White vs Dark Chicken: Difference and Comparison

Chicken is very famous as a healthy and affordable food source. Chicken contains vitamins, proteins, and several minerals.

Along with this, it can be made in so many ways and can be applied to different seasonings. While choosing chicken meat, you may get confused about whether to choose white chicken or dark chicken.

You need to know the differences between the white and dark chicken.

Key Takeaways

  1. The white chicken comes from the breast and wings, while dark meat is found in the thighs and drumsticks.
  2. Dark chicken meat contains more fat and calories than white meat but offers more flavor and tenderness.
  3. White chicken meat is leaner and has a milder taste, making it a popular choice for various healthy recipes.

White vs Dark Chicken

The difference between white and dark chicken is that white chicken is the chicken meat found in wings and breasts, while dark chicken is found in chicken legs. White chicken meat is mild and lean in flavour and quickly dries out if you overcook it. On the other hand, dark chicken meat is juicy and more flavourful.

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White chicken is the chicken meat found in the chicken’s wings and breasts. These muscles are used for flight and require fast energy production.

In these muscles of chicken, anaerobic energy is used to quickly break down carbohydrates. So, these chicken pieces have less fat and a dry and stiff texture.

Dark chicken is the chicken meat ‘s legsfound in the chicken’s legs. As chickens mostly walk and run, these muscles allow for aerobic energy production.

In these muscles, Oxygen converts fat and carbohydrates into fuel. For storing Oxygen these muscles have a protein named myoglobin which gives the meat a dark color.

For this, these chicken pieces are juicy and have more fat.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonWhite ChickenDark Chicken
Body partWhite chicken is found in the breast and wings of the chicken.     Dark chicken is found in the legs of the chicken.
White chicken contains almost 10 per cent red fibers.     Dark chicken contains almost 50% red fibres. White chicken has less amount of fat and calories. It is idle for those who want to cut fat and calories from their diet.    
SoftnessWhite chicken is stiff and dry in texture.     Dark chicken is soft and juicy.
NutritionDark chicken is high in fat and calories. It is also rich in Zinc, riboflavin, iron, and niacin. Dark chicken is high in fat and calories. It is also rich in zinc, riboflavin, iron, and niacin.
TasteAs dark chicken is juicy and soft, it tends to cook best on the grill, roast, bake, pan-fry, or broilAs dark chicken is juicy and soft it tends to cook best on the grill, roast, bake, pan-fry, or broil

What is White Chicken?

White chicken is the meat found in chicken wings and breasts containing 10 per cent of red fibres. These muscles of the chicken use explosive force as it is used for flight.

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These types of muscles of the chicken are the type 2 muscles that support short burst movement. Fast energy production are also required in these muscles of chicken. 

Due to using an anaerobic energy system, these muscles can easily break down carbohydrates without any help from Oxygen.

For this, these muscles barely store myoglobin, giving the chicken meat a darker shade. As a result, these pieces are lighter in colour. 

White chicken is also low in calories and fat. Type 2 muscles convert energy from carbohydrates instead of fat.

As a result, there are fewer fats in these muscles. This is why white chicken meat has a dry, stiff texture and lower fat and calories.

White chicken is milder in taste and flavour and quickly dries out if overcooked a little. White chicken must be seasoned heavily to be tasty and can be best if cooked in a stew or sauce.

In the cooking world, white chicken is favoured compared to dark chicken because of its mild flavors. Chefs can add any flavour and can experience the white chicken.

dark chicken 1

What is Dark Chicken?

Dark chicken is the chicken meat found in the chicken’s legs. Dark chicken contains almost 50 per cent of red fibres. Dark chicken is soft and juicy in texture.

As chickens primarily run instead of flying, the legs of the chicken have type 1 muscle fibres. This type of muscle fibre is allowed to conduct aerobic energy production.

In this energy system, Oxygen is required for converting fat and carbohydrates into fuel. 

For storing Oxygen in these muscles, a protein named myoglobin is found in dark meat. Myoglobin gives a darker shade compared to white chicken.

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In the aerobic energy system, fat is used to convert energy. As a result, dark chicken has a high level of fat.

It has more saturated fat compared to white chicken. Apart from the fat, dark chicken is also rich in calories. Additionally, dark chicken contains more Vitamin B-12, riboflavin, iron, thiamine, and Zinc than white chicken.

Dark chicken is more tender and softer compared to white chicken. As it has a juicy texture, for the high-fat content, it is widely used in roasting, broiling, grilling, and baking.

Dark chicken has a more robust flavour than white chicken. It can stand on its own in the department of flavour and taste.

dark chicken

Main Differences Between White and Dark Chicken 

  1. White chicken is found in the breast and wings of the chicken. On the other hand, dark chicken is located in the legs of the chicken.
  2. White chicken contains almost 10 per cent red fiber, but dark chicken contains almost 50% red fiber.
  3. White chicken has less amount of fat and calories. It is idle for those who want to cut fat and calories from his/her diet. Dark chicken is high in fat and calories. It is also rich in Zinc, riboflavin, iron, and niacin.
  4. White chicken is stiff and dry in texture. On the contrary, dark chicken is soft and juicy.
  5. White chicken has a stiff and dry texture, so it is less tasty than dark chicken. It can easily dry out if overcooked a little. This white chicken cooks best in a stew or sauce to avoid dryness. As dark chicken is juicy and soft, it tends to cook best on the grill, roast, bake, pan-fry, or broil.
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References
  1. https://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&as_sdt=0%2C5&q=white+chicken+&btnG=#d=gs_qabs&u=%23p%3DJYvS1u2YCvwJ
  2. https://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&as_sdt=0%2C5&q=dark+chicken+&btnG=#d=gs_qabs&u=%23p%3DPzJmZoLZ2GEJ

Last Updated : 13 July, 2023

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8 thoughts on “White vs Dark Chicken: Difference and Comparison”

  1. This article provides a very clear and instructive comparison of the two chicken types, from a nutritional and culinary perspective.

    Reply
  2. This article is very educating. It provides information that I never thought about. I learned new things about chicken varieties.

    Reply
  3. The article is well written and very informative. I learned a lot of new things about something that is used in many recipes.

    Reply
  4. It is remarkable the detail in the explanation of the difference between the two types of chicken, very informative article.

    Reply
  5. Very interesting and well written article. I never knew there was such a difference in nutrition between the two types of chicken.

    Reply
  6. I didn’t know chicken meat was so complex, but this article has been able to explain the topic with a wealth of details, and I appreciate that.

    Reply

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