Can Hamsters Eat Cilantro? Benefits, Dangers and How to Feed Them

Can Hamsters Eat Cilantro

Hamsters are very small animals that are very popular as pets. They have a varied diet and can eat a variety of foods, including fruits, vegetables, grains, and seeds. One popular vegetable that hamsters enjoy is cilantro. It has a distinctive flavor that some people love while others find overwhelming. In this article, we will explore whether hamsters can eat cilantro and more interesting facts.

Do Hamsters Like Cilantro?

Hamsters can eat cilantro, and some may enjoy it as a treat. Cilantro is a safe herb for hamsters to consume in small amounts as part of a balanced diet that includes a variety of foods. However, not all hamsters may like cilantro. It is important to introduce new foods to your hamster slowly and in small amounts to avoid upsetting its digestive system. 

It should only be given as a treat and not as a primary source of nutrition. Hamsters require a balanced diet that includes a variety of foods such as pellets, fresh vegetables, and fruits. As with any treat, too much cilantro can lead to weight gain and other health issues. Therefore, it’s recommended to offer small amounts of cilantro once or twice a week as a special treat.

‘Cilantro’ Feeding Time for Your Hamsters

It is not recommended to feed cilantro to your hamsters daily, as it should only be given to them as an occasional treat. Cilantro is a safe food for hamsters that may enjoy the taste, but it should be given in small amounts, no more than once or twice a week. 

It is important to ensure that your hamsters have a balanced diet that includes a variety of foods such as fresh vegetables, fruits, and hamster pellets. You should also avoid giving your hamsters any food high in sugar or fat, as well as any foods that are toxic to them, such as chocolate or avocado.

How to Feed Cilantro to My Hamsters

When feeding cilantro to your hamster, it’s best to follow these steps:

  • Wash the cilantro thoroughly to remove any dirt, pesticides, or chemicals.
  • Chop the cilantro into small pieces that your hamster can easily eat.
  • Offer a small amount of cilantro as a treat, about the size of a fingertip, once or twice a week.
  • Observe your hamster to ensure they are eating the cilantro and not showing any signs of digestive upset, such as diarrhea or bloating.
  • If your hamster does not show any adverse reactions, you can continue to offer cilantro as an occasional treat.

Nutritional Benefits of Cilantro for Your Hamster

Cilantro, also known as coriander or Chinese parsley, is an herb that can provide several nutritional benefits for hamsters. Here are some of the benefits:

  • Cilantro is rich in vitamins A, C, and K, as well as calcium, iron, and potassium. 
  • Cilantro contains antioxidants that can help protect your hamster’s cells from damage caused by harmful molecules called free radicals.
  • Cilantro can help to regulate bowel movements, prevent constipation, and promote healthy gut bacteria.
  • Cilantro contains anti-inflammatory properties that help hamsters with arthritis or other inflammatory conditions.
  • Cilantro has a strong aroma and flavor that can stimulate hamsters’ appetites and encourage them to eat more.

However, it’s important to remember that cilantro should be given to hamsters in moderation. Too much cilantro can cause digestive upset or other health problems. As with any new food, it’s best to introduce cilantro gradually and monitor your hamster’s reaction.

Dangers of Feeding Cilantro to Hamsters

Some potential dangers of feeding cilantro to your hamster include the following:

Digestive Issues

Hamsters have sensitive digestive systems, and feeding them foods that are not part of their regular diet can lead to digestive problems such as diarrhea, bloating, and constipation. Cilantro contains fiber, which can be beneficial in small amounts, but too much can lead to gastrointestinal issues.


Cilantro has a large amount of toxic coumarin. Hamsters have small bodies, and even a small amount of coumarin can be harmful to them. It’s best to avoid feeding cilantro to your hamster to prevent the risk of toxicity.

Nutritional Imbalance

While cilantro is a good source of vitamin C, it does not provide all the nutrients that hamsters need. Hamsters require a diet that is high in protein and low in fat, and their food should be specially formulated to meet their nutritional requirements.

Overall, it is best to stick to a hamster’s regular diet and avoid feeding them cilantro or any other human foods unless recommended by a veterinarian. 

Can Every Breed of Hamster Eat Cilantro?

