Bird-friendly Reindeer Food Recipe

These recipes have been adapted from the RSPB website. They recommend NOT using glitter as it is damaging to wildlife.

Bird-friendly Reindeer Food Recipe

These snacks can be made at home using store-cupboard ingredients, are a brilliant Christmas activity to get the kids involved with and can be safely enjoyed by all of the wildlife in your garden - not just reindeer.

Why Glitter Should Be Avoided

Glitter is a microplastic which can end up in the sea/ocean. Its size makes it appealing to animals to eat but it is potentially very dangerous (animals eating plastic often has fatal consequences).

Not only is this bad for our marine life, but it is estimated that these microplastics end up back inside of us as we consume seafood. One study led by Prof Richard Thompson reported that plastic was found in 1/3 of UK caught fish. This can only be a bad thing!

Experts estimate there are already 51 trillion fragments of microplastics in our oceans.

Please think twice before buying/making reindeer food with glitter. These bird-friendly recipes are a brilliant alternative and a nice tradition for children to get involved with.

Bird-friendly Reindeer Food Recipe 


  • A few handfuls of wild bird seed
  • A handful of rolled oats 
  • Dried cranberries 
  • Dried insects (especially mealworms and waxworms)
  • Some grated cheese
  • 50g Melted lard / suet 
The beauty of this recipe is that it is super flexible. There is no need to go out and buy special ingredients, just use what you have. You can make this a few days in advance with children (simply stir the ingredients together) and store in a recycled jar. If you would like to make a label, I like this verse:

Reindeer Food Poem

Sprinkle on your lawn at night.
The moon will make it sparkle bright.
Santa's reindeer fly and roam.
This will help them find your home.

On Christmas Eve, open your glass jar and sprinkle the reindeer food on your lawn at dusk. You could also leave some in a bowl by your step.

Bird-friendly Reindeer Food Recipe

Bird-friendly Reindeer Cookies Recipe

As an alternative to reindeer food, how about making Rudolph's favourite cookies and hanging them in your garden?

  • 150g Suet/Lard 
  • 500g Wild Bird Feed Mix 


1 - Melt the Suet/Lard in a saucepan over a low heat. Once melted, gradually stir in the bird seat until well mixed.
2 - Remove from the heat and leave to stand for 10 minutes. It should start to set.
3 - Spoon onto a lined baking tray (at least 2cm deep) and pop in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
4 - Use festive cookie cutters to cut out various cookie shapes
5 - Leave the cookies to cool overnight in the fridge (you can sprinkle any leftover mixture on your lawn)
6 - On Christmas Eve, you can hang them from trees with natural string or leave on a bird table - whatever Rudolph doesn't eat will soon be enjoyed by other garden wildlife.

Bird-friendly Reindeer Food Recipe

Let me know if you fancy making some bird-friendly reindeer food this year x

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Bird-friendly Reindeer Food Recipe


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