Turtles, as pets, are one-of-a-kind. Unlike dogs and cats, turtles do not have soft coats. Plus, they have rather different care requirements compared to your furry pets.
And, while turtles can be pretty challenging to keep, they are, in many ways, extraordinary and stunning.
Trust me, keeping a turtle is absolutely worth it.
They are unique, curious, and a nice touch of diversity from the quintessential aquarium resident – fish.
But, for turtles to stay healthy and happy, they need to consume a nutritious and balanced diet.
Since these reptiles cannot seek food on their own, you, as their owner, should provide them with the best turtle food available.
To help your pet prosper and grow, your turtle should consume premium quality food that has all the essential minerals, proteins, and vitamins it needs.
And guess what? I am going to make things a whole lot easier on your end by sharing my picks for the best turtle food choices available in the market today.
Of course, I have plenty of tips and suggestions that will help you become the best turtle owner you can be. So, shall we begin?
Table of Contents
What Do Turtles Usually Eat In The Wild?
Want to know the definition of the best turtle food? First, you need to know what these creatures eat in the wild.
To me, one of the secrets to a healthy and happy turtle is to ensure that its diet mimics closely to what these animals eat in their natural habitat.
There are more than 300 turtle species, with a handful of differences between every species. The most common and popular pet turtle is, hands down, the red-eared slider.
And, this turtle breed is an omnivore, which means it eats animals and plants alike.
The digestive system is optimized to accommodate a mixture of food, including animals and plants.
Turtles, in the wild, feed on a lot of different things, from decaying sea life to small fish and aquatic vegetables.
When they become adults, turtles primarily eat aquatic vegetation. Younger turtles, however, need to consume a heap of animal protein. Ideally, protein should make up around 50% of their diet, as they need protein for optimal growth.
Types Of Turtle Food
Before I reveal my top picks, let us take a look at some of the best turtle food options available for your pet. Even if you have a little experience keeping turtles, these tips will significantly benefit you.
Pellets And Food Sticks
Pellets are a staple for most pet turtles. Not only are they healthy and nutritionally balanced, but they also are easy to consume for the turtles.
Furthermore, they contain all the essential nutrients needed for your pets to prosper. Even with all the perks of using pellets, you still should add other types of food to the diet of your pet.
Like humans, turtles want a little diversity in their diet.
As they grow, turtles shift their diet to vegetables and fruits from animal proteins. And though it is not their favorite, young turtles do eat some fruits.
Fruits are, in general, an excellent source of vitamins. After all, fruits are low in calories, sodium, and fats.
Here are some of the best fruits that you can give to your turtles:
Vegetables are essential to the diet of every turtle. It should take around 40 to 60% of its overall diet.
Veggies are incredibly healthy and contain an array of nutrients that will be rather useful in the body of every turtle.
Not all vegetables are suitable for turtles, however, especially the ones with high phosphorus content.
For the best results, feed your pets with these vegetables:
- Mustard greens
- Shredded zucchini
Turtles also love edible aquatic veggies, like:
- Water hyacinths
- Water lettuce
Snacks are tasty treats that will come in handy once in a while. But I do not recommend pet owners to give snacks to turtles every day. Once they get used to eating snacks, turtles will refuse to consume other types of food.
Snacks should be used as a treat or reward for your pet.
There are tons of fish that you can add to your pet’s diet, including guppies, bluegills, bass, platies, killifish, and canned tuna. Not all fish make an ideal source of food for your turtles, though.
Some of the fish that you should avoid for your turtle include feathered minnows, gizzard shad, goldfish, carp, and rosy red minnows.
Turtle Food Comparison Chart 2021
When it comes to food for these reptiles, the options are seemingly endless, making it difficult for you to pick the best turtle food. That is why I have created this in-depth comparison chart for you.
