How to Make Birdseed Cakes

Updated February 21, 2017

Attracting birds to your backyard will make any landscape more aesthetically pleasing. Birdseed cakes are small cakes made from different kinds of seed that are held together with shortening. They are ideal for yards without birdfeeders and can be placed almost anywhere. They can also be made to feed pet birds or any other seed-loving animal.

Add 1 cup of vegetable shortening to a small saucepan. Place the pan on the stove over medium-low heat. Heat for 5 to 10 minutes or until the shortening is completely melted.

Pour 2 cups of the birdseed of choice into the saucepan. Stir the seeds into the shortening until the two are thoroughly mixed.

Transfer the birdseed mixture into a small plastic container with a lid. Move the container directly to the refrigerator and allow it to set for two to three hours before removing.

Run hot water around the outside of the container. This will loosen the hold of the shortening on the interior walls of the container, making it easier to remove.

Turn the container upside down and gently pat the bottom until the birdseed cake pops out, moulded to the shape of the container. Place the birdseed cake in a place easily accessed by birds, such as atop a fence post.


Different kinds of birdseed attract different kinds of birds. Black sunflower seeds are preferred by chickadees, cardinals and blue jays. Millet, canary seed and cracked corn are favourites of sparrows and gold finches. Small bits of fruit or nuts can also be mixed in with the melted shortening. Banana, raisin, and apple are desirable to waxwings, robins and catbirds.


Try to place the birdseed cakes out of reach of squirrels, as they will also be attracted to the seeds and may eat them before your birds have the chance.

Things You'll Need

  • Vegetable shortening
  • Saucepan
  • Birdseed
  • Plastic container
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About the Author

Willow Sidhe is a freelance writer living in the beautiful Hot Springs, AR. She is a certified aromatherapist with a background in herbalism. She has extensive experience gardening, with a specialty in indoor plants and herbs. Sidhe's work has been published on numerous Web sites, including