You are currently viewing Choosing The Best Turtle Food [Ultimate Guide]

Choosing The Best Turtle Food [Ultimate Guide]

Having a pet calls for some extra responsibility. You will have to look into the well-being of the pet.

The first thing you will have to consider is the diet.

Diet in itself is very complex and challenging to follow, even for us human beings. It is the same case when you own a turtle.

Turtles are fascinating creatures, and all they care about is food and their survival. It is, therefore, up to us to provide the food for them when they are in our custody.

For the turtles to remain healthy, they need different means, which will provide different nutrients.

Since they cannot go out of their tanks to look for food on their own, it is up to us to decide some of the best foods and varieties to give them.

In this guide, we shall be looking at some of the best turtle foods and foods for baby turtles.

You will also learn why these foods are considered the best.

What do turtles eat? Well, there are a variety of foods that turtles do eat. The meals range from proteins, fruits and vegetables, bugs and insects and so on. Their diet varies with age. When they are young, they eat lots of proteins and gradually change as they grow where they start eating more fruits and vegetables.

Like I mentioned earlier, food is among the top priorities in a turtles’ life. Feeding your turtle a healthy diet is very important, as this is what will determine the health of your turtle. A turtle that is fed only one type of food will never be as healthy as one who gets different foods. All foods have different nutrients. You should ensure that your turtle has access to all the different foods. Let us now get down to the guide.

This guide is the result of more than 30 years of experience, and days of research.

Best Turtle Foods: Pellets

If you visited all pet turtle stores, you would find pellets being offered for different species of turtle. Pellets are like staple foods for turtles. However, you should not feed them pellets alone. Turtle pellets should only take about 25% of the meal. The rest should be from other meals. Let’s have a look at some of the best pellets.

The ZooMed Natural Aquatic Turtle is a perfect choice when looking for some natural food for your turtle. These pellets have been divided into three different sizes to make it convenient for the different sizes of turtles. These foods also consider different protein levels for hatchling, growth and maintenance formulas. What makes it suitable for turtles is that the food has formulations for the different sizes of the turtles that require different nutrients like the hatchling has higher protein levels. The growth and maintenance formulas also have the right ingredients. For water turtles, the food floats in the water to make it easier to spot the food. You can buy it on Amazon.

Just as the name suggests, this food is for the small turtles that have the size of their shells less than 4 inches. The food is specially made to help with their growth. The food has high proteins that serve that purpose. The other thing that makes the food suitable for the hatchlings is the size of the pellets. The pellets are small enough to make it easy for the hatchling to feed on. On Amazon, you can check the available sizes and prices – klick here.

The ZooMed Natural Aquatic Turtle variant for the growth is for the turtles in their “teen.” I mean, the turtle is not fully grown and is not a hatchling. Like I mentioned before, every size of the turtle requires different nutrients. Like the growing turtles, they need about 35% of proteins. Not more and not less. The growth variant provides exactly that. These foods also contain other nutrients like calcium and vitamin D3. Buy here.

For the fully-grown turtles, this is the pellet variant you should get. This is explicitly made to have fewer proteins compared to the rest of the options. The reason being is that fully-grown turtles do not need to grow anymore. The thing with turtles is that they should not get more of the same nutrient. If they gain much of the same nutrients, it ends up being harmful. Since the fully-grown turtles are not growing anymore, they do not require many proteins. This food, therefore, offers 25% proteins, which are enough for them.

From a different brand, we have the Mazuri Fresh Water Turtle diet. This is an excellent option for the turtles. It offers nutrients like proteins, vitamin D3, vitamin E, and calcium. This food is great as a staple food as the food ensures that the turtle gets most of the nutrients they require. The meals are also compactly made which means they will not mess the water when they are consumed by the turtles. These foods are among the best turtle food for red-eared slider turtles and box turtles as well. For prices dive here. 

Read also about the best automotive turtle feeder, it can be helpful especially during the holiday.

Best Turtle Foods: Snacks

Snacks are also useful for turtles once in a while. You should avoid giving snacks to turtle every time. This is because the turtles will get used to the snacks and will refuse to eat other kinds of foods. You should use snacks as a reward or treat for your turtle. Snacks are also tasty when you want to train your turtles. Some of these snacks include:

When looking to treat your turtle, this is a good option. It has small baby shrimps that are sun-dried. This treat provides natural just as the turtles prefer. This food has high protein content, which is suitable for small turtles. This food can be used as a supplement to the Reptomin floating food sticks. Check this Amazon’s Choice here.

