Best Bird Seed for Chickadees: Top Choices in 2023

Chickadees are delightful garden visitors, and the following curated list features the best bird seed products to attract and nourish these charming birds.

Best Bird Seed for Chickadees

After an in-depth analysis of various bird seeds, we’ve narrowed down the choices for the perfect chickadee bird seed blend, taking into consideration quality, nutrition, and bird-attracting factors.

In the next section, we’ll dive into the top options for the best bird seed that will keep chickadees, and other neighboring birds, well-fed and satisfied throughout the changing seasons.

Kaytee Wild Bird Ultimate No Mess Food

Kaytee Wild Bird Ultimate No Mess Food

Kaytee Wild Bird Ultimate No Mess Food is an excellent choice for those seeking a high-quality, no-waste birdseed that attracts diverse bird species, including chickadees.


  • 100% edible ingredients, no sunflower hulls
  • Attracts a wide variety of colorful songbirds
  • Compatible with various bird feeder types


  • Slightly more expensive than regular seed mixes
  • May still be prone to interest from squirrels
  • Some small seeds may germinate if dropped

The Kaytee Wild Bird Ultimate No Mess Food truly stands out for its no-mess and waste-free ingredients. Comprised of sunflower hearts, shelled peanuts, added calcium, and more, the mix is entirely consumable. Birds simply love it, and as a result, your backyard remains clean and beautiful.

Attracting a variety of birds, such as cardinals, finches, chickadees, nuthatches, woodpeckers, and other colorful songbirds, this birdseed mix keeps your yard lively and vibrant. It’s compatible with hopper, gazebo, and tube-style bird feeders, offering flexibility when setting up your bird feeding station.

While Kaytee Wild Bird Ultimate No Mess Food is an excellent choice, it is slightly more expensive than regular seed mixes. However, the high-quality components and waste-free nature of this seed can justify the extra cost. Additionally, it’s worth noting that squirrels might still be attracted to this mix. To prevent them from depleting your birdseed supply, consider implementing squirrel-proof measures. Lastly, some small seeds may fall on the ground and germinate. To avoid this, simply place your bird feeder in a strategic location away from garden beds.

In conclusion, for those seeking a no-mess, high-quality birdseed, the Kaytee Wild Bird Ultimate No Mess Food is a top choice. Its waste-free composition, variety of attractive ingredients, and compatibility with different feeder types make it ideal for keeping your backyard clean, beautiful, and filled with colorful songbirds.

Lyric Chickadee Wild Bird Seed

Lyric Chickadee Wild Bird Seed

A fantastic choice for attracting chickadees and other songbirds to your backyard with an appealing blend of sunflower seeds and nuts.


  • Rich mixture of sunflower seeds, mixed tree nuts, and peanuts
  • Designed to attract chickadees, nuthatches, titmice, woodpeckers, and more
  • Highly compatible with various feeder types


  • May require frequent refilling as birds love this seed mix
  • Potential for squirrels to be attracted as well
  • A few reported instances of bugs in the packaging

After using Lyric Chickadee Wild Bird Seed in my own backyard, I have been pleased with how it effortlessly drew in a variety of songbirds, especially the adorable chickadees I aimed to attract. The carefully crafted blend of sunflower seeds, mixed tree nuts, and peanuts seems to be a favorite among chickadees, nuthatches, titmice, woodpeckers, and even some unexpected visitors.

In addition to pleasing the birds, I appreciated the mix’s compatibility with multiple feeder types. However, I did find that I had to refill the feeder quite often, as the birds truly flocked to it and emptied it rather quickly. While this isn’t a major drawback, it does make for a more frequent maintenance task.

One thing to keep in mind is that the Lyric Chickadee Wild Bird Seed isn’t only attractive to birds; squirrels also enjoyed snacking on the mix. The presence of squirrels didn’t bother me personally, but if you’d prefer to keep them away, you might want to take precautions, like using a squirrel-proof feeder.

Lastly, while the quality of this bird seed blend is generally impressive, there have been some isolated reports of bugs found in the packaging. I experienced no such issues with my bag, but it’s something to watch out for.

