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Home > Fish > 9 Best Foods for Oscar Fish in 2024 – Reviews & Top Picks

9 Best Foods for Oscar Fish in 2024 – Reviews & Top Picks

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There are plenty of great brands of Oscar fish food, and the one right for you is largely dependent on your Oscar and what type of food they like to eat. Most like floating food, but some rather pick it up off the floor. Your fish may also prefer flakes or pellets.

We’ve chosen nine different brands Oscar fish food to review so you can see the difference between each brand. We’ve also included a short buyer’s guide where we help you understand a little bit more about what Oscar fish like to eat and how you can enhance their color.

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A Quick Glance at Our Favorites in 2024

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Tetra Cichlid Jumbo Tetra Cichlid Jumbo
  • Fortified with vitamin C
  • Float
  • Natural chemicals
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Wardley Shrimp Formula Wardley Shrimp Formula
  • Nutritious ingredients including shrimp
  • Helps maintain clear water
  • Vitamin C and antioxidants
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Hikari Tropical Hikari Tropical
  • Carotenoids
  • Stabilized vitamin C
  • Promotes growth
  • Hikari Hikari
  • Doesn’t cloud water
  • High in beta carotene
  • Floating pellets
  • Fluker's River Shrimp Fluker's River Shrimp
  • High in protein and amino acids
  • Single-ingredient
  • The 9 Best Foods for Oscar Fish

    1. Tetra Cichlid Jumbo Sticks Fish Food – Best Overall

    Tetra Cichlid Jumbo Sticks Fish Food

    Tetra Cichlid Jumbo Sticks Fish Food is our pick for the best overall food for Oscar fish. This brand is a great alternative to feeding your Oscar live fish. It’s constructed from dried krill and shrimp and fortified with vitamin C. It also contains natural chemicals that promote color enhancement. This type of food floats, so it’s more like the food in their natural habitat.

    The only real downside to Tetra Cichlid Jumbo Sticks Fish Food is that if your fish don’t eat it quickly, it can cloud the water. However, we think this is the best food for Oscar fish available.

    • Dried krill and shrimp
    • Fortified with vitamin C
    • Contains natural chemicals that promote color enhancement
    • Float
    • Can cloud water

    2. Wardley Shrimp Pellets Formula Fish Food – Best Value

    Wardley Shrimp Pellets Formula Fish Food

    Wardley Shrimp Pellets Formula Fish Food is our pick for the best food for Oscar fish for your money. It contains high-quality, nutritious ingredients including shrimp, fish oil, and wheat flour. Vitamin C and other antioxidants help build a strong immune system to prevent disease and infection. It also helps maintain clear water by breaking down cleanly and doesn’t form a cloud.

    The downside to Wardley Shrimp Pellets Formula Fish Food is that it breaks down very quickly, and it’s a sinking food so it can leave quite a mess on the tank floor if you don’t have bottom feeders to clean it up. With that being said, we believe this is the best food for Oscar fish for the money today.

    • Nutritious ingredients including shrimp
    • Vitamin C and antioxidants
    • Helps maintain clear water
    • Breaks down quickly

    3. Hikari Tropical Food Sticks – Premium Choice

    Hikari Tropical Food Sticks

    Hikari Tropical Food Sticks is the premium choice food for Oscar fish. This food contains plenty of carotenoids for bright, rich colors. Its ingredients supply a balanced diet for carnivores, and stabilized vitamin C helps boost the immune system and help ward off infection. It also helps promote faster growth. This food is a floating stick about ½-inch long and provides a natural feeding environment for your carnivore fish that usually likes to pick flies and other bugs off the surface.

    If your fish don’t eat the Hikari Tropical Food Sticks fast enough, they do absorb water and sink to the bottom where they can breakdown and cause some cloud in the water. We also found that about one out of four of our Oscar fish didn’t care for this food.

