Not sure what to feed your bearded dragon?
Bearded dragons have a very specific diet, and good nutrition will help ensure a long and healthy life for your pet.
Read our guide to bearded dragon diet, food and nutrition for everything you need to know about feeding your bearded dragon.
What do bearded dragons eat?
Bearded dragons are omnivores, so they eat both plants and animals. Usually insects, vegetables and non-citrus fruits.
But adult and baby beardies have fairly different dietary requirements.
Baby bearded dragons tend to eat more bugs than plants; their diet should be roughly 80% bugs and 20% plants because it’s still growing. You’ll need to feed your baby beardie three times a day, and feed your pet as many insects as it can eat within 10-15 minutes (any uneaten insects should be removed from the tank – this is part of keeping your vivarium clean). Typically a baby bearded dragon will eat 20-30 insects a day.
As adults, your bearded dragon’s diet will be radically different. It will need roughly 20% bugs and 80% plants, and you need to be careful not to overfeed your bearded dragon in order to prevent it getting overweight. An adult bearded dragon only need to eat insects once a day; the rest of the time you can feed it vegetables and non-citrus fruit.
Which insects can bearded dragons eat?
There are plenty of different insects that you can feed your bearded dragon – but you should always make sure you buy them online or from a reputable pet store.
NEVER feed bearded dragon insects that you’ve caught yourself outside – these can contain harmful pesticides and parasites.
Crickets are the most common bearded dragon food, but here’s the full list of which insects are safe to feed to a bearded dragon:
- Dubia roaches
- Black soldier fly larvae
Which vegetables can a bearded dragon eat?
Many common vegetables are safe for bearded dragons to eat – here’s a list of easily available vegetables that can form a staple part of your bearded dragon’s diet.
- Bell peppers
- Butternut squash
- Raw cabbage
- Peeled cucumber
- Cooked lentils
Certain plants are also safe to feed to a bearded dragon:
- Mint leaves
- Rose petals
- Fresh thyme
Which fruits can bearded dragons eat?
There are many fruits that are safe for bearded dragons to eat; just avoid citrus fruits as these can be difficult for bearded dragons to digest. The following fruits are safe for your reptile:
Is there anything a bearded dragon can’t eat?
There are a couple of foods that you should avoid – some can be harmful to bearded dragons, others just aren’t very nutritious. Here are the foods you should leave out of your bearded dragon’s diet:
Spinach itself is healthy but calcium binds easily to it, which can make it difficult to digest. It’s best to leave it out of your bearded dragon’s diet.
Lettuce is most water and not very nutritious. Since it won’t do much for your bearded dragon, it’s best to avoid it.
Never, ever feed avocado to a bearded dragon. They’re toxic and should always be avoided.
Insects you’ve caught yourself
The same goes for insects you’ve captured yourself in the wild – they can contain pesticides and parasites, and should never be fed to your bearded dragon.
Where to buy bearded dragon food
A pet store is a good place to start but if you don’t have a local near you, you can actually buy bearded dragon food on Amazon – even insects.
Crickets, worms and other dried insects are all available online (you can’t buy live insects on there though but that’s fine for people who don’t fancy dealing with live insects).
Want more bearded dragon care advice? Stay on the Vivarium World blog:
- Bearded Dragon Setup Guide
- Best Cheap Vivariums for Bearded Dragons
- What is the Right Size Vivarium for a Bearded Dragon?