This Wreath Makes A Beautiful Christmas Gift for the Bird Lover...

There are a lot of recipes for this wreath on the Internet. I've made some with flour as the paste that have dried cloudy and fell apart easily.  This recipe/method seems to hold up best for me and the wreath dries clear.  I have tweaked it with a little more gelatin as I think it sets up nicer for me.  I never have the same experience twice when I use gelatin, sometimes it sets up fast and other times it seems to take forever to form a paste. With patience it always thickens for me!  I like to tie my wreaths with tulle as it is wide and soft and doesn't cut into the wreath while hanging.  Double it up, for strength.  It's also a nice touch to wrap the wreath in cellophane with a bow for gift giving!
#birdseedwreaths #diychristmasgifts #crafts #giftsforbirdlovers


1/3 slightly rounded cup cornstarch
1/2 cup warm water
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 and 1/2  package unflavored gelatin
4 cups bird food (such as seeds, peanuts, berries, dried fruits)
1 bundt pans or you can use other molds
Nonstick cooking spray


Please read through all the directions before starting...

Spray bundt pan with cooking spray, set aside.On stove top over medium heat, whisk gelatin and water until dissolved. Whisk in corn syrup and cornstarch next.  Keep whisking until there are no lumps.  It will form a thick paste.  Make sure mixture is thick before moving on to the next step (there is a picture of one of my wreaths that failed because I got impatient, see below)...if it's slow to thicken, sometimes allowing it to cool helps.

Add 4 cups bird seed to thickened mixture.  Mix well.  Spoon into mold.  Spray back of metal spoon with cooking spray and press firmly down on mixture so it is well packed in the mold.  Place in refrigerator until set. It will be hard to the touch when it's set. It usually takes about 1/2 hour. Remove from mold onto baking sheet, carefully.  Let dry for a couple of days (turning occasionally).  Tie on a bow for hanging (warning: do not use twine or other thin hard hangers as it will cut through the wreath and cause it to fall)

NOTE:  If you would can add a wire ring in the middle of mixture. It will hold together better when put outside. (hangers work well!)  Make sure your wire ring is not springy, you do not want to add pressure inside your wreath. This step is not necessary to form wreath but it does make a stronger wreath.  I usually do this step! **Also, do not put these wreaths out if rain is in the forecast for the week, they will fall apart in the rain (all food does).

A Sprinkle of Dried Fruit adds color!
Lay Hanger in center of mixture
Turn carefully onto flat sheet

Place rest of mixture on top

Your Wreath Will Dry Clear & Strong!

This is what will happen if you do not thicken your paste, it will pool at the bottom of the pan and dry cloudy and the wreath will not be strong.  Still edible for the birds but not a very nice gift! Sometimes I rush too much when I have a lot of them to make lol!

Update January 2017
Commonly asked questions
Will the wreathes mold? They are food so like all food they will mold at some point. It's best to make them a few days ahead of when you will use them/gift them. Use the same judgement as you would for your own food.
Are the ingredients bad for birds? Sugar, cornstarch, etc. are bad for any species in high quantity. This is meant to be a snack/treat not a major part of the diet. I have a Parrot and he loves a treat as much as I do and I think it adds to the quality of his life as it does mine. Please use your own judgement, it is not necessary to make comments below on this, just move on if you do not agree with feeding the birds.
Should I put them out in the rain? No, it's food, it will fall apart. Some people move them in and out if rain is called for in the forecast. Yes, occasionally they hold together even in the rain.
My wreath fell apart even though I think I did everything right! Yep, this happens. This is the best recipe I have made but it's food and sometimes doesn't cooperate. Put the broken one out on a pan for the birds up high away from predators (the squirrels will probably get it first but the birds will get in there too). My best advice, make a couple/few extras just in case something went wrong. 


copyright, 2013, Nicole F. Cox, All rights reserved.


Unknown said...

Nicole I just made the bird seed wreath. The paste thicker nicely. I do think mixing the cornstarch with the water and a whisk first then adding the gelatin would reduce clumping. Just could not get the cornstarch to dissolve easily. The second go around I did as mentioned and was so much easier. Turned out lovely. The wire ring worked awesome too. Thanks for sharing.

Nicole F. Cox said...

Hello Unknown, you're welcome! I'm glad to hear that you found a solution to your problem. Remember when making a recipe that things like atmosphere, water, gas/electric stove, how vigorously you stir, and temperature will always affect the outcome of any recipe so people will have different results depending on these factors. I've made/tested this recipe as written and lumps have never been an issue for me but thank you for commenting as someone who is experiencing this problem may find your solution helpful. For our readers, I don't recommend changing the recipe unless you experience an issue as this has been tested for several years by hundreds of people and this is the first complaint of lumps. Thanks again Unknown for taking the time to comment and sharing your thoughts with us!!

GiniD said...

Hello! I just wanted you to know that I've been using your recipe to make these lovely birdseed wreaths for several years now, and EVERYBODY loves them! I give them as gifts, which are very unique. In the winter, which is the only time I make them, I "store" them in the garage where it is cold, and do not have a problem with mold. If they get eaten up to the point where the ribbon doesn't hold them any longer, I simply place the chunks in an old birdbath for them, and other critters, to munch on freely. Your recipe is the best in my opinion as the "glue" doesn't turn white and holds the seed together very well. I use different types of seed, and sometimes fruit like dried cranberries, to give the wreaths color. A huge hit with my family and friends. Thank you!


Nicole F. Cox said...

Hello Virginia, thank you so much for sharing your experience! So much work goes into these posts and it's wonderful to know that you are finding it useful. I also love these wreaths and anything that helps our feathered friends get through the hard winter. Again, thanks for taking the time to comment, you made my day!

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