Practical - Index > Companion Animals > Pet Care > Parrots >food

The following recipes are ones that I have tried on my own birds with great success.

NOTE: Measurements are inexact.

NOTE: Bird bread is wonderful for teasing a reluctant bird into eating something other than just bird seed. You can start by making regular corn bread, and crumbling a little bit over the bird's seed dish every day. Once he gets used to picking through it to get to his "real food", he may begin to actually taste some. At that point, you can begin adding a little more bread, until he has to eat some to find the seeds beneath it. Once you see the bird is eating the plain corn bread, you can start making "bird bread" instead. By slowly adding new things to the bird bread batter, you can often sneak new foods into your picky eaters!

EARLY BIRD BREAD RECIPE

    2 packages of corn bread mix (not sweetened corn muffin mix!)

    frozen vegetable of choice (chopped fresh, or rinsed canned are both OK

    frozen fruit of choice (chopped fresh, or unsweetened canned are both OK)

    hulled raw unsalted sunflower seeds (available at bulk food stores near snacks)

    raisins

    hulled raw millet seed (available at bulk food stores near cereal section)

    fruit juice (orange, apple, etc.) (using more than one kind is OK)

    eggs (1 more than packages call for)

Preheat oven following bread mix instructions. Grease 7" x 10" cake pan.
Follow instructions on package for number of eggs used, then add one more egg.
Substitute fruit juices for milk required by mix.
Add approximately 1/2 cup of hulled sunflower seeds, and approximately
1/2 to 3/4 cup each of frozen veggie and frozen fruit.
Add handful of raisins.
Mix all ingredients together well.
Pour into heavily greased 9"x 13" cake pan.
Sprinkle small handful of hulled millet seeds over top.
Bake until cake pulls away from sides of pan and is golden brown on top
(it should be hard on top, but not burned.)
Let cool completely, then cut into small (1") cubes.
Place cubes and any crumbled pieces in a plastic bag or container, and freeze.
To use, just remove one or two cubes and thaw, then crumble up into bird's dish.
Vitamins or wheatgrass powder can be sprinkled over the cooled, baked cake.
For one bird, this should last several weeks. Use as a treat to supplement the regular diet.
In emergencies, this can be served in place of regular food.

For Variety:

    Try using cooked beans, pasta or dry bird pellets instead of frozen vegetable.

    Or mix in 1/2 cup of applesauce (reduce other liquid by 1/4 cup).

    Mix in 1/4 cup of pellets, increase liquid by 1/4 cup to account for pellets absorbing some liquid.

    Or add 4-6 "fruity ice" cubes (see below), thawed, and 1/2 cup melted peanut butter, to make "PB&J" bird bread!

FRUITY ICE

    several types of fresh fruits, any combination, diced into pieces.

Puree fruits in blender or food processor until smooth and mixed.
Pour into ice cube trays, and freeze until solid.
Keep frozen, stored in freezer containers or plastic bags.
To serve, remove 1-2 cubes per bird, thaw slightly.
Some of my birds actually seem to prefer the frozen fruit, especially in summer!

EASY BIRD BREAD RECIPE

This recipe produces a heavy, dense bread that doesn't easily fall apart,
making it easier to store and freeze.

    2 cups baking mix (Bisquick, Jiffy, Aunt Martha, etc.)

    2 cups white or yellow corn meal

    1 cup whole wheat flour

    2 tablespoons baking powder

    4 eggs

    3 6-ounce jars of pureed fruit or vegetable baby food, any combination

    Any additions you choose to include (cheese, chopped fruit or vegetables, nuts, peanut butter, etc.)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Heavily grease one 9"x13" cake pan.
Mix all dry ingredients together well in large bowl.
Add eggs and baby food. Stir until all ingredients are evenly moist.
Batter will be very thick and heavy. Pour batter into cake pan.
Bake approximately 40 minutes, or until cake pulls away from sides of pan.
Cool completely, cut into small cubes.
Reserve enough for 2-3 days, and freeze the rest. Thaw as needed.

BEANS AND RICE

    1/4 cup pinto beans

    1/4 cup kidney beans

    1/4 cup split peas

    1/4 cup lentils

    1/4 cup navy beans

    1/4 cup garbanzo beans

    1 cup cooked brown rice

    1 cup cooked white rice

    1 carrot (chopped)

    1 cup frozen corn (thawed)

Soak beans overnight. Drain, rinse, refill pan with water.
Add carrots and cook with beans for 1 hour.
Add corn and rice and cook till warm. Cool and serve.
Store excess in leak proof containers.
May be frozen in 3 day serving sized containers, and thawed before use.

15 BEAN SOUP

    1 package 15 bean soup

    1 bag frozen corn

    1 cup raw brown rice

Soak beans overnight. Add rice, cook for 1 hour or until done.
Add corn 50 minutes after you started beans cooking.
Drain water and serve. Store excess in leakproof containers.
May be frozen in 3 day serving sized containers, and thawed before use.

MILLET & RICE

    1 part cup cooked hulled millet

    1 part cup white rice, cooked

    1 part cup brown rice, cooked

Soak millet in water for 20 minutes prior to cooking.
Mix together with rice and serve warmed.

AMBROSIA

    2 medium oranges peeled

    1 small banana cut into slices

    20-30 seedless grapes, quartered if your birds are smaller

    1 cup strawberries cut in half.

    1 small apple cut into bird-sized pieces

Combine all ingredients and toss well. Can be frozen until further use.