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12 Best Gourmet Dog Foods in 2024 – Top Picks & Reviews

Written by: Jordyn Alger

Last Updated on May 15, 2024 by Dogster Team

12 Best Gourmet Dog Foods in 2024 – Top Picks & Reviews

White fluffy dog looking at Ollie fresh dog food chicken and beef recipes on table

We all want what is best for our canines, and premium food can be just the way to ensure that happens. Gourmet dog food options are becoming more popular as pet owners become more aware of their dog’s dietary needs, but which dog food is the right pick for you? It can feel overwhelming to try and sort through the endless options.

This article aims to narrow your search by providing reviews of some of the best gourmet dog foods on the market. From vet-recommended brands to choices for puppies, there is something for everyone on this list. So, let’s dig in!

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A Glance at Our Winners in 2024

Rating Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Ollie Fresh Lamb with Cranberries Ollie Fresh Lamb with Cranberries
  • Supports digestion
  • Includes superfoods
  • Balances blood sugar
  • Budget Buy
    Second place
    Wellness Grain-Free Adult Recipe Wellness Grain-Free Adult Recipe
  • Provides omega fatty acids
  • Good source of glucosamine, and taurine
  • Supports immune system
  • Third place
    Nom Nom Dog Food Beef Recipe Nom Nom Dog Food Beef Recipe
  • Made freshly
  • Premium ingredients
  • Made in USA kitchens
  • Diamond Naturals Large Breed Puppy Formula Diamond Naturals Large Breed Puppy Formula
  • First two ingredients are animal-based
  • Made in the USA
  • Made without artificial flavors and colors
  • Merrick Classic Healthy Grains Small Breed Recipe Merrick Classic Healthy Grains Small Breed Recipe
  • First two ingredients are animal-based
  • Provides omega fatty acids, glucosamine, and chondroitin
  • Aids digestion
  • The 12 Best Gourmet Dog Foods

    1. Ollie Fresh Lamb with Cranberries Dog Food Subscription – Best Overall

    Ollie Lamb Dish With Cranberries

    Main ingredients: Lamb, butternut squash, lamb liver, kale, rice, cranberries
    Protein content: 10%
    Fat content: 7%

    Our choice for best overall gourmet dog food is Ollie’s Fresh Lamb with Cranberries.

    This recipe is packed with great ingredients, including real lamb, healthy superfoods, and nutritious fruits and vegetables. It’s good for managing your dog’s blood sugar and helping their vision and digestion. Fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants help boost your dog’s overall well-being.

    This recipe is made in the United States and avoids artificial ingredients and fillers. The premium quality of the blend lends to its high price, but that’s to be expected with almost any gourmet dog food.

    Pros
    • Provides antioxidants, fiber, and healthy vitamins
    • Supports digestion
    • Includes superfoods
    • Balances blood sugar
    • Boosts eye health
    Cons
    • Expensive

    2. Wellness Grain-Free Adult Recipe Dry Dog Food – Budget Buy

    Wellness Grain-Free Complete Health Adult Deboned Chicken & Chicken Meal Recipe Dry Dog Food

    Main ingredients: Deboned chicken, potatoes, peas, chicken meal, dried ground potatoes
    Protein content: 20% min
    Fat content: 12% min

    The best gourmet dog food for the money is Wellness’s Grain-Free Complete Health Adult Deboned Chicken & Chicken Meal Recipe.

    The first ingredient is deboned chicken, providing your pup with healthy proteins to fuel their energetic lifestyle. The recipe contains omega fatty acids that support the skin and coat health and is fortified with antioxidants and probiotics.

    It is important to know that his recipe is grain-free and contains peas. Grain-free diets1 and recipes with peas2 may be linked to severe heart conditions in dogs. So, keep that in mind when making a decision, and consult your vet before making any significant dietary changes.

    Pros
    • Provides omega fatty acids, probiotics, and antioxidants
    • Good source of glucosamine, and taurine
    • Supports immune system
    Cons
    • Contains peas
    • Grain-free

    3. Nom Nom Beef Mash Dog Food Subscription

    Nom Nom Beef Mash

    Main ingredients: Ground beef, russet potatoes, eggs, carrots, peas
    Protein content: 8%
    Fat content: 4%

    Nom Nom’s recipes are made fresh in kitchens in the United States. The wholesome proteins and vegetables create an excellent blend to support your dog’s health. Nom Nom also offers the unique benefit of pre-portioning your dog’s meal to suit their dietary needs.

    Since peas are in this recipe and may be linked to heart disease in dogs, we recommend that you speak to your vet before making any dietary changes for your dog.

    Pros
    • Made fresh
    • Premium ingredients
    • Made in USA kitchens
    Cons
    • Contains Peas

    4. Diamond Naturals Large Breed Puppy Food

    Diamond Naturals Large Breed Puppy Food

    Main ingredients: Lamb, lamb meal, whole grain brown rice, cracked pearled barley, grain sorghum
    Protein content: 27% min
    Fat content: 15% min

    The best recipe for puppies is Diamond’s Naturals Large Breed Puppy Formula. The first two ingredients are lamb and lamb meal, both animal-sourced products, and the recipe is packed with protein. This is evident with the protein content reaching a 27% minimum. The blend is made in the United States without artificial coloring or flavoring, ensuring the quality of its production.

