Guinea Pig Food Chart

The following chart is a complete list of safe foods for guinea pigs. In the columns beside, you’ll find the frequency they can be fed and any important notes you should know about each particular food.

Also listed is the Vitamin C and calcium content per 100 grams. Nutrient profiles are sourced from the official USDA Food Database.

Everything is listed in alphabetical order and color-coded so you can easily find what you’re looking for.

Below the food chart, you’ll also find a list of all the foods you should not feed your guinea pig.

Daisy digging into some escarole.

Vitamin C is especially crucial for guinea pigs, as they cannot make their own and need to receive 100% of this nutrient from their diet. Vitamin C deficiencies lead to muscle loss, weakness, and an increased risk of illness. You can find the highest vitamin C foods highlighted in violet purple in the list below. Try to include at least one high vitamin C veggie in your guinea pig’s diet daily.

Calcium content is also a crucial component in your guinea pig’s diet. Piggies are prone to bladder stones, so be sure to balance each high-calcium food with 2-3 mid to low-calcium veggies. The lowest calcium foods in the list below are highlighted in bright turquoise.

Frequency Color Codes:

Green = Almost daily
Yellow = A few times a week
Blue = Once a week
Orange = A few times a month
Red = Rarely

Vitamin C Color Codes:

Violet = High source of Vitamin C
Light Blue = Moderate source of Vitamin C
Mint Green = Low source of Vitamin C

Calcium Color Codes:

Pink: High levels of calcium
Purple: Moderate levels of calcium
Turquoise: Low levels of calcium

