The objective of the current experiment was to determine the effects of high-concentration phytase (5000 FTU/kg) feeding to diverse lines of chickens fed phosphorus (P) adequate maize–soybean meal diets (4.5 g/kg non-phytate P) on the performance and intestinal immune function. Performance was measured for outbred broiler (Ross 308) and inbred Fayoumi lines over 0–21 days, and duodenum and ileum were harvested for the determination of mucin-2, interleukin (IL)-1β and IgA mRNA by quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction. Over the 0–7-day period, there was a significant line × diet interaction, as high phytase supplementation increased broiler average daily gain (ADG), but had no effect on Fayoumi ADG. Treatment of diets with phytase increased expression of the mucin-2 gene in the duodenum mucosa. There were significant interactions between line and age, and line, diet and age on duodenal expression of the IL-1β gene as phytase supplementation of the broiler line reduced IL-1β in comparison to control fed broilers without change in the Fayoumi line. Overall, the addition of a high concentration of phytase to broilers fed adequate concentrations of non-phytate P resulted in improved growth performance early with a reduction in this effect over time. Mucosal mucin-2 expression was increased with high-concentration phytase feeding across both lines, but IL-1β mRNA expression was reduced in the duodenum of broilers fed high concentrations of phytase, suggesting that the increased performance noted might be related to decreased inflammation.