Total Time
Prep 1 min
Cook 10 mins

This is my little hummingbird friend's favorite nectar. I know some people don't add the coloring, but my little hummer refuses to drink unless it is red. If you have a less picky humminbird then you don't need to bother with the coloring. I have heard conflicting informations from "experts" regarding the use of food color. If your hummingbird doesn't object...leave it out...mine does object and hasn't had problems so I use it. Luckily I live in Florida and can enjoy seeing hummingbirds all year long! :o)

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup superfine sugar
  • 3 -5 drops red food coloring (optional)


  1. Combine ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. Allow sugar to dissolve and remove from heat.
  3. Let the nectar cool and then pour into your feeder.
  4. Store remaining nectar in the refrigerator.
Most Helpful

This is the standard ratio for homemade nectar, but be advised red food coloring is unnecessary and can be harmful to our tiny feathered friends

pfoenix50 May 22, 2015

PLEASE DO NOT USE THIS RECIPE! Hummingbird experts have done research and will tell you over and over to not ever use red food coloring, which is Red Dye, a petrochemical, in hummingbird nectar. It harms hummingbirds. Experts also tell us to always, and only use the 4 to 1 ratio. That is 4 parts water and 1 part pure granulated cane sugar. Only. Please follow the experts from Audubon to Cornell U Ornithology and make it right or don't make it at all.

Jan W. March 21, 2015

Use a red feeder and you shouldn't need to color the nectar.

John W. July 15, 2015