Birdseed Ornaments
Yield: 3-4 ornaments made from standard-size cookie cutters
If you’d like to make additional ornaments, I recommend doing them in separate batches. That way, the mixture won’t start to dry out as the ornaments are being made. You want the birdseed to be wet when going into the cookie cutters for maximum stick factor once dried, and prepping individual batches takes just a minute or two.


  • ¾ to 1 cup birdseed
  • 1 packet (.25 ounce or 7 grams) of gelatin (unflavored—I use Knox)
  • ¼ cup boiling water
  • Cookie cutters, lightly greased*
  • Twine and/or ribbon
  • Parchment or waxed paper


  1. Combine the gelatin and the water in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. Keep stirring until the gelatin is completely dissolved. Remove the pan from heat and allow the mixture to cool for one minute. Stir in ¾ cup birdseed, adding extra as needed until all the liquid is absorbed. (You won’t want to add much more than 1 cup, otherwise there won’t be enough “glue” to bind the birdseed once dried.)
  2. Place the cookie cutters on a parchment or waxed paper on a baking sheet. (You can make the ornaments right on the counter, but a baking sheet allows for them to be easily moved aside later.) Fill each ornament halfway with the birdseed mixture. Lay a piece of twine down the length of the cookie cutter. Fill the cookie cutter to the top with remaining birdseed mixture, making sure to pack it down firmly. Allow the ornaments to dry for several hours or overnight. Once completely dried, gently press the ornaments out of the cookie cutters. If desired, add a decorative ribbon and hang on a tree branch for the birds to enjoy!
  3. STORAGE: If not hanging the ornaments right away, they may be stored in an airtight container for a few days in a cool, dry place. For longer storage, it’s best to freeze them, as the humidity in a refrigerator can cause mold to develop or sprouting. Additionally, seed moths or their larvae are sometimes already present in birdseed. Although this doesn’t mean the seed has gone bad, moisture and humid conditions will hasten their development.


*The cookie cutters do not have to be greased, but lightly greasing them will make for extra easy removal once dry, especially when using ornaments with small angles like stars. Younger children may be better off using ornaments without tight corners, as these are slightly harder to pack with the birdseed. We use a very small spoon for this.

The key to ornaments that are sturdy and stick together is to press firmly on the birdseed mixture as you pack it into the molds.


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