|Product Name||Suitable for||Sizes||Key Features|
|Tetra Reptomin Turtle Food - Best Overall||Frogs, newts and aquatic turtles||10.59 oz, 6.83 lbs, 3.7 oz, and 2.64 lbs||Formulated scientifically for exotic pets|
|Fluker Labs Aquatic Turtle Food - Best Budget||Aquatic turtles||4 oz||A perfect blend of freeze-dried mealworms and river shrimp as well as fortified pellets|
|Zoo Med Aquatic Turtle Food Natural - Best for Aquatic Turtles||Aquatic turtles||12 oz, 24 oz and 45 oz||No artificial preservatives or colors|
|Rep-Cal Box Turtle Food Maintenance - Best for Box Turtles||Box turtles||12 oz and 24 oz||Fortified with minerals and vitamins|
|Fluker Labs Medley Treat - Best Turtle Treats||Aquatic turtles||1.5 oz||Provides essential minerals, vitamins, fats and proteins|
|Hikari Turtle Food Sticks - Best Turtle Food Sticks||All pet turtles||7.05 oz||Enhanced mix of nutrients|
|Wardley Premium Turtle Food - Best for Red-Rared Sliders||Amphibians and aquatic reptiles||14.5 oz, 4.75 oz and 2 oz||Ingredients are all natural|
|Zilla Turtle Food Fruit Fix - Best Fruit Mix||All pet reptiles||2.5 oz||Nutritious and easy to prepare|
|Tetra Gammarus Turtle Food||Frogs, newts and aquatic turtles||10 g||Made with genuine shrimp|
|Zoo Med Red Shrimp Turtle Food||Aquatic turtles, invertebrates and marine fish||10 oz and 0.5 oz||Contains premium quality protein|
|Nature Zone Tortoise Food Bits||Tortoises||2 oz and 9 oz||Specifically formulated for optimal health and growth|
|Picky Neb High-Protein Treats||Wild birds, turtles, hedgehogs, fish and chicken||30 oz||Improves health and boosts immune system|
|Tetra Reptotreat Turtle Food||Amphibians and aquatic turtles||62 g||Contains beta-carotene|
|Zoo Med Block Turtle Food||All pet turtles||5 blocks and 10 blocks||Excellent food source when you are away|
|Fluker’s Grasshoppers Freeze-Dried||Sugar gliders, hedgehogs, birds and reptiles||1 oz||Ideal alternative to real live insects|
Which Are The Best Turtle Foods To Buy?
Are you looking for the best food for your box turtle? Want to score a wallet-friendly turtle food? Whether you are looking for an affordable option or a specific solution, these tips will definitely help you find the best turtle food for your pet.
- Best Overall – Tetra Reptomin Turtle Food
“Formulated scientifically for turtles, these Tetra food sticks are packed with natural and high-quality ingredients as well as enriched with calcium and vitamin C.”
- Best Budget – Fluker Labs Aquatic Turtle Food
“This wallet-friendly turtle food is fortified with all the essential minerals, vitamins, fat, and protein to ensure optimal health and growth.”
- Best for Aquatic Turtles – Zoo Med Aquatic Turtle Food Natural
“Not only are these floating pellets easy to eat for aquatic turtles, but they also contain a wide array of nutrient-rich ingredients.”
- Best for Box Turtles – Rep-Cal Box Turtle Food Maintenance
“Tasty, balanced, and remarkably nutritious, this superb turtle food is tailored carefully to the nutritional needs of every charming and smart box turtle.”
- Best Turtle Treats – Fluker Labs Medley Treat
“Featuring a medley of crickets, mealworms, and river shrimp, this tasty, freeze-dried treat has exceptional natural nutrition content and is packed with all the vital nutrients.”
- Best Turtle Food Sticks – Hikari Turtle Food Sticks
“Made by a trustworthy and celebrated manufacturer, this turtle food is nutritionally complete and has added calcium to support healthy shell and bone development.”
- Best for Red-Rared Sliders – Wardley Premium Turtle Food
“Fortified with a plethora of nutrients, this Wardley turtle food is the ultimate complete diet for red-eared sliders designed to boost the immune system and healthy bones.”
- Best Fruit Mix – Zilla Turtle Food Fruit Fix
“Suitable for pet reptiles, this fruit mix is, no doubt, a convenient and quick way to provide your pets with an array of tasty and nutritious fruits.”
Top 15 Best Turtle Food Reviews in 2021
One of the best ways to score the best turtle food for your pet is to read a bunch of unbiased and unfiltered reviews. And, I am going to make things easier and simpler on your end by sharing my best turtle food reviews in one spot.
Check them out!
