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Best Cichlid Food for Growth, Health and Breeding

Keeping a cichlid means keeping it in top-notch health. To do that, you’ll want the living conditions of your cichlid to be perfect. This means regularly doing things like changing the water, keeping the water temperature within reasonable limits, and of course, making sure it’s getting the proper nourishment from its food.

best cichlid food

Fish feed can completely affect the way you keep your cichlid in good health. This is something that can separate an experienced aquarium hobbyist from an inexperienced one. While some people will be content with giving their fish generic fish feed, a veteran fish owner will know that different fish require different feed for their individual needs. Not all fish have the same nutritional requirements, and in some cases, certain food items can have effects on the fish’s appearance. So it’s important that you invest in the best food for your cichlid.

Best Cichlid Food You Can Buy

There are a few different brands in the market offering cichlid food. You want to be careful about which products you go for and whether or not they can keep your cichlid healthy and happy. Here are some of the best cichlid foods you can buy.

Fluval Bug Bites Pellets for Cichlids

Fluval A6581 Bug Bites Cichlid Pellets 353 oz Medium to Large Fish

Fluval Bug Bites Pellets are made from Black Soldier Fly Larvae. Rich in protein, designed to feed the hungriest of cichlids, awesome all natural food source designed for health, growth and breeding!

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Fluval Bug Bite Pellets provide a carnivore-friendly fish feed for you. This is made from natural protein sources like wild insects. The feed is available in a 100g bag of slow sinking pellets. These have the benefit of staying on the surface long enough for fish to feed on them and prevent them from making the water cloudy or mineralized.

The big component of the Fluval Bug Bites Pellets is the Black Soldier Fly Larvae. This is a viable natural source of protein for the fish as it is 40% nutrient-rich. There are many different variations of protein that can be sourced from this feed, such as Omega 3 and Omega 6. These proteins will greatly help in the growth of the fish’s scales and skin. As a bonus, there are also some healthy minerals, vitamins, and nutrients that can help with appearance.

New Life Spectrum Thera-A

New Life Spectrum Cichlid Formula 1mm Sinking Freshwater Pet Food 250gm

Formulated from Krill and Algae, super packed with nutrition and no nasty fillers. Straight up a great source of high-quality nutrition for your cichlids.

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This is one of the most highly rated cichlid feeds. In fact, it tends to be the ultimate feed that is preferred by a lot of different fish and species. The New Life Spectrum Thera A comes in two quantities; 250g and 500g bottles. If you’re going after quaintly, it’s best to go for 500g since it will give you the most bang for your buck.

The NLS cichlid feed is made from all kinds of high-quality ingredients. This feed has a blend of different sources of nutrients. It’s meant to keep any kind of fish healthy and properly maintained. Some reviewers have noted that this feed works best for African cichlids as it can enhance their appearance significantly.

The big drawback here is that the NLS feed is more expensive than other fish feed. But as far as quality is concerned, it’s the best cichlid food of the lot. Among the saltwater community, this is one as top-of-the-line as it gets.

Royal Pet Supplies Zoo Med Spirulina Fish Food

Zoo Med Spirulina 20 Flake Fish Food 2Ounce

Spirulina super food for enhanced nutrition and prepping your cichlids for breeding. Vitamin-packed for intense nutritional super feedings, a great flake food to mix into daily feedings.

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Sometimes you don’t have the luxury of keeping all your species of fish in separate tanks. In cases like that, you have to think about what your target conditions for one fish will have an effect on all the other fish in the tank. This is especially true for fish feed when you can’t pick which fish will consume which feed in the same tank.

Royal Pet Supplies works best for these kinds of situations. This feed has been formulated to work for just about any kind of fish. Although this is primarily a saltwater fish feed, it can work for freshwater fish as well. The feed comes in sizes of 2 and 4-ounce economy packs. This feed is at the lower end of the market, so you don’t need to worry about the feed is too expensive.

Hikari Cichlid Gold Floating Pellets for Pets

Hikari 88Ounce Cichlid Gold Floating Pellets for Pets Mini

Hikari delivering yet another superfood floating pellet for your cichlid. Always a trusted brand in the tropical fish world, Hikari high quality floating pellet delivers maximum nutrition for health and growth.


If you’re looking for floating pellets instead of sinking pellets, the Hikari Cichlid pellets are what you need. These pellets come in 250g or 8.8 oz quantity with a choice of mini, medium or large-sized pellets depending on your fish.

The great thing about floating pellets is that you can easily monitor just how much your fish is eating. It also has the benefit of not making the tank water cloudy and mineralized.

The gold flakes are also high in nutritional value. The pellets are high in beta carotene and NS germ to keep the fish healthy. There is also an addition of Vitamin E and stabilized Vitamin C. This will help boost the immunity of your fish and keep them contracting any kind of aquatic disease.

The Hikari Cichlid Gold Floating Flakes are neither too expensive nor too cheap. It offers the best value for money if you’re looking for a good compromise between quality and nutrition.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Best Cichlid food?

The best cichlid food depends on your specific requirements and tank conditions. You can go for feed that is economically viable, better for overall health or appearance-enhancing. Always consider what the food will be used for, is it general overall health? Maybe you are trying to prepare your cichlids for breeding or perhaps you are trying to help them grow to their fullest potential. Each one of these requirements will have its own food to help accomplish that specific goal.

How Frequently Should You Feed Your Cichlid?

This depends on the specific species of your cichlid. As a general rule, it’s acceptable to feed your cichlid two to three times a day. Any more than that can cause overfeeding unless your cichlid has different requirements. If you are trying to grow out your cichlids or prep them for feeding, you may want to consider feeding them high protein food or live food instead of just more food. Try to match the goal with a food that can help you achieve the goal.

How Much Feed Should Each Portion Have?

A good way to determine proper feeding portions for your cichlid is to observe them during feeding. If they leave behind food during a 1-2 minute feeding period, you should lower portions. If the gobble it all up then you could test feeding a bit more each time. Using measuring spoons or cups can help you be more precise and determine the best amount of food to feed. Being consistent will provide the best results, knowing exactly how much food will also help cut down on waste and save you a few dollars in the long run.

Which Feed is Safe for Cichlids?

Any fish feed made from vegetarian ingredients will be good for cichlids. Feed with a heavy concentration of meat can cause digestive problems for the fish. Generally, the label will mention if it’s okay to use for cichlid. Most commercial food purchased online, including the ones listed here, are from reputable companies with years of experience developing food for cichlids. Trusted brands are trusted for a reason and they stand the test of time becoming the industry standard. Do your homework and you will see the same brands again and again, why? Because they have high-quality standards that are safe for your cichlids.

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