Can Betta Fish Eat Bread?

Last Updated on May 19, 2021

And the answer to the question is yes.

Betta fish can eat bread, they enjoy nibbling on it as a snack or a special treat. But that does not mean you should include it in their diet. Your betta fish has specific dietary requirements that you should follow to maintain their health.

Why you should not feed your betta with bread?

Pieces of bread and crackers are low in nutrients. Betta fish are carnivorous and require a high protein diet. And bread does not fit into the category. It contains a lot of additives that can put your betta at risk.

If it is a human, then you are giving it junk food.

Feeding your betta with bread can also trigger health risks. Remember that betta fish have sensitive stomachs. Pieces of bread or crackers swell when wet that can cause bloating or constipation to your betta fish.

Not to mention that they can get messy and can give you an unpleasant tank situation.

When can you feed your betta with bread? Are there other options?

As mentioned above, we can consider bread or crackers as a snack or a little treat for your betta. While bread is a poor alternative for betta fish food, you can feed them with it. This is especially necessary if you are running low on their regular food.

However, you can opt for a healthier choice if you have some vegetables in your fridge. You can boil vegetables such as peas, cucumbers, or zucchini to soften them up and remove their peels. This will make it easier for your betta to digest.

Your betta fish can also tolerate greens like lettuce and spinach. Wash the leaves and leave them in the microwave for 3 to 5 seconds for easier digestion.

Ensure that these snacks do not have any seasoning. The slightest bit of flavor can cause digestive problems to your betta fish.

Do not feed them with fibrous vegetables such as carrots and beans. These are too difficult to chew and can affect your betta’s digestion process. Avoid vegetables with bitter flavors like cabbage, Brussel sprouts, and broccoli. These also include onions, leeks, or shallots.

While vegetables are better than bread, you should not include these in your betta’s diet as well. Betta keepers may only consider these food alternatives when they are running out of betta fish food.

Related: Best Food for Betta Fish to Keep it Full and Well

Can you feed meat to your betta? Chicken, Beef, Pork?

While we stated that betta fish are carnivores, they might not eat land creatures in their natural habitat. But there are betta keepers who give their bettas small slices of meat from time to time as a treat.

Similar to vegetables, feed them with cooked meat and with no seasoning. It should also be easy to eat to aid in the digestion process.

However, farm-grown animals such as chicken, beef, and pork might be raised with chemicals that can be harmful to your betta.

What should I feed my betta fish?

A pile of pet fish food on a white background with the shape of a fish in the center.

In their natural habitat, bettas eat insects, bloodworms, daphnia, and brine shrimp, among others. Betta keepers usually feed them with live and frozen foods, freeze-dried foods, and pellets.

Live and Frozen Foods

Feeding your bettas with live foods can imitate their natural habitat. However, be careful when you purchase your live and frozen foods as they may carry parasites and other diseases.

One example of this food type is bloodworms. A lot of fish go crazy for bloodworms–betta fish included. You have the option to purchase live bloodworms or frozen ones available in tiny frozen cubes. You can also opt for dried bloodworms or bloodworm gel.

These are suitable for your betta fish, you only need to find which one they like best. You can start with live bloodworms as their movement attracts your betta’s attention.

Remember to limit feeding your betta with only one or two worms at a time. Throwing in more can overfeed your betta.

Refrain from refreezing unused worms, as it could have been exposed to bacteria. Refrigerate them for a maximum of two days and throw them after.

Freeze-Dried Foods

Brine shrimp, Daphnia, Tubifex are some freeze-dried foods that you can mix into your betta’s diet. While they cannot compare to live or frozen foods for quality, they are some of your betta’s natural food.

Compared to live and frozen foods, freeze-dried foods are safe from bacteria and parasites. They are also easy to source out at your local pet stores and are relatively inexpensive.

Increase the moisture content by soaking them in tank water to rehydrate them before feeding. Remember to not directly feed your betta fish with freeze-dried foods. Doing so can cause bloating and constipation problems.

You can feed them twice or thrice a week. Similar to live and frozen foods, do not refreeze leftover freeze-dried foods.


Considered as the most common betta fish food, these are easy to find on your local market. Choose pellets with high-quality ingredients and fewer fillers.

Be cautious about pellets that expand considerably when wet. It is better to soak them in tank water to hydrate them before feeding. You can also look for ones designed to not expand when wet.

Feeding tips for your bettas

Regular feeding schedule

It is important to have a feeding schedule for your betta fish. Feed them twice a day at 12 hours intervals.

Related: How Long Can Betta Fish Go Without Food?

Do not overfeed your betta fish

Check on your fish after you throw in the food. If your betta hasn’t eaten all the food for two minutes, take out the leftovers. Its stomach is tiny, as is the size of one of its eyes.

Overfeeding your betta can lead to some serious health problems.

Check on what they want to eat

Bettas are fussy eaters. They might not want what you feed them so always observe the food they eat. You can try some freeze-dried foods but know that you can never go wrong with live food.

Final Thoughts

While this article has enumerated other options to feed your betta, betta fish have their own nutritional requirements to stay healthy and alive.

You could feed them with human foods such as bread, but you should not consider it on their regular diet. They can only be a snack or a treat that you could give occasionally.

As mentioned, a few times in this article, your bettas have sensitive digestive systems. You should be careful with what you feed them.

Related: Betta Fish Doesn’t Eat: Everything You Need to Know