Overall, I highly recommend the Lyric Chickadee Wild Bird Seed for anyone looking to attract chickadees and other delightful songbirds to their backyard. The mix’s enticing blend, compatibility with various feeders, and my own personal experience with it make it worth giving a try.

Lyric Fine Tunes Wild Bird Seed

Lyric Fine Tunes Wild Bird Seed

A premium no-waste bird seed mix that attracts a variety of birds, perfect for chickadees and other small-beaked birds.


  • Custom cut, no-waste mix
  • Suitable for small-beaked birds, especially younger ones
  • All-natural ingredients and high nutritional value


  • A bit pricey
  • Not suitable for caged/domestic birds
  • Mixture inconsistency in some bags

As a bird enthusiast, I have tried various bird seeds on the market, and Lyric Fine Tunes has proven to be one of the best. With its custom cut, no-waste mix, even small-beaked birds like chickadees can easily eat the seeds provided. The blend is 100% edible and contains a good balance of nuts and kernels, which are a natural source of Vitamin E, essential for bird health.

The Lyric Fine Tunes Wild Bird Seed mix not only attracts chickadees but also a wide range of birds like bluebirds, finches, and cardinals. However, while it’s perfect for wild birds, this mix is not recommended for domestic (caged) birds, so be cautious if you’re considering this product for your pet birds.

One minor issue that I encountered is that some bags had an inconsistent mixture, resulting in a faster consumption rate. Although the price may be a little higher than other bird seeds on the market, the quality and variety of birds attracted to the feeder make it well worth the investment.

In conclusion, if you’re looking to attract chickadees and other wild birds to your yard, this Lyric Fine Tunes Wild Bird Seed mix is ideal. With its high nutritional content and no-waste formula, your feathered friends will surely enjoy this treat while keeping your feeder area clean.

Wagner’s 76027 Black Oil Sunflower Wild Bird Food, 25-Pound Bag


A top choice for wild bird enthusiasts, Wagner’s Black Oil Sunflower Seed offers high-quality nourishment for a variety of bird species, particularly chickadees.


  • Attracts a wide variety of birds
  • Thin shelled sunflower for easy access by small beaked birds
  • High energy content for a healthy bird lifestyle


  • May attract squirrels as well
  • Can create a mess if not properly stored
  • Packaged in a larger box than necessary

After using Wagner’s Black Oil Sunflower Wild Bird Food, I’ve noticed that it does an excellent job of attracting a wide variety of birds, including chickadees, cardinals, and finches. The thin-shelled sunflower seeds make it easy for even the smallest beaked birds to enjoy, while the high-energy content keeps them healthy and active.

One downside, however, is that the seeds can also attract squirrels, leading to the occasional squabble at the feeder. A separate squirrel feeder may be necessary to keep the peace. Additionally, the seeds can create a mess if not properly stored or if the bag is accidentally damaged. It’s also worth mentioning that the product arrives in a larger box than necessary, which may be a concern for those focused on reducing waste.

All in all, the Wagner’s 76027 Black Oil Sunflower Wild Bird Food provides an excellent source of nourishment for wild birds, especially chickadees. If you are looking for a high-quality, USA made bird seed that caters to a variety of species, this product is a fantastic option.

Lyric Fruit and Nut Wild Bird Seed

Lyric Fruit and Nut Wild Bird Seed

High-quality bird seed mix that attracts various songbirds and provides a blend of fruits, nuts, and seeds for an enjoyable bird-watching experience.


  • Wide variety of 13 gourmet, natural ingredients
  • Attracts numerous species of songbirds
  • No fillers, resulting in less waste


  • Slightly higher price than other birdseed mixes
  • Some corn and peanut content may not be preferred by all birds
  • Limited international shipping

Lyric Fruit and Nut Wild Bird Seed offers a balanced blend of all-natural ingredients designed to attract a wide range of songbirds, including chickadees, robins, orioles, blue jays, and more. Its 13 premium components provide an enjoyable mix for your feathered friends, while the absence of fillers ensures that there’s minimal waste left behind at your bird feeders.

