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Sunday craft: DIY bird seed cookies

It’s hard to think of thrifty things to do a Sunday with kids. This fun craft is easy to make and enjoyable for kids of all ages.

It’s difficult to come up with budget-friendly activities for a Sunday with kids. This delightful activity is simple to prepare and suitable for children of all ages.

Birdseed ornaments are easy to create and inexpensive – and your feathered companions will appreciate it!

At first glance, a cookie recipe containing birdseed may appear to be serving up unappealing diet fare as punishment for misbehaving children. Don’t worry. We would never do something like that!

While gingerbread men and Christmas tree tarts are out of season, your festive cookie cutters may be put to good use with a fun project that doubles as a thoughtful gift for family and friends.

We were positive that pigeons would make rapid work of these ornaments the first time we made them. Surprisingly, they stand up fairly well and, adorned with a bright ribbon, look lovely among the leaf-dropping trees.

If you want to make a large batch of birdseed cookies, we recommend doing so in separate batches. As a result, the mixture will not begin to dry out while the decorations are being formed. You want the birdseed to be wet when it goes into the cookie cutters for maximum stick factor after drying, and prepping individual batches only takes a minute or two.

What you need

  • 1 cup mixed wild birdseed
  • 1 packet unflavoured gelatin
  • 1/4 cup boiling water
  • Spray-and-cook
  • Twine or ribbon
  • Waxed paper
  • Finely crated apple or raw butternut

How to make it

  1. In a small saucepan, combine the gelatin and water and bring to a simmer, stirring frequently.
  2. Continue to whisk until the gelatin is completely dissolved.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside for one minute to cool.
  4. Stir in 3/4 cup birdseed, adding more as needed until the liquid is completely absorbed. (If you add more than 1 cup, there won’t be enough “glue” to bond the birdseed once it’s dry.)
  5. For some extra “flavour” you can combine a mix in a few cubes of finely sliced or grated apple and butternut.
  6. Place the cookie cutters on a baking sheet lined with parchment or waxed paper. (The ornaments can be made right on the counter, but a baking sheet allows them to be simply put aside later.)
  7. Half-fill each ornament with the birdseed mixture. String twine along the length of the cookie cutter.
  8. Fill the cookie cutter to the brim with the remaining birdseed mixture, packing it down firmly.
  9. Allow several hours or overnight for the ornaments to dry.
  10. Gently press them out of the cookie cutters when the ornaments have completely dried.
  11. Add a ribbon and hang it on a tree branch for the birds to enjoy!


  • While the cookie cutters do not need to be oiled, lightly lubricating them will make removal easier once dried, especially when using ornaments with slight angles, such as stars.
  • Younger children may benefit from choosing decorations with rounded corners, as these are easier to load with the birdseed.
  • The trick to making durable and stickable ornaments is to compress the birdseed mixture into the moulds firmly.

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