These treats are very nutritious with very low-fat content. This is a perfect treat for the turtles as they absorb water. This way the turtle will have an easy time feeding on them. The nutrients include vitamin A and vitamin D which are suitable for the eyes and the shell. This is among the best aquatic turtle foods.


The zoomed gourmet reptisticks are good for turtles. This snack is made to replicate the natural foods that a turtle diet contains. It is a mixture of fishmeal, mealworms, cranberries, shrimps, and kales, just like a healthy diet. This is a nice protein-rich treat that you can offer your turtle from time to time. This snack is suitable for the small growing turtles with about 2-inch shells. Check the best prices here.

Unlike the reptisticks, which are for young growing turtles, the ZooMed large sun-dried red shrimp is for the large size turtle. They have high protein content. They are good for boosting nutrition and increasing weight. The nutrients include crude protein: 59%, crude fat:8.5%, crude fiber(max):3.5% and moisture(max):9%. You can use this as a treat as well as a staple food. This is a great option as the food is of high quality. Try it.

As an alternative diet, you may consider this high-quality food product for your turtle. It is an alternative to live insects and is good for reptiles, fish, hedgehogs, and birds. The food is made up of natural nutrition, which the turtles always prefer. The crickets are dried and frozen. This is for the turtles that do not like to interact with live prey. Check the price on Amazon.  

Best Turtle Foods: Fruits

As turtles grow, they shift their diet from many proteins to more fruits and vegetables. Young turtles also do eat fruits; they are not their favorite. In general, fruits are a good source of vitamins. They are low in fats, sodium, and calories. Different fruits are good for turtles. There are fruits that you should also avoid giving to your turtle. Let’s start with some of the fruits that you should feed your turtles. Carrots, squash, pear, grapes, some berries, apples, banana, kiwi, mango, tomato, cantaloupe, including many other fruits. Since the list of good fruits is huge, let’s look at the fruits that you should avoid. Fruits that have huge phosphorus content are not good fur turtles. These fruits include peach, honeydew, mulberry, guava, avocado, raisin, prune, date, and persimmon. Other fruits that you should avoid are fruits with citric acid. They include oranges, lemon, limes, pomea, grapefruits, and mandarins.

Best Turtle Foods: Vegetables

Vegetables should also form part of a turtles diet. In percentage, it should take about 40% to 60%. Vegetables are healthy, and they contain nutrients that are very useful in a turtles’ body. Some of the best vegetables include leafy greens such as spinach, kale, collard, mustard greens. There are also edible aquatic vegetations like water lettuce, duckweed, and water hyacinths. On top of these, you can also consider the squash, peas, and shredded zucchini. Some vegetables also contain high amounts of phosphorous, and they should be avoided. These veggies include carrots, tomatoes, pumpkins, broccoli, and sweet potato leaves.

Best Turtle Foods: Fish

Most turtles will prefer raw foods. Most of these fresh foods are sources of proteins. To the younger turtles, proteins play a significant role. It helps with their growth, and this is the reason you should include a source of proteins like fish in their diet. There are different types of fish that you can offer to your turtles as well as others that you should not include in their diets. Some of the fish to include in the diet include canned tuna, killifish, platies, bass, bluegills, and guppies. Turtles will eat fishes that are smaller in size. That way, they will be easier to catch. Some fishes to avoid include rosy red minnows, carp, goldfish, gizzard shad, and feathered minnows. There are other types of fish that can eat your turtle. You should also avoid such fish.

How To Feed Your Turtle

To ensure that your turtle is always satisfied, feed him as much food as the size of his head. This is the best method as it applies to all turtle sizes. For more information on how to feed your turtle, check out our previous post How to Feed a Turtle!


What Is The Best Food For Baby Turtles?

In reality, babies need more diet rather than food. In this case, they should get a variety. Their diet includes insects, chopped mealworms, beans, tomatoes, melon, green lettuce, bananas, small crickets, etc.

Do Turtles Eat Every Day?

For the adult turtle, you only need to feed them after three days or every other day. For the little ones, every day is crucial. The reason being that they are more playful and need energy for their growth

Is Reptomin Good For Turtles?

The reptomin floating food sticks are suitable for turtles considering that they have the right nutrients. They are enjoyable for the turtles to eat and they come in different sizes. I would choose this as the best turtle food. 

On Amazon, you can check the available sizes and prices – klick here.

How Many Pellets Should I Feed My Turtle?

This is difficult for many people. I would recommend that you feed your turtle as many pellets as can fit in their heads if they were empty or feed them as much as they can eat in 15 to 20 minutes.

 In conclusion, these foods are among the best box turtle food and turtles in general. You can use these diets for your pet turtles.

The Best Turtle Food pin

Leave a Reply