Can Parrots Eat Peppers, Yes African grey parrots love peppers

Can Parrots Eat Peppers? A Quick Guide to Spicy Food and Parrots

Yes, parrots can eat peppers. So many pepper varieties are safe and healthy for your parrot to consume. Many experts recommend feeding your parrot various foods, including peppers, to ensure they get the necessary nutrients.

While all peppers are not created equal, most are perfectly safe for your parrot to eat. However, there are several things to keep in mind when feeding your parrot peppers.

First, not all peppers are equal in terms of spice. Some peppers, such as jalapeños and habaneros, are much spicier than others. It is essential to consider the spice level when feeding your parrot peppers. Dogs share the same spicy food receptors as us humans, while spicy peppers do not bother parrots. It’s imperative to monitor your bird if they throw food on the ground that dogs are scooping up.

Second, you don’t need to remove the seeds and stem from the pepper before feeding it to your parrot. The seeds are the part of the pepper that contains the most capsaicin, making peppers spicy.

Parrots love peppers

Can Parrots Eat Bell Peppers?

Yes, bell peppers are full of nutrients essential to a parrot’s diet. Vitamin A is important for vision, and bell peppers are an excellent source of this vitamin. Bell peppers also have a significant amount of Vitamin C, which helps to boost the immune system. In addition, bell peppers are a good source of antioxidants, which can help to protect cells from damage. As a result, bell peppers are healthy and nutritious food for parrots.

Can Parrots Eat Green Peppers?

Yes, green peppers are a type of bell pepper. As mentioned above, bell peppers are full of impotent nutrients for parrots. Green peppers specifically are an excellent source of Vitamin C. They also contain a decent amount of Vitamin A, B6, folic acid, and lutein. Green peppers also include a small amount of iron, which can help your parrot’s blood carry oxygen. Overall, green peppers are safe and healthy for your parrot to eat.

Can Parrots Eat Spicy Food?

Yes, capsaicin, the substance in many peppers that make it spicy, does not elicit the same pain response pathway in birds vs. mammals. A study showed how adding capsaicin to wild bird food deters squirrels from munching on the food. 

Birds and capsaicin, what’s the deal?

Most birds don’t taste capsaicin in the same way we do. The capsaicin does not bind to the pain receptors in a bird’s tongue. Therefore they don’t experience the painful heat!

Can Parrots Eat Peppers, Yes African grey parrots love peppers

Can Parrots Eat Jalapeño Peppers?

Yes, parrots will readily feed on jalapeño peppers in the wild. The jalapeño peppers fall in the heat range of 2,000 to 8,000 Scoville Heat Units (SHU). The SHU is a heat measure to understand how hot they are. Each hot pepper has a unique SHU range.

Jalapeño peppers are a safe and natural food for a parrot to eat; these peppers do not affect parrots in the same way that they do us, humans. Scientist’s have come to understand that parrots do not have the same pain receptors in response to spicy foods that mammals have.

Can Parrots Eat Hot Peppers?

Yes, parrots can eat a wide variety of hot peppers like chili, jalapeño, serrano, scotch bonnet, and more. Even though African greys can eat hot peppers, my particular African grey, Coco, prefers bell peppers.

Researchers are finding that capsaicin does not bind to the vanilloid receptor 1 in parrots. On the other hand, if a mammal eats a hot pepper, the capsaicin will bind to vanilloid receptor 1 and cause a painful sensation.

Whenever I give her a hot pepper, she usually tosses it onto the bottom of the cage.

Can Parrots Taste Spicy Food?

Since parrots can eat spicy foods without the same physiological effects that we endure, it is safe to theorize that they do not taste spicy food the same way we do. However, no definitive studies have been conducted on whether parrots can taste spicy food.

One study done in 1995 by Mason and Clark found that European starlings did, in fact, taste spicy food. The starlings were the only birds in the study that seemed to detect capsaicin, via the trigeminal nerve, just like mammals.

Birds provide an ecological advantage for the pepper plants partly because a parrot’s stomach does not break down the seeds like a mammal’s digestive tract.

So a mammal’s digestive tract destroys the pepper seeds, so there is no seed dispersal in the poop. However, this is not the case with our feathered friends. Birds can eat pepper seeds and disperse the viable seeds in their poop, which means more pepper plants will grow.

Can Parrots Eat Peppers Every Day?

Yes, but in small amounts, you would not give your parrot an entire pepper daily. However, a piece of pepper every day is fine. Keep in mind that with birds, moderation and variety are key.

Learn what to feed an African grey here. African greys, like most other parrots, are super intelligent. Therefore, offering them a wide variety of fresh foods, pellets, seeds, and nuts is essential. Doing this allows them to not get bored with what you are feeding them.

