Red-Eared Slider Commercial Food Guide: Top Picks & Feeding Tips

Tanja is a qualified postgraduate scientist with a great passion for nature and how different ecosystems interact. Her education included coursework and practical experience to advance in biological sciences, farming, aquarium research and fisheries management. She has experience in constructing ponds, aqua- and hydroponics, productive gardens with a small worm farm and compost heap, and larger scale mariculture facility setups.

In my article, “A healthy diet for red-eared sliders in captivity,” I discussed the ins and outs of administering a healthy turtle diet at the correct ratios. I also mentioned the importance of adding a commercial feed with supplements to a red-eared slider’s diet for optimal growth and gut health. Let us have a closer look at the best supplier feeds sold commercially as reptile pellets, flakes, floating sticks, treats, and powders.

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Commercial food options

There are a variety of commercial food options available for red-eared sliders. However, not all these products are created equal. It is essential to do your research to find the best food for your turtle, and it is probably how you got to this post. So, what commercial turtle food options are available, and of those options, which product is the best for your red-eared sliders?

  • One option is feeding your red-eared slider pellets. There are many brands of turtle pellets on the market; thus, it is important to read the ingredients to find one high in protein and low in fillers.
  • Another option is to feed your turtle freeze-dried shrimp, mealworm, krill or crickets. These foods are a good source of protein and can be a tasty treat for your turtle.
  • Red-eared sliders also enjoy commercial fish food and can be administered in small quantities every week.

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Whatever food you choose, make sure to supplement it with fresh vegetables, fruits, and dark leafy greens. Red-eared sliders need a diet that is high in fiber in order to stay healthy. Offer your turtle a variety of foods and let them choose what they want to eat. Also, refer to the article “A healthy diet for your red-eared sliders” for a detailed list of foods that red-eared sliders can eat, and when and how to administer feed.

Reliable Suppliers

If you are looking for the best commercial turtle food for your red-eared slider, there are a few reliable suppliers that you can trust. Here are a few that ranked top of the list:

  • Chewy: This site offers a wide variety of turtle food, including pellets, freeze-dried foods, live foods, and supplements. They also have an online forum where you can ask questions and get advice from other turtle owners.
  • My Turtle Store: The online store offers a wide variety of turtle foods, including pellets, freeze-dried foods, and live foods. They also have a great selection of supplements to keep your turtle healthy.
  • Petco: This site offers a variety of commercial turtle foods, as well as live foods and supplements. They also have a blog with helpful information on turtle care.

Added Supplements

As your red-eared slider grows, you may want to consider adding some supplements to their diet. This is especially true if you are not feeding them commercially prepared turtle food that already has these added. Some common supplements include calcium, vitamins A and D, and iodine. You can find these in powder or tablet form at your local pet store or veterinary. Just be sure to follow the directions on the package.

The following turtle food products are classified in the supplements list due to their purpose of providing added supplement value to your red-eared sliders’ diet:

  • Nature Zone Bites Tortoise Food
  • Omega One Juvenile/Adult Turtle Floating Pellets
  • Rep-Cal Calcium with Vitamin D3 Ultrafine Powder Reptile Supplement
  • Zilla Vitamin Supplement with Beta Carotene Reptile Food Spray
  • Zoo Med Aquatic Turtle Banquet Block Supplement Treat
  • Zoo Med Aquatic Turtle Food Growth Formula
  • Zoo Med Dr. Turtle Slow-Release Calcium Block Turtle Supplement

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The list includes reputable suppliers who are highly recommended by other turtle and reptile keepers or aquarists.

Comparing Products and Suppliers

When it comes to finding the best food for your red-eared slider, there are a lot of options out there. But which one is the best for your turtle? The table below compares some of the market’s most popular commercial turtle foods and points out which ones come out on top.

SPOILER ALERT: Tetra ReptoMin and ZooMed products outcompete other suppliers by far.




Overall Review

Fluker’s Buffet Blend

Freeze-dried Protein

$6.49 – $27.77

Premium blend


Fresh Water Pellets

$13.59 – $54.99

Great vitality feed

Tetra ReptoMin

Floating Sticks

$3.59 – $76.99

Best overall feed

Zilla Reptile Munchies

River Shrimp Treats

$7.99 – $9.99

Premium choice


Natural Aquatic Pellets

$7.92 – $17.77

Best value for money

Though ZooMed’s aquatic turtle food is the most preferred by turtle owners because their product line is mainly derived from natural ingredients, the products tend to foul and brown tanks or ponds. Tetra ReptoMin products do not seem to pose any of these issues. Fluker’s buffet blends, on the other hand, offer a premium freeze-dried blend but definitely at a cost. Nevertheless, in the end, it is what your red-eared sliders prefer to consume.

Your red-eared slider’s dietary requirements

As your red-eared slider’s owner, it is vital to be aware of their daily diet requirements. While they are omnivores, meaning they eat both plants and animals, the bulk of their diet should be plant-based. An excellent commercial turtle food will include a mix of vegetables, fruits, and pellets.

One important thing to remember is that turtles are cold-blooded, so their metabolism is much slower than ours. This means they do not need to eat as often as we do. A general rule of thumb is to feed them once a day, although you may need to increase or decrease this depending on their activity level.

If you are unsure how much food to give them, a good starting point is 1/2 cup per 10 gallons of water. But again, this may vary depending on your turtle’s individual needs. It is always best to err on the side of caution and give them less food rather than too much.

Finally, be sure to offer your turtle a variety of foods, so they get all the nutrients they need. While pellets provide a well-rounded diet, supplementing with fresh fruits and vegetables will ensure they get all the vitamins and minerals needed to stay healthy and satisfied.

Concluding Remarks

As you have seen, a great variety of turtle feed and food combos are available for red-eared sliders. While there is no one “best” diet for these turtles, some combinations of turtle feed and food items may be better than others, depending on the individual turtle’s needs. Ultimately, it is essential to consult with a veterinarian or other reptile expert to determine the best diet for your red-eared slider.

Like with nature, regularly change the feeding combo you administer to keep your red-eared sliders happy, and to create an environment for the sliders that ‘simulates’ variety. Accordingly, healthy foraging behaviors will always be encouraged, and feeding your turtles will be an absolute breeze.

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