    • Carotenoids
    • Balanced for carnivores
    • Stabilized vitamin C
    • Promotes growth
    • Floats
    • Some fish won’t eat them

    4. Hikari Fish Food

    Hikari Fish Food

    Hikari Fish Food contains floating pellets designed to keep your water clear. The pellets are high in beta carotene and will Promote brighter colors in your fish. Stabilized vitamin C will help boost your fish’s immune system and promote longer, healthier life.

    The primary downside to Hikari Fish Food is that it dissolves quickly, and once it does, the food begins to sink. While it doesn’t cloud the water, it does allow a lot of particles to float around and can make a mess on the bottom of the tank if you feed more pellets than your fish will eat. Another thing we noticed about this brand is that it no longer uses whole fish, and instead uses fish meal, which is a lower-quality ingredient.

    • Floating pellets
    • Doesn’t cloud water
    • High in beta carotene
    • Stabilized vitamin C
    • Promotes long life
    • Dissolve quickly
    • No longer uses whole fish

    5. Fluker’s Freeze-Dried River Shrimp

    Fluker's Freeze-Dried River Shrimp

    Fluker’s Freeze-Dried River Shrimp features 100% natural freeze-dried river shrimp. There are no chemical preservatives or extra ingredients. These impressively large treats are very high in protein and amino acids, nutrients that will promote rapid, healthy growth.

    Unfortunately, it’s not a balanced meal and doesn’t provide many of the vitamins and minerals required for a strong, healthy Oscar. You will need to supplement this food with other brands to supply the necessary nutrition. Some smaller Oscar fish may have some difficulty with the tough skin on these shrimps, and they have a very bad odor. If you feed your Oscar Fluker’s Freeze-Dried River Shrimp regularly, your tank will also begin to smell like the food.

    • High in protein and amino acids
    • Single-ingredient
    • Not a balanced meal
    • Can cause your tank to have an odor

    6. Aqueon Cichlid Food Pellets

    Aqueon Cichlid Food Pellets

    Aqueon Cichlid Food Pellets is a unique brand of slow-sinking pellets. In our experience, what they mean by slow sinking is that some continue floating, some hover in the middle, and some will sink to the bottom. This food delivers balanced nutrition that contains krill and squid for optimal protein intake. There are no artificial colors or preservatives in this brand.

    Aqueon Cichlid Food Pellets do have a strong smell, however, and you’ll find yourself trying to close the package very tightly. We felt that the pallets were kind of small, and we’re only about half the size of a standard pallet. We also noticed that several of our Oscars wouldn’t eat this brand.

    • Slow sinking food
    • Balance nutrition
    • Contains krill and squid
    • No artificial colors or preservatives
    • Bad smell
    • Some fish don’t like it
    • Small pellets

    7. Fluval Bug Bites Pellets for Cichlids

    Fluval Bug Bites Pellets for Cichlids

    Fluval Bug Bites Pellets for Cichlids contain 40% black soldier fly larvae, which is extremely high in protein and easy for your Oscar to digest. These pellets also contain Omega fatty acids, which help with numerous internal functions. This brand is processed in small batches to ensure quality control.

    We found Fluval Bug Bites Pellets for Cichlids to have a very bad odor, and some of our Oscar fish did not like it. We also felt that it created cloudy water in two ways. First, the pellets break down quickly and leave some cloud in the water. The breakdown also leaves a film on the surface of some objects. Second, we thought our fish produced more waste while eating this food, which also leads to cloudy water.

    • 40% black soldier fly larvae
    • High in protein
    • Contains Omega fatty acids
    • Processed in small batches
    • Bad odor
    • Clouds water
    • Some fish don’t like

    8. HBH Pisces Pros Oscar Bites Color Fish Food

    HBH Pisces Pros Oscar Bites Color Fish Food

    HBH Pisces Pros Oscar Bites Color Fish Food provides the nutrients required for rapid growth as well as color enhancement. Floating food that will tap into your Oscar’s instinct to pull food from the water surface.

    The problem with HBH Pisces Pros Oscar Bites Color Fish Food is that the ingredient quality is not very high, and there’s no whole fish. The pellets are also extremely small and better for small fish like a Beta, but it can work well while your Oscar is still small.

