Are you new to owning a bearded dragon?
Do you want to provide the best and healthiest foods for your bearded dragon?
As an omnivore, bearded dragons need to eat both protein and vegetation, but most people feed their pets too many insects.
It’s tricky knowing what to feed your bearded dragon when it comes to vegetation, but we’re here to help.
What are the best fruits, vegetables, and bearded dragon salad?
The best fruit, vegetables, and salads for bearded dragons mimic what they would find in the wild. It’s essential to feed your pet a mix of these plants often ensuring they receive the nutrients they need.
Read on for more details on what to feed your beardy when it comes to plants.
Table of Contents
Brief Overview Of Bearded Dragon Diet And Feeding
Bearded dragons go through changes in their diets depending on their stage in life.
In general, younger bearded dragons need to eat more often with a mostly protein diet (insects like mealworms) with some plants.
This flips as they age into an adult bearded dragon.
Adult bearded dragons need a diet consisting of 70% plant life and 30% protein (including insects and worms).
If you’d like a list of great protein sources we have a post on the best insects for bearded dragons you’ll find helpful.
For quick reference, see this table on what and how often to feed bearded dragons.
|Age||Diet Ratio||Amount||Feeding Frequency|
|0-3 Months||70% Insect 30% Veg||30-80 Insects Daily||3-5 Daily|
|3-8 Months||70% Insect 30% Veg||30-80 Insects Daily||2 Daily|
|8-12 Months||70% Insect 30% Veg||30-80 Insects Daily||1 Daily|
|1+ Years||30% Insect 70% Veg||50 Insects Weekly||Roation*|
Note: Each feeder insect should be smaller than the distance between the bearded dragon’s eyes.
This prevents injury from eating.
The size of your live food is a greater concern for baby bearded dragons.
We have a dedicated post on how often to feed bearded dragons that dives much deeper into the topic of feeding frequency.
How To Feed A Bearded Dragon
Before we jump into the bearded dragon’s diet, let’s quickly cover some tips for feeding your bearded dragon.
First, never feed them anything larger than the distance between their eyes. This could cause paralysis or even death.
Place the food in the enclosure in front of your pet bearded dragon.
Once the bearded dragon starts eating, continue to place more food in front of it.
Note: It’s also completely acceptable to feed them from your hand.
Make sure you hold the food with your fingers but don’t get your finger too close to the beardy.
They can bite, which won’t hurt, but it’s still something to avoid.
If you happen to get bit here’s one of our posts on handling a bearded dragon bite.
Continue to do this until the bearded dragon stops eating.
Stop adding food at this point.
After your beardy has ignored the food for a few minutes and gone to do something else (such as basking), remove the food.
You don’t want it to spoil and then the beardy to come back to it.
In short, your goal is to feed your pet as much as it’ll eat at one time.
Then, remove the leftovers.
Pro-tip: Have what you’re planning to feed the bearded dragon set out ahead of time.
Best Fruits For Bearded Dragons
Bearded dragons can eat most fruit without being harmed, but the fruit on our list offers excellent nutrients and are completely safe for the lizard.
Don’t overdo too much of one type of fruit.
Mixing it up gives a tasty variety of nutrients.
Fruits can make up to 1/3 of the meal for “veggie” meals.
Best Fruits For Bearded Dragons:
Best Bearded Dragon Vegetables
When bearded dragon experts refer to vegetables, they’re talking about the plants humans eat as well.
These are jam-packed with nutrients for bearded dragons.
You need to mix up the types of vegetables you feed your pet.
A good rule of thumb is to cover as many colors of vegetables as possible.
In veggies, different colors mean different vitamins.
Vegetables can make up to 1/2 of the meal for “veg” days.
Best Vegetables For Bearded Dragons:
- Green beans
- Butternut squash
- Sweet potato
- Bell pepper
- Broccoli (small bits weekly)
- Collard Green
- Bok Choy
- Acorn Squash
- Swiss Chard
Best Salads For Bearded Dragons
The best dragon’s salad comes from the plant’s bearded dragons like to forage in the wild.
These are sometimes ones we, humans, use as garnishes or spices.
As with veggies, these salads are packed with essential nutrients.
But a leafy green is also crucial for a healthy digestive system.
Avoid plants high in oxalates since it binds with calcium and removes the nutrients from your pet.
Like the other plants, make sure you mix up what salads you use from meal to meal.
Salads can make up to 1/2 of the meal for “veg” days.
If you’re using iceberg lettuce, do so in minimal amounts and don’t provide it daily.
Best Salads For Bearded Dragons:
- Dandelion greens
- Turnip greens
- Mustard greens
- Dandelion Flowers
- Dandelion Leaf
Supplements For Bearded Dragons
Even with an excellent and varied diet, there’s a chance your captive bearded dragon may become short of a certain type of nutrient.
The most common is calcium deficiency.
This is from a lack of calcium in their diets or a lack of Vitamin D (which comes from the UV bulbs) needed to absorb calcium.
The easiest way to avoid this problem is to use calcium powder.
There are different types of supplements available.
The most common and effective is a powder sprinkled on your bearded dragon’s food once or twice a week.
I recommend this powder supplement by Zoo Med on Amazon.
It has many vitamins and nutrients as well as probiotics for helping keep the digestive system healthy.
Your bearded dragon must get the best fruits, vegetables, and salads in their diet.
Failing to do so can result in a severe imbalance in their nutrition, which may shorten their lifespan.
By making sure you feed adult bearded dragons with 70% of their diet based on plants and switching up the types of plants they eat, you’re setting them up for long and healthy life.