What to Feed a Baby Bearded Dragon | Beardies Eat A Varied Diet

Bearded Dragon Food

What to Feed a Baby Bearded Dragon

Like most living creatures, baby bearded dragons need to eat a proper diet on a regular schedule in order to remain healthy and happy.

When you’re first getting familiar with the diet and feeding of beardies, it might seem like a lot to know and remember. But don’t be intimidated- once you get a handle on the basics, it’ll be easy as pie to get into a routine for feeding your baby. You got this!

Dragons are omnivores, and they need a variety of different foods in their diets. They won’t get everything that they need from food alone, so you will have to offer calcium and vitamin supplements, as well.
The age of your bearded dragon determines how often and how much they should eat, and how often nutritional supplements should be added to their food.

Age Guide:

Hatchlings (Newborn up to 3-5 months)

• Frequency: 3 – 5 times a day
• Ratio: 80% protein, 20% veggies
• Calcium: Every feeding, 5 days a week
• Vitamins: Once a day, 2 days a week

Juvenile (5 – 18 months)

• Frequency: 2 – 3 times a day
• Ratio: 80% protein, 20% veggies
• Calcium: Every feeding, 4 days a week
• Vitamins: Once a day, 3 days a week

Adult (Over 18 months)

• Frequency: 1 – 2 times a day
• Ratio: 80% veggies, 20% protein
• Calcium: Once a day, 3 days a week
• Vitamins: Once a day, 2 days a week

Super-Important Tips

Before getting into the specific items that a bearded dragon can eat, there are a few important things to know about preparing food and supplements for your beardie’s diet.


Your dragon needs to eat live insects to stay healthy. The bugs don’t have a lot of nutritional content, however, and have limited value unless you gut-load them.
It sounds bizarre, but it makes sense! Gut-loading is basically fattening-up the bugs before they are fed to your dragon. Filling their little tummies with good stuff so that, when your beardie eats them, he/she will get the benefits of the insects’ last meals.
Feed the insects in your holding tank up to 48 hours before they’re slated for the feeding dish. You can give them the veggies that dragons eat or a special food mix from your pet store. Some beardie lovers even feed their bugs baby food or puppy chow.

Dusting & Dizzying

Bearded dragons need vitamin and calcium supplements. These come in a powdered form that can be dusted on your beardie’s food. It’s perfectly okay to dust their veggies, but you can kill two birds with one stone by dusting the insects as part of dizzying them.

It’s a silly way to say it, I know, but what “dizzying” means is confusing and calming the bugs. You don’t want them scrambling or hopping around willy-nilly, stressing out your hungry beardie, right?

When you’re preparing a meal, put the insects into a small cardboard box or plastic container, dust the supplement on them, then shake them around a little bit. Don’t shake too vigorously- you’re not making a martini, and you don’t want the bugs to be killed from whiplash. Your beardie needs to consume them alive.

Just shake enough to coat them with the dust and get their tiny noggins rattled. Then serve them up!

Serve While Warm

Your baby bearded dragon’s food doesn’t need to be heated up before eating, but your beardie does. A dragon needs to be warm to digest food properly. Don’t serve breakfast immediately after bringing up the lights for the day, give your baby some time to warm up before feeding. And give your beardie at least 2 hours to digest after dinner before turning down the lights for night.

Bearded Dragon’s Diet List

Proper serving amounts depend upon the size, age, and personality of a dragon. As a beardie will stop eating when full, pay attention to how much he/she eats and let that guide you in determining serving sizes.


From birth until reaching adulthood at 18 months, 80% of a dragon’s diet should be protein. After that, the ratio should flip, with protein representing only 20% of your beardie’s diet.

Feed your dragon insects by putting them in a shallow dish. Remove the dish and clean carcasses and random body parts from the habitat once your beardie is sated.

Meat Menu:

• Crickets
o Juveniles should be fed pinhead crickets
o Bugs need to be smaller than the space between the beardie’s eyes

• King worms
o Also known as “Super Worms,” a well-balanced choice

• Mealworms
o Do not feed to hatchlings
o These are a treat, use sparingly

• Wax worms
o High fat content, use sparingly

• Earthworms
o High fat content, use sparingly

• Roaches
o Dubia roaches are the best
o Hatchlings can eat newborn roaches

• Pinkie Mice
o Served frozen, only feed to adults

Protein No-Nos:

• Table scraps
o Don’t feed beardies beef, chicken, pork, or any meat from your plate

• Insects
o Boxedler bugs and fireflies are toxic to bearded dragons
o Never feed a dragon wild-caught bugs, they may have trace pesticides or parasites that could be fatal


Only 20% of a beardie’s diet should be veggies until adulthood, then 80% should constitute greens. Mixing insects or brightly colored fruit treats into salads can help to get a dragon used to eating greens.

Salad Menu:

• Staple Leafy Green
o Turnip, mustard, and collard greens, kale, watercress, and escarole
o Iceberg and other lettuces common to people-salads are good for providing hydration/water content, but are not essentially nutritious

• Treat/Occasional Greens
o Swiss chard, bok choy, cilantro, parsley, and kohlrabi leaves

• Staple Veggies
o All types of squash, from acorn squash to zucchini
o Root vegetables: parsnips, carrots, sweet potato
o All things green: snap peas, green beans, okra, broccoli

• Treat/Occasional Veggies
o Asparagus, cauliflower, beets, celery, bell pepper

• Staple Fruits
o Mango, papaya, prickly pear

• Treat/Occasional Fruits
o Banana, berries, melon, kiwi, apple, grapes, peaches, figs

Salad No-Nos:

• Veggies
o Avoid feeding a beardie tomatoes, beet greens, spinach
• Fruits
o Rhubarb and avocados are toxic to bearded dragons


Baby bearded dragons need to stay hydrated, but many may not drink from a water dish. If you are worried that your baby isn’t getting enough water, try these measures:

• Make sure water in the dish is always clean
• Drop a piece of brightly colored fruit or a small mealworm into the water; a beardie will consume water while eating it
• Spray water on your dragon’s salad before serving
• Spray a mist of water on your beardie, he/she may lick up droplets

With a proper, well-balanced diet and adequate hydration, your baby bearded dragon will stay healthy, living a long a happy life. See how my love affair with Baby Beardies started by reading Baby Bearded Dragon | Geocaching Adventure Hunts New Treasure.