Fishkeeping is a bit like a hobby of “secrets” and, slowly but surely, you learn successful practices over years in the hobby. There are all kinds of tips and tricks you pick up along the way.
One of the first questions to answer is: what on earth should I be feeding my fish? There are so many different products out there, and it can be tough deciding which ones to buy. It can be even tougher to know which food to use in which context.
So, I’ve curated a list of my favorite commercial fish foods and when to feed them! I wanted to make it simple and easy for you to feed your fish the good stuff.
Tetra Color Granules
We tend to think of Hikari or Repashy when we think of high quality fish foods. But Tetra’s color granules have really been growing in popularity with hobbyists. A lot of expert hobbyists as well as ornamental fish farms buy this stuff by the bucket.
The ingredient list is good, and more than that, in my personal experience I’ve experienced solid growth in my fish. In addition to achieving robust growth, this fish food is true to its name—i.e. it really does bring out the color in your fish.
Ingredients: Fish Meal, Dehulled Soybean Meal, Wheat Germ Meal, Wheat Flour, Corn Gluten, Feeding Oat Meal, Potato Protein, Shrimp Meal, Dried Yeast, Wheat Gluten, Monobasic Calcium Phosphate, L-Lysine Monohydrochloride, Lecithin, Algae Meal, Soybean Oil, Yeast Extract, Ascorbic Acid (Source Of Vitamin C), Inositol, Niacin, A-Tocopherol-Acetate, Riboflavin-5-Phosphate, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (Stabilized Vitamin C), Choline Chloride, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride.
Sera O-Nip Tabs
O-Nip tabs are hands down my favorite food these days. They’re such a fun treat for your fish. More than that though, they’re also very nutritious for your fish (as you’d expect for a Sera product).
The tablets are quite different to other fish foods, they’re not meant to be just dumped in the tank and left to float or sink. Instead, you take a Sera O-Nip tab and press it against the inside of your aquarium glass, sticking it in place.
What happens next is quite entertaining, all your fish will come to the front of the glass to peck at the little tablet.
As you can imagine, this food is aimed at smaller community fish. It wouldn’t really be suitable for a big midas cichlid to just gobble up in one bite.
However, it is great for the fry of larger fish! It’s good because it’ll hang around stuck to the glass for a while, and will slowly break down into much smaller particles and then float in the water column. This will allow your fry to either peck at the tablet on the glass, or they can feed off the little bits floating in the water.
And oh boy, is this food nutritious. Just look at the ingredient list:
Ingreidents: fish meal, wheat flour, brewers yeast, Ca-caseinate, milk powder, krill (4.9%), bloodworms (4.2%), gammarus (2.6%), Tubifex (2.1%), sugar, whole egg powder, spirulina, sea algae, mannan oligosaccharides (0.4%), cod-liver oil (containing 34% omega fatty acids), herbs, alfalfa, stinging nettle, parsley, green-lipped mussel, paprika, Haematococcus algae, spinach, carrots, garlic.
Hikari Algae Wafers
Hikari’s algae wafer is the quintessential algae wafer in my opinion.
They’re marketed at plecos, and plecos do like them. But, in my experience, plenty of my other fish like them too. My botia loaches go nuts for them, and livebearers like swordtails and platies really dig them. And the plant matter in the ingredient list makes them a great treat for fish like goldfish and silver dollars. Although, the latter would need to catch them before they sank to the bottom of the tank.
Ingredients: Fish Meal, Wheat Flour, Wheat Germ Meal, Starch, Dried Seaweed Meal, Dried Bakery Product, Alfalfa Nutrient Concentrate Dehydrated, Dehydrated Alfalfa Meal, Brewer’s Dried Yeast, Soybean Meal, Fish Oil, Krill Meal, Spirulina, Garlic, Dl-Methionine, Chlorella, Astaxanthin, Choline Chloride, Vitamin E Supplement, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (Stabilized Vitamin C), Inositol, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin, Vitamin A Oil, Thiamine Mononitrate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Niacin, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (Source Of Vitamin K), Folic Acid, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Biotin, Disodium Phosphate, Ferrous Sulfate, Magnesium Sulfate, Zinc Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Cobalt Sulfate, Calcium Iodate, Blue 2 (Artificial Color).
Fluval Bug Bites
I like bug bites because my fish like bug bites. In fact, just about every fish I’ve ever tried bug bites with like them.
The name for this product comes from the fact that it is made up of 40% black soldier fly larvae. Add salmon to that as a second major ingredient and you have a highly nutritious food for your fish.