A downside, however, is its price point, which is somewhat higher when compared to other birdseed options. This could potentially dissuade some buyers, especially those on a tighter budget. And while the mix contains an assortment of seeds, nuts, and fruits, it also includes corn and peanuts, which may not be as appealing to all birds.

The product itself is not widely available for international shipping, which may be a disadvantage for some customers looking to purchase it from outside the United States. That said, for those who reside within the U.S., this birdseed mix could prove to be a favorite choice for attracting a variety of songbirds and enhancing your bird-watching experiences.

Happy Wings Nyjer/Thistle Seeds with Empty Sock

Happy Wings Nyjer/Thistle Seeds with Empty Sock

The Happy Wings Nyjer/Thistle Seeds with Empty Sock is a fantastic option for attracting a variety of songbirds and finches, while providing them with nutritious, oil-rich seeds.


  • Highly nutritious and exotic oil-rich seeds for year-round feeding
  • Attracts various finches and songbirds
  • Comes with durable, reusable mesh sock feeders


  • More prone to squirrel access than other feeder types
  • May not attract as many birds as expected
  • Socks may not be as weather-resistant as other feeders

I recently tried the Happy Wings Nyjer/Thistle Seeds for feeding the chickadees in my backyard. The seeds themselves are rich in oils and nutrients, making them perfect for sustaining a variety of wild birds. The high-quality seeds are processed in a USDA and BRC-GS approved facility, ensuring that our feathered friends have the best possible food source.

The package also includes three empty mesh sock feeders that can be easily filled and hung. Since the sock feeders require no assembly, it was a breeze to set them up. Additionally, they can be washed and refilled multiple times, making it convenient to maintain multiple feeding areas or have backups.

However, like every product, there are a few downfalls. The mesh sock feeders may not be the best choice for keeping squirrels away, as they can easily jump onto bushes and tear holes in the feeder. Additionally, some customers have reported that the product may not attract as many birds as desired, but this could vary depending on location and availability of other food sources.

In conclusion, the Happy Wings Nyjer/Thistle Seeds with Empty Sock offers a versatile and nutritious option for feeding a variety of wild birds. Despite a few minor drawbacks, this bird seed and feeder combination is worth considering for any bird enthusiast looking to nourish their backyard visitors.

Lyric Sunflower Kernels Wild Bird Seed

Lyric Sunflower Kernels Wild Bird Seed

Lyric Sunflower Kernels are a fantastic choice for chickadees and a variety of other wild birds, thanks to its nutritious ingredients and no-waste formula.


  • High-quality, edible ingredients without shells
  • Attracts a variety of bird species, including chickadees
  • No mess and no waste in your feeding area


  • Price fluctuations make it difficult to budget for
  • May contain unexpected filler ingredients such as peanuts
  • Packaging might not be sufficiently sturdy for shipping

Lyric Sunflower Kernels are packed with essential fats and proteins that chickadees, grosbeaks, flickers, redpolls, towhees, finches, nuthatches, titmice, woodpeckers, and cardinals need to thrive. The kernels are 100% edible, meaning there’s no mess or waste from shells, making your bird-feeding area clean and enjoyable.

The kernels can be used alone or mixed with other bird seed blends to attract even more bird species to your feeder. However, it’s worth noting that some customers have reported peanuts mixed into the product, which they did not expect. If you or any family members have allergies, be cautious in handling this product.

One concern is the fluctuation of the product’s price over time, making it challenging to budget for consistently. Despite that, Lyric Sunflower Kernels provide an excellent food source for chickadees and other wild birds in your backyard. With a 4.7 star rating from more than 1900 reviews, it remains a popular choice among bird enthusiasts.

Lyric Fine Tunes Wild Bird Seed

Lyric Fine Tunes Wild Bird Seed

This custom-cut, waste-free mix is perfect for attracting a variety of smaller-beaked birds, including chickadees.


