John Seeberg

Written by John Seeberg

Laura Ward

Reviewed by Laura Ward

Updated: June 12, 2024

NutriSource Grain inclusive & Grain free cans (Wet) Review

Updated: June 12, 2024

Our Verdict


Highly Recommended

NutriSource wet cat food is made up of seven recipes – three grain inclusive, four grain-free – which each receive the Cat Food Advisor highest rating, 5 stars.

  • Made with high-quality animal protein
  • Contains additional animal organs
  • Salmon oil provides a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids
  • High in protein
  • Low in carbohydrate
  • Rich in fat and moisture
  • Contains some plant based protein
  • More expensive than some cat foods

The table below shows each recipe in the range including our rating and the AAFCO nutrient profile: Growth (kitten), Maintenance (adult), All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.

Product line Rating AAFCO
NutriSource Chicken & Rice Formula 5 A
NutriSource Chicken, Turkey & Lamb Formula 5 A
NutriSource Chicken, Turkey, Lamb & Fish Formula 5 A
NutriSource Lamb Select 5 A
NutriSource Pork Select 5 A
NutriSource Turkey Select 5 A
NutriSource Country Select 5 A

Recipe and Label Analysis

NutriSource Chicken & Rice Formula was selected to represent the other products in the line for a detailed recipe and nutrient analysis.

Label and nutrient data below are calculated using dry matter basis.

NutriSource Chicken & Rice Formula

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content







Chicken, chicken broth, chicken liver, brown rice, yeast extract, dried egg product, dehydrated alfalfa meal, flaxseed, agar-agar, natural flavor, potassium chloride, salmon oil (preserved with tocopherols), choline chloride, salt, taurine, minerals (iron proteinate, zinc proteinate, copper proteinate, manganese proteinate, sodium selenite, ethylenediamine dihydroiodide), vitamins (vitamin E supplement, niacin, thiamine mononitrate, D-calcium pantothenate, vitamin A supplement, riboflavin supplement, vitamin B12 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, biotin, folic acid, vitamin D3 supplement), brewers dried yeast, hydrolyzed yeast, dried kelp, yucca schidigera extract.

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 0.3%

Red denotes any controversial items

Ingredients Analysis

The first ingredient is chicken, which is considered “the clean combination of flesh and skin… derived from the parts or whole carcasses of chicken”. 1

Chicken is naturally rich in the 11 essential amino acids required by a cat to sustain life.

The second ingredient is chicken broth. Broths are of only modest nutritional value. Yet because they add both flavor and moisture to a cat food, they are a common component in many wet products.

The third ingredient is chicken liver. This is an organ meat sourced from a named animal and thus considered a beneficial component.

The fourth ingredient is brown rice, a complex carbohydrate that (once cooked) can be fairly easy to digest. However, aside from its natural energy content, rice is of only modest nutritional value to a cat.

The fifth ingredient is yeast extract which is the common name for a broad group of products made by removing the cell wall from the yeast organism.

A significant number of these ingredients are added as specialized nutritional supplements while others are used as flavor enhancers. 

However, the glutamic acid (and its chemical cousin, monosodium glutamate, or MSG) found in a minority of yeast extracts can be controversial.

That’s because even though the Food and Drug Administration designated these food additives to be safe decades ago, the agency continues to receive reports of adverse effects.

So, detractors still object to the use of yeast extract and other glutamic acid derivatives and blame them for everything from Alzheimer’s (in humans) to obesity.

In any case, since the label reveals little about the actual type of yeast extract included in any recipe, it’s impossible for us to judge the quality of this ingredient.

The sixth ingredient is dried egg product, which is a dehydrated form of shell-free eggs. Quality can vary significantly. Lower grade egg products can even come from commercial hatcheries – from eggs that have failed to hatch.

In any case, eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

The seventh ingredient is dehydrated alfalfa meal. Although alfalfa meal is high in plant protein (about 18%) and fiber (25%), it can be less common to find it in a cat food recipe.

The eighth ingredient is flaxseed, one of the best plant sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Provided they’ve first been ground into a meal, flax seeds are also rich in soluble fiber.

However, flaxseed contains about 19% protein, a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this cat food.

From here the list goes on to include a number of other items. But to be realistic, ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to affect the overall rating of the product.

However this recipe contains brewers dried yeast, which can be a controversial item. Dried yeast contains about 45% protein and is rich in other healthy nutrients. Fans believe yeast repels fleas and supports the immune system. Critics argue yeast ingredients can be linked to allergies.

This may be true, but (like all allergies) only if your particular cat is allergic to the yeast itself. In any case, unless your cat is specifically allergic to it, we feel yeast should be considered a positive addition.

This food also contains chelated minerals that have been chemically attached to protein. This makes them easier to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually found in better cat foods.

Nutrient Analysis

Based on its ingredients alone, NutriSource Chicken & Rice Formula looks like an above-average wet product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 42.8%, a fat level of 30.1% and an estimated carbohydrate level of 19.1%.

As a group, the brand features an above-average protein content of 42.8% and an above-average fat level of 32.2%. Together these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 17% for the overall product line, alongside a fat to protein ratio of 75%.

This means this NutriSource Grain inclusive & Grain free cans range contains higher than average protein, lower than average carbohydrate and higher than average fat, when compared to typical wet cat food.

Final Word

This range of food offers good protein, derived from quality animal meat and organs. In addition, it is rich in fat which comes from fish oil which provides omega-3 fatty acids.

The Cat Food Advisor recommends this food.

Has NutriSource Grain inclusive & Grain free cans cat food been recalled in the past?

No. NutriSource cat food has not been recalled.

You can view a complete list of all cat food recalls since 2021 here.

To stay on top of any cat food product recalls, sign up for our free email alerts, here.


NutriSource was founded in 1964 by Darrell Nelson and is based in Perham, Minnesota. The company has been family-owned for three generations.

NutriSource is part of the KLN family of brands which is headed by CEO Kenny Nelson.

As a US-based brand, NutriSource manufactures their foods in company-owned facilities in Perham, MN.


1: [1. Association of American Feed Control Officials].

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