Peach and Daisy pictured with some green leaf lettuce and sweet bell peppers.
FoodFrequencyVitamin CCalciumNotes
ApplesOnce a week4.6mg7mgRemove seeds before feeding
ApricotOnce a week10mg13mgHigh in sugar, feed a thin slice at a time
Arugula/Rocket SaladOnce a week15mg160mgHigh in calcium, contains a hint of Vitamin C
AsparagusOnce a week5.6mg24mgIntroduce slowly; can cause bloating
BananaA few times a month8.7mg5mgVery high in sugar, feed in small amounts
BasilOnce a week18mg177mgHigh in calcium; feed a few leaves at a time
Beet GreensOnce or twice a month30mg117mgHigh in oxalates, can be toxic in large amounts.
BeetrootOnce a week4.9mg16mgHigh in oxalates; Feed only small amounts
Bell Pepper, GreenDaily99.5mg7mgExcellent source of Vitamin C
Bell Pepper, OrangeDaily158mg5mgExcellent source of Vit C
Bell Pepper, RedA few times a week142mg6mgHigher in sugar but great source of Vit C
Bell Pepper, YellowDaily139mg7mgExcellent source of Vit C
BlackberriesOnce a week21mg29mgHigh in sugar; feed in small quantities
BlueberriesOnce or twice a week9.7mg6mgHigh in sugar but rich in antioxidants
Bok ChoyOnce a week45mg105mgIntroduce slowly; can cause bloating
BroccoliOnce or twice a week89.2mg47mgIntroduce slowly; can cause bloating
Brussels SproutsOnce a week85mg42mgIntroduce slowly; can cause bloating
Butternut SquashOnce a week21mg48mgFeed a small slice at a time
Cabbage – GreenA couple of times a week36.6mg40mgIntroduce slowly; can cause bloating
Cabbage – RedA couple of times a week57mg45mgIntroduce slowly; can cause bloating
Cabbage – SavoyA couple of times a week31mg35mgIntroduce slowly; can cause bloating
Cantaloupe/RockmelonOnce a week36.7mg9mgHigh in sugar. Remove rind and seeds
CarrotsA couple of times a week5.9mg33mgContains some sugar and is high in Vitamin A
Carrot TopsOnce a weekUnknownUnknownNutrient-rich and high in calcium,
exact numbers unknown
CauliflowerOnce a week48.2mg22mgIntroduce slowly; can cause bloating
CeleryA couple of times a week3.1mg40mgSafe to feed stalks and leaves.
Chamomile Flowers and LeavesA couple of times a monthUnknownUnknownFeed sparingly
Cherries – Sweet & SourOnce a week7mg13mgRemove pit; do not feed leaves or stem
Cilantro/CorianderA couple of times a week27mg67mgAvoid feeding to pregnant or injured pigs
CloverOnce a week or lessUnknownUnknownHigh in calcium, feed sparingly
Collard GreensOnce a week35.3mg232mgCan be fed to young guinea pigs (under
4-6 months) more frequently
Corn on the CobA couple of times a month6.8mg2mgLow nutritional value – feed occasionally
Corn Husks and SilkA few times a weekUnknownUnknownLow nutritional value.
Discard outer husks if not organic
CranberriesOnce a week14mg8mgFeed fresh, raw cranberries, not dried!
CucumberAlmost daily2.8mg16mgHigh water content; safe to feed skin & seeds
Dandelion – Leaves, Root, FlowerOnce or twice a week35mg187mgEnsure they are pesticide-free!
DillOnce or twice a week85mg208mgRich in calcium and great source of Vit C
EggplantOnce or twice a month2.2mg9mgLow nutritional value; feed sparingly
Leaves and unripe eggplants are toxic
ElderberriesOnce or twice a month36mg38mgLarge amounts can be toxic; do not feed
leaves or stem.
Endive, Belgian/Witloof ChicoryAlmost daily2.8mg19mgSmall yellowish heads are safe to feed
regularly, but fairly low in nutrients
Endive, CurlyA few times a week6.5mg52mgSafe to feed regularly & piggies love it!
EscaroleA few times a week7.1mg47mgSafe to feed regularly & piggies love it!
FennelOnce or twice a week12mg49mgSafe to feed bulb and frond
Green fronds are higher in calcium
Garden CressOnce a week69mg81mgFeed small amounts
GrapefruitA few times a month37mg15mgAcidic and sugary, feed sparingly
Grapes, Green or RedOnce a week or less3.2mg10mgSugary and low nutritional value
Grass, from outsideDailyUnknownUnknownPick by hand from untreated lawns only
Green BeansOnce or twice a week12.2mg37mgFeed 1-2 beans at a time
Guava FruitOnce a week228mg18mgAcidic & sugary but excellent source of Vit C!
Honeydew MelonOnce a week18mg6mgRemove seeds; the rind is safe
Kale – Green or RedOnce or twice a week93.4mg254mgVery nutrient-rich but high in calcium;
Great for guinea pigs under 6 months!
KiwifruitOnce a week74.7mg35mgHigh in sugar; feed small quantities
KohlrabiOnce a week62mg24mgIntroduce slowly; can cause bloating
Lettuce, Boston Butter/BibbsDaily3.7mg35mgFeed it along with higher-nutrient foods
Lettuce, Green LeafDaily9.2mg36mgFeed it along with higher-nutrient foods
Lettuce, Red LeafDaily3.7mg33mgFeed it along with higher-nutrient foods
Lettuce, RomaineDaily4mg33mgFeed it along with higher nutrient foods
MangoOnce a week36.4mg11mgHigh in sugar; remove the skin and pit
Mint LeavesOnce a week31.8mg243mgPeppermint and spearmint leaves are both
safe to feed
Mustard GreensOnce a week70mg115mgNutrient-rich but fairly high in calcium
NectarineOnce a week5.4mg6mgSafe to feed with skin in small quantities
OkraOnce a week23mg82mgContains some calcium and oxalates.
OrangesOnce a week59.1mg43mgAcidic & sugary, can also feed peels if organic
OreganoOnce a week2.3mg200mgHigh in calcium; feed in small amounts
PapayaOnce a week60.9mg20mgHigh in sugar.
Parsley, Curly and Flat-LeafA couple of times a week133mg138mgNutrient-rich but relatively high in oxalates
ParsnipsOnce a week17mg36mgFeed in small amounts; avoid the greens
PassionfruitOnce or twice a month30mg12mgHigh in sugar, phosphorus & acidity
PeachesOnce a week4.1mg4mgSafe to feed with skin
PearOnce a week4.4mg8mgSkin is safe but remove the seeds
Peas, Snow & Sugar SnapOnce a week60mg40mgHigh in phosphorus and starch
PineappleOnce a week47.8mg13mgAvoid canned pineapple, skin, leaves & core
PlantainOnce or twice a week20.2mg2mgPick this weed from a pesticide-free area
PlumOnce a week9.5mg6mgHigh in sugar, do not feed the pit. Skin is safe.
PomegranateA few times a month10.2mg10mgHigh in sugar, do not feed skin or white membrane.
PumpkinA few times a month9mg21mgVery high in Vitamin A – feed sparingly
Remove seeds.
RadicchioA few times a week8mg19mgBitter-tasting but often popular with piggies!
RadishOnce a week14.8mg25mgFeed a thin slice per serving
Radish LeavesOnce a week63mg200mgHigh in calcium; feed in small amounts
Rapini/Broccoli RabeA few times a month20.2mg108mgHigh in Vitamin A – Feed sparingly
RaspberriesOnce a week26.2mg25mgVitamin-rich – feed up to a couple of berries a
Raspberry Plant LeavesA few times a weekUnknownUnknownEnsure the leaves are pesticide-free
SpinachOnce or twice a month28.1mg99mgExtremely high in oxalates, feed sparingly
StarfruitA couple of times a month34.4mg3mgAcidic & sugary; feed sparingly
StrawberriesOnce or twice a week58.8mg16mgStrawberry tops are also safe
Strawberry Plant LeavesA few times a weekUnknownUnknownEnsure the leaves are pesticide-free
Sweet Potato/YamOnce a week2.4mg30mgOffer a thin slice or tiny cube at a time
Swiss Chard – All ColorsA few times a month30mg51mgHigh in oxalates – feed small amounts
ThymeA few times a month160mg405mgVery high in calcium, offer sparingly
Tomatoes – Big or SmallA few times a week27.2mg11mgAcidic. Do not feed leaves, stems, or unripe.
Turnip GreensOnce or twice a week60mg190mgHigh in calcium and oxalates
Turnip RootOnce or twice a week21mg30mgRelatively high in oxalates
WatercressOnce or twice a week43mg120mgSafe to feed 3-4 stems at a time
WatermelonOnce a week8.1mg7mgSafe to feed flesh and rind, remove seeds
Wheatgrass/Cat GrassA few times a weekUnknownUnknownContains a moderate amount of calcium
Zucchini/CourgetteAlmost daily17.9mg16mgLow in sugar, safe to feed with skin intact
Source: USDA Food Database