One thing to be aware of with bug bites is that they will sink, so if you’re trying to feed them to a betta for example, it might help if you have a handful of corydoras in the tank to clean up the left overs from the bottom. Alternatively, you can always just siphon off the uneaten food.
I like bug bites as a nice treat to supplement something like the Tetra granules mentioned above.
Ingredients: Dried black soldier fly larve, salmon, fish protein concentrate, green peas, potato, wheat, dicalcium phosphate, calcium carbonate, DL-methionine, lecithin, choline chloride, L-lysine, vitamin E supplement, biotin, niacin, calcium L-ascorbyl-2-monophoshate, calendula, zinc oxide, manganous oxide, d-calcium pantothenate, vitamin B12 supplement, beta-carotene, rosemary extract, riboflavin, copper sulfate, pyridoxine hydrochloride, thiamine mononitrate, inositol, folic acid, vitamin A supplement, calcium iodate, sodium selenite, vitamin D3 supplement.
You can probably guess from the name—“Micron”—that this food is tiny. It’s practically a dust! This food is made for your fish fry. But, it’s not just the size of the food, the ingredients also promote growth and disease resistance.
So, if you breed fish or are planning to breed any of your fish in the future, this is a great food to keep in stock. Especially so if you have any livebearers, because they will breed whether you like it or not! And if you want to feed the day old fry once the female has given birth, Sera Micron is a great choice.
The packaging, and therefore, the ingredient list, is in German. So I’m forgoing putting in a text list of the ingredients because I don’t want to mistranslate anything!
Although, I’m fairly confident that “krillmehl” translates to “krill meal” and the same goes for “fischmehl” and “shrimp-mehl” being fish and shrimp meal respectively. So, you can see that it’s a high quality ingredient list. And just look at that list of added vitamins! And over 50% of protein! Wow, this is a great food to grow your babies with.
Hikari Cichlid Gold
I’ve always liked Hikari foods, and for my cichlids I’ve always used Cichlid Gold.
The ingredient list and the quality of the food—as you’d expect with Hikari—is very good.
But, in addition to that, one of my favorite things about this food is that it comes in four sizes: baby, mini, medium, and large. Having said that though, keep this mind: big fish can eat swallow the smaller sizes without an issue, while smaller fish might struggle with a big pellet in their mouth. So, I tend to favor the smaller sizes.
Ingredients: Fish Meal, Flaked Corn, Wheat Flour, Gluten Meal, Brewers’ Dried Yeast, Dried A Niger Fermentaion Extract, Garlic, Astaxanthin, Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Vitamin A Supplement, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (Source Of Vitamin C), Vitamin B12 Supplement, Biotin, Calcium Pantothenate, Choline Chloride, D Activated Animal Sterol (Source Of Vitamin D3), Folic Acid, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite (Source Of Vitamin K Activity), Inositol, Para-Aminobenzoic Acid, Zinc Oxide, Manganous Oxide, Salt, Ferrous Chloride, Copper Sulfate, Cobalt Sulfate, Aluminum Sulfate, Magnesium Sulfate.
First and foremost, let me just say that as fishkeepers we need to support our local fish stores whenever possible.
However, there are a few reasons I recommend Amazon. I use Amazon affiliate links so I get a small percentage back from Amazon if you make a purchase after following one of my links (at no cost to you whatsoever). I’m sure you’ve seen your favorite YouTubers talking about their Amazon affiliate links? Well, I’m part of that same program.
But, that isn’t the only reason I promote products on Amazon, I do it because I live in an area where there just isn’t a good local fish store. And the big box stores aren’t worth the drive sometimes because they usually won’t have the particular type of fish food I’m looking for. So, that’s where Amazon comes in.
Amazon Prime And Being An Aquarium Hobbyist
And Amazon Prime has been a literal life safer for me.
The fast, free shipping has meant I’ve been able to get medicine for my fish just in time to keep them alive.
Also, it’s great to get my fish food shipped right to my door quickly. Because, you know how it is, sometimes you just end up with fish you weren’t expecting to have! Maybe your fish started breeding unexpectedly? Or maybe you made an impulse purchase at the fish store? There’ve been many times where I’ve rescued fish too and needed to get stuff in for them quickly.
So, as a fishkeeper I recommend keeping an active Amazon Prime subscription.
Similar to any purchases you make through my affiliate link, I also get a small financial reward if you sign up for Amazon prime.
Big thanks go out to any of y’all who use my Amazon affiliate links. I use the income from my website as a supplementary income to help support my family. Even if you’re not thinking of buying any of the products recommended on this page, please consider clicking one of the links before any purchase you might make via Amazon. Believe me, every little helps.