I’ve heard that hamsters can eat nuts, but I have always wondered which ones are safe for them to eat since there are so many different types. So what nuts can hamsters eat?
There are loads of nuts that hamsters can eat. Peanuts, cashews, almonds, and hazelnuts are just a few of the best hamster treats you can give them. Plus, they are loaded with good nutrients that help to boost their health and add to a balanced diet.
Let me take you through everything you need to know about the good nuts, the bad nuts, and the facts in between.
Table of Contents
- Hamsters can eat most nuts except pecan nuts.
- Their favorites include walnuts, almonds, and Brazil nuts.
- If you’re looking for a healthy snack to give your hamster, try some of these nuts.
The Complete List of Nuts Hamsters Can Eat
Hamsters LOVE to eat nuts, and it’s a great way to give them a healthy snack. But not all nuts are created equal. Some of their favorites include walnuts, almonds, and Brazil nuts.
Nuts are a GREAT SOURCE of protein and other nutrients.  However, it is also important to remember to feed nuts in small amounts as a treat because they are high in fat.
Pro Tip: Hamster digestive systems can handle nuts well, especially as they forage for them in the wild.
So if you’re looking for a HEALTHY snack to give your hamster, try some of the nuts I have listed below. Your furry friend might love them.
Almonds are a RICH source of nutrients like vitamin E, copper, magnesium, and manganese .
Hamsters eat almonds like crazy but make sure you do not give your hamster bitter almonds, as these contain high quantities of cyanide.
They also contain monounsaturated fats, the “good” fats that can help reduce cholesterol levels and improve heart health.
Pro Tip: be sure to remove the almond skins before giving them to your hamster, as these can be harmful.
Can they eat Brazil nuts? Well, Brazil nuts are another EXCELLENT choice for hamsters. They’re a good source of selenium, which is an essential mineral for hamsters (and humans). 
Pro Tip: Brazil nuts are relatively high in fat, so be sure to give them in moderation.
Yes, hamsters eat cashews. Cashews are a good source of ESSENTIAL vitamins and minerals like copper, magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc. 
They also contain “good” fats, like oleic acid, which is fantastic for their health and building a robust immune system.
Hamsters eat hazelnuts, which are an EXCELLENT SOURCE of vitamin E, manganese, and copper. They also contain mono- and polyunsaturated fats, which are essential for maintaining a healthy heart.
Macadamia nuts are great for hamsters but have the same benefits and issues as Brazil nuts. They’re a good source of selenium but are also relatively HIGH in fat.
Macadamia nuts are one of the few nuts that Dwarf hamsters CANNOT eat. The risk of diabetes is too high and can cause serious health problems.
Do hamsters eat peanuts? Yes, they do. Peanuts are a good source of protein, fiber, niacin, and vitamin E. They also contain “good” fats and have been shown to improve heart health.
Can hamsters eat peanut butter, though? Well, yes, they can, but they should be fed with caution because sticky food can get stuck in their cheek pouches.
Pro Tip: be sure to remove the peanut skins before giving them to your hamster, as these can be harmful.
Pine nuts are an excellent source of vitamin K, manganese, copper, and iron. They also contain monounsaturated fats, which can help IMPROVE heart health.
Pistachios are a good source of protein, fiber, copper, manganese, and vitamins B6 and E. They also contain “good” fats and can improve heart health.
Can Hamsters eat walnuts? Yes. Walnuts are an EXCELLENT source of omega-3 fatty acids, copper, manganese, and vitamins B6 and E. They also contain “good” fats and can improve heart health.
Here is a cute hamster enjoying her nuts.
Considering there are so many nuts that hammies can enjoy, are there any harmful ones?
Which Nuts Should Hamsters Avoid?
There are a few nuts that you should AVOID in your hamster’s diet. These are:
- Salted nuts
- Bitter almonds
This is because they are NOT healthy options and can cause health problems.[ 5] Pecans are exceptionally sweet and much higher in terms of sugar content than other nuts.
Bitter nuts contain too much cyanide, and the high sodium content of salted nuts is risky.
How Often Can Hamsters Eat Nuts?
Giving your hamster a nut or two once a week is MORE than enough, and they should not have more than this.
It is enough to provide an excellent nutritional boost to their diet without causing any potential harm to their health.
Can Hamsters Have Nuts in Shells?
While hamsters CAN eat the shells of some nuts, it is generally not recommended. This is because they can be a choking hazard and cause digestive problems.
Can Hamsters Have Salted Nuts?
No, hamsters should not have salted nuts as they are high in sodium and can cause health problems such as dehydration.
So, what nuts can hamsters eat? There are a variety of nuts that hamsters CAN eat, and they offer a range of nutritional benefits. Be sure to give them in moderation, as some nuts are relatively high in fat.
Remember, REMOVE the skins of any nuts before giving them to your hamster, as these can be harmful. Finally, avoid giving hamsters salted nuts, as the high sodium can cause health problems.
Check out my other guides on what you can and cannot give your hamster as a nice little treat.
What nuts from the above list did you feed your hamster? Let us know in the comments!
- 1. Ros E. Health Benefits of Nut Consumption. Nutrients. 2010;2(7):652-682. doi:10.3390/nu2070652
- 2. Health Benefits of Almonds – ProQuest. www.proquest.com. Accessed October 13, 2022. https://search.proquest.com/openview/353b1f60cf1c6f6a79695bfc423c6494/1?pq-origsite=gscholar&cbl=41269
- 3. Oup.com. Published 2022. Accessed October 13, 2022. https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article-abstract/87/2/379/4633360
- 4. Griffin LE, Dean LL. Nutrient Composition of Raw, Dry-Roasted, and Skin-On Cashew Nuts. Journal of Food Research. 2017;6(6):13. doi:10.5539/jfr.v6n6p13
- 5. Wong R. Response Latency of Gerbils and Hamsters to Nuts Flavoured with Bitter-Tasting Substances. Published May 1994. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1080/14640749408401355?journalCode=qjpc&
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