    • Food for growth and color
    • Ingredient quality not very high
    • Pellets too small for bigger fish

    9. TetraCichlid Floating Cichlid Sticks

    TetraCichlid Floating Cichlid Sticks

    TetraCichlid Floating Cichlid Sticks are floating sticks that encourage your Oscars instincts to feed on the surface. This food is high in protein and nutritionally balanced for rapid, healthy growth. It also contains ingredients to help enhance the color of your Oscar. Biotin helps maintain a healthy metabolism.

    What we didn’t like about TetraCichlid Floating Cichlid Sticks was that it doesn’t contain any whole fish ingredients and is all fish meal. It also has a strong smell. This food also breaks down quickly if your fish don’t eat it right up, and as they eat, the food breaks apart in small pieces, which can be very messy.

    • High in protein
    • Nutritionally balanced
    • Enhances color
    • Contains biotin
    • No whole fish
    • Smells strong
    • Clouds water
    • Messy

    divider-fishbowlBuyer’s Guide – Choosing the Best Foods for Oscar Fish

    Let’s discuss some of the important things to consider before power-purchasing food for Oscar fish.


    Oscar fish are omnivores, which means they need meat as well as a vegetable to survive. In the wild, Oscars eat mostly insects, crustaceans like shrimp, and water plants, so they are the primary ingredients you want to look for in your food.

    High-quality cichlid flakes and pellets are the best foods to feed your Oscar. These pellets should be high in protein, and when possible, be available in different sizes to match the size of your Oscar.


    While some Oscars like flakes, the vast majority will eat pellets. There are three types of pellets available, floating, sinking, and slow sinking. Floating pellets stay at the surface and is the way most Oscars prefer to eat. It taps into their instinct to eat flies and mosquitoes from the surface of the water. Floating pellets can be easier to clean because you can use a net to pick up any extra.

    Sinking pellets quickly sink to the bottom and rest so your Oscar can pick them up and eat them. Many Oscars may like to eat from the bottom, but this type of pellet can make a mess as it breaks down and sinks into the sand or gravel.

    Slowly sinking pellets are a combination of the two and are suitable for aquariums with multiple fish. Floating pellets are slowly sinking pellets because if left in the tank long enough, they will sink.

    One thing you need to look for on a case-by-case basis is how cloudy the pellets make your water. While all pellets break up, some do so much more cleanly than others.

    Live Food

    Besides high-quality pellets, you can also feed your Oscar the following types of live food for a treat. Live food is the most nutritious, but it can also carry harmful bacteria that can transfer to your fish or the water in your aquarium. Too much life food can cause your Oscar should no longer eat pellets.

    • Blackworms
    • Bloodworms
    • Crickets,
    • Earthworms
    • Flies
    • Grasshoppers
    • Mealworms
    • Waxworms

    Plant Food

    You can also feed your Oscar, several fruits and vegetables from time to time. It’s important to blanch your fruits and vegetables first before adding them to the tank if you were feeding fruit with seeds, you will also need to make sure to remove all seeds before placing it in the water.

    • Apple
    • Banana
    • Carrots
    • Cucumber
    • Green peas
    • Lettuce
    • Spinach

    Color enhancement

    Ingredients including Carotenoids, Beta carotene, and Astaxanthin can help enhance and boost the color of your Oscar fish. These ingredients can be a fortification, and you can find them in river shrimp, skrill, and green peas.


    While every fish has a different taste, and yours may differ, we highly recommend our choice for the best overall. Tetra Cichlid Jumbo Sticks Fish Food contains whole fish and plenty of vitamins and minerals that will help your Oscar stay healthy. It will also help improve the color of your fish, and its floating style taps into its basic feeding instincts. Wardley Shrimp Formula Is another great choice and comes at a bargain price. This food also contains high-quality ingredients and provides antioxidants to boost your Oscar’s immune system.

    We hope that you have enjoyed reading over our buyer’s guide. If we have helped you choose a fish food please share these nine best foods for Oscar fish on Facebook and Twitter.

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    Featured Image Credit: Enrique Grisales, Pexels

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