1. Tetra Reptomin Turtle Food
They do not call this Tetra product the best turtle food in the market today for nothing. Not only is it suitable for aquatic turtles, but this versatile option is also ideal for frogs, newts and other pet reptiles.
Furthermore, this food mimics the feeding habits of the turtles in the wild since it floats, allowing the reptiles to rise to the surface and grab a tasty treat.
Rich in calcium and packed with protein, this turtle food has been formulated scientifically to support your pet’s general health.
On top of it all, it is easy for the reptiles to digest this turtle food.
- Specially formulated for exotic pets
- Tons of nutrients
- Easy to digest
- Promotes growth
|Dimensions||3.6 x 3.6 x 7 inches|
|Sizes||10.59 oz, 6.83 lbs, 3.7 oz, and 2.64 lbs|
- Rich in calcium and digest
- Mimics natural feeding habits of aquatic turtles
- Superior quality ingredients
- Holds form and shape in the water
- May cloud water if leftover or excess is not removed from the aquarium
2. Fluker Labs Aquatic Turtle Food
Looking for budget-friendly treats or snacks for your turtles? Then, give this one-of-a-kind turtle food a shot!
Unlike other options, this one is labeled as a buffet and actually consists of 3 types of turtle food: fortified pellets, dried mealworms, and dried shrimp.
To me, it is a convenient and versatile option, especially for newbies. When looking for the best turtle food, you usually have to choose between pellets and a snack.
But, with this turtle food, there is no need to pick one because you have the best of both worlds in one package.
Even better, it covers all the nutritional needs of your turtle.
- Unique food combination
- Fortified with vitamins and minerals
- Ideal for beginners
|Type||Mix of pellets and freeze-dried food|
- Easy to metabolize
- Uses natural ingredients
- Features a bunch of essential minerals and vitamins, including Vitamin A, B vitamin and calcium
- Some terrestrial turtles may not like it
- May make the aquarium water dirty
3. Zoo Med Aquatic Turtle Food Natural
(Best for Aquatic Turtles)
No list of the best turtle food options is complete without the inclusion of Zoo Med aquatic turtle food. With its premium quality and natural ingredients, this turtle food is incredibly nutritious, healthy, and safe to consume for turtles.
Plus, it is available in different varieties with different nutrient levels, depending on the needs of your turtle at its age.
Trust me, it has all the key nutrients needed for your turtle to thrive, from its hatchling stage to its adulthood.
Ingredients include choline chloride, Vitamin E supplement, fish oil, soybean meal, fish meal, wheat mill run, and many more.
- No artificial preservatives or colors
- Suitable for turtles of all ages
- High protein content
|Dimensions||3.6 x 3.6 x 7 inches|
|Sizes||10.59 oz, 6.83 lbs, 3.7 oz, and 2.64 lbs|
- Floats on your aquarium water
- Has all the nutrients your pet needs
- Rich in calcium and protein
- Easy to digest
- Tends to clog the filter of your aquarium
4. Rep-Cal Box Turtle Food Maintenance
(Best for Box Turtles)
When it comes to box turtle food, nothing can top this Rep-cal product. Specially formulated for box turtles, it is definitely one of the easiest ways to provide your reptilian buddies with superior nutrition tailored carefully to their needs.
While box turtles are not picky eaters, it can be a little tricky to figure out if you are giving them nutritious ingredients in proper quantities.
Luckily, this turtle food can make things easier on your end, with its remarkable mixture of meat, vegetables, and fruits.
- Fortified with minerals and vitamins
- Contains natural fruit and plant ingredients
- Formulated specifically to boost health and ensure growth
|Sizes||12 oz and 24 oz|
- Can be a staple diet for your pets
- Optimale fat and protein content
- Includes a lot of Vitamin D3 and calcium
- Made in the United States
- It tends to make the aquarium a little dirty
5. Fluker Labs Medley Treat
(Best Turtle Treats)
You are going to love this well-known turtle food, especially if you have baby and juvenile turtles. I used this for my baby Diamondback Terrapin, and she totally loves it as well.
It is not just a tasty treat for turtles, but it also boasts an exceptional blend of mealworms, crickets, and freeze-dried river shrimps, which are packed with tons of proteins.
And, it is quite affordable, compared to other leading turtle food brands.