  • All-natural, finely-cut blend for easier consumption
  • No shells or hulls for a mess-free feeding experience
  • Attracts a wide variety of birds, including bluebirds, finches, and chickadees


  • Can be quickly consumed by birds, requiring frequent refilling
  • Not recommended for domestic (caged) birds
  • May not attract bluebirds as easily as other species

Lyric Fine Tunes Wild Bird Seed is a premium mix that provides all-natural nutrition to attract a wide variety of birds. Its finely cut blend is perfect for smaller-beaked birds, making it easier for them to eat. This bird seed mix is perfect for chickadees, but also attracts other wild birds such as bluebirds, finches, and more.

One of the major advantages of this bird seed mix is its no-waste composition. All shells and hulls are removed, leaving just the nut and kernel blend. This not only provides a natural source of Vitamin E for bird health but also significantly cuts down on mess in your bird feeder or garden area. As a result, you won’t be spending time and effort on cleanup.

While the blend attracts a variety of bird species, it might not be as successful with attracting bluebirds specifically, which is a common desire for many bird enthusiasts. Additionally, it is worth noting that this particular mix is not recommended for domestic caged birds.

In summary, Lyric Fine Tunes Wild Bird Seed is an excellent choice for attracting chickadees and other small-beaked wild birds due to its finely cut, waste-free blend. However, if you’re keen on attracting mainly bluebirds, you may need to try other options or supplement with additional means to attract them.

Kaytee Wild Bird Waste Free Nut and Fruit Food Seed Blend

Kaytee Wild Bird Seed

A top choice for attracting a variety of birds, including chickadees, with its premium blend of nuts and fruits, while minimizing waste.


  • 100% consumable gourmet mix
  • Attracts a variety of birds
  • No messy shells or leftovers


  • May clog certain feeders due to cherry size
  • Slightly more expensive than other options
  • Limited international shipping

I recently tried the Kaytee Wild Bird Waste Free Nut and Fruit Food Seed Blend and noticed a significant increase in birds visiting my backyard. Chickadees, woodpeckers, cardinals, and finches flocked to the feeder for a taste of the delicious mix. Hulled sunflower seeds, shelled nuts, cranberries, cherries, blueberries, and dehydrated apples combine to create a nutritious and tasty treat for our feathered friends.

One of the standout features of this product is its waste-free formulation. Kaytee’s blend doesn’t leave shells or messy leftovers behind, keeping the yard and patio clean. This is perfect for those who value a tidy outdoor space without compromising their love for birdwatching.

However, it’s worth noting that the cherries in this blend may clog some bird feeders with smaller openings. In my experience, it’s a good idea to check the feeder size compatibility beforehand. The seed blend is slightly more expensive than other birdseed options, but the premium mix and variety of birds it attracts make it a worthwhile investment.

In conclusion, the Kaytee Wild Bird Waste Free Nut and Fruit Food Seed Blend is a top recommendation for those looking to attract chickadees and other birds to their backyard. With a waste-free formula and a delightful mix of nuts and fruits, it’s a product that benefits both the birds and those who enjoy watching them. Just be mindful of feeder compatibility and the slightly higher price point.

Lyric Delite Wild Bird Seed

Lyric Delite Wild Bird Seed

Lyric Delite Wild Bird Seed is an excellent choice for feeding chickadees as it offers a no-waste, nutritious mix that attracts various bird types.


  • Shell-free, weed-free, and mess-free formula
  • Attracts a wide variety of birds, including chickadees
  • Stay Fresh Technology keeps the product fresh


  • May attract squirrels due to larger seed pieces
  • Some birds may prefer other mixes
  • Not eligible for international shipping

Lyric Delite Bird Seed goes beyond offering a tasty blend to a variety of wild birds like chickadees, buntings, woodpeckers, and finches. Its unique formula is pure food for the birds since it contains pre-hulled seeds, thus providing a waste-free, mess-free, and weed-free feeding experience.

One thing I enjoy about this birdseed is its Stay Fresh Technology, which ensures the freshness of the seeds regardless of the storage time or weather conditions. The blend contains shelled peanuts, sunflower kernels, pecans, pistachios, and shelled pumpkin seeds. These ingredients cater to birds of all life stages, providing them with essential proteins and nourishment for survival.

However, keep in mind that this mix may attract squirrels due to the larger pieces of nuts and seeds. If you are trying to prevent squirrels from reaching your bird feeders, you might want to explore other options. Also, some birds may prefer other mixes, so it may be helpful to experiment with different seed blends to find the best one for your local feathered friends.

