Betta fish are carnivorous. Despite that, many owners often wonder if they can feed their betta vegetables. And if the answer is yes, what vegetables are absolutely safe for a betta?
Betta fish can eat vegetables. Some safe vegetables for a betta can be peas, zucchini, spinach, cucumber, lettuce, sweet corn, etc.
Though betta can eat vegetables, you shouldn’t feed them vegetable everyday. Feeding vegetable once a week is perfect. In fact, feeding Betta boiled peas once a week helps against bloating & constipation.
What Vegetables Are Safe For Betta?
Here is a list of safe & unsafe vegetables for betta fish:
|Vegetable||Safety||Nutritional Value (100 gram serving)||Why Good/Bad For Betta?|
|Peas||Safe||2.35 gram protein||Prevents digestive issues, bloating, constipation, etc.|
|Cucumber||Safe||0.56 gram protein, 3.17 milligram vitamin C||Rich in vitamins.|
|Lettuce||Safe||1.4 gram protein||Rich in vitamins.|
|Sweet Corn||Safe||3.2 gram protein||Great for occasional treats|
|Spinach||Safe||2.9 gram protein||Rich in minerals & nutrients.|
|Zucchini||Safe||1.2 gram protein||Rich in minerals & nutrients.|
|Carrots/Beans||Not Safe||–||Too much fibrous for betta. Can cause digestive problems.|
|Cabbage/Brussel Sprouts/Broccoli||Not Safe||–||Has a bitter flavor. Betta tends to dislike these.|
|Onion/Shallots/Leeks||Not Safe||–||Doesn’t contain any nutritional value for betta|
How Often Should You Feed Vegetable To Betta?
Though betta can eat vegetables, we shouldn’t forget that they are mainly carnivorous. So, feeding vegetables everyday won’t be the greatest idea.
I’ll suggest not to feed vegetables more than once a week. Once a week is a good amount to bring enough change to the diet and not cause any problem with the digestion. Moreover, feeding peas once a week is actually helpful against bloating or constipation.
How Much Vegetable Should You Feed Betta?
Do you know that Betta’s stomach is as large as its eyes? Yes, it is that small!
That’s why, when you overfeed a betta continuously, the following things can happen:
- The digestive system will get overloaded
- Food won’t get digested as they should
- With time, bloating will occur (Betta’s belly will get swollen)
- If not treated early, serious consequences can occur
So, now you know the importance of not overfeeding your betta.
When it comes to vegetables, I’ll suggest to feed 1/4th portion of a pea each time you feed the vegetable. Obviously you’ll not only feed pea to the betta.
Just eyeball the size of the vegetable and compare it to 1/4th portion of a pea. You don’t need to be 100% precise.
How To Prepare Vegetables For Betta?
The preparation can be a little bit different depending on the type of vegetable. I’ll try to give a general guideline for most of the types of vegetable:
Preparation for Pea
- First, take out 1 pea from the fridge. You need to boil it for about 5 minutes.
- Once the pea is soft, take it out and wash it under cold running water.
- After that, take out the skin of the pea. It is very important. Betta can’t eat the skin.
- Now, depending on the size of the betta, take 1/4th or 1/3rd portion of the pea and mush it between your index finger and thumb.
- Now put the mushy pea on the tank water. The betta should nibble it out of curiosity and gulp it down if it prefers the Peas.
Preparation for Hard Vegetable (Cucumber, Zucchini, etc.)
- Whenever preparing any vegetable for fish, you need to make sure it is soft. This is the general guideline.
- First, peel off the skin.
- Just take a very small piece of the vegetable you want to feed betta. Wash it and boil it until softens.
- Take out the vegetable piece, wash it under running cold water and afterwards, put it in the tank.
Preparation for Leafy Vegetables (Lettuce, Spinach, etc.)
- There is no need to boil leafy vegetables. You can just microwave it for a few minutes. This will make the leaf soft.
- Just don’t throw in the whole leaf. Take out a small portion and try to feed it fast.
- Take out the leftover after 30 minutes.
Fresh vs Frozen vs Canned Vegetables
There is actually no difference in nutritional value between frozen, canned or fresh vegetables. You can feed whichever you’ve got in your pantry.
Just make sure you’ve followed the proper steps to make the vegetable ready for your betta. I’ve talked about all the preparation steps in the above section.
What If My Betta Don’t Eat Vegetables?
There is actually nothing you can do if your betta doesn’t eat vegetables. Not all betta are same. They have very distinct and different personalities.
We all know bettas go crazy for bloodworms, right? Well, I had a betta once. No matter however I give it freeze dried bloodworm, the betta just refuses to eat it.
I even tried to infuse garlic flavor inside the bloodworm. Still the betta completely rejected it. However, my other betta went nuts for the freeze dried bloodworm!
So, you can’t actually do anything about your betta’s personality and taste.
However, you can just keep with it for a few weeks and see if your betta starts to nibble at the vegetable. If it refuses to eat the vegetable this week, try again the next week. Try it for a month and see if your betta starts to like the vegetable or not.
Also, don’t stick with just one vegetable. If the betta refuses spinach, try lettuce. If it refuses Cucumber, try zucchini. There are lots of options to try. Also, as a last resort, you can also rub sum garlic on the vegetable to make it more lucrative to the betta.
Can Betta Fish Eat Fruits?
Well, betta can eat fruits. But it is recommended not to feed fruits to your betta. Fruits that are too citrus or sweet can cause issues with digestion. You can try feeding fruits once a month just as a treat. However, my recommendation will be just to stick with variety of vegetables.
So, now you know how to properly feed vegetables to betta. I’ve tried to make this guide as informative as possible. Hope this helps you out.
Happy Betta, Happy You!