    Unfortunately, this recipe is built for large breeds only. So, if you have a small or medium-breed puppy, this may not be the right fit for you.

    Pros
    • First two ingredients are animal-based
    • Made in the USA
    • Made without artificial flavors and colors
    • Contains superfoods
    Cons
    • Large breeds only

    5. Merrick Classic Healthy Grains Small Breed Dog Food

    Merrick Classic Healthy Grains Small Breed Recipe Adult Dry Dog Food

    Main ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Barley, Turkey Meal
    Protein content: 27% min
    Fat content: 16% min

    Our next choice is Merrick’s Classic Healthy Grains Small Breed Recipe. The first two ingredients are deboned chicken and chicken meal, both animal-based products. This ensures that the 27% protein content minimum is made up of healthy meat for your pup. The brown rice supports digestive health, and the inclusion of omega fatty acids, glucosamine, and chondroitin promotes overall health.

    The recipe is only available to small breed dogs, and if you have a bigger dog, you may want to look for other options on this list or review Merrick’s other products.

    Pros
    • First two ingredients are animal-based
    • Provides omega fatty acids, glucosamine, and chondroitin
    • Aids digestion
    Cons
    • Small breeds only

    6. Spot & Tango Cod & Salmon UnKibble Gourmet Dog Food

    Spot + Tango Cod & Salmon Unkibble Recipe

    Main ingredients: Cod, salmon, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, sunflower seeds
    Protein content: 29.67% min
    Fat content: 22.06% min

    Spot & Tango’s Cod & Salmon UnKibble is packed with protein and uses cod and salmon as the first two ingredients. The fruits and vegetables in the blend contribute to overall health. Spot & Tango’s recipes are made fresh and personalized for the well-being of your dog and are made with limited ingredients.

    This recipe is also grain-free. If your dog has an allergy to grains, it could be beneficial, but if not, we recommend that you speak to your vet about the potential link between grain-free diets and heart disease.

    Pros
    • Hypoallergenic
    • First two ingredients are animal-based
    Cons
    • Grain-free

    7. Just Food for Dogs Chicken & White Rice Dog Food Recipe

    Just Food for Dogs Chicken and White Rice

    Main ingredients: Chicken thighs, white rice, spinach, carrots, apples
    Protein content: 8% min
    Fat content: 3% min

    The Chicken & White Rice recipe by Just Food for Dogs is a premium dog food brand and is rather expensive. However, the health benefits more than live up to the price tag.

    The recipe is an excellent source of calcium and phosphorus, both of which are vital to the maintenance of healthy bones. Another benefit is that there are no preservatives, and if gluten gives your dog tummy issues, there is no gluten, either.

    Pros
    • Great calcium and phosphorus content
    • No preservatives
    • Gluten-free
    Cons
    • Expensive

    8. The Honest Kitchen Gourmet Grains Dehydrated Dog Food

    The Honest Kitchen Gourmet Grains Beef & Salmon Recipe

    Main ingredients: Dehydrated Beef, Organic Barley, Organic Oats, Organic Flaxseed, Dehydrated Eggs
    Protein content: 30% min
    Fat content: 15% min

    The Honest Kitchen’s Gourmet Grains Beef & Salmon dehydrated dog food is an excellent gourmet meal for pups.

    This recipe is made in the United States and does not contain any artificial fillers, by-products, or preservatives. The protein content is a 30% minimum, and the recipe is packed with fruits and vegetables. Ingredients such as carrots, coconut, and pumpkin support your dog’s overall well-being.

    Before serving The Honest Kitchen, you will need to add warm water, wait three minutes, stir, and then serve. So, keep that in mind when making a decision.

    Pros
    • Made in the USA
    • No artificial preservatives, by-products, fillers
    • High protein
    Cons
    • Requires a wait before serving

    9. VICTOR Classic Hi-Pro Plus Formula Dry Dog Food

    VICTOR Classic Hi-Pro Plus Formula Dry Dog Food

    Main ingredients: Beef meal, grain sorghum, chicken fat, pork meal, chicken meal
    Protein content: 30% min
    Fat content: 20% min

    Victor’s Classic Hi-Pro Plus Formula is a great option for dogs. With a high protein content and an affordable price, this recipe allows pet owners to receive quality at a low cost.

    It is crafted in the United States and is dense with nutrients, helping to keep your lively pup energized. Vitamins, minerals, fatty acids, and essential amino acids are included in the meal, and provide some great health benefits.

    Sadly, this recipe is designed only with small breeds and medium breeds in mind. A larger dog may need a different formula to support their needs.

