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How Much & How Often To Feed Betta Fish? (Guide)

Regarding our betta fish, we all like to show them affection in every way possible. We find that food and rewards are one of the simplest methods to achieve this goal. However, overfeeding or feeding the incorrect meals to your betta fish can lead to health concerns and water quality difficulties.

If you've ever wondered what to feed your betta fish and how frequently, continue reading "How Much & How Often to Feed Betta Fish? (%year% Guide)" by BestForPets (bestforpets.org) to learn everything you need to know about feeding betta fish!

What to Feed a Betta Fish

Feeding your betta fish the proper nutrients will preserve its health, enhance its color, extend its life, and make it a happy fish overall.

Bettas are carnivores, thus their natural food consists mostly of insects and snails. There are an abundance of goods available to guarantee that your betta receives a nutritious diet.

Options for Feeding Your Betta

  • Pellets: Pellets are the most economical way to provide your betta with high-quality food. This sort of food is typically shelf-stable for six months after opening and is available in a wide variety of sizes and tastes. Pellets are high in protein and can be utilized as the primary food source for your betta.
  • Flakes: Possibly the most well-known food choice, flakes are commonly accessible but often contain less nutrients than other meal varieties, such as fresh or frozen foods. Flakes are a nice alternative for sometimes switching things up, but they should not be the major source of nutrition.
  • Live: Live foods are the most difficult to feed on a regular basis, since they require a reliable source of live animals for feeding or producing your own live food. There are several kits available that enable you to cultivate young brine shrimp or daphnia, both of which are excellent live feeding alternatives for bettas. The highest nutritional density of all food kinds is found in live foods.
  • Freeze-dried: These freeze-dried meals begin as living foods, but through a specific drying process, all liquid is eliminated. Frequently, freeze-dried meals maintain the form of the living animal, making them aesthetically enticing to your betta. Live and frozen foods are more nutrient-dense than flakes and pellets, although the freeze-drying process removes some of the nutrients.
  • Frozen: Frozen meals are a good substitute for fresh foods. These foods are frequently frozen when they are still living, so the majority of their nutritional content is preserved. Typically, frozen feeds are pre-portioned into little cubes, so it may be tough to measure out the correct amount for one betta fish.

What's the Best Food for Your Betta?

  • Live foods are the most nutrient-dense food option for bettas, however this is impractical for most individuals.
  • The nutritional value of frozen meals is inferior to that of fresh foods, but storage and portioning might become problematic.
  • Due to their lack of moisture, freeze-dried foods tend to produce constipation, and some may have lost their nutritional profile.
  • For the majority of individuals, pellets are the most cost-effective alternative for nutrient-dense, budget-friendly diets.
  • Flakes are an occasional delight, however the majority of flake meals lack the nutritional profile required for daily feedings.

Meals Bettas Cannot Consume:

  • Omnivorous Foods: Although it may seem like a good idea to give your betta the same food as your other fish, the majority of communal and omnivorous foods do not offer enough protein for bettas to be healthy.
  • Herbivore Foods: Herbivore foods, such as algae wafers, should not be offered to bettas since they do not contain enough protein and may cause constipation and other health issues because bettas are not designed to digest them.
  • Fruits and Veggies: While many fish and invertebrates prefer fresh meals such as fruits and vegetables, bettas do not require them. The only exception is feeding constipated bettas a mouthful of cooked, peeled peas to get things going again.
  • Plant Roots: You’ve probably seen kits with a vase and plant sold as self-sustaining betta settings. Unfortunately, bettas cannot subsist on plant roots and are quite unlikely to consume them. Your betta will perish from nutritional deficiency or famine if left to subsist on plant roots.

Betta Fish Feeding Chart

  • Monday: Fasting
  • Tuesday: 2-3 pieces of live, frozen, or freeze-dried food 1-2 times a day
  • Wednesday: 2-3 pieces betta pellets 1-2 times a day
  • Thursday: 2-3 pieces betta pellets 1-2 times a day
  • Friday: 2-3 pieces of live, frozen, or freeze-dried food 1-2 times a day
  • Saturday: 2-3 pieces betta pellets 1-2 times a day
  • Sunday: 2-3 pieces betta pellets or pinch of flakes 1-2 times a day

How Often to Feed a Betta Fish

Since betta fish do not graze like omnivore and herbivorous fish, they must be fed a minimum of once each day. Ideally, you should feed your betta twice each day, but you can divide the food amount into three feedings per day if you like. Your betta requires food for vitality and health.

However, you must fast your betta every 1 to 2 weeks. Fasting allows the digestive system to catch up on any meal that was not completely digested.

This will help your betta avoid constipation. A single day of fasting is sufficient, and unless required to address a medical issue, you should not fast your betta for two consecutive days.

The Dangers of Overfeeding Betta Fish

The greatest concern associated with overfeeding your betta is the possibility of creating constipation. Constipation in bettas can cause more than abdominal pain and swelling. Inducing stress can also result in swim bladder malfunction and worsen other underlying medical issues.

Ensure that you are feeding your betta an adequate amount of food every meal, and fight the impulse to overfeed since they have puppy dog eyes.

Another major issue associated with overfeeding is the potential for water contamination. Food that your betta does not consume will begin to decompose, causing ammonia levels to rise.

It will also permit the growth of bacteria, which will cloud the water and diminish the dissolved oxygen content.

Why Won't My Betta Fish Eat?

If your betta fish is bloated or constipated, it may forego one or more meals.

Medical diseases such as swim bladder disease and dropsy can also cause anorexia, so if your betta begins to miss meals, be careful to properly check for signs of an underlying issue.

Water quality difficulties are the most prevalent cause of a betta stopping to eat. If your aquarium is not cycled and you do not do frequent water changes, the water quality will deteriorate. The same applies to overfeeding and rotting food in the tank. Bettas are happiest and healthiest in water that is clean.


Feeding your betta fish the proper diet is simple, but you may need to read labels and check the amount and frequency of feeding. Aim for a nutritional foundation that is rich in protein and contains minimal fillers such as soy and cornmeal.

Feeding your betta a variety of meals will offer it with stimulation and enrichment. If possible, provide your betta with occasional live meals. They will love exercising their natural hunting skills!

How Much & How Often to Feed Betta Fish?” by BestForPets (bestforpets.org) has hopefully given you some facts that you need to know while providing your betta with the best meal ever.

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Dr. Deborah Fletcher

Deborah R. Fletcher, DVM, is a skilled veterinarian with more than 15 years of experience dealing with companion and exotic animals. She has experience caring for a variety of animals, including household cats and dogs, reptiles, birds of prey, and even primates. Dr. Fletcher is a valuable part of the BestForPets team, where she contributes to their aim of providing pets and their owners with the finest possible treatment and services.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Deborah Fletcher


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