Also Read:

Unsafe Foods for Guinea Pigs

My handsome boy TJ with some curly parsley.
  • Animal products or by-products (including meat, milk, eggs, cheese, yogurt, ice cream, whipped cream, etc.)
  • Dog, cat, or ferret food or treats.
  • Rabbit or hamster food.
  • Any kind of processed human foods (including cookies, crackers, bread, cereal, french fries, chips, pizza, pasta, etc.)
  • Chocolate and candy of all kinds.
  • Juice and other human drinks (including fruit juices, coffee, tea, alcohol, etc.)
  • Sugary store-bought guinea pig treats such as yogurt drops, honey sticks, and dried fruit.
  • Cooked or canned vegetables (feed raw only!)
  • Garlic
  • Pickles
  • Rhubarb
  • Avocado
  • Hot Peppers
  • Mushrooms
  • Ginger
  • Coconut
  • Lemons & Limes
  • Popcorn
  • Peanut Butter
  • Beans (excluding green beans)
  • Iceberg lettuce
Skylar munching away on some of her favorite greens.
  • Onions and other plants from the onion family including leeks, chives, shallots, onion grass, and spring onions.
  • Potatoes (excluding sweet potatoes)
  • Nuts and most seeds are fattening and pose a choking risk.
  • Grass or dandelions that have been exposed to herbicides or pesticides
  • Lawnmower clippings (they are mixed with oil & can ferment and cause bloat in guinea pigs)
  • Eggplant leaves, stems, and unripe eggplants
  • Tomato leaves, stems, and unripe tomatoes
  • Most plants that grow from a bulb are poisonous, and many houseplants are, too – be sure to keep plants out of your piggy’s reach!

In Closing

I hope you found these lists helpful for your piggies! The best diet for guinea pigs consists mostly of grass hay, supplemented by high-quality pellets, and up to 1 cup of fresh vegetables daily.

Be sure to introduce all new foods slowly to your guinea pig to give them time to adjust and avoid digestive issues.

Foods that are high in Vitamin C while remaining low in calcium are the best options for guinea pigs. Also, be sure to feed a variety of colored veggies so your piggies get a healthy mix of minerals and antioxidants.

For even more information on guinea pig diets and feeding tips, check out our guinea pig food page.

Peach and Daisy posing with an assortment of sweet bell peppers.

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