In conclusion, Lyric Delite Wild Bird Seed is a solid choice for those looking to offer nutritious, hassle-free food to chickadees and other wild birds. With its high-quality ingredients and Stay Fresh Technology, this product will keep both the birds and birdwatchers happy.

Buying Guide

When choosing the best bird seed for chickadees, there are several factors to consider. The primary goal is to provide a nutritious and attractive blend that will encourage these beautiful birds to visit and feed in your garden regularly.


Select a bird seed blend with a high percentage of chickadee-friendly ingredients. These include:

  • Black oil sunflower seeds: Rich in essential fats and proteins, lightweight, and easy to crack for chickadees.
  • Peanuts: A good source of energy and protein, make sure they are unsalted and chopped or in the form of peanut butter.
  • Millet: A small grain that provides a decent amount of carbohydrates and proteins.
  • Safflower seeds: A good alternative to sunflower seeds, less attractive to squirrels.

It’s essential to avoid filler ingredients such as wheat, oats, and cracked corn that provide less nutritional value to chickadees.

Nutritional Value

Ensure the bird seed blend has a balanced combination of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates for the chickadees. High-energy, nutrient-dense seeds are critical for their overall health and survival, especially during the harsh winter months.


Choose fresh bird seed with a recognizable and readable manufacturing and expiry date. Make sure the seeds are not stale or moldy, which can be harmful to birds.

Packing Size

Consider purchasing smaller packages of bird seed to maintain freshness. Unused portions should be stored in a cool, dry place in an airtight container preventing any contaminants and moisture.

Seed Mix vs Straight Seeds

Decide between a pre-mixed blend or straight seeds. Pre-mixed blends provide convenience but might contain less favorable ingredients. Straight seeds allow customizing the ratio of ingredients to the preferences of chickadees in your region.

Remember to keep the bird feeders clean and accessible to promote healthy feeding habits for chickadees and other desirable birds in your garden.

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of bird seed do chickadees prefer?

Chickadees have a strong preference for black oil sunflower seeds. These seeds are high in fat content, which provides chickadees with the energy they need. Offering these seeds in your bird feeder will likely improve the chances of attracting chickadees.

How can I attract chickadees to my feeder?

To attract chickadees to your feeder, ensure you’re providing black oil sunflower seeds or a high-quality seed mix containing these seeds. Chickadees also appreciate suet, particularly in the colder months. Additionally, placing your feeder near a tree or shrub can offer the birds a sense of security, increasing the likelihood they will visit your feeder.

Are there specific seeds that chickadees dislike?

Chickadees typically avoid seeds with tough outer shells or low nutritional content. Avoid filling your feeder with seeds such as milo or cracked corn, as these are less appealing to chickadees. Instead, opt for black oil sunflower seeds or a high-quality seed mix.

Which bird seeds are best for both chickadees and cardinals?

Black oil sunflower seeds are a favorite for both chickadees and cardinals. These seeds have a high nutritional value that appeals to many bird species. Providing a seed mix that combines black oil sunflower seeds with safflower seeds or striped sunflower seeds will satisfy the feeding preferences of both chickadees and cardinals.

What type of feeder is best for chickadees?

A tube feeder or hopper feeder with short perches is ideal for chickadees, as these feeders offer easy access to their preferred sunflower seeds. Chickadees can also feed from platform feeders or suet feeders. In general, choose a feeder that is sturdy, holds a good amount of seed, and allows for efficient drainage.

Are there any seasonal feeding preferences for chickadees?

Chickadees’ feeding preferences may change depending on the time of year. In the colder months, chickadees will appreciate the addition of suet, as this food source provides needed fat and energy. In warmer months, continue offering black oil sunflower seeds or a seed mix containing these seeds to cater to their preferences.

Julian Goldie - Owner of

Julian Goldie

I'm a bird enthusiast and creator of Chipper Birds, a blog sharing my experience caring for birds. I've traveled the world bird watching and I'm committed to helping others with bird care. Contact me at [email protected] for assistance.