Can Oscar Fish Eat Human Food? [Diet From Home]

Feeding oscar fish and ensuring proper nutrition can be costly if you always buy food from the pet store. Probably you’re trying to find some alternatives, especially from home. But can oscar fish eat human food?

Oscar fish can eat a variety of human food. They can be fed chicken, seafood, vegetables, fruits, shrimp, mussels, prawns, etc. However, bakery items and citrus food should be avoided.

But are human foods enough to keep your oscar happy and healthy? I’ll elaborate on that in the subsequent section.

What food do Oscar Fish Like to Eat?

Oscar fish are omnivorous, they can eat almost anything that fits into their mouth. They can eat live food, dried food, frozen food, vegetables, and fruits.

However, they mostly prefer meaty food. In the wild, they keep themselves busy finding live foods.

A balanced diet is good for them that includes protein-based food, vegetables, and fruits.

In the fishkeeping community, I asked what they feed their oscar fish.

They usually feed their oscar fish pellets, red meat, live fish, frozen fish, shrimp, prawns, peas, bloodworms, live insects, blueberries, etc.

Oscar Fish Food

So, you can see the list is diverse, and you can literally feed everything to your oscar fish.

But making a balance, and variation is essential for your oscar fish to stay healthy and happy.

Also, keep in mind that vegetables and fruits are not their primary food. That can be fed occasionally, and the focus should be on the meaty food.

What Human Food Can Feed Your Oscar? [How Much & How Often]

The list of human food that your oscar fish can eat is long. However, I’ll try to provide some of them so that you can get ideas.

The below table shows the most common human food for oscar fish.

Seafood Animal Meat Vegetables Fruits
Salmon, Tuna, Mussels, Squid, Cockles, Shrimp, Prawn Chicken, Beef, Beef Heart, Mutton Pea, Carrot, Cucumber, Spinach, Lettuce, Corn Mango, Banana, Apple, Berries



Oscar can eat various seafood, and it’s good for them. Marine protein is a super alternative to terrestrial protein.

You can include seafood like tuna, salmon, mussels, squid, and cockles.

Moreover, brine shrimps and prawns are great food options for oscar because of fibers that aid digestion.

Make sure you cut fish such as salmon and tuna, into beautiful pieces before serving, and also remove the oil.

Oily part of the fish isn’t easy to digest and can make the water dirty.

Salmon & Tuna

Animal Meat

You can also infrequently feed your oscar fish chicken, and red meats such as mutton, beef, etc. to bring some variety to their diet.

However, don’t feed them animal meat too often, because it can adversely affect oscar fish health.

Animal meat contains saturated fats. The fish liver is not supposed to process that. So, moderation is the key. Too much animal meat can cause fatty liver disease to oscar fish.

“Beef heart is one of the best animal meat you can feed to your Oscar fish because it does not contain a lot of saturated fats.”

Tom Jones, Aquagoodness

However, feeding terrestrial animal protein in moderation can yield an excellent result in terms of the health and growth of the oscar fish.

The preparation of animal meats is also vital. That must be nicely boiled and cooled down to room temperature.

Also, never use any spice or seasoning, and make sure you remove the uneaten piece of food immediately from the tank.



You can provide vegetables as well. Vegetables are a great source of fiber.

Feeding them once a week will help oscar fish in digestion and relieve constipation.

Since vegetables are not their main diet, feeding mostly plant-based food won’t ensure proper nutrition for oscar fish.

Animal protein is a complete protein containing all the essential amino acids.

On the other hand, plant-based proteins are proteins that provide only a few amino acids.

The most common vegetables that fishkeepers used to feed their oscar are peas, carrots, cucumber, spinach, lettuce, broccoli, and corn.


Fruits can also be fed to oscar, and the same rules apply to fruits as vegetables. You can provide mango, banana, berries, and apples in small pieces to your oscar fish.

What Human Food You Should Avoid Feeding Oscar

Feeding your oscar fish a little human food may be quite handy for an oscar owner.

But, there is some human food that you shouldn’t feed your oscar because that can cause digestive ailments, and also deteriorates the water quality.

Bakery Items

Any kind of bakery item should be avoided. Bakery items are in general rich in carbohydrates and contain yeast.

Oscar fish can eat bakery items like biscuits, bread, etc. But bakery items are low in nutritional value in terms of oscar fish health.

Another aspect is yeast in contact with water expands, and that can create constipation or bloating problems for your oscar fish.

Citrus Food

Lemon, lime, oranges, etc. are citrus food. They contain Citric acid, and because of that citrus food is sour-sweet in taste.

Oscar fish won’t mind eating those. But if you throw down the citrus food in the tank, the pH level can be altered to some extent.

Therefore, you had better avoid feeding citrus food to the oscar.

How To Prepare Oscar Fish Food At Home

There are no strict guidelines that you need to follow while preparing oscar fish food. However, you need to keep in mind a few factors that are crucial.

  • Gather what you want to feed to your oscar fish.
  • Cut down the food that can fit in oscar fish’s mouth.
  • You can add some vitamin boosters to the food to ensure proper nutrition.
  • Soak the food for an hour in tank water, then feed to your oscar.

If you want to prepare food in bulk amounts use the freezer to preserve the food.

One important thing to remember, you should not solely depend on human food.

If you do so fish will be habituated to eat only those, they won’t eat pellets, and flakes.

So, here you should make a balance; feed both the homemade and other foods.

What Are The Right Combination For Oscar Fish Diet

The right combination of an oscar fish diet is crucial to keep them healthy and ensure proper growth. Here is the chart that you can follow for feeding your oscar fish.

Days Food You Can Provide
Saturday Cichlid pellets, bloodworm, Shrimp
Sunday Live food such as Cricket, Grasshopper, live fish.
Monday Tilapia fillet, Mussels, cucumber
Tuesday Peas, Salmon or Tuna, Cichlid pellets
Wednesday Prawn, Zucchini, Banana,
Thursday Cichlid pallet, bloodworm, chicken or beef heart
Friday Live food such as Cricket, Grasshopper, live fish. Lettuce, Spinach

This is not the hard-and-fast rule, you can make your own feeding routine.

I just provided an example to show how you can add variety to your oscar fish diet, and at the same time can ensure the essential nutrients for them.

A good balance is key, and you should focus mostly on protein-based food, others are only to be blended with the main food.

How often and How Much to feed Your Oscar?

How often to feed your oscar depends solely on the age of your oscar fish. An adult oscar fish needs to be fed once daily, while juvenile oscar fish needs two-three times daily.

Baby oscar feed requires frequent feeding because they are growing fast.

They can’t eat a lot of food at a time, therefore, feeding them at regular intervals is a good practice.

How much to feed to the oscar? The amount of food that they can eat in 2-3 minutes. That’s the ideal amount, otherwise, more than that will make oscar fish obese, which is harmful.

More Resources on Oscar Fish

Bottom Line

You can feed several human foods to oscar fish, and it’s a good alternative.

However, make sure you are providing enough protein and a diversified diet to your oscar fish.

If you want to know more about oscar fish care please leave a comment below.

Sujit Modak

Leave a Comment