What Do Fairies Eat?
The Fairies: What Do Fairies Eat?
For as long as fairies have roamed the earth (which has been thousands of years), they have also always loved to eat and be merry. Since the days of the ancient Celts, fairies were considered to be a real aspect of every day life. They weren't make-believe creatures, and many times the ancient peoples would show their respects to the fairies by leaving out offerings of food and drink. Other reasons to leave offerings to the fairies was to keep them appeased or entertained enough to deter them from stealing things like fresh milk or butter...or keep them from wreaking havoc in the home or on the farms.
If you are a lover of fairies and follow the pagan wheel of the year, perhaps you are wanting to know the answer to the question "what do fairies eat?" Maybe you plan on leaving fairy libations at your back-door step this Midsummer. Perhaps you want to know what food the fairies will eat in order to bless your garden. Maybe Samhain is on its way and you would like to leave an offering not only for your ancestors but for the fay. We will take a look at some of the tastiest and most traditional treats upon which fairies will partake. And we will discover the answer to the question, "what do fairies eat?"
Fairies Love Milk & Cream & Churned Butter
What Do Fairies Eat? Milk, Cream, or Butter Is Their Favorite Treat!
Traditionally in Ireland, Scotland, England and elsewhere in Europe, many people would leave a small serving of their freshly squeezed milk on the doorstep for the passing fairies. Some people in Ireland, as mentioned previously, believed in fairies so much so that they thought if they didn't leave a helping of their milk for the wee folk that the wee folk would become angry and either steal it for themselves or play awful tricks on them. This tradition can be read in many books, but it was included in a modern-day fictional story by popular author Anne Rice.
In Anne Rice's books The Mayfair Witches Trilogy, she speaks of how the Scottish would leave pails of milk on their doorsteps at night to appease the "Taltos". The Taltos was a type of fairy and a main character in her Mayfair Witches Trilogy, and it is mentioned time and time again throughout the Trilogy about how much the Taltos adored and yearned for fresh milk. This part of the story was pulled from actual folklore and tradition in Scotland and Ireland.
So as you can guess, milk is believed to be something that fairies love to eat...errr or drink. They mostly love fresh milk...the creamier the better. And, speaking of cream - what else do fairies eat? Cream and butter, of course. You can pretty much imagine that if fairies like to drink milk then they must love all forms of dairy, right? Well, I'm not sure about cheese or yogurt yet as I haven't tested it out myself, but I can tell you that cream and butter are also two traditional fairy foods. Freshly churned butter is even better!
What do fairies eat? Cakes, of course!
Cakes & Cookies: Fairies Love to Eat Sweets!
What do fairies eat besides milk, cream, and butter? Along those same lines, fairies dating back centuries have been known to love sweets of different kinds. Traditionally cakes and milk or cakes and ale would be left for the fay on one of the eight holy days (sabbats)...usually on Samhain, Beltane, or Midsummer.
In my experience with answering the question what do fairies eat, they will eat almost any type of sweet you offer to them. I've offered the fairies a blueberry muffin (not made from scratch, mind you) as well as a powdered doughnut with a cup of milk. And each time I went to get the dish the next day, the entire sweet treat was gone! The cup of milk always remains though, which makes me wonder if the fairies don't like it to be pasteurized? Maybe because it's stripped of it's creaminess, that doesn't please the fay so much.
For this Midsummer though, I plan on making fairy cakes from scratch. The fairies love it if you make a grand gesture for them. While fairies will eat sweets of any kind, home-made sweets designated specifically for their consumption might really thrill them! So what do fairies eat? Sweets of all kinds - cakes, cookies, pies, muffins, doughnuts, and probably more!
Update: I left out brownies and cream for the fairies on Midsummer's Eve...and on Midsummer morning the plate was completely clean and the glass was empty of any drops of cream. So apparently fairies eat brownies, as well!
The sweeter and prettier the more likely the fairies will love you for it.
What Do Fairies Eat & Drink? Libations of Ale & Wine
In addition to stealing the unwilling household's fresh milk, churned butter, and sweet cakes, what do fairies eat? What do fairies drink?
- Heck, pretty much any kind of alcohol!
Another long-standing belief and traditional beverage of the fairies is wine. If you meet anyone who works with fairies on a regular basis, whether magically or simply naturally, they will most likely tell you that fairies love wine. So if you decide to leave cakes and milk out for the fairies this Midsummer, switch it up for Samhain and leave out some bread and wine.
That's right, folks. Fairies like to have a good time, just like you and me. There are even some fairies who circulate or reside around alcohol such as wine and ale. Two fairies that are known to guard wine cellars or vineyards include the clurichaun and the Italian monicielo. These fairies will stand guard over your stock but these fairies will also drink your wine...and sometimes too much of it! There are legends of people meeting drunk clurichauns after they have had too much of the family's wine stock from the cellar.
Ale is another traditional beverage of the fay. Fairies love to drink wine but they also love a traditional mug of ale or beer. The mug to the right was dug up and is thought to be from the 1700s...I wonder if any fairies ever drank ale out of this mug?
And don't forget the mead! The Irish fay in particular truly enjoy a bit of mead from time to time. I'm sure if you set out a small cup or goblet of a fresh batch, they will be very pleased!
Another recommendation - don't just set out any old type of beer or wine. You surely wouldn't feed a favored guest a mug of natty ice, now would you? And I also wouldn't set out a cup of Arbor Mist wine. Give them some of your finest that you can afford, even if it's a little extra that you didn't drink from a bottle yourself. The fairies will appreciate the gesture, trust me.
Hopefully I've answered the question, what do fairies eat? If you haven't figured out what fairies eat by now, or if you disagree, you must experiment. Leave out different types of food and see what kind of reactions you get. Do good things happen directly after you leave the fairies an offering of bananas or does your entire stock of bananas rot within a day? You'll notice once you start making the offerings. And may the faeries bless you!
Written and copyrighted © Kitty the Dreamer (May Canfield), 2013. All Rights Reserved.
Questions & Answers
Do fairies like nuts?
You can try it out. Traditionally they enjoyed mead, wine, ale, buttercream, milk, cakes, and bread.
I know faeries dislike iron, but can they be given treats of certain fruits that might contain iron?
I would avoid it...they don't tend to like the fruits these days unless they are homegrown and/or organic. Too many pesticides.
How do you attract fairies to a farm?
Fairies are usually already there. But fairies love animals, particularly horses. Build a fairy garden and leave fairy offerings. Take good care of the land and wildlife and they will bless you in return.