Homemade Organic Sweet Feed

Figuring out how to herd sheep into and out of the pastures each day was a bit challenging, until we figured out the magic trio – a red bucket, a bell and a treat called Sweet Feed.  Sweet feed is a grain mixture with a bit of molasses in it, and let me tell you something, sheep go mad for it.  They will follow you to the ends of the earth by the sound of that little bell and the looks of that bright red bucket. 

At first, I searched high & low for a local source for this stuff.  For anyone who is looking for a good business venture, I would suggest an organic and soy-free feed operation in Southern California.  No lie.  It is impossible to find good feed around here, and the market for it just keeps growing and growing.  I will be your very first customer.

Well finally, my search led me to a nice guy out of Colorado who suggested I just make my own!  Boy, was he right.  It is super simple to make, and the sheep love it way more than the non-organic stuff that was leftover by the previous owners, which is interesting because my version is very low in molasses.  Guess the sheep know what real food tastes like.  Around here, the treat is actually nicknamed “Molly’s Crack,” because the sheep appear to have developed a bit of an addiction.  If you’ve got animals yourself, give it a try.

Organic Sweet Feed
for Sheep

The ratio of molasses to grain in this recipe is low in order to preserve the health of the animals.  High-molasses feeds can cause diabetes in sheep, just like a high-sugar diet can in humans.  I make only a few buckets of this treat at a time, so that I’ve used it all within a month.  It will be a bit tacky, just use a spoon to break it up before scooping into the bucket.

6 cups pearled barley
6 cups whole wheat berries
6 cups green split peas
2 tbsp molasses

In a large bowl, combine the barley, wheat berries and split peas.  To the mixture, add the molasses.  Using a large spatula, fold the molasses into the mixture, making sure to coat all dry ingredients.  When the feed is ready, it will have a slightly dark and sticky appearance.

May your livestock enjoy!

xo – Organic Spark


  • Leanne

    Hi Molly! Thank you for this. Do you happen to have a recipe for chicken feed?

    January 20, 2012
    • Molly Chester

      Not yet. Maybe one day. We’re talking about trying to grow some grain here at ALF one day. That would require me to come up with a recipe! A few years off for us though. If you find a good one, let me know! :)

      January 21, 2012
  • This is the recipe I use for my chickens. I also mix in a little diatomaceous earth for mite control.

    January 22, 2012
    • Leanne

      Thank you, Tami!

      February 15, 2012
  • Tilon Van Wyk

    Hi do you more recipes for sheep ? my sheep are very thin and need to gain weigh very fast otherwise they may die. I give them 4 time a day extra feed but it is not working they do get fat. Can you help. Thank you

    September 20, 2012

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