphenol A (BPA)Some cans may contain BPA, a chemical linked to adverse health effects

Safe Ways to Eat Canned Chicken During Pregnancy

To safely consume canned chicken during pregnancy, follow these guidelines: Choose low-sodium options to avoid excessive salt intake. Always check the expiration date and inspect the can for any signs of damage or bulging. Thoroughly rinse the chicken under cold water before eating to remove any excess sodium and preservatives. Ensure it is heated thoroughly to kill any potential bacteria.

Alternatives to Canned Chicken During Pregnancy

Fresh ChickenEnsure it is cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C)
Frozen ChickenProperly thaw in the refrigerator and cook thoroughly
Rotisserie ChickenVerify it is fresh and properly stored, and avoid consuming it if left out for too long

Expert Opinions

According to Dr. Jennifer Wider, a renowned women’s health expert, “Canned chicken can be a safe and convenient option during pregnancy, as long as it’s properly handled and cooked thoroughly.”

According to the American Pregnancy Association, “Canned chicken is generally safe to consume during pregnancy, but it’s important to check for any signs of spoilage or contamination before consuming it.”

According to Dr. Yvonne Butler Tobah, an obstetrician-gynecologist at Mayo Clinic, “Canned chicken can be a convenient source of protein during pregnancy, but it’s crucial to follow proper food safety guidelines to minimize the risk of foodborne illnesses.” (source: [])

According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, “Canned chicken can be a nutritious option during pregnancy, but it’s essential to choose products from reputable brands and follow safe handling and cooking practices.”

According to Dr. Mary Jane Minkin, a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Yale University, “While canned chicken can be safe during pregnancy, it’s always better to opt for fresh or frozen chicken whenever possible to minimize the risk of bacterial contamination.” (source: [])


Can I Eat Canned Chicken While Pregnant?

Yes, you can eat canned chicken while pregnant as long as the cans are in good condition, and the chicken is cooked thoroughly to an internal temperature of 74°C (165°F).

How can I ensure the safety of canned chicken during pregnancy?

To ensure the safety of canned chicken during pregnancy, check for any signs of spoilage or damage to the can, such as dents, bulges, or leaks. Cook the chicken thoroughly before consuming it, and avoid consuming it past its expiration date.

What are the potential risks of eating canned chicken during pregnancy?

The potential risks of eating canned chicken during pregnancy include foodborne illnesses caused by bacteria like Listeria and Salmonella, which can lead to complications such as miscarriage, stillbirth, or severe illness in newborns.

Can I eat canned chicken salad during pregnancy?

Canned chicken salad can be safe during pregnancy if it’s made with thoroughly cooked chicken, fresh ingredients, and pasteurized mayonnaise or dressings. Avoid any ingredients that may pose a risk, such as undercooked eggs or unpasteurized dairy products.

What are some alternatives to canned chicken during pregnancy?

Alternatives to canned chicken during pregnancy include fresh or frozen chicken, rotisserie chicken, and canned tuna or salmon (in moderation due to potential mercury contamination). Always ensure that these alternatives are cooked thoroughly and handled safely.


Canned chicken can be a convenient and nutritious option for pregnant women when consumed safely and in moderation. By following proper food safety practices, checking labels for sodium content, and choosing BPA-free options, expectant mothers can enjoy the benefits of canned chicken while minimizing potential risks. Always consult with a healthcare provider for personalized dietary advice during pregnancy.


Dusty is the owner and editor of As Mom Sees It, a product review and family matters blog. She is the mother of two in Ohio and has partnered with companies like Nike, Verizon, Kingston Technology. You can find her on Twitter at @AsMomSeesIt.