There are several different types of hamsters commonly kept as pets, such as:

  • Syrian hamsters, also known as golden hamsters, are the most common pet hamsters and can eat cilantro. 
  • Dwarf hamsters, such as the Campbell’s dwarf hamster, Roborovski dwarf hamster, and winter white dwarf hamster, can also eat cilantro as part of a balanced diet. 
  • Chinese hamsters should not eat cilantro as they are known to be prone to diabetes, and cilantro can have high sugar content.

Other Herbs that Hamsters Can Eat

Hamsters can eat a variety of herbs in addition to the ones typically recommended for them, such as parsley, dill, and cilantro. Some other herbs that are safe for hamsters to eat in small quantities include:

  • Basil: This herb has anti-inflammatory properties and can help boost the immune system.
  • Rosemary: This herb is rich in antioxidants and can help improve digestion.
  • Sage: This herb has antibacterial properties and can help soothe sore throats and other respiratory issues.
  • Thyme: This herb can help boost the immune system and has antifungal properties.
  • Mint: This herb can help soothe upset stomachs and freshen your breath.

When feeding herbs to your hamster, be sure to offer them in small quantities as part of a balanced diet. Always make sure the herbs are fresh and free from any pesticides or other harmful chemicals. Introduce new foods slowly and watch your hamster’s reaction to make sure they tolerate them well.

What is Poisonous to Hamsters?

Many things can be poisonous to hamsters, including:

  • Chocolate: Chocolate contains theobromine, which can be toxic to hamsters and cause symptoms like diarrhea, vomiting, and seizures.
  • Garlic and onions: These foods contain compounds that can damage a hamster’s red blood cells and cause anemia.
  • Citrus fruits: Citrus fruits like oranges and lemons contain a lot of acids, which can upset a hamster’s stomach and cause digestive problems.
  • Avocado: Avocado contains persin, a substance that is toxic to many animals, including hamsters. It can cause respiratory distress, heart failure, and death in severe cases.
  • Alcohol: Alcohol is toxic to hamsters and can cause severe damage to their liver and other organs.
  • Caffeine: Caffeine is a stimulant that can cause hyperactivity, restlessness, and rapid heart rate in hamsters.
  • Nuts: Nuts are high in fat and can cause digestive problems if a hamster eats too many.


Can hamsters eat cilantro (coriander) seeds?

Hamsters can eat cilantro (coriander) seeds in moderation. Cilantro seeds are a good source of fiber, vitamins, and minerals, which can benefit your hamster’s health. But you should not feed your hamster too many cilantro seeds at once, as they are high in fat content. You can buy cilantro seeds specifically designed for feeding pets or grow your own organic cilantro seeds to ensure their safety.

Can hamsters eat cilantro stems?

Yes, hamsters can eat cilantro stems. Cilantro is a safe and healthy herb that can be included in a hamster’s diet in moderation. The stems of cilantro contain many of the same nutrients as the leaves and can be a good source of fiber for your hamster.

Can hamsters eat cilantro flowers?

Yes, hamsters can eat cilantro flowers. Cilantro (also known as coriander) is safe for hamsters to eat, and the flowers are a perfectly acceptable part of their diet. However, it’s important to feed cilantro in moderation, as with any food, and to ensure that it’s fresh and free of any pesticides or other harmful chemicals. Additionally, it’s always a good idea to introduce new foods gradually to a hamster’s diet to avoid any potential digestive upset.

Can hamsters eat cilantro roots?

While hamsters can eat cilantro leaves in moderation as a treat, there is limited information available on whether they can safely consume cilantro roots. It’s best to err on the side of caution and avoid feeding your hamster cilantro roots, as they may be harder for them to digest and could potentially cause digestive problems. Instead, stick to feeding your hamster a balanced diet of commercial hamster food and occasional fresh fruits and vegetables that are safe for them to consume. 


Based on the available information, it can be concluded that hamsters can eat cilantro. Cilantro is a safe and healthy herb for hamsters when given in moderation. However, it’s important to note that every hamster is different and may have individual preferences and dietary needs. It’s always a good idea to consult with a veterinarian or do further research to ensure that cilantro is a suitable addition to your hamster’s diet.

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