Published on February 17th, 2015 | by Crunchy Scott5
How to Make Homemade Suet Cakes for Birds
Show your feathered friends some love during these cold winter days by making them some homemade suet cakes.
This has been quite a winter. Storm after storm has plagued the Northeast for weeks. And now here in the D.C. area, where I live, we’re getting whopped with the white stuff after days of bitter cold temps. (I have to confess – I LOVE IT!)
I’m very good to the birds who nest near my home all year long, but when the weather gets to be this cold and this snowy, I do worry. So like all good tree-snugglers, I give my feathered friends a little something extra in the winter. Homemade suet cakes are easy and inexpensive to make. And not only is it a special treat for the birds, but it’ll provide them with that extra bump of nutrition and fat they need during these bitterly cold months.
- ¼ cup vegetable shortening or lard
- ¼ cup unsalted peanut butter
- ½ cup birdseed
- handful of dried fruit (optional)
How to put it together:
1. Combine shortening and peanut butter in a microwave-safe bowl.
2. Heat in microwave for 20-30 seconds.
3. Mix in birdseed and dried fruit.
4. Pour into molds. Since Valentine’s Day was a few days ago, I happen to have heart-shaped molds around. And I actually think heart-shaped suet makes a sweet gift for the birds. But y0u can use anything you want. Muffin tins work great. And empty tuna cans also work well. Just remember to grease them with a little shortening first.
5. Let them cool in the fridge or outside (if it’s cold enough) until they harden up. This should take 2-4 hours.
6. Pope them out of the molds. Usually, they come out easily. But you can run a knife along the sides to make sure.
7. Place your suet cakes inside a suet cage. If you don’t have a suet cage, you can also put them on a tree stump or branch.
Trust me, the birds will find these suet cakes! The squirrels probably will too.