Personally, I do not recommend it as your pet’s primary food source, but nonetheless it can be an occasional tasty treat for your turtle.
- Unique food combination
- Provides vital minerals, vitamins, and fats
- Tasty treats for turtles
- Coms with all the nutrients needed for optimum health and growth
- Loaded with protein
- Not ideal for adult turtles
6. Hikari Turtle Food Sticks
(Best Turtle Food Sticks)
This Hikari product has always been one of my go-to turtle food brands. One of my pet turtles is a fussy and picky eater and usually prefers freeze-dried salmon. Amazingly, though, he utterly loves and enjoys these sticks too.
It seems a tasty food for turtles, as they always go crazy whenever I feed them these goodies.
Of course, I also love the nutritious content of this turtle food. After all, it has a rich protein content of 41% and a fiber content of 2%.
Not to mention, this turtle food is odor-free and does not make the aquarium water cloudy and dirty.
- Clean water formula
- Enhanced probiotic nutrient blend
- Packed with protein, vitamins, and minerals
|Dimensions||10 by 4.5 by 1.5 inches|
- Turtles find it tasty
- Ideal for picky eaters
- Added calcium to help support healthy shell and bone development
7. Wardley Premium Turtle Food
(Best for Red-Rared Sliders)
It is easy to keep your pet reptile well-fed and healthy even when you are on a budget, thanks to manufacturers like Wardley. For years, I have been using this turtle food for some of my pets.
While it is remarkably affordable, it does not compromise on quality. As a matter of fact, these food sticks from Wardley make up a complete turtle diet.
Every stick is made up of natural ingredients and is fortified with Vitamin C and calcium for a healthy immune system and stronger bones.
They float on the tank’s surface, meaning it is easy for your pets to eat them.
- Fortified with high-quality and all-natural ingredients
- No artificial dyes or colors
- Ideal or all amphibians and aquatic reptiles
|Dimensions||17.6 x 8.8 x 11.1 inches|
|Sizes||14.5 oz, 4.75 oz and 2 oz|
- Excellent value for your money
- Balanced and complete nutrition
- Easy for your pets to eat
- Rich in calcium and Vitamin C
- The food does not easily break down in the turtle tank
8. Zilla Turtle Food Fruit Fix
(Best Fruit Mix)
While it is not jam-packed with protein, this fruit mix can still be a terrific addition to your turtle’s diet. After all, it teems with essential nutrients that will help your pet grow and prosper.
And since adult turtles do not consume a ton of protein, this fruit mix makes a tasty and nutritious treat for your pet reptiles.
This fruit mix has an array of fruits that reptiles love and prefer, including freeze-dried blueberries, mangoes, pears, peaches, strawberries, bananas, and apples.
- Easy and convenient to prepare
- Suitable for a variety of pet reptiles
- Nutritious ingredients
|Dimensions||5 x 2.8 x 9.3 inches|
- Resealable package is convenient
- Rich in fiber
- Plenty of vitamins and minerals
- Safe and healthy
- Small protein content
- There are traces of shake and powder inside the package
9. Tetra Gammarus Turtle Food
Looking for more options for turtle snacks? Why not consider this Tetra turtle food? Although it is not an ideal staple food, this treat certainly helps stimulate the appetite of your pet.
As a matter of fact, I know a lot of people who use it to train their pet turtles.
I used it to train my turtles, and it has been quite well thus far. My pets are responding to it quite well, and now know a couple of tricks.
I do not, however, recommend it for daily feeding since it is a little expensive and is simply ideal for snacks too.
You may also use it to feed frogs and newts.
- Nutritious snacks
- 100% natural ingredients
- Tasty treats
|Type||Sun-dried baby shrimp|
|Dimensions||2.9 x 1.6 x 1.3 inches|
- Turtles seem to enjoy it
- Super nutritious
- Natural ingredients
- Helps improve the turtle’s appetite
- Slightly expensive
10. Zoo Med Red Shrimp Turtle Food
The Zoo Med red shrimp turtle food is one of my favorites and a superb treat that can be very beneficial to your pet in many ways.
Trust me, it has everything your turtle needs for an active and healthy life.
