Suet Cakes


Homemade suet cakes that fit standard suet feeders can be made with molds—sandwich-size plastic freezer containers (Dollar Store). Save the store-bought plastic suet cake holders and reuse them as your molds. Be sure to coat each mold with a non-stick spray before putting in the suet mix. Recipe #1 uses empty orange juice cartons and slices the brick into feeder-sized cakes. 

Suet cakes are great for woodpeckers, wrens, nuthatches and jays, but other birds occasionally use suet feeders too. Homemade suet cakes are great for winter months but should not be used in the hot summer.  

To hang a suet cake without the feeder, place the end of a piece of rope or heavy string into the bottom of the mold/container leaving some of the rope/string out of the container. Pour in the suet mix and freeze. Hang with the string/rope.

Recipe #1

½ cup fat or lard
2 cups old-fashioned oatmeal
2 cups chunky peanut butter
2 cups beef broth
½ cup raisins, dried cranberries or chopped nuts
1 ½ cups wild bird seed

  1. Combine lard, oatmeal, peanut butter, broth and sugar in a large pot
  2. Heat to a boil, reduce heat to simmer, simmer for 20 minutes until mixture is the texture of thick oatmeal
  3. Stir in raisins and/or nuts
  4. Remove from heat and stir in bird seed
  5. Pour into mold/orange juice carton, put in freezer until hardened
  6. Once hardened, remove suet from freezer. If using an orange juice carton, allow brick to soften slightly to ease in slicing.
  7. Cut into feeder-size slices about 1 ¼ inch thick.
  8. Store thawed cakes in fridge for up to 1 week or refreeze with a sheet of wax paper between slices.

Recipe #2

1 cup shortening such as Crisco
1 cup crunchy peanut butter
2 cups old-fashioned oatmeal
1 cup corn meal
2 cups bird seed

  1. Melt shortening and peanut butter over medium heat—do not boil.
  2. Stir in oatmeal
  3. Stir in birdseed and cornmeal
  4. Pack tight into containers
  5. Wrap in foil
  6. Freeze overnight
  7. Carefully remove solid suet from containers
  8. Store in fridge or freezer until ready to use

Suet cake recipe #1 is from
Suet cake recipe #2 is from