Can You Eat Canned Chicken While Pregnant? [Explained]

Verified by Kimberly Langdon M.D.
Verified by Kimberly Langdon M.D.

Kimberly Langdon is an obstetrician/gynecologist with 19 years of clinical experience and graduated from The Ohio State University, College of Medicine.

As much as possible, pregnant women should eat fresh and unprocessed foods. 

Canned goods can be an alternative, but some still doubt whether they are healthy or safe. 

To address this concern, let’s discuss one example – canned chicken. 

Is it safe to eat if it’s canned? Can you eat canned chicken while pregnant?

Can you eat canned chicken while pregnant?

Yes, it’s safe to eat canned chicken. The Food and Drug Administration requires that all canned chicken be cooked at a specific temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit to ensure it’s free of harmful bacteria. 

Pregnant women are especially vulnerable to foodborne illnesses, so it’s essential that they only eat chicken that has been cooked properly, and canned chicken is a convenient option.

Regarding nutrition, canned chicken is low in fat, and it’s a good source of lean protein, which is essential for the baby’s development. 

In addition, it also contains other nutrients such as iron, zinc, vitamin B and vitamin D. These nutrients are necessary for muscle growth, energy production, and boosting of the immune system. 

Hence, canned chicken can be a part of pregnant women’s diet.

Pregnant women are advised to eat 100g of chicken per day or two small cans of chicken. It’s important to note, though, that they should still eat a variety of other protein sources, such as fish, tofu, legumes, and eggs.

Things to remember when buying canned chicken

Although we’ve established that canned chicken can be a lifesaver for busy moms and a healthy option for pregnant women, there are still certain things you should remember when buying them.

  1. Make sure to check the expiry date and buy from a reputable source.
  2. Avoid canned chicken that contains added preservatives or salt. Choose the ones labeled ‘low sodium’ or ‘no salt added.’
  3. Avoid processed or pre-cooked chicken as it may contain added chemicals and preservatives. You can check the label to see if it contains any unwanted ingredients.
  4. Inspect any signs of damage or leakage before purchasing it. Check the can for any dents or rust before consuming.
  5. Pregnant women should remove chicken skin as it contains high levels of fat.
  6. Wash your hands thoroughly before handling the chicken.

Can you eat canned chicken salad when pregnant?

The answer is the same – yes, you can. And again, make sure that the canned chicken salad does not contain processed chicken or any added preservatives or salt. Canned chicken labeled ‘low sodium’ or ‘no salt added’ must be the first option on your grocery list for a healthier pregnancy diet.


Pregnant women can eat canned chicken as it is a safe and healthy option.

It is an abundant source of lean protein and other essential nutrients necessary for the mom’s healthy diet and the baby’s development.

When buying canned chicken, check the expiry date and avoid the ones with dents, rust, or any damage to ensure it’s newly canned. Lastly, choose the ones with no added salt or preservatives.

Canned chicken is an excellent option to include in pregnant women’s diet. However, it’s always better to consult your doctor or healthcare provider to get more personalized dietary recommendations.