We provide our parrot with the best pellet food for an African grey parrot, plus plenty of fresh foods to supplement the pellets.

How Much Pepper can a Parrot Eat?

You can either offer your parrot a small 1-inch piece of pepper, a whole hot pepper like chili, or half of bell pepper. My parrot loves to pick the seeds out and use them like a foraging toy.

Most parrots love to forage, so if you offer them a bell pepper with the seeds inside, they will spend time picking out the seeds (and tossing them -lol).

What Part of a Pepper Can Parrots Eat?

Parrots will eat the fleshy part of the pepper, including the seeds. You can offer them the entire pepper, or if it’s a large pepper, I usually cut it into quarters, so I have a snack for four days.

Some people remove the seeds before offering them to their parrots, but I have never had any issues with my parrot eating peppers with the seeds. My parrot plays with the seeds by picking them off the flesh and tossing them.

Can Birds Eat Pepper Seeds?

Yes, birds can eat pepper seeds; usually, my bird only eats a few seeds. However, Coco enjoys picking them off the pepper and tossing them across the room. Providing your bird with enough foraging opportunities is imperative for their mental well-being.

The Nutritional Benefits of Peppers for Parrots

Firstly the list of nutritional benefits for peppers is long. Green peppers are an excellent source of vitamins lutein, A, C, and E. Red peppers are an excellent source of vitamins A, C, plus lycopene. Hot peppers will help improve your bird’s metabolism plus protect its heart.

Other fresh foods that you can offer your bird include:

  • If you are wondering, “can parrots have mango?” the answer is “yes.” Although please don’t give your bird an entire mango; that is too much sugar for one bird. Instead, cut a piece off the mango and offer your bird one small part.

Reasons Why You Should Feed Your Bird Peppers

Promotes Healthy Feather Growth

Peppers are a great food you can give your bird to promote healthy feather growth. These veggies are rich in vitamins A, C, E, and iron, all essential nutrients for growing feathers. Vitamin A is necessary for the development of new cells, including feathers.

Vitamin C helps the body absorb other nutrients essential for feather growth. Vitamin E is a powerful bird antioxidant that helps keep feathers healthy and robust.

And finally, iron is necessary for producing hemoglobin, which means the healthy blood flow is imperative for healthy feather growth. So if you want your bird to have beautiful, healthy feathers, include peppers in their diet!

Delicious Treat

Offering peppers to your bird as a delicious treat is a great idea! Peppers are not only a satisfying treat for birds but also packed with nutrients essential for a healthy diet. I love listening to my bird crunch peppers; the sound is so cute!

In addition, peppers can help to boost the immune system and provide antioxidants that can protect against disease. So, not only will your bird enjoy a delicious treat, but you will also be providing them with an essential source of nutrition. Another food that is a delicious snack for parrots is potatoes. Did you know that parrots can eat potatoes?

Mood Enhancer

As any pet owner knows, variety is essential in keeping an animal happy and healthy. Diversity is especially true for intelligent birds like parrots, which can quickly become bored with a monotonous diet. Peppers are not only a healthy treat for your bird, but they can also help to improve their mood.

Offering peppers as a treat can help elevate your birds’ moods and prevent them from becoming frustrated or depressed. In addition to being a Mood Enhancer, peppers are a good source of vitamins and antioxidants. So not only will your bird be happier, but they’ll also be healthier!

Great Foraging Treat

Anyone with a parrot knows that providing unique ways for your bird to forage is essential to their mental well-being. Peppers are an excellent foraging treat for your intelligent parrot.

Parrots are known for their intelligence and love of a challenge, so they will appreciate the chance to forage for their food. Your parrot will love the challenge of getting to the seeds and the pepper taste. There are many types of peppers, so you can choose the one that is right for your bird.

Some popular peppers with parrots include red bell pepper, jalapeño pepper, and habanero pepper. So peppers are a great option if you are looking for a fun and challenging treat for your bird.

Peppers: What are the antioxidants, vitamins, or nutritionally beneficial micronutrients in this veggie for parrots?


A micronutrient is vital for your bird’s eye health and brain function.

Vitamin C

Excellent for your parrot’s immune system. Providing your bird with fresh pepper weekly will help protect them from disease.


If you offer your bird red peppers, you will provide them 11 times more beta carotene than a green pepper.

5 Ways To Serve Your Bird Peppers

1. Cut them up and add them to your bird’s food bowl for a bit of extra spice.

2. Give your bird a whole pepper to make a mess with and pick apart.

3. Put the pepper pieces on a skewer that fastens to the top of your bird cage; this will provide a foraging opportunity.