For starters, it is an incredible source of protein, making it an ideal part of your pet’s diet. Plus, it is a natural food source, with a mixture of shrimp, leafy greens and insects.
Also, this turtle is suitable for a variety of invertebrates and aquarium fish.
- Superior quality protein
- May be used as an occasional treat or a staple food
- Loaded with nutrients
|Sizes||10 oz and 0.5 oz|
- You will notice positive changes in just a few days of using
- Ideal for growing and young turtles
- Turtles find it delicious
- Has a strange smell
11. Nature Zone Tortoise Food Bits
Searching for some tasty yet healthy treats for your pet tortoise? You are going to enjoy having Nature Zone tortoise food bits in your arsenal.
It is a soft-moist, melon-flavored food that is bound to become one of your pet reptile’s favorite tasty treats.
Formulated especially for appetite stimulation, this food did wonders for my rather picky tortoise. Not only did he like and adore it, but her appetite significantly improved after eating this food.
I also love the content of this food. Every bit is packed with amino acids, minerals, and protein.
And, did I mention that it has a sweet taste too?
- Soft-moist melon-flavored soft gel
- Sweet and irresistible aroma
- Balanced formula packed with minerals, protein, and amino acids
|Dimensions||2.5 x 2.5 x 5.5 inches|
|Sizes||2 oz and 9 oz|
- Tortoises love the taste
- Perfect for picky eaters
- Fragrant smell
- Improves your pet’s appetite
- Not ideal for other turtle breeds
- Contains sucrose
12. Picky Neb High-Protein Treats
Picky Neb may be a little different compared to the other best turtle food options on this list. The truth is, it is not explicitly formulated for turtles and is known as food for chickens.
Still, it is an exceptional all-natural alternative with no artificial substances and preservatives that might affect your turtle’s health.
Plus, these mealworms are high in protein and contain all the crucial elements to help improve your turtle’s growth rate and health.
Aside from chickens and turtles, it is also a suitable food for hedgehogs, hamsters, fish, and even wild birds.
- High protein content
- Convenient to handle
- Improves health and boosts immune system
|Dimensions||10 x 6 x 2 inches|
- Mealworms are a nutritious source of protein
- Ideal for people with other types of pet
- No artificial additives
- Safe to use
- A bit expensive for a turtle treat or snack
13. Tetra Reptotreat Turtle Food
Tetra ReptoTreat turtle food has some interesting and unique ingredients. It, for instance, has omega-3 fatty acids, which definitely help keep a happy and healthy turtle.
Likewise, it aids in providing a balanced and nutritious diet for your turtle. Even better, the turtle has a natural color-enhancing ingredient, meaning some physical aspects of your pet will become more colorful.
Of course, it also contains all nutrients that are essential for your pet’s health and growth. And, it is pretty to eat and digest for your turtles as well.
- Ideal supplement
- Unique ingredients
- Flavorful treat
|Dimensions||2.4 x 2.4 x 3.5 inches|
- High in krill and river shrimp
- Has omega-3 fatty sides
- Exceptional treat and supplement
- Not a staple food for a turtle’s diet
14. Zoo Med Block Turtle Food
Going on a vacation and wondering how to feed your pet while you are away? Well, the thing is, turtles can go without food for weeks or even months. Even so, I recommend that you find a solution to feed your turtles while you are away.
And that is where this turtle food will come in handy for you.
Unlike other pellets, these blocks do not dissipate when underwater. It will sit on the tank’s bottom and will be gone only when your turtles are finished nibbling it.
Also, these blocks are rich in calcium. I often use it to add more calcium to my pet’s diet.
- Excellent food source when you are away
- Made in the United States
- Full of nutrients
|Dimensions||3.2 x 1.8 x 5.2 inches|
|Sizes||5 blocks and 10 blocks|
- Calcium and food supplement in one package
- Ideal for those who are going on a vacation
- Healthy treat
- It is best used with an automatic turtle feeder
15. Fluker’s Grasshoppers Freeze-Dried
From time to time, your turtles need something new to spice up their appetite. As they say, variety is the spice of life.
And, that is why you should consider buying Fluker’s grasshoppers freeze-dried turtle food.
When I first tried it, I did not expect my turtles would love it. This one was cheap, so I thought it would not hurt even if my experiment fails.
