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Birdseed Ornaments

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overhead shot of Birdseed Ornaments
NON-FOOD ITEM. These birdseed ornaments are an easy project and so much fun for the kids to make, they look adorable hanging from your trees, and all the local birds will eat them up.
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Table of Contents
  1. Bird Seed Ornaments Ingredients
  2. How to Make This Bird Seed Ornaments Recipe
  3. How To Serve
  4. Storage
  5. More Recipes You’ll Love
  6. JUMP TO RECIPE

These birdseed ornaments are adorable and will be a hit with the birds in your neighborhood this spring. These cute and crunchy treats are a fun craft to do with the kids, especially since no baking is required, and a great way to attract lots of feathered friends to your trees.

a Birdseed Ornament hanging on a branch with a string

Bird Seed Ornaments Ingredients

Birdseed Ornaments raw ingredients that are labeled

You’ll need:

  • 2¾ cups wild finch blend
  • 1 cup water, divided
  • 2 packets of unflavored gelatin
  • 2 tablespoons of light corn syrup
  • 9 plastic or metal cookie cutters, any shape
  • 3 (7-inch) paper cookie sticks, cut into 2¼-inch pieces or 3 plastic drink straws, cut into 2¼-inch pieces
  • 9 (14-inch) long cut pieces of jute, twine, hemp, or yarn for hanging the ornaments

SUBSTITUTIONS AND ADDITIONS

CORN SYRUP: Honey is not a good substitute for light corn syrup. If you don’t have any light corn syrup, you can skip the sweetener altogether.

LEMON OR ORANGE ZEST: If the weather is below 45-50°F, you can add a teaspoon of orange or lemon zest. 

ORANGES: You can also use hollowed-out orange halves instead of cookie cutters. Make two holes on opposite sides of the orange, about ½ inch down, and fill the halves with the birdseed mixture. 

GELATIN: If you are making this birdseed ornament recipe in above-50°F weather, you can substitute 1½ tablespoons agar powder for the gelatin. It is completely vegetable-based and should not mold as quickly.

How to Make This Bird Seed Ornaments Recipe

STEP ONE: Line a baking sheet with either wax paper or parchment paper. Lay out your favorite cookie cutters, spacing them at least 2 inches apart. Set the tray aside.

STEP TWO: In a large heat-safe mixing bowl, add ½ cup of cool water. 

STEP THREE: In a small heat-safe bowl, add the other ½ cup of cold water and microwave for 1 minute. Carefully remove the hot water and set it aside.

STEP FOUR: Sprinkle the packets of gelatin over the cool water and stir to dissolve. While stirring, carefully pour the hot water over the gelatin mixture. Stir to continue dissolving the gelatin.

gelatin being sprinkled over the water in a bowl

STEP FIVE: Continue stirring, add the light corn syrup, and stir to combine completely.

corn syrup in a bowl being stir by a spoon in a bowl

STEP SIX: Immediately pour the birdseed into the corn syrup mixture and stir with a large wooden spoon. Set the bowl in the refrigerator for 8-9 minutes to allow the gelatin mixture to be slightly absorbed by the seed.

OUR RECIPE DEVELOPER SAYS

Don’t leave the bowl in the fridge for any longer than 10 minutes, as it will harden too much, and the ornaments will end up crumbly. It only needs to be set enough that it doesn’t seep out from under the sides of the cookie cutters.

birdseed being stirred in a bowl

STEP SEVEN: Spoon the seed mixture into the cookie cutters until full. Once you have your cookie cutters filled, use a small piece of parchment paper or wax paper to gently pack the seed mixture into the mold.

PRO TIP:

Spray your cookie cutters with nonstick spray so that the ornaments don’t stick when you remove them.

Birdseed Ornaments on cookie sheet being pressed down with spoon

STEP EIGHT: Press the cut cookie sticks or cut drink straws about ½ to 1 inch from the top. Be sure to gently press down around the plastic straw with the wax/parchment paper as well.

PRO TIP:

Make sure the hole is not set much closer to the edge of the shape than ½ inch, or the edge may not be thick enough to hold the ornament’s weight.

Birdseed Ornaments on cookie sheet being cut

STEP NINE: Place the cookie sheet in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours to dry. Overnight is best.

Birdseed Ornaments on cookie sheet

STEP TEN: Once the ornament is dried, carefully pull/push around the edges of the cookie cutter. Gently remove the stick/straw and thread the ornament with the pre-cut piece of twine. Tie a small knot in the string. Hang the ornaments outside any time of year.

Birdseed Ornaments on parchment paper and on string

How To Serve

Hang these DIY cookie cutter birdseed ornaments on your trees and shrubs and wait for a wide variety of birds to arrive. Try to hang them so that they are close to other tree branches, so the birds have somewhere to perch.

