Can Betta Eat Flakes?

Betta fish need a good diet to remain healthy, and you need to make sure that you feed your betta with the appropriate food that it needs to survive and thrive in your care. Bettas can be picky eaters, which can make the process of feeding them a challenging one, but if you provide them with the right food, they will generally always eat. So, can bettas eat flakes? 

Betta fish can and do eat fish flakes that are offered to them. If you are feeding your betta flakes, you need to ensure they are flakes made specifically for betta fish as they require a large amount of crude protein. Betta fish are natural carnivores, and their diet should reflect this. 

Let’s discuss more about how to pick a good flake food for your betta. If you’re in a hurry, though, I recommend you try this one.

My Betta in Front of My Ottos | Source: Tiny Underwater | License: CC-BY-4.0

Can Betta Fish Eat Flakes?

Betta fish can and do eat fish flakes, although a lot of betta keepers will tell you that most bettas will refuse to eat flakes just because they do not like them, but some bettas do and will eat the flakes that are offered to them.

If you want to feed your betta flakes, you need to ensure you get the flakes specifically made for betta fish. Do not feed them “normal” or tropical fish flakes as bettas require crude protein, and these flakes do not provide this protein. 

If you’re looking for a good flake food for your betta, I recommend this one from bug bites, which is made by Fluval. (Link is to Amazon.)

Betta | Photo 18765880 © Dmitryon |

The Best Food For Bettas

When you are looking for the best fish food for your betta fish, you need to remember that these fish are natural carnivores, meaning they require a lot of protein in their diets. This is why it is vital that your get food made specifically for betta fish. 

Let us go over the food options that you have to feed your betta, but remember, the best diet is a varied diet, so the more you include, the better for your fish. 

Betta Pellets And Flakes

Bettas are just like any pet in the sense that they require a varied diet for them to stay healthy. You must choose high-quality fish flakes or pellets for your betta as a staple in their diet. It is not uncommon for bettas to refuse to eat flakes, which is why most people who keep bettas will opt for the pellets. 

You need to ensure that you buy flakes or pellets made specifically for betta fish as these fish need a diet rich in crude protein, and normal fish flakes and tropical fish flakes do not offer enough of this protein. Feeding your betta fish pellet food or flakes as a staple food is important, but you need to add some other food to their diets too. 

Live Betta Food

Some betta fish keepers also include live foods in their fish’s diet. Including live food in a bettas diet does lead to fish being very healthy compared to bettas that do not get live food in their diets.

Betta fish, siamese fighting fish, betta splendens | Source: Deposit Photos

Some of the live food that betta fish enjoy and eat in the wild are mosquito larvae, brine shrimp, and blood worms. The only issue with feeding your betta live food is that you could introduce parasites to your fish and your tank if you try feeding them live food you caught outside, making your fish sick and disrupting your tank’s ecosystem. 

But this does not mean that you should never try and feed your betta live food as there are ways around this, like getting your live food from a good supplier or cultivating your own.

Frozen Betta Food

Frozen betta fish food is an excellent option if your betta fish refuses to eat flakes. The good thing about frozen betta food is that it’s identical to the variety that comes with the live food options. So, your betta will get all the benefits of the live food without the threat of introducing any parasites to the fish and tank. 

Frozen betta food is easy to store and keep well in the freezer for a long time, which means that you do not need to make multiple stops at the store to get their food for the week. Just ensure that you follow the instructions that come with the frozen betta food to ensure you defrost it correctly for your fish to eat safely.  

Freeze-dried Betta Food

Freeze-dried betta foods are a great option if you do not have access to frozen or live betta foods and your betta does not want to eat the flakes. These freeze-dried betta foods will generally have the same selection of mosquito larvae, blood worms, and brine shrimp. 

Freeze-dried betta food is an easy food option to add to your betta’s diet, but there is a problem with this type of food. Freeze-dried betta food does not usually provide the best nutrition for the fish as most of the nutritional value was sapped out of it when it was freeze-dried. 

Another issue with freeze-dried betta food is that it tends to expand in the fish’s stomach after being eaten. This can cause your betta fish to have constipation or become bloated if too much is fed to the fish. 

How Often You Should Feed A Betta 

You should try to feed your betta every day but skipping a day now and then will not harm your betta fish. You could feed your betta fish by dividing its food into two or three meals to have throughout the day, or you could feed them a good amount once a day. 

The way you split up your betta fish’s meals is your choice; ensure that you do not overfeed your betta fish and make sure that they do not go too long without food either. 

If your betta fish does not want to eat due to sickness or stress, you do not need to be concerned as they can go a few days without food, but if this goes on for more than four days, you should seek help at your local aquarium store. 

How Much To Feed A Betta

Bettas are considered small in the fish world; thus, they do not require a large amount of food, especially if they are being fed good quality food. Their stomach is about the size of their eye, and that’s about how much you want to feed them.

If feeding pellets, two or three normal sized pellets of shrimp or worms should be enough for them to stay healthy. 

Although, you can also vary the frequency that you feed your betta and the amount of food you give them at each feeding. You can even skip a day, and there will be no adverse side effects for your betta; do not skip multiple days or switch the food amount by a large amount. 


Betta fish are beautiful fish that can be challenging to look after sometimes, and they can be picky with what they will eat and all of their food. But they can eat flacks as long as they are offered the right flakes for their protein-rich diet, although it is best to provide a varied diet with flakes as a staple.  Good luck with feeding your betta!