To my surprise, my pets were having a blast munching on these freeze-dried grasshoppers.
As I glanced at its ingredients, I also noticed that it is packed with nutrients.
- Excellent and safe alternative to live insects
- Adds more diversity to your pet’s diet
- Ideal for turtles, sugar gliders, hedgehogs, birds, and reptiles
- Large and full-size crickets
- Crude protein is 68%
- Easy to consume and digest
- Improves your pet’s appetite
- Has a slightly odd smell
Still having problems making a decision? When looking for the best turtle food, make sure to take note of these crucial tips.
Consider The Type Of Turtle You Have
Not all turtles are the same. Some turtles are terrestrial, while others are aquatic. So, you need to figure out what turtle type you have to find the best turtle food for your pet.
Pet turtles, in general, are omnivorous. Still, you need to do your homework, so you can provide the ultimate nutritious diet for your pet turtle.
An aquatic turtle, for instance, can consume veggies and need high protein levels. Land tortoises, on the other hand, are herbivores and need plenty of green leaves.
Natural And High-Quality Ingredients
The best turtle food contains real and natural ingredients, including vegetables, fruits, insects, and fish. Also, avoid any turtle food that includes some artificial additives, such as flavoring and coloring.
Rich In Calcium
Calcium is, no doubt, the key to a healthy and happy life for every turtle. Keep in mind that calcium helps develop a hard and robust turtle shell. Aside from providing a balanced turtle food, you should consider infusing a calcium supplement to your pet’s diet.
Loads Of Protein
Protein is highly essential for these reptiles, especially for baby turtles, since it is vital for their growth. The more protein you give to your hatchlings, the healthier they will be.
Adult turtles actually do not need a lot of protein since they stick to their green leafy favorites, like water lettuce and vegetables.
Turtles need around 70 to 80% of protein in their overall diet when they are young. Adult turtles, meanwhile, only need 25% (or less) of protein in their regular diet.
Minerals And Vitamins
Young and baby turtles do not need a ton of minerals and vitamins. In their growth stages, protein and a little fat are the most valuable aspects of their diet.
For adult turtles, though, they need minerals and vitamins in maintaining their overall health.
Brand is not everything when it comes to turtle food. Still, you should buy turtle food from a trustworthy brand.
A cheap turtle food from an unknown brand is cheap for a reason. It has low-quality ingredients, and mainly uses fillers, additives, and colors.
The best turtle food brands have spent several years crafting and perfecting their own products.
Surprisingly, turtles can identify if the food you are feeding them is to their liking. These reptiles have taste buds, so look for the best turtle food that will appease their palate. Since you cannot taste it for yourself, you should spend some time reading the best turtle food reviews to know if it is tasty for your pets.
Got something that you would like to clarify? Then, spend some time reading the article’s FAQ section.
How often should I feed my turtle?
Young and baby turtles need to consume a ton of food to support their growth rate. Ideally, you should feed them around 6 times a week.
As for adult turtles, there is no need for them to eat every day. In fact, you can feed them 4 times per week.
How long can a turtle go without eating?
Adult turtles can survive for several months without eating. Even so, I do not recommend it since it is against a pet owner’s moral rule.
What are the best turtle food brands?
For optimal health and nutrition, consider buying products from these noteworthy brands:
Can they eat bread?
Technically, turtles can eat bread. But, I do not recommend it even if it is safe for turtles to eat bread. Bread simply does not provide any nutritional value and might even lead to problems in digestion if overfed.
What human food can turtles eat?
Turtles are omnivores, meaning they can eat most human food as long as it has nutritional benefits for these creatures. Here is a shortlist of the common human food options that are safe to eat for turtles.
My Top Pick
Every option mentioned in this review is worthy of the title “best turtle food”. Sure, some of them have a few downsides and disadvantages, but all in all, they can be rather beneficial for your pet turtle.
And, if you choose to select one, I recommend that you go for my top pick: Tetra Reptomin Turtle Food.
I have been using this outstanding turtle food for years and is my go-to option. While I have tons of exceptional choices, I cannot think of a product better than this one.
With high levels of calcium, Vitamin C, and protein, it has everything I need to help my pet live a blissful and energetic life.
Moreover, it is easy for your pets to eat and digest these food sticks.