These homemade bird seed ornaments would also make great gifts for all of the bird lovers in your life during the holiday season.

For another DIY project, check out our recipe for Christmas potpourri.

Storage

AT ROOM TEMPERATURE: In temperatures 50°F and higher, these no-bake wild birdseed ornaments will keep for seven days. In weather below 50°F, the ornaments should keep for 10 to 14 days.

IN THE FREEZER: You can also freeze these cookie cutter birdseed ornaments for up to 2 months.

a bunch of Birdseed Ornaments on parchment paper

These look like bird cookies or birdseed cakes, and I bet they will gobble them up. It’s exciting to see all the wild birds visiting your own backyard to eat the homemade birdseed ornaments you left for them, and they will thank you with a display of their stunning colors.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Is gelatin safe for birds?

Gelatin is a natural product, and therefore it is safe for the birds to consume.

How long do birdseed ornaments last?

If you are storing birdseed ornaments inside, keep them in an airtight container or Ziploc bag in a dry, cool place, and they should last for 10-14 days, or in the freezer for up to two months.

How do you get birdseed to stick together?

To get your birdseed treats to stick together, add gelatin to your mixture as it acts as an adhesive.

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Birdseed Ornaments

5 from 3 votes
NON-FOOD ITEM. These birdseed ornaments are an easy project and so much fun for the kids to make, they look adorable hanging from your trees, and all the local birds will eat them up.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 8 hours 15 minutes
Servings 9 ornaments

Ingredients
  

  • cups wild finch blend
  • 1 cup water, divided
  • 2 gelatin, unflavored
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 9 cookie cutters, any shape
  • 21 inch paper cookie sticks, cut into 2¼-inch pieces or 3 plastic drink straws, cut into 2¼-inch pieces
  • 126 inches long cut pieces of jute, twine, hemp, or yarn for hanging the ornaments

Instructions
 

  • Line a baking sheet with either wax paper or parchment paper. Lay out the cookie cutters, spacing them at least 2 inches apart. Set it aside.
  • In a large heat-safe mixing bowl, add ½ cup cool water.
  • In a small heat-safe bowl, add the other ½ cup water and microwave for 1 minute. Carefully remove the hot water and set it aside.
  • Sprinkle the gelatin over the cool water and stir to dissolve it. While you are still stirring, carefully pour the hot water over the gelatin mixture. Stir to continue dissolving the gelatin.
  • Continue stirring, and add in the light corn syrup and stir to combine completely.
  • Immediately pour in the birdseed and stir with a large wooden spoon. Set the bowl in the refrigerator for 8-9 minutes to allow the gelatin mixture to be slightly absorbed by the seed.
  • Spoon the seed mixture into the cookie cutters until they are full. Once you have your cookie cutters filled, use a small piece of wax paper or parchment paper to gently pack the seed mixture into the mold.
  • Press the cut cookie sticks or cut drink straws about ½ to 1 inch from the top. Be sure to gently press down around the straw with the wax/parchment paper as well.
  • Place the cookie sheet in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours to dry. Overnight is best.
  • Once the ornament is dried, carefully pull/push around the edges of the cookie cutter. Gently remove the stick/straw and thread the ornament with the pre-cut string. Tie a small knot in the string. Hang the ornaments outside.

Notes

  • Don’t leave the bowl in the fridge for any longer than 10 minutes, as it will harden too much, and the ornaments will end up crumbly. It only needs to be set enough that it doesn’t seep out from under the sides of the cookie cutters.
  • Spray your cookie cutters with nonstick spray so that the ornaments don’t stick when you remove them.
  • Make sure the hole is not set much closer to the edge of the shape than ½ inch, or the edge may not be thick enough to hold the ornament’s weight.

Nutrition

Calories: 15kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Sodium: 5mg | Potassium: 1mg | Sugar: 4g | Calcium: 2mg | Iron: 1mg
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  1. Carrie Gartzke says

    5 stars
    Easy and fun for all ages. Thanks for the suggestion of adding in grated orange peel! So clever.

    This is a great activity and economical too. In addition these make great gifts.

    I appreciate you for publishing this recipe/activity/diy holiday present.

  2. Carrie Gartzke says

    5 stars
    Easy and fun for all ages.it is also very economical.

    I made these with a girl scout troop and a group of older adults, 65 and better and another group which consisted with individuals with disabilities. This activity worked wonderfully for all.

    Thanks for the suggestion of adding in grated orange peel! So clever. I made those for little gifts. .

    I appreciate you for publishing this recipe/activity/DIY holiday present.