    Pros
    • Affordable
    • Made in the USA
    • High protein content
    Cons
    • Small and medium breeds only

    10. ACANA Red Meat Recipe Gluten-Free Gourmet Dry Dog Food

    ACANA Wholesome Grains Red Meat Recipe Gluten-Free Dry Dog Food

    Main ingredients: Beef, deboned pork, beef meal, oat groats, whole sorghum
    Protein content: 27% min
    Fat content: 17% min

    Acana’s Wholesome Grains Red Meat Recipe Gluten-Free dog food is a healthy and wholesome option.

    The first three ingredients are beef, deboned Pork, and beef meal, contributing to a high-protein diet. The wholesome grains, pumpkin, and butternut squash are full of fiber and incredibly nutritious, boosting the health of your dog’s digestive system. Plus, there are no artificial preservatives, flavors, or colors.

    This recipe is also recommended exclusively for small dog breeds and medium dog breeds. If you think this is the right option for your large breed dog, talk to your vet first to ensure that it can give your dog the nutrients they need.

    Pros
    • First three ingredients are animal-based
    • Gluten-free
    • High protein content
    • No artificial flavors, preservatives, or colors
    Cons
    • Small and medium dog breeds only

    11. Merrick Classic Healthy Grains Adult Dry Dog Food

    Merrick Classic Healthy Grains Real Beef + Brown Rice Recipe with Ancient Grains Adult Dry Dog Food

    Main ingredients: Deboned beef, pork meal, brown rice, barley, oatmeal
    Protein content: 26% min
    Fat content: 15% min

    Merrick’s Classic Healthy Grains Real Beef + Brown Rice Recipe with Ancient Grains is a great option for all breeds and is made in the United States.

    With deboned beef and pork meal as the first two ingredients, the recipe is packed with protein. The inclusion of glucosamine and chondroitin supports the mobility and function of the hips and joints, and the omega fatty acids help to nourish the skin and coat.

    This option is a bit pricey but most quality dog foods will not be cheap.

    Pros
    • First two ingredients are animal-based
    • Made in the USA
    • Aids hip and joint function
    • Boosts health of the skin and coat
    Cons
    • Expensive

    12. Farmina Lamb & Blueberry Medium & Maxi Adult Dry Dog Food

    Farmina N&D Ancestral Grain Lamb & Blueberry Medium & Maxi Adult Dry Dog Food

    Main ingredients: Lamb, dehydrated lamb, whole spelt, whole oats, dried whole eggs
    Protein content: 28% min
    Fat content: 18% min

    Farmina’s N&D Ancestral Grain Lamb & Blueberry Medium & Maxi dog food recipe is a low glycemic formula, perfect for dogs that require carefully balanced blood sugar.

    Lamb and dehydrated lamb are the first two ingredients, which are a great source of nutrition for your dog. The whole spelt and whole oats are designed to support dogs with blood sugar difficulties. Like several brands on our list, Farmina a bit more expensive than standard dog food.

    Pros
    • First two ingredients are animal-based
    • Low glycemic formula
    • No by-products
    • High protein content
    Cons
    • Expensive

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    Buyer’s Guide: Finding the Best Gourmet Dog Food

    Now that you have a list to start from, how do you figure out which option is the best for your dog?

    Talk to Your Veterinarian

    The first and best step you can take is to consult a trusted veterinarian about your dog’s diet. Your vet’s professional insight will be the greatest tool you have in constructing a personalized meal plan for your dog, ensuring that your furry friend gets the proper nutrition they need in each bite.

    Learn What Makes a Recipe Healthy

    Several dietary factors can contribute to your dog’s health, such as the ingredients and the nutritional value.

    Although meat is essential to your dog’s diet, it should not be the only part. Generally, a good dog diet includes meat, grains, vegetables, and fruits. The higher the quality of these ingredients, the better your dog’s health.

    The age or breed of your dog can determine which recipes are good for them. Over time, the nutritional needs of your dog will change. That is why finding a dog food that is specific to their age and breed categories can support them even more than other formulas.

    labrador dog watching its food at home
    Image by: Olena Yakobchuk, Shutterstock

    Understand How to Read a Dog Food Label

    Reading a dog food label can be confusing, but Merck’s Veterinary Manual explains each important category in detail. There are three important places to look when reading a dog food label.

    The guaranteed analysis will list the minimum amounts of protein and fat in the formula and the maximum amounts of water and fiber. These numbers can give you a reasonable estimate of the nutritional value of a particular recipe.

    The most prevalent ingredients are the ones listed first. So, if the first ingredient is an animal protein, then the formula is likely of good quality.

    The statement of nutritional adequacy is an AAFCO-approved statement that ensures the recipe is whole and balanced for dogs. This stamp of approval is an indicator of the quality of the meal.

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    Summary

    This article reviews some of the best gourmet dog foods on the market, starting with Ollie’s Fresh Lamb with Cranberries meal. The best budget option is Wellness’s Grain-Free Complete Health Deboned Chicken & Chicken Meal Recipe, and Nom Nom’s Beef Mash is our 3rd place choice.

    Though these are our top three, any recipe on this list could be the perfect fit for your dog. Talk to your vet, do your research, and decide what option best suits your furry friend.


    Featured Image Credit: Dogster

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