4. If you have an intelligent parrot, you can add some pepper to a foraging toy and allow them to solve the puzzle.

5. Offer your parrot dried hot peppers!

How to Get Your Parrot to Eat Peppers?

If your parrot is scared to try new foods like raw peppers, the following tips will help.

A macaw eating a hot pepper. Macaws love peppers

Parrots love to eat whatever we are eating, so one tip is to eat some peppers yourself. Show your bird how good they are; they may want to fly over and check out the pepper. My bird will try to grab food as I put it in my mouth.

Another tip is to take away all other food, like seeds and pellets. Only provide your bird with the pepper for an entire day. Your bird will likely try the pepper once they get hungry enough.

Can Parrots Eat Raw Peppers?

Can parrots eat raw peppers? The answer is yes; they can eat raw peppers. Peppers contain a variety of vitamins and minerals that are essential for a bird’s health. In addition, hot peppers contain capsaicin, a substance that has been shown to have health benefits for birds.

However, it is essential to note that not all birds will enjoy eating peppers, especially if you have not given them to them before. Some birds may find the taste and texture of peppers to be unpleasant or even scary.

If you are unsure whether your parrot will enjoy eating peppers, it is best to start with small pieces and see how it reacts. When I am offering new foods to my parrot, I begin by making sure I show it when my bird is most hungry and apt to eat.

If your bird is not interested in the pepper, it is probably best to keep trying until they are comfortable with the new type of food.

Can African Greys Eat Peppers?

Timneh African Grey Parrot eating bell pepper

Yes, African greys can eat all kinds of peppers. African greys are brilliant parrots that can live for up to 60 years as pets. If you think of adding an African grey to your family, you may wonder what they like to eat. African greys eat various fruits, vegetables, and seeds in the wild.

In captivity, they should have a diet similar to their natural diet. Furthermore, if African greys eat various fresh fruits and vegetables and a pellet-based diet, you will have a greater chance of increasing the African grey lifespan.

Congo African grey eating a hot chili peppers

Peppers are a good source of vitamins and minerals, so they can certainly be part of an African grey diet. Just be sure to offer a variety of other foods, so your bird gets all the nutrients they need.

Can Conures Eat Bell Peppers?

Yes, absolutely! Conures, like most parrots, do best with a wide variety of fresh foods. A conure is an active chewer, so they will enjoy picking apart the pepper and getting to the seeds. Check out our Sun Conure Food List Guide!

Can Lovebirds Eat Peppers?

Yes, lovebirds can eat peppers. While they may not be the first food that comes to mind when you think of lovebirds, these little birds enjoy eating various fruits and vegetables.

In addition to peppers, lovebirds like to eat other fruits and vegetables, such as grapes, apples, and carrots. So, if you’re looking for a unique and healthy way to add some variety to your lovebird’s diet, consider adding some peppers to their food dish. Your feathered friend will thank you for it!

Can Budgies Eat Peppers?

Budgies are naturally inquisitive birds and love to try new things. When it comes to food, budgies are not afraid to experiment. In fact, budgies actually love peppers. So, the answer to the question “can budgies eat peppers?” is a resounding yes! A budgie requires a balanced, well-planned diet, with seeds being the smallest part of their diet.

Peppers are a great source of micronutrients, vitamins, and minerals, so they make a healthy snack for your budgie. Some birds are attracted to the bright colors and the sharp smell. Plus, they enjoy the crunchy texture. 

Can Cockatiels Eat Bell Peppers?

Yes, cockatiels can eat bell peppers. In fact, they can eat all kinds of peppers, including hot peppers like jalapeños and habaneros. Peppers are a good source of capsaicin plus vitamins A and C.

Capsaicin gives peppers their spicy flavor and has several health benefits, including pain relief and anti-inflammatory properties. So, bell peppers are a healthy treat for your cockatiel and may also help keep them feeling their best.

Can Parakeets Eat Peppers?

The answer to the question “can parakeets eat peppers?” is a resounding yes! Furthermore, a parakeet can eat all kinds of fruits and vegetables, including peppers.

Peppers are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals and can help boost a bird’s immune system. In addition, peppers are a low-calorie food, making them an ideal treat for parakeets that is heart healthy.

So, if you’re looking for a healthy snack for your feathered friend, don’t hesitate to give them a few slices of pepper. Furthermore, you don’t have to remove the seeds; they are safe for parakeets!

Final Thoughts for “Can Parrots Eat Peppers?”

Peppers are a great food to feed your parrot. They provide essential nutrients and can help keep your bird healthy and happy. With so many different peppers available, you can find one that your bird will love. Be sure to introduce new foods slowly and eat with your bird. As always, consult with an avian veterinarian if you have any questions or concerns about what you’re feeding your feathered friend. Thanks for reading!