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Best Raw Dog Food Brands for Health, Safety, and Taste

Mychelle Blake
woman feeding dog in kitchen

The raw dog food diet has become popular with dog owners who feel that dry kibble and canned food are not providing their dogs with the balanced meals needed for optimal health. Since feeding a raw diet can be a lot of work, this has given rise to commercially prepared raw food diets which make feeding raw easier and more convenient. There are many options for dog owners and the best raw dog food brands receive high reviews for their recipes, packaging and quality.

Best Freeze-Dried Raw Dog Food

Stella & Chewy's Chicken Dinner Patties are an excellent choice for a freeze-dried raw dog food. It's a grain-free, gluten-free and raw pea-free recipe that is the number one choice on the Dog Lover's Digest website with a five-star rating. The Dog Food Advisor website also gives it a five star rating and calls it a "superior raw product." Chewy.com users give it an average rating of 4.7 out of five stars with over 500 reviews. It's made from 95% cage-free chicken and 100% certified organic fruits and vegetables.

  • The food is best for adult dogs and all breed types and sizes.
  • The first five ingredients are chicken with ground bone, chicken liver, chicken gizzard, pumpkin seed and organic cranberries.
  • The nutritional profile is 48% protein, 28% fat, 5% fiber and 5% moisture with about 4,420 kcal per kilogram.
  • It comes in a 5.5 ounce bag (11 patties) for about $14, a 14 ounce bag (28 patties) for $30 and a 25 ounce bag (50 patties) for about $50.

Best Frozen Raw Dog Food

Instinct by Nature's Variety Frozen Raw Medallions Cage Free Chicken Recipe is one of the top frozen raw dog food choices. Users on Chewy.com give the food an average rating of 4.3 out of five stars and it's one of the ten best raw dog foods chosen by Pet Reviews. Dog Food Advisor gives it their second highest rating, 4.5 out of five stars and highly recommends it. The food comes in one ounce frozen medallions that are 85% meat and organs and 15% non-GMO vegetables, fruits and other nutrients. It's also grain-, corn-, wheat-, and soy-free and has no artificial ingredients.

  • The food is best for adult dogs and all breed types and sizes.
  • The first five ingredients are chicken (including ground chicken bone), chicken liver, chicken heart, apples, and carrots.
  • The nutritional profile is 12% protein, 8% fat, 2% fiber and 70% moisture with about 1,645 kcal per kilogram.
  • It comes in a three pound bag that contains about 48 one-ounce medallions and sells for about $15.

Best Budget-Friendly Frozen Raw Food

One of the downsides of feeding raw is that it can be quite expensive. Finding an affordable option can help make this diet much easier on the wallet. Nature's Logic Patties come in five different flavors: beef, chicken, venison, pork and rabbit. Rover.com chooses it as one of the best affordable frozen raw options and Dog Food Advisor gives it 4.5 out of five stars and calls it "highly recommended." Chewy.com users give the chicken recipe a rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

  • The food is best for adult dogs and all breed types and sizes.
  • The first five ingredients are chicken, chicken liver, chicken heart, montmorillonite clay and herring oil.
  • The nutritional profile is 12% protein, 7% fat, 3% fiber and 72% moisture with about 1,200 Kcal per kilogram.
  • It comes in either a six pound bag of 3.2 ounce-size patties or a six pound bag of eight ounce patties for about $38. That works out to about $6.33 per pound.

Best Budget-Friendly Freeze-Dried Raw Food

Another budget-conscious top pick is Primal Freeze-Dried Nuggets for Dogs. Dog Food Advisor gives the product their top five star rating. The chicken flavor is an Amazon's Choice product with an average rating of 4.2 out of five stars with over 300 reviews. It also comes in beef, lamb, pork, turkey and sardine, and venison which range in ratings on Amazon between 4.3 and 4.5 stars. The diets are all free of grain, gluten, corn, wheat and soy.

  • The food is best for adult dogs and all breed types and sizes.
  • The first five ingredients are: chicken, chicken necks, chicken gizzards, organic kale and organic carrots.
  • The nutritional profile is 37% protein, 37% fat, 1% fiber and 2% moisture with about 172 calories per ounce of food.
  • It comes in either a 5.5 ounce bag for about $15 or a 14 ounce bag for about $31. These nuggets can be a cost conscious form of the raw diet as you can buy them and use them to supplement a regular bowl of kibble or other fresh ingredients.

Best Raw Food for Dogs With Medical Issues

Darwin's Natural Pet Products line of frozen raw dog foods is a leader in the commercially prepared raw dog food market. They have received top reviews for their commitment to creating diets using quality, organic vegetables and hormone-free, antibiotic-free and pesticide-free meats. They also make a line of foods that are available with a veterinary prescription only. Their Intelligent Design Veterinary Meals for Dogs are designed for dogs that either have kidney disease, liver disease, cancer or joint and musculoskeletal issues. These diets are all designed specifically for each medical condition, such as lowered protein, increased vitamins and supplements and they do not include grains, refined carbohydrates or high-starch content. Darwin's ships their products nationwide and also has an autoship service. They also have a discount program for service dogs and for pet professionals.

  • The food is best for adult dogs with one of the four listed medical conditions and the supervision of a veterinarian.
  • The first five ingredients for the Kidney Support diet are beef meat, sweet potatoes, beets, beef livers and beef hearts.
  • The nutritional profile is 13% protein, 9% fat, 1.2% fiber and 71% moisture with about 1,513 kcalories per kilogram.
  • The recipes range from $6.90 per pound for the cancer and joint support diets up to $8.90 per pound for the kidney support diet.
  • It comes in either a 5.5 ounce bag for about $15 or a 14 ounce bag for about $31. These nuggets can be a cost conscious form of the raw diet as you can buy them and use them to supplement a regular bowl of kibble or other fresh ingredients.

Best Raw Dog Food Diet for All Life Stages

K9 Natural Grain-Free Freeze-Dried Dog Food is an Amazon's Choice product with an average rating of 4.4 out of five stars. It's also on the Whole Dog Journal's list of top raw foods. The food is made from ingredients sourced in New Zealand including grass-fed, range-free meat and cage-free chickens. The food is grain-free and has non-GMO ingredients. This food can also be used in several ways as either a complete meal, mixed with other fresh ingredients, as a training treat or as a topper on dry kibble.

  • The food meets all AAFCO requirements for all life stages of your dog, from puppy to senior.
  • The first five ingredients for the beef recipe are beef, beef liver, beef tripe, beef kidney and beef heart. It also comes in a chicken, lamb, lamb and salmon and hoki and beef recipe.
  • The nutritional profile is 35% protein, 37% fat, 2% fiber and 8% moisture with about 5,269 kcalories per kilogram.
  • It comes in a five ounce bag which sells for about $14.

Feeding the Best Raw Dog Food Brands

It's definitely easier to feed a commercially prepared raw frozen and freeze-dried dog food, especially if you're limited on time and don't care for all the food preparation involved in making your dog's food. While some of these products can be pricey, you may find budgeting for them is worth it if you prefer the ease of pre-prepared meals. Though these products are less messy than preparing meals with raw meat and bones on your own, you still need to observe safe food handling practices. Make sure you wash your hands before and after handling these products to keep you and your dog's safe, and clean your dog's bowls regularly as well.

Best Raw Dog Food Brands for Health, Safety, and Taste